Carrerra Design & Renovation

Basement Renovation
North York ON M3J 2E5
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flak in Toronto
flak in Toronto
1 review Richmond Hill, ON
0/10

Main-Floor Reno - Unhappy

We are writing this review to help others avoid what we went through and save their money and avoid stress.

We fully trusted Alex as a professional and didn’t question his decisions which was our first mistake. In our case, he accepted a project that he did not know how to do and when he was faced with problems related to his inability to complete the work, he charged us for it. In our case, he charged us to re-sand our staircase (after it was ruined), re-paint our ceiling (after it was damaged during the work), and re-paint arches that were not patched properly.

Please see attached photos of the work and decide for yourself.

He installed red oak risers and treads over our new stairs, even though our flooring was white oak. We think this was the first of many problems that we would encounter.

He then tried to colour-match our new flooring with a two-tone stain over-top the red oak he installed. He was unable to apply the two-tone stain properly, resulting in a horrible finish that you will see in the attached photos. After Alex left, we consulted with multiple professionals in this field and they advised not only that the choice to use red oak was a mistake, but also that the contractor that we hired had no idea how to apply a two-tone finish, which resulted in the horrible mess we have.

After we complained to Alex, we finally got him to agree that this was unacceptable and that it needed to be redone. However, even after agreeing he did not cover the costs to re-sand the stairs. We not only paid for that ourselves, but we even helped sand because his worker couldn't get it done properly and missed many areas. After all of this, he applied a stain and clearcoat combination that turned our stairs orange. We spoke with a professional about this and he advised us that this is a common mistake for people that do not know which types of stain/clearcoat to use with red oak. Going into this process we knew we wouldn't get a 100% colour match here, but this isn't even 10%. Even now, we can still see colour bleed-thru from the original two-tone mess. It's terrible.

During this work, we had to be out of our house for 3 weeks for him to practice on our stairs. He charged us $12,000 and at the end said he cannot do more and gave us $2000 discount for his bad job which is not even close to what we have to spend to fix it. (We have two separate quotes coming in around $7000 for one out of two staircases).

While they were working inside on the floors, a lot of dust was generated which ruined parts of our ceiling as the workers put their tape over-top of it. After three weeks, the paint was ruined and had to be re-done. Again, his workers made this mistake but he forced us to pay for it.

During demolition of our dining area, his crew broke many of our marble tiles. Alex told us that he would bring in a professional to fix it, however he never did this and simply put grout over-top of the big chips. Again, looks terrible and is sloppy which you will see in the photos.

The pickets that were removed from our stairs were left on the floor during the project and due to carelessness are now re-installed but are covered in glue, paint, stain, and just about any other construction material you can think of.

Even after walking through our house multiple times, identifying problems that needed to be fixed, there are still many sloppy and un-finished things everywhere. You will see them in the photos.

We bought expensive, top-quality, canadian-made, engineered hardwood for this project (which we paid for outside of our contract). During the installation, Alex's crew managed to get construction adhesive over nearly every single board on our main floor. Even though our contract stipulated a "professional clean" - the glue is still noticeable everywhere and we are still cleaning up on a daily basis - which is very difficult to do because every time you clean the floor it removes part of the beautiful matte finish.

A lot of the preparation work that was necessary prior to the arrival of the painter was done poorly, and had to be re-done by the painter. The original estimate for this project was 3-4 weeks and it took 7 weeks before we got our house back. The painter routinely worked till 3AM since we were out of the house (we have cameras and an alarm) but I'm certain this project would have taken even longer had he not done that.

The one positive thing I will say about this project is that the installation of our new patio door and windows came out well.

Approximate cost of services:
$50,000.00
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