Rockland Design/Becker Corp Builders - Caveat Emptor
SUFFERN, NEW YORK -- CAVAET EMPTOR! After working with Rockland Design/Becker Corp Builders on a recent project I can say with confidence DO NOT HIRE THIS CONTRACTOR, YOU WILL REGRET IT. Read on for the nitty-gritty details.
I engaged Rockland Design/Becker Corp Builders to do an extensive renovation on an apartment in the Bone Aire section of Suffern, New York. The project included a gut renovation of the kitchen and bathroom, as well as cosmetic work in the living-room and bedroom. The entire cost of the project excluding tile, carpet and appliances was 68K. I had three issues with Rockland Design/Becker Corp Builders 1) the poor quality of their work, 2) the delays in getting problems addressed 3) they did not honor their guarantee. Here are a few examples of my experience with Rockland Design/Becker Corp Builders:
Tile Work – About 4 months after the project was completed tiles in the dining area began loosening. As part of the project, Becker Corp installed a thin layer of concrete (mud job) on the existing subfloor before the tile was installed. Unfortunately, they never went into the basement to check if the existing subfloor could support the extra weight, and so the mud job began cracking and the tiles began coming loose. When I had another contractor inspect the loosening tile, he diagnosed the problem explaining that additional supports should have been added and that the existing ½ inch subfloor should have been replaced with ¾ inch treated plywood before the mud job was done. He told me that to fix the problem the entire kitchen would have to be removed, so the floor could be redone; estimated cost 10K to 15K. Next, I contacted Becker Corp. They told me the headers in the basement were too far apart and that this was my problem, but that they could fix it by adding a support and patching the tile. They also told me that they would do it for ‘cost.’ I decided to go with Becker Corp because I could not spend another 10K after already paying 68K. Also rather than arguing about the guarantee I agreed to pay. After the additional support was installed their tile guy came back to fix the tile, however I was told I had to pay him directly. Again rather than arguing about a guarantee I again agreed to pay. About a month after the Becker Corp repair, more tiles are coming loose on other areas of the floor and now I am now faced with tearing out a brand new kitchen so the floor can be fixed the right way. If you are reading this review, ask yourself do you really want to work with this contractor?
Plumbing – After the project was mostly complete there were leaks throughout the bathroom - the toilet, the ceiling in the shower, and from the shower doors. It took 6 weeks to get these all fixed and in the process floor insulation (which was a $400 ‘extra’) got wet and moldy, which ultimately had to all be replaced. All the leaks were simple problems that could have been avoided in the first place if the plumber had been competent. Again, ask yourself - do you want to be dealing with 6 weeks of leaks after your job is completed?
Electrical – In the process of moving the door buzzer/intercom system the electrician cut a main line disconnecting the entry system for the entire building. It took 5 weeks and 4 visits for him to finally get it fixed. Needless to say this did not put me in good standing with the condo board or my neighbors. Electrical work was done in the bedroom (recessed lighting) on which I never signed off, nevertheless I had to pay for it. Items were routinely double billed by the contractor and electrician. Wires covered in black electrical tape were left exposed in the kitchen – the work can best be described as sloppy and rushed.
I took the time to write this review in hopes of saving someone else the hassles that I went through working with this company. There are plenty of excellent contractors in Rockland County, unfortunately for me Rockland Design/Becker Corp Builders is not one of them.