Beacon Builders, Inc. out of Kennesaw, Ga (Atlanta) Complaint - Consumer beware of this company
ATLANTA, GEORGIA -- A couple of months ago I decided to renovate two upstairs bathrooms. In 2008 I had my kitchen completely renovated and had a very bad experience with the contractor I hired for that job and was leary about hiring another contractor. My neighbors across the street were having a major renovation and as I watched their project and saw the work being done I decided to hire their contractor, Beacon Builders, Inc. to renovate my bathrooms. Again, from the beginning the workmanship was not good and was a fight to get the problems corrected. The following is a synopsis of the course of events over the past month to when the baths were finished.
1) The company began the job with my small guest bathroom. The first problem was the tile work. The installer did a sub par job. I used penny round tiles. When the tile was complete there were tiles sticking up, grout everywhere and rough, grout covering up the tile (not cleaned properly), gaps between the wall and where the tile should have been. I complained to the contractor's right hand guy as the contractor left on vacation the week that the job started. He came in and fixed the mistakes that were done, that took several days to bring up to the standard of work I expected. I wrote to the contractor while he was away and let him know there were problems and also told him as well as his first assistant that I did not want the same tiler to work on my masterbath as the tile work in there was going to be labor intensive and needed to be done by someone that was more detail oriented. When the contractor got back we discussed the work done, his response was that the type of tile used was hard to work with. I told him that if it was hard to work with that he should have let me know and I would have hired someone to do the tile work that knew how to set it. During the same week, other work was started that I contracted for. I had some soffits around the front porch that were cracked and needed to be repaired, the house pressure washed and new paint on and around the front porch. When the contractor and I initially discussed that part of the job he said that he could repair the wood and no one would know that it was repaired, I told him then that if the wood needed to be replaced I didn't have a problem with that. He said no we can get it. Well the house was pressure washed and the same guy attempted to fix the wood and proceeded to paint. By the end of that part of the job, the wood looked worse than when he started, it looked like it had been repaired poorly and painted over. The front porch was painted, it bubbled up, just awful work. I was very upset about the entire first week of the job. I told him that this all needed to be done over. This was the start of his true colors popping out. He wanted to fight with me over it, starting with, what I now consider as his catch-all statement, I don't see what you are seeing (I don't know how he couldn't) and his other catch-all statement is "my guy didn't do this". Was I expecting new, yes I was and yes I am picky because I wanted it fixed, not thrown together.
2) They moved onto my masterbath. This was totally gutted. The plumber came in to replumb. I was not in there when he was putting in the new pipes. At the end of the day and after they finished putting in the new pipes they were down at the street, both the plumber and his assistant, no one was in the bathroom at the time. He turned the water back on and all of a sudden he goes running by me and up the stairs. What had happened was the pipe was broken and proceeded to flood, not only did it flood but came down the walls and ceiling to my new pantry that was put in last year. The water damage was clearly visible and we had to wipe up water. When the contractor came out another fight ensued rather than saying that he would do whatever it took to fix the problem he wanted to fight about what he would do to fix the problem. Short of taking down the drywalls he said he could get it fixed. Again, he tried to shortcut this fix. They put KILZ on, mudded and painted, only the pantry part, the ceiling and the walls. After several attempts it still wasn't correct or fixed. The contractor stated the following "there is not damage". Well what is the definition of damage when you can see the water marks on the wall and ceiling. He also tried to use smoke and mirrors by saying it was shadows I was seeing and that the water never touched the walls when it ran down from upstairs. I couldn't believe it and another fight ensued (also come to find out, the plumber took out all the copper piping there and replaced the new piping with cvc piping, imagine that). The plumber came back, replaced the piping and that part of the plumbing was done to my satisfaction. His right hand man came back as the job was complete and remudded and painted the ceiling and wall downstairs one more time, you can still see where the water ran down after many attempts to correct it. I don't think this can ever be repaired due to the water (or what the contractor said "was a mistake and mistakes happen" of course they do but not like this) short of redoing the drywall. This guy's MO is get in a fight about everything and then say okay we'll fix it. Everything was a fight as you will see as I go on down the list.
3. He brought a new tile guy in to set my tile in my master. Initially the job went along fine (less the fact that we ran out of dots that there we're being put in the center of the scroll tile we didn't anticipate and also the tile guy went on vacation which put us behind a bit, this was not the issue). When he got back the center dots had come in and he proceeded to finish up the tile work or at least had it all grouted, not cleaned or sealed. Also, I had a custom cabinet made for that bathroom. The tile had not been cleaned or sealed yet and the contractor wanted to bring the cabinet in anyway, I questioned this but he said it would be fine. I had a specific design to the cabinet and even gave him a picture to take to the cabinet maker. When the cabinet arrived the contractor came up and told me that there was a little problem but before I made a decision to take a look at it. The design wasn't even close, I said NO and again he tried slipping something through. The cabinet maker came out, took off the incorrect doors and drawers and went back to design the correct doors and drawers with the original color photo that I had offered to give the contractor but didn't get to the cabinet maker since the contractor said a photocopy would suffice. The cabinet maker made new doors and drawers but one of the doors is bowed, doesn't shut flush and I am so weary of the work of Beacon and the fights, I've dropped it. When I started to look at the tile work after the grout, cleaned and, there were tons of tiles that were crooked and still are, I can supply pictures. I couldn't believe it, I said something to the contractor and told him I would mention it to the tile guy when he came back to clean and seal. I had to go out of town the last weekend of the work. The contractor and I discussed the crooked tiles and I told him that if they could be fixed please fix them and if there was enough tile. Apparently the tiler ran out again, they had to order more and I had to go out of town again. The contractor told me that the job would be complete when I got home. I got home, went upstairs and was shocked to see thatthe tile was all set but had not been cleaned or sealed and the bathroom was not complete.
4) The next morning I went downstairs (I got in late and didn't go into the kitchen) and turned the lights on in the kitchen, I was shocked to see my new farm sink in the kitchen covered up with a white filmy substance. I started to clean it with a soft towel (it is a soft grade of stainless and I know not to use an abrasive cleaner on it) and found the sink scratched everywhere and the white substance hard to get rid of. While I was gone the painter had come back to repaint and finish my front porch and had access to my house. It was quite apparent that he had washed his brushes in my sink and tried to clean it up when he did he had scratched the entire sink and didn't get the residue off, no one else was here to use the sink. There was a brillo pad next to the sink and we deducted that he probably had tried using the brillo pad to clean it which caused the damage. What I know is my sink was Not in this condition when I left.
When I called the contractor his response was "I don't know what to say and I'll call the painter". When the contractor came that morning he walked up to me and said he looked at the sink and then proceeded to blame it on something else, like a pot did it or some concrete patch we used outside did it. What he also said was that he had talked to the painter and he said he didn't get near the sink. I said that I didn't agree, another fight ensued and he stated "then you are calling my guy a liar". I said that I didn't say that but since he brought it up "I guess I was". He then raged and screamed at me "You're the Liar". Then stormed out of the house and was yelling that I was stressed out and he needed to leave. That was it for me, I should have told him right there to get his stuff and get out. Unfortunately he had threatened to leave before during other disagreements about the quality of the work being done. I was too close to the end of the project, he had almost all of my money and I needed to have the job done. The tile work was lousy (tiles are crooked everywhere, again the excuse was that this tile was hard to work with), the sink is ruined and I have to pay to have it resurfaced and worse everything was a fight with this guy, he just doesn't want to take responsibility for any bad work done by his subs. Also, come to find out, he was working on another house for the same neighbor I found him through and at the same time he was working on my house. When we compared notes apparently he used the same 3 comments and engaged into fights with him and then belligerently, attempted to fix the problems but in actuality it is a bandaid fix. My neighbor said he thought he was the only one having problems with Beacon and the contractor. Beacon wanted to always bring upthe fact that I had one bad experience with a contractor that I was projecting that bad experience onto him, that is a ridiculous statement. It would be like if I had one bad experience with an employee and hired another and held that bad experience over the new employee's had. Yeah right, that makes sense. The fact is that the work was less than par (am I picky, you are right when I am spending thousands of dollars for a new kitchen or bath), I was spending a lot of money and yes I wanted new, not somewhat new, I got more than I expected when parts of my new kitchen were damaged. Now, I do have to give credit where credit is due and the only redeeming factor of this entire mess. The contractor's right hand man was the go to, fix it without a hassle type of guy. If I asked him a question or asked him to fix it he did or tried to without a word said or a fight. Overall, I rate the performance from Beacon Builders, Inc. on a scale of 1 - 5 (one being the lowest) as a 2 (only because his assistant did what he could to remedy the situation), otherwise a 1.
At the end of the day beware of the following from this contractor:
A. "I don't know what to say"
B. "I don't see it" (will use smoke and mirror tactics to display it isn't defective)
C. "My guy didn't do it"
D. Expect a fight.
I learned a lesson from this project, my kitchen project and the contractors involved. I will never pay a contractor more than 50% before the job is complete (I had paid Beacon 3/4 of the agreed upon contract price). When a contractor presents you his contract, tell him you'll take a look at it and then revise it to your expectations or have him sign your own contract stating your expectations and payment schedule, negotiate it. If the work isn't to your satisfaction and the contractor is either trying to cut corners and rush through the job, ask him to leave and don't pay him another dime unless he agrees to remedy the problem, thus the 50% rule. If you ask him to leave he'll threaten to put a lien on your house so make sure you detail your expectations and how you will handle the resolution of defects in workmanship.
Please beware before you think about using this company, Beacon Builders, Inc., unless you like to fight and be totally upset with the job being done, I am not alone in my assessment of this man and his company. If you do decide to use them, Do Not sign his contract, negotiate your own.