Why?

For the best reason why, see my first post.  Essentially, I am looking to document the remodeling of our home in the Bay Area and hopefully people who are doing remodeling of their homes will be able to get something out of this.

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7 responses to “Why?

  1. Ken Smith

    Scott – great website. I also live in Willow Glen ( about a mile from you judging your comments on the Dematei project house). We are preping for a major remodel also – I just talked this morning with a high end builder popular in Willow Glen and from taking
    a quick look at our design plans – provided me with the grim reality of what this is going to cost us. I was thinking of bringing in Craig Rogers as my 3rd bidding contractor and after reading your comments – I think I will. I also have been out
    looking at his homes and like what I see. I will call him today. Please share any
    other wisdom , caveats…etc you can – we hope to be where you are in the spring of
    07. I will bookmark your site and come back to see your progress – best of luck.

    Ken

    BTW: yes – contractors should have websites to show off their work!!

  2. Ken,

    Thanks for the nice note.

    We love Craig. Not only did he have a very competitive bid, but he is by far the most responsive of the 4 contractors that we spoke with. His referrals all had amazing things to say about him, his vendors speak quite highly and, perhaps most surprising, he has been amazingly flexible in working with our mortgage broker to accommodate our financing. We have all of his contact information and typically get a response back to any of our questions within a few hours tops. We’ve heard that he can be a bit ornery during the development process, but we have yet to see any of that to date, despite all of our dumb questions.

    Without providing specific numbers, here is who we talked with and how they came in based on the others:

    Craig Rogers – 100% – I’ll use that as a watermark
    Demattei – 150% – We love their work and knew that they would be the top cost, but wanted to hear what they had to say.
    Tom Browne – 130% – Tom did a house next to ours and we became friends with him. He was the finance arm of Tim Casey and the house next door came out very nice.
    John Novetny – 115% – Some of our friends used John to do their house and had great things to say. He was longest on the time frame by about 3 months. His work is beautiful.
    Walt Mullins – 95% – Walt built a very nice house the next block over and the owners loved him. He hasn’t built too many homes, though, and that was a concern.

    We took DeMattei out of the process fairly early on as we are on a tight budget. Craig just really seemed to shine in all areas.

    As far as bits of wisdom that I can share, I have to admit that my wife has been running the show and has been doing an amazing job. Everyone will tell you this, but you want to be way, way ahead of the steps that you will need to do. We have heard countless times that people just wait around until the last minute to pick things out and then stall the project because they can’t make up their mind on windows or granite or appliances. You can’t start finalizing your ideas too early. I feel like we’ve been looking at various brands of windows for years, but we now know definitively what windows we are going with. Same with appliances, doors, molding etc. This way when Craig asks what we want, we don’t need to spend a week or more shopping, we just say this is it.

    While it hasn’t all been roses, I think that the advanced planning has made things fairly less complicated for us. As things turn up, both positive and negative, I’ll be sure to document it all.

    Thanks again for looking at the site.
    Scott

  3. Emily

    Scott,

    Thank you, thank you, thank you! I found your site by doing a search on Craig A. Rogers. I’m so glad I did. We are also planning on doing a remodel on our home in Willow Glen. It’s a 1947. 3bd, 1bth home. It was fine for us when we moved in 6 years ago, but now with 2 kids, the bathroom situation is not very fun. Anyways, we contacted Craig way back in January. We have seen some of his homes that he built and loved all of them, especially the Mediterranean style one on Nevada. I agree with you; he’s very responsive and almost always answers his cell phone. My husband wears shorts 11 months out the year, so he liked the fact that Craig does also. 🙂 Craig helped us get in contact with an architect that he works with back in May. We loved their work and they hit the nail on the head with the design, but unfortunately their follow-through was less than desirable. We’re still waiting for the final plans. Hopefully, we will have them in our hands next week and won’t be too far behind from you. David spoke with Craig on Monday, but didn’t discuss his workload to see if he could fit us in this year or if we’re looking at spring of next year along with Ken. I spoke with someone at the FHHL office in Los Altos back in August to get some information about the construction loan. Maybe I will contact Chris since you seem to have had a great experience with her. Anyways, thank you again for the great site and I will be checking back often.

    Take care,

    Emily

  4. Dude…. What the hell you have gone nuts… Sue keeps talking of stuff like this, so I keep taking her no vacations….

    call you tomorrow….

    Scott

  5. Ken

    I had Craig at my dining room table, along with 3 other popular contractors in Willow Glen – I liked
    what he had to say about the process – unfortunately I had him over before my design work was settled. I will get my soon to be completed design in front of him shortly for a rough estimate and he will be in my short list of 3 for final bids. There are some great contractors in the area – I won’t go into detail here – feel free to mail me at snekmail@yahoo.com and I will share my notes on the local contractors.

  6. Brian

    I am trying to do a few projects at home on my own. You mentioned that the suppliers Craig Rogers uses are good- would you mind sharing that info with me. Anything to help my job run more smoothly.
    Thanks for your help,
    Brian

  7. Usually I do not read article on blogs, but I wish to say that
    this write-up very pressured me to take a look at and do
    it! Your writing style has been surprised me.
    Thanks, very great post.

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