Upon purchasing a hundred-year old house in Leslieville, it was clear a solid renovator was needed to help give the house some TLC. Only one bathroom in a three-bedroom house, a small and dated kitchen, an unfinished basement – were just a few of the issues that simply made the house difficult to live in.
After doing some research, we met with the Executive Project Manager (Joseph) for Urban Studio. Their ratings on all relevant platforms were second to none. There were limited opportunities to bring contractors to the house before closing but after meeting with Joseph it was clear that there would be no shopping around necessary. Very quickly Joseph started earning our trust and confidence. On his first visit to the house, he recognized that there was moisture in the basement (something I was unaware of on purchase). As well, he spoke about the importance of permits as opposed to some contractors that may advise that permits are unnecessary. Moreover, his advice was that any of his competitors that advised against permits should not be hired as it was both advisable and necessary to have permits in place for the work being done. In addition to these things that were raised before signing for Urban Studio to complete the work, Joseph has an excellent sense of humour and demeanor which were both important to me. While the project cost and scope were quite large, without shopping the job around, sourcing quotes and information, Urban Studio was clearly the renovator for the job.
One of the things I appreciate about the contract with Urban Studio is the built-in feature to provide financial value to homeowners for not meeting timelines. It was another reason they were chosen as it was clear that they meant to be on-time with the project – something I understand not too be the case for all contractors/projects.
My experience with Urban Studio was solely through the Executive Project Manager. As stated earlier, I found him to have a great sense of humour and demeanor, but his real value is with his great advice, thoughtfulness and understanding. As I stated, the job was a large job and it won’t surprise you that it wasn’t without challenge. However, every step of the way Joseph was there to explain details, provide advice and also to find ways to stay within the budget wherever appropriate. As is the case when opening walls, unforeseen issues can arise and when they did Joseph found solutions that would ensure the house had sound structure and my wallet was not too badly injured.
From a cost perspective, Urban Studio submitted a quote that was in-line with my expectations. As well, when I shared with friends and family the amount of work that was being performed and the price tag associated with the project, all were surprised at how reasonable the cost was. Of course the price did increase during the project but that should be expected when breaking into walls and finding no insulation, inadequate gas connections, etc. However, as mentioned before, the Executive Project Manager made every effort to stay within budget by making suggestions of where cost could be reduced and where other offsets could be identified.
I would be remiss not too mention all the incredible sub-contractors that Urban Studio brought in for the project. They as well shared Joseph’s traits and were very helpful on a regular basis. During the project they would regularly go the extra mile by helping when deliveries would come to the house etc. They were friendly, professional and very good at their crafts. They worked hard, they worked long and they did an amazing job. Thank you to you all.
Now that I have been able to move-in I can say that I am quite satisfied with the work performed. The quality of the craftsmanship is excellent. Moreover, Urban Studios will be coming back to iron out any issues I locate as I settle in. During these troubling times (this was written during the Covid-19 crisis), Urban Studio is not coming back to complete non-urgent work (i.e. cosmetic) and this is something I truly appreciate as we all know how important distance is at this time of increased awareness of social responsibility.
- Company Response
Hi Adam, thank you for taking the time to leave such a detailed review. Everyone from our team enjoyed working with you. We are happy to hear that you took appreciation to the extra effort we put in, as that is truly what we believe set’s us apart. All of our recommendations come from an honest place, putting ourselves in the homeowners shoes and treat it as our own home and financial investment. Looking forward to seeing you when the time comes to apply the finishing painting touches. Enjoy your new home in Leslieville and everything that neighbourhood has to offer. We wish you a lot of joy and happiness for the years to come in your new home!