Months ago, I looked for someone to do a small painting project on Thumbtack. And I ended up with a brand new home.
Christian, Jessica, Hector and the rest of the team at 5th Gen Group honestly do miracles. We own a 100+ year old row home in Washington DC and we've had problems ever since we moved in five years ago. After dealing with four different contractors that left me unsatisfied, I tried Thumbtack (at that time, new in the DC area). Christian came out to do an estimate and I was impressed by him from the get go - as a woman, I hate when contractors act like I'm stupid or uninformed. Christian never did that, and he answered all my questions respectfully and thoroughly and would defer to my wishes.
We initially contracted for a gut remodel of our ancient kitchen and leaking bathroom. Christian's professional opinion was heavily appreciated as well as his vision - he instantly "got" the feel of a space and spent a lot of time listening to not only what we wanted, but how we would use the space and what we planned for the house in the future.
Of course, the best laid plans always go awry - we knew our house had a few "handyman specials" but once Christian opened up the floor in the kitchen, we realized we were really in for it. Down there was a hidden mess of rotting wires, missing piping, garbage from the last renovations, and rotted-out beams.
Overnight, our budget doubled. I personally wanted to die. But Christian calmly lead us through the process, helped us try to salvage our murdered budget, and focused on explaining the trade-off in home values. We ended up with an additional half bath downstairs (because really, what was another 5K at that point?), brand new kitchen (with a small bar!) a brand new stairwell and relocated laundry room, and a brand new bathroom with a shower (after 5 years of an ancient leaking cast iron tub).
Christian isn't completely perfect - he's totally a perfectionist, and if you are one too, be prepared for some long conversations. There is an epic texting exchange over the bathroom tile that I may print out just to see how long it really was. But that's about the only thing. Also, for the other ladies on here- I always hate opening my home to someone because I have had bad experiences with contractors who were, at best, creepy. Christian and Hector were completely professional, and they really went the extra mile to make sure I always knew who would be in the house, when they would arrive, and how to reach both of them. Christian also has a lot of loyalty and integrity toward his clients - he is always fair, both in pricing and in the treatment of your home. He broke a small appliance - the only reason I knew was because he called me when he was purchasing an (upgraded) replacement on his own dime.
All renovations are hard projects, long projects, and frequently frustrating. There was definitely a day when I wanted to kill Christian for sending me out to two different quarries in far out Virginia right around rush around. But when I stepped into my home for the first time, I couldn't stop smiling.
And when we finally scrape together the budget for a third floor extension, I know exactly who I am calling.