Sep 2, 2015
What they did, they did well. The problem was how long it took. They seem to work on their own schedule with no regard to what the customer needs. That was an issue for me. I am sorry to say that I wouldn't be able to recommend them to anyone. It didn't feel professional at all and I had to keep asking when they were going to do things. It felt like a struggle to get what I needed or wanted out of the arrangement.
Jul 22, 2015
Brick or Stone Repair
I have mixed emotions about this review. The contractor tried to do what was right, but fell short of the mark.
I have lived at my residence for 34 years. I have personally performed a patio renovation a dozen times and I previously had contracted out the work twice. In the interests of fairness to Handy Wise Men and potential customers, please consider the follow:
PROs: The owner, Brian Pool, was quick to respond to my inquiry to power wash, tuck point, and seal my brick patio. Brian promptly came to my residence and provided a professional quote based on a firm price for the power wash/brick seal and an hourly basis for the tuck pointing at a rate I deemed fair for the claimed expertise. Brians father, Ron, arrived to commence the job at 10:30 AM as promised, and power washed all items. So far, so good.
Ron arrived the following day at 11:30 AM and worked until 5:00 PM repairing the unavoidable damage to the grout and brick. Though a late starter on the job, Ron was conscientious and worked 3-5 hours each day for the next three days.
After a no show, Ron arrived the following day to continue working on the tuck pointing. He arrived with the wrong sealer. He later exchanged it for the correct product.
Over the next fifteen days, work proceeded at the 4-5 hours per day pace. In fairness to Handy Wise Men, Ron supervised work at other sites in the mornings and worked late mornings and afternoons. This was not mentioned when I contracted for the work. A job that never took more than 3 days lingered on for a month, albeit rain delays resulted in 7-10 days of lost time.
I became concerned about the hours tallied for the tuck pointing. Brian emailed me an agreeable reduction in the hours actually spent. I offered them $200 more to finish the job.
Ron continued working on the job, mostly half days, until finally complete.
During the power washing of a gazebo canvas top, dry rotted netting was destroyed. Although this was unavoidable to some extent, Ron removed the damaged section and indicated he would replace the netting. This was above and beyond in terms of trying to make me happy and charged me only for the material purchased.
Handy Wise Men never used our restroom facilities or asked for anything. This was appreciated.
Ron was always polite. He responded to my telephone calls. He and his son seemed like genuinely honest people.
CONs: Brian initially indicated to me that Ron was experienced at tuck pointing. While he had some rudimentary skills in coloring mortar to match the brick and existing grout, it was inconsistent. He continually had to make new batches of grout which never really matched one another. Hence, the grouting took on many colors. On his final day of grouting he made no effort to color the grout, resulting in a white grout line which really stood out.
This job took way too long. I expected longer daily hours to be spent on the project. Ron spent 12 days working on the project, albeit short days, resulting in a bit of inconvenience to me. However, on most days he worked independently. Four work dates were scheduled and not kept, without benefit of advanced notice.
Some of the final finish work was rough, but for the most part, it was no worse than if I had done the work myself, and on par with other contractors who previously did the work.
The job ended badly with Ron arriving with the repaired gazebo top. He had used a paper stapler to attach the netting to the canvas. I expect this will rust out, requiring me to remove it and to have it professionally repaired.
OVERALL: Handy Wise Men were professional in their bidding process, not so much in the execution of the work. They went beyond what I considered the initial scope of the work, but we reconciled the cost. They seemingly wanted to do right by me on the job, and went the extra mile to make me happy. However, I would not use the firm again. Perhaps they have more expertise with types of work.
Feb 5, 2015
Electrical and Wiring Issues
Quick response, very reasonable pricing, fixed our electric concern the same day
Jan 25, 2015
Fence and Gate Installation
Brian and his team did a nice job with my project. What defines a company is how they handle problems. There were a couple small details I wanted differently, so we talked about a better way to complete the work. They did it without any pushback immediately. Once again, this is what I look for in a great contractor and service provider.
Dec 15, 2014
Ronald and Brian installed new copper water pipes in my house today. From the day they came to give me an estimate I found them to be very friendly and professional. They did a great job today, and left after thoroughly cleaning their working area. I will not hesitate to hire them again.
Nov 14, 2014
Overall, i am rating the work 3 stars, but let me provide more detail. I had Handy Wise Men for multiple jobs. Below are the individual reviews:
1) Exterior trim work and j-channel repair on the roof. For this, I give a rating of 5 stars. They came by and did the repairs while I was away from the house. The price was in line, if not on the low side of the competition, and the work looks great.
2) Light fixture replaced in a two story foyer. For this, 5 stars as well. The light looks great, and would have been very difficult for us to do ourselves.
3) Painting our two story foyer. This, I would rate 3-4 stars. For the most part, this was done well, but they did not cover our hardwoods (presumably because we already had cardboard on the floor from when we moved in a few days before), and we had to clean up numerous paint drips. We also found some paint spots on the ceiling that we had to go back and touch up. Finally, we ended up doing an entire second coat all the way up to the edge of the ceiling because the paint was spotty in places and not an overall smooth finish (this could be us being picky).
4) Repairing drywall tape - this was our biggest issue. When they arrived, they didn't have the right materials because they didn't realize this was part of the job (even though, I had clearly communicated this through numerous emails). Some spots were okay, but for two large spots, we still have to go back and scrape/sand them ourselves. I guess my expectation was all we needed to do was paint when it was finished. I probably should have asked them to come back and finish the next day, but we were honestly just ready to be done with people coming in and out of the house. We also had to vacuum up afterwards from the sanding and had to scrape numerous spots off the hardwoods where putty had fallen. For this work, I would rate a two stars at best.
For odd jobs that are difficult to do on our own, I would consider Handy Wise Men again. However, for the detailed work, I would likely look to specialists in the future.
Oct 11, 2014
Handy Wise Men replaced two windows, a door, and a faucet. They also fixed a kitchen drain issue. They were great, start to finish. Very professional, great communication, very reasonable rates. They asked questions to make sure they understood the requirements and did an excellent job on everything. My house is over 100 years old with many minor but annoying issues so I've already started a list of what to have them fix next. Very happy and wish I had found them years ago.
Oct 6, 2014
Roof Repair or Maintenance
Roland and Brian were very responsive and professional. They left the work area cleaner than they found it. I would definitely call then again for future work.
Sep 12, 2014
Great experience with Handy Wise Men. Ron came out to our house on short notice and mounted 2 tvs very quickly. It was done for a very fair price and I highly recommend them.
Aug 3, 2014
Brian installed laminate in my bathroom shower and quarter round in two bedrooms, and caulked several plaster cracks. My AC went out while he was working on the bathroom job, and he was able to fix my AC, because he is HVAC- certified. He even pitched in and helped my moving helpers with a few things. Prices were very reasonable, and Brian is pleasant, honest and trustworthy. He will text you before he arrives and let you know his schedule. I have already recommended their services to several friends. Thanks Handy Wise Men for making my move less stressful!