Unlicensed Contractors- Are They Worth the Risk?
Dear Jim: I am about to start on a new retaining wall project in my back yard. I’ve received several bids, but they vary dramatically.
I moved to the Bay Area from Pasadena (LA) in 1976 to attend UC Berkeley and study Anthropology (go Bears!). After graduation I worked as a river rafting guide, seasonal firefighter, lifeguard, swimming instructor, and scuba diving instructor at UC, teaching scientific diving to students who wanted to do underwater research in Biology.
In 1979 I started my own handyman business called “Jim of All Trades”. I received my license as a General Contractor in 1983, doing mostly small remodeling projects.
In the early 90’s, my crew and I began doing foundation replacement, drainage systems, and earthquake retrofitting. We found that structural repair was really our niche, and we began to focus on becoming the best in this part of the business. We bought our first bobcat and dump truck and never looked back.
With continuing education. I received as a Certified Graduate Remodeler through NAHB, a Certified Structural Repair Specialist though NAWSRC, and a Building Performance Contractor through CBPCA and Build-it Green.
As you can see from the reviews both on our website and from other online sources (Google, Facebook, Yelp, etc.), our customers have been quite happy with the results.
We have an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau, and we have achieved elite status due to our exceptional custom review.
And I can declare with complete confidence that Jim Gardner Construction has become the best long-term solution for customers with drainage, foundation, earthquake and seismic retrofitting, and similar structural challenges and issues. We don’t take shortcuts like our competitors because we’ve seen time and time again:
If you opt for a quick, cheap “band-aid” repair for a major structural problem, you will end up paying thousands upon thousands of dollars more down the road.
My grandparents lived in Oakland and my mother grew up there. I went to school in Berkeley and I’ve lived in Piedmont with my wife and three daughters since 1996, so I feel personally invested in my friends and neighbors. My goal is to help them preserve their 100-year-old homes for the next 100 years.
That’s why after working as a construction contractor for 30+ years, I realized that the cost and time incurred working outside of the service areas that account for 90%+ of my business was beginning to be too much.
We still occasionally do jobs in special circumstances outside of those areas. But these are the areas we know and do our best work, so that’s where we currently focus.
This means we don’t do real estate purchase inspections, consultations, and bid on properties work only after escrow has closed..
Because we do most of our own design work only occasionally do we bid on plans or design-work provided by outside designers, architects or engineers.
There are no cheap, quick-fix solutions when it comes to structural work. We will save you money in the long-run because we do the job right the first time.
We rely on our own extensive company owned variety of equipment, tools and vehicles, including dump trucks, a Bobcat loader and excavator, and several conveyors to help us move dirt, concrete and gravel more efficiently at the job site. We have a full complement of cribbing, shoring and steel beams so we can support your home without the use of outside subcontractors.
This allows us to operate more efficiently and then pass on the savings to you, our valued customers.
If you have a job that sounds like it might be a good fit for us, then please click/tap the following button to go to our estimate request page:
Because we own a wide variety of equipment, tools and vehicles , including dump trucks, a Bobcat loader and excavator, and several conveyors to help us move dirt, concrete and gravel are moved more efficiently at the job site.
We have a full complement of cribbing, shoring and steel beams so we can support your home without the use of outside subcontractors.
Since we own our own earthmoving equipment, and we have experienced equipment operators and truck drivers on the crew, we can exercise a level of control and precision with our demolition and excavation work that most contractors don’t have. Our own yard storage in Alameda allows us to store our equipment and materials off site away from clients property.
By owning our own equipment we can make our jobs more efficient and we can work faster and more precisely, which allows us to cut costs and be more competitive. We can then pass on the savings to you, our valued customers.