In the spring of 2013, we added a small sitting room/office onto our master bedroom, and extended a patio roofline to create more covered outdoor space. For our contractor we chose Mark Thomas of Straw Dogs Construction, Inc. We now look on our completed project with great satisfaction, and are extremely pleased with our decision to use Mark.
During our search for a contractor, we hesitated with the selection process, but Mark's name kept coming up, especially with a strong recommendation from Grant Road Lumber. We spoke with Mark early on, and occasionally he would call to see if we had any questions. We respected the fact that he never put any pressure on us, but was supportive and helpful. For instance, he steered us to a draftsman who could draw up the plans needed for a bid. Mark knew how to maintain courteous contact while still allowing the final selection of contractor to be our own decision. In the end, we sensed that he was the right person for the job. By the time we signed the contract, we felt as if together we were already a team with a common goal.
Groundbreaking was a couple of months after we signed. During that time, Mark was arranging the sub-contractors schedules and acquiring the necessary city permit. Preparation time would surely vary depending on his workload, and the client's needs.
Once the job was underway, Mark kept the ball rolling. Sub-contractors showed up when planned, or if there was a change (only occasionally), we were notified ahead. Without fail, each sub-contractor was extremely professional, reliable, and set high standards for themselves. It was clear they were experts in their respective fields. Yet also, they were friendly and approachable, willing to answer questions. There was an implicit trust in the team of people Mark assembled. In fact, it was a pleasure to meet each new group. Throughout, Mark was on the site most days, checking in with workers, and several times even lending a hand himself when needed. He was visible and involved at every major step, and in-between too.
One of Mark's strongest traits is his level of communication. He understood our overall goals, but took time to work out the small details with us. We always were well informed about who was showing up next, and when. Knowing that he juggles several jobs at once, it was amazing to watch how effectively he fit the pieces together, mindful of everyone's time. He once said that each evening he writes notes on that particular day's jobs. We firmly believe that. When talking to him, his memory of details is often astounding. He is a consummate professional, as was everyone else we met.
Many comment that Mark becomes like a friend. This is so true. Having a conversation with him is natural. He really listens to people. In addition, you respect the man for his honesty, integrity, and hard work. You also intuitively sense the deeply solid business partnership he shares with his wife. Kristy. She handles most, if not all, of the paperwork, billing, and emailing. Together they are a T-E-A-M we would recommend without hesitation. Definitely consider Mark Thomas if you are searching for a contractor. Give Mark and Kristy of Straw Dogs Construction, Inc. a try.