Our project involved the demolition of an old addition to our century house in the Glebe and its replacement by a much larger one. We could not be happier with the outcome, and found Amsted to be a very professional, capable partner in turning our ideas into reality. They were a pleasure to work with, and we wouldn't hesitate to do so again should the opportunity arise.
We thoroughly enjoyed working with the Amsted team led by Paulette MacGregor and Hugh Trueman. Our biggest issue revolved around delays of materials arriving because of the pandemic. Any other issues we found were quickly addressed by our Amsted Team
Areas Of Satisfaction - Customer service is fantastic as is the actual work. We're happy with how our reno turned out.
I have recommended Amsted to friends based on the outstanding experience we have had during our renovations.
Why Did You Choose Us? - Having both design and construction together made working with Amsted more attractive than having to find separate companies to do each. This simplified the project for us and helped us choose Amsted.
Amsted provided a professional service and presence from our first meeting through to the after-project care. All details were addressed in a professional manner, and nothing was overlooked. Over the course of a normal project, and during COVID Amsted took the time to address all of our concerns whether they be from personal protective equipment or renovation-related questions. Each of the members of the Amsted team and their associated trades always maintained a professional and positive attitude, regardless of the challenges presented. A job well done.
Scope, Budget, Schedule - Even during Covid, Amsted was able to hold to scope, budget and schedule while maintaining the high quality standard that we had looked forward to in dealing with Amsted.
Trust - Yes - this is the behaviour that i have observed, and Amsted has earned our trust.
Very good process. No major surprises. Anything found was dealt with with good explanations. Great project manager
Expertise - used very skilled craftsmen and craftswomen
Areas Of Satisfaction - Communications and Project Management were exemplary.
Overall, our experience with a major renovation was very good. There were minor setbacks and inconveniences but these were dealt with quickly and professionally. This year with CoVid, there were difficulties that could not have been anticipated but I always felt that our project manager was on top of things. It took away a lot of the anxiety around big changes during trying times. It was very reassuring.
Job Site Clean And Secure - Excellent! The project manager (and his assistant in phase one) kept everything clean and all was tidy at the end of the work day. I was pretty pleased with my sense of safety when I visited the job site particularly once we were dealing with the extenuating conditions of a pandemic! I couldn’t travel to see the work progress quite as often as I would have liked but the health of workers was a high priority.
Employees Professionalism - Everyone I dealt with was polite, professional, and personable.
Subcontractors Professionalism - Everyone that I met who worked in any capacity was respectful and courteous. I was very impressed at times.
Areas Of Satisfaction - Guy keeping me posted with near daily pictures was very reassuring and necessary with CoVid isolation.
Recommend - This was a tricky project... mould found in the building with unknown source, vulnerable patients of the health system residing in the building, and the COVID-19 pandemic. The source of the mould was quickly found and remediated, without any disruption to residents. Amsted followed all the required infection prevention standards during construction which kept everyone safe. Work was delayed in starting, but not by much and progressed at a good pace. Utimately, everyone is very pleased with the finished space. COVID-19 required an additional overlay of precautions, and Amsted rose to the challenge.
Recognized Excellence - Sean Ryan, Project Manager.. Sean didn't start this project with us but picked up very quickly and managed the work beautifully. He was a real pleasure to work with.
Why Did You Choose Us? - Kind and professional staff and strong community recommendations
Amsted was recommended to us by our designer and we can honestly say that our experience with Amsted was nothing shy of exceptional. Our renovation was extensive (+ $750K) where we essentially gutted the interior and exterior of the house and left on the shell so there was much to be done. My husband and I had a sense of what we wanted but Chuck Mills, Amsted’s architect, delivered an exterior design that was nothing shy of genius (that continues to conjure the wow factor in friends and strangers alike!) and floor plans that are very functional while still incorporating a modern day lifestyle. Our project manager, Jason Labelle, was on top of everything and our weekly status meetings were very informative and kept us up to speed. Communication throughout via emails, phone calls, and weekly meetings was excellent and the budget was maintained. Probably what impressed us the most about Amsted can be summed up in a one word: Integrity. With a project of this magnitude, there are bound to be issues that arise but it’s how they are handled that shows the true character of a person/company. And in this domain, we hold the utmost respect for Steve Barkhouse, the owner of Amsted. Steve was always open, honest, so personable yet forever professional, provided sound advice, and the integrity showed through - particularly in resolving issues, that made us feel more like family than a client because he genuinely had our best interest at heart. And it is clear that these values are filtered down to the friendly, talented staff (ie. Mark, Marty, and each member of the team), the knowledgeable and skilled contractors, and even the quality of the building materials. To this day, we continue to be impressed by the ongoing customer service and support (mostly instigated by Amsted rather than by us). We can’t thank you enough, Amsted, for making our dream home a reality. We would not hesitate to refer anyone and everyone to you!
Professional & Organized - The weekly meetings and prompt emails, calls, additional meetings kept things moving along efficiently and allowed us to know the status of things at all times.
Expertise - We could always rely on Amsted for sound advice. What was particularly helpful is that the staff would provide you with the options, identify the pros and cons, and the price so that we could make an informed decision.
Employees Professionalism - Professional, courteous, knowledgeable, and friendly. Couldn’t have asked for any better!
Client For Life - Without a doubt. And we would not hesitate to recommend Amsted to anyone!
Very satisfied with our reno!
unbelievably professional but with a down-home feeling
Amsted Design Build has completed three renovations at my place, from the basement to the second floor, and all three storeys look amazing.
Additional Comments - After undergoing three renovations, I have been in a position to appreciate the great work, dedication and professionalism of all parties involved. I strongly recommend Amsted Design Build.
This is an extremely professional firm that demonstrates their organized and high quality work ethos in every way. AMSTED is always on time, on point, knowledgeable, reliable, professional, and strong at communication and corresponding with the client. But most importantly is that they cared about us, our home, and our project. Amsted has a knowledgeable team who knows both design and building rules. We were provided with information that helped with finding the best options and solutions to doing what we envisioned.
Design/Selection Process Helpful - Knowledgeable team who knows design and building rules. We were provided with information that helped with finding the best options and solutions to doing what we envisioned.
Professional & Organized - This is an extremely professional firm that demonstrates their organized work ethos in every way. Amsted is always on time, on point, knowledgeable, professional dressed, strong at communication and correspondence. But most important is that they cared about us, our home, and our project as demonstrated by how they ran their daily business.
Job Site Clean And Secure - The site was always clean! Even through the de-construction. These guys cared for our kids and family environment and always had the right equipment for clean air, security and safety, and clean everything else!
Employees Professionalism - Class-Act for the firm and the professionals at AMSTED! You can't find a better team in Ottawa!
Subcontractors Professionalism - Amsted seems to deal with only the best. But the manner in which they contract and project manage leaves very few issues they can't cover or solve. That's the key to success.
Recommend - I have recommended Amsted to others. I will continue to recommend Amsted to others. And we plan on calling on Amsted for work in future on our home as well.
Why Did You Choose Us? - Consistent quality. Consistent honesty. An impressive attention to client needs and care!
Was very happy with Amsted!
very positive experience from start to end of the project. Amsted definitely has developed a culture of ensuring that the client is satisfied.
Why Did You Choose Us? - liked their approach and the outlined plan/ process for the renovation from start to finish.
Additional Comments - great experience from start to end. I would highly recommend Amsted.
We were scared. We had a major project to do on our home and our biggest fear was to end up on Holmes on Homes with a reno disaster. Amsted quashed all those fears, kept us in the loop, included us in all details, were incredibly professional, knowledgeable and innovative. They did a fantastic job! Special shout out to Guy (Master Project Manager) Steve, Bryce, Kevin and Chris. You guys are the best!My house is dreamy now. Love it!
Areas For Improvement - They did not fall short. In fact Amsted and their team far exceeded my expectations on all fronts, professionalism, communication, great workmanship, cleanliness at the end of the work day and weekends.
Areas Of Satisfaction - Open and honest communication with the clients is one of the many keys to your success and your reputation precedes you in a good way on that front.
Amsted provided a stress free, high quality, renovation. They were great with communication by consistently letting us know about the progress of the job - there were no unwanted surprises. The employees were sensitive to our needs, were always straight forward with answers to questions and clearly understood how we would feel during the renovation process and did everything they could to ease the inconvenience. The workers cared about the job, were respectful, clean, polite and great with our kids! I do not think that you will find a better company to build or renovate your home.
Recognized Excellence - Paulette MacGregor, Guy Moffitt, Steve Putinski, Guiseppe Dirienzo and Bryce. Not only were they excellent at what they do, they were also fun to work with. Amsted has done a great job of recruiting good people.
Remodeling Concerns - Our concern was the inconvenience of a renovation, but Amsted's experience came through when they explained what they would do to minimize it. One of the biggest was how clean they kept the work site, it really made it feel like true professionals were on the job and taking pride in everything they did, including how they left the site at the end of the day.
Why Did You Choose Us? - It was the professionalism with which they approached the job. They understood what we wanted better than we did and they were able to provide us with some great suggestions that provided us with comfort that they had done this before and knew exactly what they were doing.
Areas Of Satisfaction - I was most satisfied with the communication. It was very good. We were always aware of what was happening and they stuck to timelines excellent. The job site was always very clean and they made sure our neighbors were happy. They were super easy to deal with, it was a very good experience.
I was delighted with the work done by Amsted. The team kept the project on time and on budget, and they were able to translate my vision into reality. Developing a excellent relationship with your design team is critical, and right from the start, they were friendly and approachable - no question or idea was too small for them to consider. The entire team was amazing. My primary contact was with Paulette MacGregor, and we connected so well. She is so passionate and high energy and absolutely wonderful to work with. She was always available and responded quickly to my emails and phone calls (even on weekends!). She understood my vision right away, and was incredibly helpful in the feedback she gave me on design choices. She was able to source some very specific and difficult to find items. Jason Labelle and Mark Wiggins were also fantastic - from the smallest detail to the most important element, they made the design come to life.
Scope, Budget, Schedule - I was extremely happy with how my Amsted team kept the project on budget and on time. They were amazing.
Areas Of Satisfaction - Of course, the team was very experienced and skilled. But their friendliness and approachability - no question or idea was too small for them to consider - is what made our relationship so good.
Lead Source - Amsted has a very strong market presence and a solid reputation. I had seen their ads, and most importantly, Amsted trucks parked in driveways around my neighbourhood.
When we first stepped foot in what would be our house in the winter of 2010, we knew it was going to be our 'forever home'. An older house, built in the late 1930's, it had had some renovations done along the way, but was in need of a rejuvenation to meet the needs of our growing family. By the spring of 2015 we had added two boys to our family and knew we had some work to do. After seeing Amsted's signs all over our neighbourhood for years, they were one of the first calls we made when thinking about a renovation project. Paulette and Val came to meet us and walk around the house with us, listening and making notes to all our dreams and ideas for what we believed our house could be, and adding in their own ideas where they could. It was important to us to keep the character of our older home, and we felt that Amsted truly understood that, while also understanding the need we had to modernize our home and give us some more living space.By the spring of 2017 we were finally ready to start. Those two years in between saw hundreds of hours of work with Paulette and her team to finalize every aspect of the design and selections: from floor plans, to kitchen and bathroom design and everything in between. Paulette and her team made the selection process as smooth as possible: often she would visit my Pinterest boards to get an idea of what we were looking for to make the most of our time together. We worked hard to ensure as many design and selection decisions were made before the start of our project so there would be no surprise decisions, and as few on-the-spot decisions to make as possible during the project. Paulette's attention to detail was impressive and we appreciated seeing everything in writing to ensure we were all on the same page about our selections and designs.For the first half of our 19 week renovation we stayed in town and were able to meet regularly onsite with Paulette and our Project Manager. For the second half however, we were living at our cottage about 300 kms out of the city. The Amsted team made the most of various forms of communication and always were very well prepared for our weekly onsite meetings when we were able to be in the city for them. We did of course experience some unexpected challenges along the way, and Amsted was generally clear about what our options were. At times we wished that our project manager was more forthcoming with a suggestion about how to proceed, however in the end we managed to resolve all the unexpected parts of the project.Amsted worked hard to ensure that our move-in date was adhered to, so that we had a place in town to be back in time for the start of school in September. Due to delays that were somewhat out of their control, not everything was finished as we had hoped. In the two months that followed we were a bit disappointed that the push to get the last few details finished took as long as it did, and sometimes felt the whole team had moved on to other projects. Overall, we were extremely pleased with the work, craftsmanship and attention to detail Amsted put into our home. The dedication and ownership of project that we saw from Paulette MacGregor has continued to impress us, six months after move in date. I truly miss our weekly design meetings and so enjoyed every step of our renovation project with her.
Professional & Organized - Extremely. We were very impressed with the attention paid to regularly updating us, and in the quality of the tradespeople that they hired to work on our house.
My experience with Amsted has been nothing but exceptional. They were always available to answer questions and concerns that I had. They left the jobsite very clean after each day of work. The schedule of work was nicely laid out and our weekly status meetings provided all the information that I needed and allowed me to ask questions as well. Every member of the team was a pleasure to work with and I would not hesitate to recommend them to family and friends. They were able to update an old family home to a modern and fully-functional family space that I can use for years to come.
Areas Of Satisfaction - The actual interactions with them at the start of the process. They were willing to actually take a close look at the project and see the actual site and address budget and scope in-person. I approached Oakwood as another potential option, but they weren't willing to take the time to physically look at the space because our initial numbers for budget were too far off. Amsted was willing and able to work with my budget and in the end, my budget was able to work with them.
Remodeling Concerns - The age of the house and the scope of work because not much had been updated in the almost 40 years that we'd lived in the house. I suspected knob and tube wiring, asbestos, lack of insulation, unbalanced HVAC, old plumbing which all turned out to be true. They were able to verify each of these items and corrected each of them by replacing the wiring, properly removing the asbestos, relocating and re-running the furnace and vents, and replace old copper pipes with new ones.
Why Did You Choose Us? - I trusted them from the start. They seemed to genuinely listen and want to help me create a new "home" but also retain some character from the old house. They did not discard me like Oakwood had and they're reputation for quality work was well-known. They were a well established company with many projects and references that I could see were well done.
Areas Of Satisfaction - Communication with on-site project manager (frequent, responsive updates and replies via email on progress of work and next day or week's plans of which trades were coming when to do what).Willingness & knowledge base of Amsted lead staff (attention to detail, answer questions, and recommend options).
Remodeling Concerns - If my husband and I had approached this project ourselves hiring of contractors and bringing them together to get the job done would have been so time consuming. Having Amsted bring all the tradespeople together at the right time was invaluable to us.
I don't know where to begin. I have nothing but praise for Amsted, and nothing but wonderful memories to share. I'll start by challenging some of the "Facts about Renovations" as told to me by so many people who had a renovation done."Renos are never on time." We were on time even after a couple of hiccups. We gutted the whole front half of our house (kitchen, bathroom, living room and dining room), plus we closed in the front step and redid the whole front walk. All in just under 4 months. The key to finishing on time was Amsted's planning and project management. Planning: We met with Paulette, our project coordinator, and Chris, our architect, early and often to get the design right and to choose our finishes so that there were no hiccups in the schedule later. Paulette was ruthless (in a very kind way) about keeping us all on track, and I swear the woman does not sleep until she is confident all details have been nailed down and signed off. As a team we went over the contract, deliverables and drawings 4 or 5 times to make sure we didn't miss anything, that helped Paulette and Guy create both an accurate budget and schedule. Project Management: Once we moved into the construction phase Guy took over schedule maintenance. He was a master at sequencing all the trades! When he saw a gap in the schedule or a problem with one of the trades he would shuffle the schedule and keep us on track. When we found a surprise in one of the load bearing walls Guy was able to get the beam we needed within a day and away we went. I think that speaks to Amsted's experience in knowing what common 'surprises' can crop up in older homes and what supplies to have on hand, just in case. When we had a hiccup with the plumbing work, Guy worked it out in a professional and diplomatic way, ensuring everyone came out feeling respected and confident in the project's success. Problems are inevitable in any project, it's how they are solved that reveals how good the PM and the company really are. Guy's soft spoken, respectful yet determined leadership style was effective - and inspirational to me. Watching how Guy and Paulette worked with the trades and suppliers helped us understand how Amsted won so many rave client reviews while keeping their long term business relationships strong at the same time. "Renos are never on budget." We only veered from the original budget by $5,000 because we asked for some extra items. Here planning and communication were key. Paulette, Chris and Guy took time to get to know us, how we lived and what was important to us. They listened and heard us, but they also knew when to tell us what would not work or what would put us over budget. Their honesty established trust with us early. They did not low ball the estimates in order to win the contract, then add on costs later. Paulette is psychic. Her ability to pick up on what we would like in colour, wood, tile and fixtures was uncanny. She narrowed down the thousands of options to a set of carefully curated collections for us to choose from and the end result is exactly what we wanted and within budget! The suppliers that Paulette took us to were all extremely knowledgeable about their products. They all spoke very highly of Paulette and Amsted, and we benefited from those well established relationships. Thanks to Amsted discounts we were able to add more finishing touches than we had thought possible."Renos are stressful." The opposite was my experience, and here I think communication, a genuine passion for their work and commitment to client service made the difference. I looked forward to seeing Paulette and Guy each week, and to our daily emails. I always knew what was happening and when, with news often delivered with Guy's trademark humour or Paulette's trademark enthusiasm. Xena, our dog, recognized the Amsted truck when Guy pulled up and would wait anxiously by the door for Paulette and Guy to come in and they loved her right back. We were honestly sad when the project was done as we missed all the chats and jokes with The Dynamic Duo.As our project manager Guy handled all communications and scheduling with the trades. As I mentioned, when any challenges came up, Guy took care of it, we never had to worry. There was not a single moment of reality TV drama on our project. More than once I came home to find an electrician, or plumber or carpenter or Guy staying just a few minutes late to do extra clean up (he is obsessive about cleanliness on the job site). Everyone respected our home as if it were their own. Everyone working on the project took pride in their work and in adding that "little bit extra" to make every detail perfect.In the end Amsted delivered more than a renovated house, they delivered an improved quality of life for our family. We have a brighter, bigger more functional living space that allows us to entertain friends in style, but also an oasis to come home to after a long day at work. For the first time ever my husband and I were actually able to imagine how great daily life could be after retiring, because Amsted proved to us that it is good to be home.
Customer Suggestion - I honestly can't think of a thing, I have never been so happy with a service in my life.
This is our 4th renovation that we have used Amsted and we continue to be very pleased with their work.
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Each item listed under "Customer satisfaction" represents a specific question asked by GuildQuality to customers of Amsted Design Build as part of our survey process. The bar graph and percentage next to the question stand for the percentage of respondents that were "Satisfied" about that particular question.
A customer is considered satisfied about about a question if they answered with 4 or more stars out of 5. For example if the "Communication" question is at 95% satisfaction that means that 95% of survey respondents answered that question with 4 or more stars out of 5 possible stars.More about surveys