Review: Add Foundation Under Wing

Approximate Cost: $78,000
Description Of Work:
We have an older house (vintage 1841 worker's cottage) with an added-on wing where no foundation had ever been laid. Todd Heino's company was hired to install a foundation under this wing and to finish the resulting basement area. To do this, this part of the house needed to be jacked up, the exterior walls of the lower area removed, the area excavated and a new footing and frost wall installed. Exterior and interior walls were built, windows and doors, including a sliding patio door were installed and a new, stylish circular staircase was built and installed to enable a within-code access to the main floor of the house. The two resulting walkout basement rooms (a laundry area and a family room) were finished with flooring (poured concrete with a Pergo floor on top in the family room), blue board, and plaster. A beautiful gas fireplace was installed into a custom-designed corner cabinet. In addition, a very useful second bathroom was added to the house. All of this work was done by Todd Heino and his coworkers.

I cannot rave positively enough about Todd Heino's workmanship, creativity and professionalism. We had interviewed 4 other general contractors who were very negative about the costs and difficulty of the project. Because the house was old, they felt it would be difficult to practically meet building codes. I did not get the feeling any of them wanted the headache of the project. Todd came in with a can-do attitude coupled with the ability to resolve the inevitable issues that arose during work like this on an old house. He worked with the building inspector and with us to solve problems in a timely and cost efficient manner.

The earliest phase involved jacking up the house in order to excavate under the house in order to put in a foundation and frost wall. Todd and his excavator co-worker designed the strategy and executed it in the predicted time frame despite needing to repair the joists of the dining room floor above the work area and the collapse of an interior brick wall that was part of the original house. Some of these problems necessitated revisions to the initial project scope and contract, and we felt the pricing for the added work was always more than fair and reasonable. Once the foundation was poured came, what was for us, the true fun part of turning a walkout basement area into livable and usable space. For this Todd Heino and his work crew had many beneficial ideas which yielded a wonderful added space to our house. For instance, a second bathroom was added to our house at a reasonable cost ( $7000). Also, we ended up with a beautiful new family room with a walkout sliding patio door, Pergo flooring, plastered walls and a corner gas fireplace with a granite facing and a custom built cabinet with shelf and drawer. One very useful amenity in the room was the addition of a wrap-around shelf along the new walls. Finally, Todd's creativity was put to the test in the design of a code-compliant stairway access to the main floor of the house. The original access was a steep, narrow-stepped stairway which was not within code. To get a stairway in code would necessitate adding right-angle turns which would have eaten up a lot of interior space. Todd found a circular staircase design which was compliant and elegant. It is beautiful. We now have an extra usable room, an added bathroom and a clean, dry basement space! We were so happy with this work, that we further contracted Todd Heino's company to replace the siding of our house and build a walk-out deck from our kitchen.