Kitchen Remodeling – Connie & Mark H.

“My husband, Mark, and I first met with Maury Jones in your incredible showroom.  We “just wanted to take a look” but Maury was so helpful that we decided to meet with him in our home to talk about completely gutting our kitchen and enclosing a small, open back porch to give us a real entry into the kitchen.  Maury spent a great deal of time with us, so he understood there were a few items that were “deal breakers” for us.  We were certain that we could squeeze a small island with a cooktop into our tiny kitchen, and Maury supported our decision completely and made it happen.  Whenever I called to say “I’ve got another idea to discuss,” he stopped by quickly and incorporated the idea into the design.  He did a wonderful job representing Normandy as our initial contact, and made us feel as if our small kitchen project was just as important as much larger jobs.  Since we were putting a table with banquette seating in a small breakfast nook, he even took measurements of banquette-style seating at a restaurant to make sure of the measurements for our space.  And he has a great sense of humor, so we could all make fun of our requirement to fit a snow shovel into a cabinet near the entry door.

I can’t say enough about our incredible supervisor, Brian Preston.  His background and knowledge in all aspects of various building trades was invaluable to the entire process.  He’s the type of guy who likes to arrive early and keep everything under control (a bit like us!), and we really appreciated that quality over the course of the project.  He always arrived before the work was going to begin for a new trade, and went over every process with me.  I’m sure I asked him hundreds of questions, and he was happy to discuss any aspect of the job.  When I first met him, I asked him what happens if he runs into problems because our house was built in 1925.  He said “there are no problems, only issues that can be dealt with.”  I never saw him get upset, even when obviously challenged by one of those old house issues.  Since the entire remodeling process is stressful for homeowners, it was incredibly important for me (since I’m retired and was home through the process), that our supervisor exude a sense of calm no matter what was happening.  It doesn’t hurt that he has a great sense of humor, and he’s simply a super likeable guy.  He really had a great relationship with all of the contractors he brought into our house, and we trusted that he was bringing in the best.

Speaking of contractors, everyone involved did a great job, but I have to give a special shout-out to a few of them who spent the most time in our house and did an outstanding job (sorry I don’t know all of their last names):

Bill, the carpenter, and his crew did the demolition, framing, built the new back steps, and all the cabinet and carpentry work.  Neighbors have commented on how great the new Trex back porch entry looks.  We were very impressed with his work, and his team, and how they managed their time.  Just before the demo, I marked a special backsplash tile above the oven with a note to save it if possible.  I didn’t have high hopes that it could be salvaged, but I’ll always appreciate that Bill took the time to save that tile for us.  Bill and his team went above and beyond our expectations with their incredible attitudes.

We also truly appreciated Brian and Tony, the electricians.  Wiring an old house has some incredible challenges, and they had to connect a 220 line from the island all the way to the other side of the house to the circuit box.  Brian Preston asked him to make sure they keep in mind that we’re planning a basement remodel in a couple of years, so they placed it in a way that would help with that remodel.  That kind of thinking is what we expected from Normandy, so we weren’t disappointed.  Every outlet is level (I’ve seen many kitchens where they’re not), and he even made sure the switches were gray to match the gray backsplash tile.

It’s difficult to express how thrilled we are with all of the people at Normandy who had input into every aspect of turning our tiny kitchen into a space that looks beautiful, functions efficiently, and gives us everything we asked for and more!  As soon as we know our basement no longer floods (we had a check valve installed 2 years ago, and haven’t had a flash flood since we put it in!), we’ll give Maury Jones a call to quote the remodeling job.  We have an old, low-ceiling basement, so  I’ve already warned Brian Preston to get used to having a sore neck!”

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