Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take to get the permit?

The primary factor is going to be how busy the City is; presently, it takes about 5 months from start to finish before we get the permit to begin the “ground breaking” portion of the project. This will vary from project to project.

How long does it take to submit the design into the City?

Presently, the lead time to submit plans is approximately 3 to 4 weeks depending on the volume of projects at the city.

How long will the construction take?

Typically it depends on the actual scope and extent of work called for. Generally speaking, you’ll be looking at anywhere between 6 to 8 weeks on a typical soft story project. As a project reaches a size where we are putting in 6-8 steel frames, then that will extend the scope of work and the project time accordingly. At the point where we provide you with the final bid, then we will be able to tell you the actual time the project should take.

Can we (our tenants) use the parking when you are on site performing the work?

Not at the beginning of the project, because we will typically be performing excavation in the parking bays. Since there’s going to be open trenches, we may also need to shore up the building, which will be inside of the tuck under parking area as well. Most commonly, parking is available after approximately 3-4 weeks, as soon as the grade beams are poured and assuming that the city inspection process timing is on schedule. We also offer trench cover plates at an added cost, which allows overnight parking as long as we don’t need to shore up existing columns. This is on a case by case basis.

What happens if the City comes back with design corrections during the permit process? Will we have to pay you more money?

No; if the City comes back with any corrections, we take care of those corrections and we get the project to a stage where we have the permit in hand, at no extra cost to you.

Can you design the project, and can I give your design to different contractors to bid on?

No, we are a design / build contractor, so if we design the project, we also have to do the construction phase of the project as well. If you would like a referral for an outside engineer, we’ll be happy to supply you with that.

When do we get the total project cost?

As soon as we are at stage known as RTI (Ready To Issue), once the City approves the design, then at that point we will work out what the cost of the project will be, and we will send you a construction contract for that amount.

Do you offer financing?

No, we do not offer financing. There are a few government programs available, such as PACE financing, but we do not provide financing.

Do you fix all stucco damage?

If any stucco damage occurred due to our work, we will redo the damaged areas in a paint ready, sand finish. This will of course be limited to the areas impacted by our work.

How do we get started?

What we need is the engineering contract signed, with the full payment of the engineering fee. Once we receive that, we will send out our drafting team to take measurements to enable the design of the project.

What is the payment schedule to perform the work?

Once we’ve got to RTI and we’ve given you the full cost, it will be $1,000 down on signing the contract. Then, 14 days before the start date, there is a 10% payment due, and then, there are payments throughout the actual time of construction for the different phases of construction.

Do you have any customer referrals?

Yes we do, and we’ll be happy to provide them. Please also feel free to browse our several hundred online reviews at Yelp, Angie’s List, Google, etc.

Do you have general liability insurance?

Yes we do, and we’ll be happy to provide you with our policy coverage information upon request.

Can you give me a total project cost before Engineering?

Until the calculations on the building have been performed by the structural engineer, there is no way of knowing what size steel, how deep the grade beams have to be, and other variables. As a result, we need to engineer the project first to actually give you a cost.

Can you guarantee the final cost will not go over the high end of the ballpark estimate?

We can’t guarantee we won’t go over the ballpark figure, but based on past projects, this happens very rarely.

What if we already have engineered plans?

Then we will be happy to give you a bid on those plans. If you can send them over to our office, we will give you a bid as soon as we review them.

Do you handle the THP forms and process?

Yes, we basically handle 95% of the forms; we fill them out and submit them to the City. The only thing we need you to do is to fill out the tenant’s names and details.

What is an RTI?

An RTI is ‘Ready To Issue’. It basically means that the City has agreed with the design and there will be no design corrections on those drawings.

Is asbestos testing needed?

If we need to demolish more than 100 sq. ft of the existing stucco, we will need an asbestos test performed by an asbestos testing service company before we start construction. This is an added cost that is not included in our bid and the property owner is responsible for payment. If the stucco is more than 1.5% asbestos, then an asbestos abatement company will need to be contracted to handle that. We will be happy to provide referrals for asbestos abatement companies.

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If you have any other questions, please don't hesitate to reach out!

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