Diamond Certified Company Report

CEF Contractors

Diamond Certified Company Report

CEF Contractors

Diamond certified ratings dashboard
CUSTOMER SATISFACTION i
Customer LOYALTY i
Helpful Expertise i
Company Credentials i
  • Workers Compensation
  • Liability Insurance
  • License Verification
  • Business Practices
  • Current Complaint File
  • Legal & Finance
Phone SURVEY RESPONSES FROM 89 VERIFIED CUSTOMERS i

Bill A.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

1 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

He's conscientious, he does an excellent job, and the prices are reasonable. He's very good at communicating what's going on with the remodel, and you're in constant contact with him about anything that comes up.

Curt's a nice guy, and he's easy to talk to. He understood what I wanted to have done, he did it very quickly, and he had a pretty good crew who worked for him. I think he does a great job.

Janet E.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

2 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They're very responsible, very cooperative, and they take pride in their work. They're always on time, they're always very tidy with their workspace, and there has been very good communication between the contractors and myself.

They were easy to work with, and I could really count on them. They're very dependable, responsible, and I didn't have to worry about the project.

Renee R.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

3 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They do a very thorough job, and I'm happy with their work.

They let me know when they were coming, they were on time, neat, and they cleaned up after themselves.

Read All 89 Survey Responses at Ratings View
Diamond certified company
Diamond certified company PROFILE

CEF Contractors provides home reconstruction, additions, remodeling, and structural repair services (including seismic retrofitting) for clients in Alameda and Contra Costa Counties. The company’s remodeling work extends to kitchens, bathrooms, decks, porches, garages, whole houses and more. “We prefer remodels that involve significant additions or alterations to the existing structure,” says owner Curt Ferson.

Mr. Ferson says he was originally drawn to the construction trade because of its creative and physical elements. He’s personally involved with every job and stresses the importance of constant client communication. “We always keep our customers updated on the progress of their projects,” he confirms. “That way, it’s easier to address any questions or concerns they may have.”

CEF Contractors is an EPA Lead-Safe Certified Renovator, which means it has been trained in leadsafe work practices for renovating older buildings. 

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DIAMOND CERTIFIED RESEARCHED CAPABILITIES ON CEF Contractors

COMPANY CONTACT
Service AREA

Alameda County
Contra Costa County
Berkeley
Oakland
San Leandro
Piedmont
Albany
Lamorinda
Alameda
Kensington
El Cerrito

SERVICES PERFORMED

Additions
Framing
Remodels
Planning
Design
Detached Structures
Green Remodels
Kitchens & Bathrooms
Structural Repairs

DIAMOND CERTIFIED RESEARCHED ARTICLES ON CEF Contractors

Company Profile

CEF Contractors provides home reconstruction, additions, remodeling, and structural repair services (including seismic retrofitting) for clients in Alameda and Contra Costa Counties. The company’s remodeling work extends to kitchens, bathrooms, decks, porches, garages, whole houses and more. “We prefer remodels that involve significant additions or alterations to the existing structure,” says owner Curt Ferson.

Mr. Ferson says he was originally drawn to the construction trade because of its creative and physical elements. He’s personally involved with every job and stresses the importance of constant client communication. “We always keep our customers updated on the progress of their projects,” he confirms. “That way, it’s easier to address any questions or concerns they may have.”

CEF Contractors is an EPA Lead-Safe Certified Renovator, which means it has been trained in leadsafe work practices for renovating older buildings. 

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Company Philosophy

"We strive to impress our clients with the total scope of our approach. Our work ethic and superior service doesn't stop at construction projects–we enjoy building customer relationships as much as we enjoy building houses. Our reputation and high amount of repeat customers help new clients feel reassured that they've hired a reliable company dedicated to integrity and craftsmanship."

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Comparative Summary

Few construction companies earn the prestigious Diamond Certified award, which means they’ve been independently rated Highest in Quality. Fewer still offer each of their customers the expertise of a construction industry veteran with more than 20 years of experience, but that’s exactly the case for CEF Contractors and its owner, Curt E. Ferson. “I founded this company in 1995 after spending several years working throughout the industry in various aspects,” says Mr. Ferson. “We handle everything from residential additions and remodels–including kitchens, bathrooms, decks and porches–to foundational and structural upgrades, including seismic retrofitting.”

Unlike construction firms that limit their clients to using in-house designers and other professionals, CEF Contractors can either work with outside architects and engineers or provide trusted subcontractors to assist with the design process. “We take an all-inclusive approach to our customers’ projects,” confirms Mr. Ferson. “Sometimes people only have a general idea of what they want, so we help them make decisions and walk them through the process. We work with architects and engineers with whom we have solid professional histories. Between us, we can handle any issues that come up during a remodeling project, from zoning to city planning.”

In addition to its flexible remodeling process, CEF Contractors supplements its customer-focused approach by limiting its workload to a select group of projects. “Since we don’t take on large workloads, we’re able to cater to individual clients in ways that larger firms can’t,” explains Mr. Ferson. “We frequently talk to our clients, keep them updated on project happenings and try to limit surprises.”

Another distinguishing characteristic of CEF Contractors is its focus on environmentally-friendly building practices and materials. “People are becoming more educated and aware about environmental issues, so it’s important for us to be as Green as possible,” says Mr. Ferson. “Every project is different, of course, but there’s always something we can do, like recycling building materials and choosing energy-efficient products.”

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Industry Info

Preparing for a remodeling project is similar to preparing to purchase a car—you may know the style you want, but the options you choose could drive the price higher than you can reasonably afford. However, there are numerous ways to stretch your remodeling budget and still end up with high-quality results. Consider the following tips to achieve the best outcomes for room additions and bathroom remodels:

Additions
• Once you add square footage to a home, the project price increases significantly. One alternative is to borrow space from a neighboring room—a process known as space reconfiguration. For a bathroom remodel, for example, consider taking space from the linen closet. You can make up some of the lost storage by finding small spaces in between wall studs for small niches or built-in shelves.
• There are many ways to make a small room appear larger. To transform a small bathroom, install a bow window or skylight. Vaulted ceilings can be a nice touch, too.
• If you’re going to expand outside the existing home, consider a small bump out of two to four feet. This may allow you to cantilever the floor joists and eliminate the need for excavation and foundation. Be careful not to extend beyond the roofline, which might require the addition of a new roofline.
• Whenever you’re adding new space to a home, have a heating/cooling contractor determine whether your existing heating/air conditioning system can accommodate the extra space. If the system is damaged, you’ll have to replace the existing units.

Bathrooms
• Consider reglazing a bathtub instead of replacing it, especially if it’s still in relatively good condition. This can save you more than half the cost of a tub replacement and minimize dust.
• Instead of ceramic tile, use cultured marble sheets for tub surrounds. You’ll save considerably on labor costs, and marble sheets are much easier to clean. Fiberglass surrounds are also less costly than tile.
• If your overall space is limited, purchase a jetted tub and shower combination or install a pedestal lavatory instead of a vanity cabinet with a sink. Remember, while pedestal lavatories eliminate the need for vanities and save space, some models may cost more than a separate vanity cabinet and sink.
• If you’re going to add a large, jetted bathtub, consider adding a water heater that’s specifically dedicated to the tub. A large tub can hold an average of 75 gallons of water or more, which can easily overextend your existing water heater and cause future problems.
• Define what’s truly needed in the bathroom. Don’t install an extra bathroom when a double sink in an existing one would meet the need.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Do you offer free estimates?

A: Initially, we’ll discuss the project over the phone to see if the nature of the work, size of the job and location of the project fit what we provide. If so, we’ll schedule a site visit to gather enough information for a free estimate. Due to the nature of working with subcontractors and material suppliers, the initial estimate may include allowances (costs) that will increase or decrease depending on the subcontractors’ final proposals.

Q: Do you bill by the hour or will you provide a fixed-price bid?

A: We do both, depending on the nature of the job and what’s best for the client. On mid-size to extensive remodels, the contract will often include some costs that may not be determined exactly at the time of the contract signing.

Q: Do you provide design work?

A: Yes, we work with several professional designers, architects and engineers. If you choose, we can provide detailed estimates for a fee, based on preliminary drawings. You can then determine where to add or omit improvements before the designer produces final construction drawings.

Q: Do you use subcontractors?

A: We use subcontractors when we’re not equipped to do a job as cost effectively as we’d like or provide the expertise we feel our clients deserve. Subcontractors can also help speed up a project and complete it sooner.

Q: In what parts of the Bay Area do you work?

A: We prefer to work within a certain radius of our home location, which includes Berkeley, Oakland, Piedmont, Albany, Alameda, Kensington, Orinda, El Cerrito and San Leandro. However, we may occasionally accept work beyond these areas.

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Diamond Certified RATINGS ON CEF Contractors
Diamond certified ratings dashboard
CUSTOMER SATISFACTION i
Customer LOYALTY i
Helpful Expertise i

Each surveyed customer was asked, “If you needed any helpful expertise, did this company provide that expertise?” To calculate this score, total “Yes” responses were divided by total responses (excluding those that stated they hadn’t needed any expertise).

Company Credentials i
  • Workers Compensation
  • Liability Insurance
  • License Verification
  • Business Practices
  • Current Complaint File
  • Legal & Finance
Phone SURVEY RESPONSES FROM 89 VERIFIED CUSTOMERS i
CEF Contractors : Average 9.4 out of 10 based on 89 unique customer surveys of customer satisfaction.

Bill A.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

1 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

He's conscientious, he does an excellent job, and the prices are reasonable. He's very good at communicating what's going on with the remodel, and you're in constant contact with him about anything that comes up.

Curt's a nice guy, and he's easy to talk to. He understood what I wanted to have done, he did it very quickly, and he had a pretty good crew who worked for him. I think he does a great job.

Janet E.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

2 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They're very responsible, very cooperative, and they take pride in their work. They're always on time, they're always very tidy with their workspace, and there has been very good communication between the contractors and myself.

They were easy to work with, and I could really count on them. They're very dependable, responsible, and I didn't have to worry about the project.

Renee R.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

3 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They do a very thorough job, and I'm happy with their work.

They let me know when they were coming, they were on time, neat, and they cleaned up after themselves.

Tom A.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

4 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

That CEF was one of the more reliable, trustworthy contractors we've done business with, we were very satisfied with the quality of the work, the professionalism, and the transparency throughout the entire process. We would definitely use them again and would recommend them.

Just that Curt was extremely trustworthy, reliable, honest, and just has really good integrity. You can tell he's doing right by his customers.

Connie S.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

5 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

He was prompt, he left the place clean, and he checked on any problems that I had. He was a good contractor.

The fact that he was here when he said he was going to be here, he also checked on all of the subcontractors work after they left.

Gabrielle E.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

6 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They're always on time, and they're very caring and friendly. They're always here when they say they're going to be here, which I think is very important.

The fact that they were here when I needed them

Ginger H.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

7 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

Curt is a great guy to work with.

Curt, he's just very pleasant to work with.

Renee R.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

8 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They're very good. They keep to their schedule, they're very neat, and they're very good to work with.

I had some beam damage which they repaired, and they put up a new fence. I hired them because they put an addition onto my sister's house, which turned out really nice.

Bill B.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

9 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They're excellent in all aspects of construction and remodeling. He hires very good subcontractors.

The dependability, he is really the best.

Dave G.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

10 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

Reliable, honest, and Curt was upfront. He told me the different options and helped me choose a good option for the garage. He was very clear about the different options.

Reliable, they were there when they said they would be there. The schedule was very clear.

Dick E.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

11 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They're reliable, honest, and they're right on target with what you want to have done.

They're trustworthy. It was excellent.

Jackson R.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

12 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

Curt is a very stand-up guy. He does what's right in all cases.

Curt is just a normal guy. He's easy to talk to, and he's not like a typical meat-head contractor.

Dave G.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

13 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They are well-prepared, and they are just really good all around.

They follow instructions really well, and they recommended items that were for important for me to consider.

Jay P.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

14 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

He really cares about the work that he does, and he tries to be very fair about prices. He really commits to doing the best possible job that he can.

His commitment to good work

Kate K.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

15 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

I found Curt to be honest and conscientious. He gave design advice when I asked for it but he was always willing to do what I asked him to do. I really liked that twice over the year that I noticed any little thing he has always been available to come back and take care of anything that was part of the original job. He's always willing to follow up on details.

Curt is a really pleasant person to work with. You have this person in your home, and it's great that he's just a really pleasant person.

Barbara D.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

16 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

Curt was honest and timely.

The quality of their work

Mike P.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

17 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

I've had a lot of experience with contractors over many years. A good contractor is a rare thing, and Curt is one of the rare ones.

Curt is really easy to work with, and he has a great personality. There's no sweat or pain with anything. It all just goes smoothly. He has excellent subcontractors that he works with. He has really good guys. He even took my subcontractors for the job and worked well with all of them. I'm extremely happy with Curt. We're planning to use Curt again. He paid a lot of attention to detail, and he did everything right.

Missy W.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

18 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

I would say that he was very easy to work with, he paid great attention to detail, he had quality workmanship, and he was flexible.

I liked the job that they did. I was satisfied. I plan to use Curt again.

Virginia H.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

19 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

Curt is very dependable, very helpful, and anxious to do the right thing. His rates are very reasonable.

I like Curt. He's just a great guy. I was very satisfied.

Jack R.

VERIFIED CEF Contractors CUSTOMER

20 of 89

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

Pretty much everything, they are on time, and they do top quality work at a reasonable price. They are pretty much all you are looking for in a contractor.

Read All 89 Survey Responses at Ratings View