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Christopher Wells Construction, Inc.

Diamond Certified Company Report

Christopher Wells Construction, Inc.

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 135 VERIFIED CUSTOMERS i

Claudia G.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

1 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

Chris was excellent. I have no doubt why he has a Diamond Certified business. He's very knowledgeable, professional, and I definitely would recommend them in a second.

My neighbor recommended him to me because Chris did their whole stairs. While he was there, he opened up my side of the stairs to take a look at the problems with them. He was very knowledgeable and he told me what could happen, but we were not ready to do that big of a project. He went above and beyond, and kindly accepted a job fixing our stairs temporarily, since he was doing the ones next door as well. He really helped me and it was a lifesaver that I didn't have to find someone else to do it. I didn't even feel like I had to go check on the work. I could already tell from the work next door that he deserves to be Diamond Certified. My neighbors' stairs are finished and they look absolutely beautiful, we really like the job he did.

Murrey N.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

2 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

I think the work is fantastic and I love the folks he employs. I trust them 1000% in my house and I've left them working on projects when I wasn't there.

He does a really good job, based on what I've heard his prices are fair, and the people he employs are very trustworthy.

David E.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

3 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They do a very good job, although it's very expensive.

They were here on the job and did craftsmanship work.

Read All 135 Survey Responses at Ratings View
Diamond certified VIDEO PROFILE
Diamond certified company PROFILE

Christopher Wells, Owner

Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. provides a variety of residential remodeling services for clients throughout San Francisco and San Mateo County. The company focuses on building room additions and remodeling kitchens, bathrooms, decks, foundations, and more.

Owner Christopher Wells has been involved in the construction industry since he was 14 years old. He began his career as a carpenter and spent many years as a home inspector, where he evaluated more than 3,000 structures and gained a thorough knowledge of Bay Area residential construction issues. Mr. Wells founded Christopher Wells Construction in 1984 after earning his general contractor’s license.

Christopher Wells Construction stresses communication through all phases of its projects. If clients have any questions or concerns, the company’s foreman is either onsite to immediately address them or is available by phone.

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DIAMOND CERTIFIED RESEARCHED CAPABILITIES ON Christopher Wells Construction, Inc.

COMPANY CONTACT
Service AREA

San Francisco

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SERVICES PERFORMED

Additions      
Remodels
Bathrooms    
Decks
Foundations  
Kitchens

DIAMOND CERTIFIED RESEARCHED ARTICLES ON Christopher Wells Construction, Inc.

Company Profile

Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. provides a variety of residential remodeling services for clients throughout San Francisco and San Mateo County. The company focuses on building room additions and remodeling kitchens, bathrooms, decks, foundations, and more.

Owner Christopher Wells has been involved in the construction industry since he was 14 years old. He began his career as a carpenter and spent many years as a home inspector, where he evaluated more than 3,000 structures and gained a thorough knowledge of Bay Area residential construction issues. Mr. Wells founded Christopher Wells Construction in 1984 after earning his general contractor’s license.

Christopher Wells Construction stresses communication through all phases of its projects. If clients have any questions or concerns, the company’s foreman is either onsite to immediately address them or is available by phone.

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Company Philosophy

"We take a simple approach to building and remodeling: Make sure the job is done right the first time, and be truthful about costs and upfront with every detail. We put a great emphasis on communication; our clients don't have to worry about when their jobs will be finished, because they already know the details."

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Comparative Summary

Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. has been remodeling and repairing San Francisco and San Mateo County homes since 1984. The company builds additions and works on bathrooms, kitchens, decks, foundations and more. Owner and company namesake Christopher Wells started his construction career as a carpenter and has been gaining hands-on industry experience ever since.

Mr. Wells personally handles the estimates, proposals and sales work for most of his company’s projects. “One of my employees doubles as an estimator and project manager when things get really busy,” he says, “but I’m usually the one doing all that work.” Mr. Wells says it’s important for customers to have the person who puts their proposal together also supervise their project. “If not, the process suffers. I’ve always said that whoever goes out and looks at the job should be the one who makes sure things are done correctly.”

Christopher Wells Construction’s crew members are all experienced journeymen with a minimum of three years with the firm. “We take pride in the amount of experience we provide,” says Mr. Wells. “In fact, our foreman has been with us since 1987.” The company uses the same crew for every job, so its members have learned to function effectively as a team. It also prides itself on its communication skills–if homeowners have any questions of concerns, the foreman is either onsite to immediately address them or is available by phone.

Mr. Wells says many contractors use different teams of subcontractors for each phase of a project, which can lead to communication gaps and drops in quality with every handoff. “I only use subcontractors for specialized, non-carpentry work. I’m not a ‘paper contractor.’ Basically, everyone on my team works for me–they’ve seen every detail of a project from beginning to end.”

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Industry Info

To keep your home in good shape, be aware of water intrusion and the damage it can cause. According to Chris Wells, owner of Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. in Brisbane, water intrusion is one of the most important problems for homeowners to address. “Whenever you see any signs of water—staining or water dripping—bring in a general contractor or roofer as soon as possible,” he says. “They’ll be able to determine what’s happening. The longer you leave a water intrusion problem, the bigger the repair bill will be.”

If your basement becomes a victim of water intrusion, there’s a good chance that mold is thriving in the affected areas. When mold grows in a basement, it’s imperative to treat it aggressively—it can be a health hazard and can cause damage to walls, floors, and items such as furniture and appliances. Consider these basic steps and precautions to treat basement mold:

• Find the source of the mold. Check for things like leaking pipes or water seeping in through walls or the floor. Immediately remove any water and use dehumidifiers or fans to help dry the area.
• Wet the affected area with a sponge or rag. Wipe off as much mold as possible.
• Use a spatula to scrape off any visible, remaining mold. Use a non-metallic spatula if you’re worried about scratching a surface, such as a finished wood wall.
• Mix a solution of water, chlorine beach and laundry detergent. For concrete mold, mix 1 cup of bleach and 1/2 cup of detergent for each gallon of water. For wooden walls, use 1/2 cup of bleach. Test the solution on a small part of the wall. If the wood changes color, use a solution of water and detergent only. A wood-cleaning product can also be used on a wooden wall.
• Thoroughly scrub any area or item that has mold. Use a sponge or rag for wooden walls and a sponge, rag or bristled brush for concrete. Scrub as hard as possible to help remove mold from its roots.
• Rinse the area thoroughly and dry it with a fan or humidifier.
• Treat the basement with a commercial mold-killing product.
• Place the mold in garbage bags and take them outside immediately.

If your water intrusion problem becomes too serious to treat by yourself, it’s important to bring in a general contractor or roofer to assess the situation. Mr. Wells advises to choose a company that carries a sufficient liability insurance policy. “If the contractor doesn’t have insurance, you may be liable for any damage or injuries incurred on the job.” Although contractors are required to carry both workers’ compensation insurance and a bond to cover payroll in case they default, Mr. Wells says some let their insurance lapse in order to save money. “It’s an overlooked part of the business. You need to confirm the validity of their insurance policies.”

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Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Do you provide written project schedules?

A: Yes, depending on the project. Some projects are straightforward and don’t require a lot of paper plans; more complex projects do. Regardless, we’ll be in constant contact so you know the status of your project and its work schedule.

Q: Do you maintain a clean worksite?

A: Yes. We pay extra attention to cleanliness. We put up temporary protection to contain dust in the work area and bring a portable toilet to the site so we don’t disturb you by using your bathrooms.

Q: Do you use subcontractors?

A: We use some subcontractors for specialized, non-carpentry work. But we use the same subcontractors all the time, and we have good working relationships with them. In effect, we’re one crew.

Q: Are you insured?

A: Yes. We carry both liability and workers’ compensation insurance.

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SELECTED PHOTOS FROM Christopher Wells Construction, Inc.

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DIAMOND CERTIFIED EXPERT CONTRIBUTOR ADVICE & TIPS FROM Christopher Wells

Expert CONTRIBUTOR PROFILE
  • Christopher Wells is a 32-year veteran of the construction industry and owner of Christopher Wells Construction, Inc., a Diamond Certified company since 2003. He can be reached at (415) 347-6907 or by email.

Christopher Wells: A Love for the Trade

By James Florence, Diamond Certified Program Reporter

BRISBANE — It was on the shores of Long Island where a young Christopher Wells discovered what would become a lifelong love of the building trades. “My initial interest in carpentry started when I was 14 years old,” he recounts. “I bought a set of plans for an 11-foot speedboat and built it in my basement. I enjoyed riding around in that little boat for the next three or four years, and that’s where my passion for construction began.”

Despite his early predilection, it took some time for Christopher to align his passion with his profession. He tried his hand at careers in family therapy and real estate, but in the end, he found that a career in the building trades simply suited him better. “I like the straightforward nature of carpentry,” he affirms. “As a therapist, in order to make any progress, your patients have to want to change, and when they resist the therapeutic process, it can be kind of maddening. As a builder, on the other hand, when you hit the nail in your left hand with the hammer in your right hand, the nail always goes in.”

Today, more than 30 years after he became a licensed contractor, Christopher says his favorite part of his job is finding solutions to complicated problems. “As a general contractor, I’m not wearing the tool belt anymore, so my favorite thing is tackling challenges that come up, whether it’s figuring out a design or determining where a water leak is coming from. I’m a problem-solver, so that’s what I like to do.”

Originally from New York, Chris migrated west to San Francisco in 1971, where he resides today with his wife, Robyn. “I love San Francisco because even though it’s a large city, it still has somewhat of a small-town feel,” he says. “I enjoy the simple pleasure of walking from my house to the West Portal Village.”

Outside of work, Christopher dedicates most of his time to his other passion: singing opera. “I sing with the Verismo Opera and the Bay Shore Lyric Opera,” he says. “Because of my age and baritone voice, I usually play fathers and older, wiser figures, but my favorite role to play is that of the villain. One of my favorite roles is Iago in Giuseppe Verdi’s opera version of ‘Othello.’” In addition to singing, Christopher enjoys traveling with his wife, both to international destinations like Europe and different parts of California to visit friends.

In his life and career, Christopher espouses a philosophy he gleaned from a Beatles song. “Paul McCartney wrote a lyric that goes, ‘And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make,’” he cites. “I’ve taken that to heart and applied it in my business. I believe that if you deal honestly with your customers and treat them with kindness, you’re more likely to receive the same treatment back from them.”

When asked the first thing he’d do if he could retire tomorrow, Chris says he’d spend more time engaging in the activities he currently enjoys. “I would do a lot of travelling with my wife. Some of the places we’ve yet to visit are Portugal, Australia, New Zealand and Norway, so we’d definitely start planning some trips. I’d also put more time and energy into my opera singing.”

Ask Me Anything!

Q: What’s your favorite opera?
A: “Rigoletto” by Giuseppe Verdi.

Q: What’s your favorite local restaurant?
A: La Ciccia in San Francisco.

Q: What were you most known for in high school?
A: Being a musician. I played the double bass, the bass violin and the trombone.

Q: If you could immediately master any musical instrument, what would you choose?
A: Piano.

Q: How do you like your eggs?
A: Scrambled.

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Expert articles
  • Assessing Your Home’s Foundation

    BRISBANE — Earthquakes are an ongoing concern for anyone who lives in the Bay Area. One way you can be proactive about protecting your home and family is to know the condition of your home’s foundation. If you understand the signs to look for, you can determine if measures are needed to bolster your home against earthquake damage.

    Depending on when your home was built, the character (as well as the quality) of its foundation can vary. For example, many houses built in the 1920s and ’30s have foundations that were engineered using local materials, which isn’t good. Local sand contains impurities, which leads to degradation of the concrete. Also, builders in those days likely didn’t use enough Portland cement, as it was very expensive.

    To assess the condition of your home’s foundation, perform this simple test: go down to your basement with a hammer or screwdriver and attempt to scrape off a piece of your foundation. If you’re successful, it’s a sign that the foundation’s integrity is compromised, in which case you should call a structural engineer.

    Another thing to look for when assessing your home’s earthquake readiness is signs of foundation settlement, which can be caused by anything from poor soil compaction to drainage issues. In most cases, signs of foundation settlement can be found inside the home in the form of wall cracks, whether in corners or diagonally above doors and windows. Another common sign is a door or window that suddenly becomes difficult to open or close. If you start to notice these signs in your home, it might be time to get a professional assessment from a structural engineer.

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Expert video tip
  • Video: Assessing Your Home’s Foundation

    Complete Video Transcription:

    BRISBANE — Host, Sarah Rutan: To ensure earthquake safety, you’ll want to know the condition of your home’s foundation and whether it needs to be repaired or reinforced. Today we’re in Brisbane with Diamond Certified Expert Contributor Christopher Wells of Christopher Wells Construction to learn more.

    Diamond Certified Expert Contributor, Christopher Wells: Hi. My tip is regarding concrete foundations in the San Francisco and North San Mateo County area. Most of the houses that I work on are in those areas, and they mostly have what we call perimeter foundations as opposed to a slab foundation.

    Houses that were built in the early part of this – of the previous century – like the 1920’s and thirties – may have foundations where the builder used local materials, which was not a good thing. If they use local sand, it would have impurities in it, and that leads towards degradation of the concrete. They also probably didn’t use enough portland cement, which was very expensive in those days.

    You can identify that if you go down into your basement, and take a hammer or a screw driver to your foundation, and try to scrape off pieces of your foundation. If you’re successful, that means you should probably call an engineer and have him look at the foundation, because you may need repair.

    Another problem that we often see is differential settlement of the foundations. Because, in the old days, they didn’t build foundations with as large a footing as we use nowadays. So, the foundation components will sort of knife down through the ground. What you can do to look for that is keep an eye on the interior of your house for diagonal cracks in walls above doors and windows. And, if you find that a door or a window that has been functioning okay in the past suddenly gets jammed, shut, or won’t open, then you may have a settlement problem. And, you should also call an engineer for that.

    Host, Sarah Rutan: To learn more from local top-rated companies, visit our Diamond Certified Expert Reports at experts.diamondcertified.org.

     

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Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. WEBSITE AND EXTERNAL FEED
Diamond Certified RATINGS ON Christopher Wells Construction, Inc.
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 135 VERIFIED CUSTOMERS i
Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. : Average 9.2 out of 10 based on 135 unique customer surveys of customer satisfaction.

Claudia G.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

1 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

Chris was excellent. I have no doubt why he has a Diamond Certified business. He's very knowledgeable, professional, and I definitely would recommend them in a second.

My neighbor recommended him to me because Chris did their whole stairs. While he was there, he opened up my side of the stairs to take a look at the problems with them. He was very knowledgeable and he told me what could happen, but we were not ready to do that big of a project. He went above and beyond, and kindly accepted a job fixing our stairs temporarily, since he was doing the ones next door as well. He really helped me and it was a lifesaver that I didn't have to find someone else to do it. I didn't even feel like I had to go check on the work. I could already tell from the work next door that he deserves to be Diamond Certified. My neighbors' stairs are finished and they look absolutely beautiful, we really like the job he did.

Murrey N.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

2 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

I think the work is fantastic and I love the folks he employs. I trust them 1000% in my house and I've left them working on projects when I wasn't there.

He does a really good job, based on what I've heard his prices are fair, and the people he employs are very trustworthy.

David E.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

3 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They do a very good job, although it's very expensive.

They were here on the job and did craftsmanship work.

Lucy P.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

4 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

I think he is smart and thorough. He is not cheap, that is where my struggle lands. In the end, because he has thought it through, you get an accurate price of job.

His attention to detail is what I like.

Richard T.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

5 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They're highly competent and friendly.

I like their efficiency.

Allyn B.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

6 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They are easy to work with, responsible, and timely.

They have good, quick communication.

Martin B.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

7 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They were very accommodating in terms of responding to needs, and the quality of the work was very high.

They do good, quality work.

Charles H.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

8 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They're highly professional, excellent to work with, and very skilled. I had a very positive experience with them.

The quality of their work, and the professionalism with which they ran, and communicated on the project. It was a really good experience.

Bill Q.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

9 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

I think that he's very honest, very trustworthy, and the team he brought with him was very competent. We've dealt with other contractors in the past and I'd definitely say he's the best. I would recommend him.

His professionalism, he did provide everything on a timely basis, and I had no expectations he didn't satisfy. He did a very good job.

Will K.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

10 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

My exposure to them was limited, but people the people that Chris sent my way and worked on my project were fantastic.

They performed as expected.

Lori B.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

11 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

Chris is very communicative, his staff is efficient, and they are friendly. They always went above and beyond.

I would give them an '11'. He had a lot of very good input, and he brought a good perspective. He was very thorough, and he stayed within budget, which was always good.

Julie Y.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

12 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They do excellent quality work, and they aim to please the customer. They use good quality materials. They are easy to work with, and they are on time, usually early.

Probably the quality of work, I am a very picky person, and they did well, even with me being very picky. They were excellent and the cream of the crop. They are prompt about responding to calls if you have questions. If you have a problem, they come out as soon as they can.

Florence A.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

13 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

He was professional and he held as close to the timeline as physically possible. He did excellent work and he had an excellent demeanor.

His honesty and integrity

C. S. S. F. L.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

14 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

He controlled the project really well and everything was on budget. He does quality work and he doesn't argue with you. Everything he said was reasonable and his cost was reasonable.

The best was that he was easy to work with. Also, he does quality work and his people are professional. He does a great job.

Dennis B.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

15 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

He's professional and he speaks the truth. He does a good job.

I would say the quality of the work, also, the straightforwardness and honesty of the procedure.

Hilary R.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

16 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

They do exactly what they say they are going to do and they let you know in advance before they do it. I had more than one person come in to the house and comment on how clean it was at the end of every day. It was incredible. I lucked out finding Christopher Wells.

Everything was done in a timely and professional manner. They did a beautiful job. They are proud of what they do and it shows.

Jerry B.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

17 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

He and his team were super easy to work with. They were impeccably polite and neat and nobody smokes.

What I liked best was how the whole finance thing worked. We knew in advance what we were going to pay and what we were going to get.

Mary C.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

18 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

He's the best contractor I've ever worked with.

He is honest, organized, efficient, and clean with a great staff.

Jean M.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

19 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

I just like the quality of the work. The workmanship is excellent. They were just a pleasure to work with. I really enjoyed working with them.

The quality of the workmanship was excellent.

Tom W.

VERIFIED Christopher Wells Construction, Inc. CUSTOMER

20 of 135

Quality 10
10 10
Loyalty Yes
CRITIQUE

He does the best work there is. He's been working for me at least 12 years.

I like the high quality of work and it is done on schedule. He's done quite a lot of work for me.

Read All 135 Survey Responses at Ratings View