Top Shelf Construction

Excellence Does Not Happen By Accident… It’s By Choice.

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(408) 265-3238

1777 Hamilton Ave, Suite 2250
San Jose, CA 95125

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What Do You Mean By "Sub-Par" Products?

What I am referring to are those products and materials that are referred to as "builder grade" or "contractor grade" products.

In short, the home improvement / remodeling / and custom home building industry is very different than the spec home BUILDING industry. In the home building industry, homebuilders and contractors are normally building "spec" homes and are looking to maximize profits. One way of doing that is by using "contractor" or "builder" grade materials.

So What Exactly Makes These Products Sub-Par?

Contractor grade or builder grade products are MASS PRODUCED to overly generic standards and measurements, where they even incorporate "margins of error" into the design and build process. Unfortunately, these are usually the same type of products you find in those "off-the-shelf" big-box retailers.

To put it bluntly, these types of products are adequate at a distance, but far from what our clients expect from a “quality finished job”. Because they're massed produced, they are much cheaper than custom measured and custom-built products. Which is why "contractors" and "builders" love to install them. But the differences are going to be glaringly apparent over time. Custom built products simply have a better quality of construction.

For example, a custom measured, custom built and expertly installed window will simply last longer, work better and save you a lot more money in the long-run… not to mention how amazing they look. The same goes for your kitchen cabinets, bathroom vanities, etc.

Simply stated, don't be fooled by cheaper prices… make sure you know EXACTLY what you are getting before you sign on the dotted line.

You Talk A Lot About "Top Quality" Installation… Can You Explain What You Mean?

We just got done talking about custom made products. These products aren’t cheap. So what good does it do you to spend thousands on your new windows, for example, if the guy's installing them don't know what they're doing?

Bottom Line, even the best products in the world are going to fail prematurely if they are not installed correctly.

This is particularly poignant when you consider how some contractors ruthlessly cut costs by hiring unskilled "day laborers" just so they can low-ball an estimate or pad profits.

Just as an example, using our windows from above… replacing your windows is not as simple as just showing up and ripping out the old ones and putting in new ones. There is so much prep work that has to go in to make sure your windows installed as close to perfection as humanly possible. For example, the window frame must be plum, level and square before you can even think about putting in the new ones. Anything less than that and you are wasting your time and money. And we're just talking about your windows. What about your kitchen cabinets, stoves, bathroom vanity, bath, toilet etc.? Without top quality construction and / or installation you are wasting your money.

If you want to be “Green” in your construction and life, buy high quality products that are made to last a long time and remain beautiful over the long haul. Inexpensive often just means “Cheap” and you are replacing the same product every 2-3 years and simply disposing of the old one in the landfill.

What EXACTLY Makes You Different?

That is a great question and a question that is not easily answered. Why? Because it's impossible for us to know exactly what our competitors are doing. Here is what we can tell you. At Top Shelf Construction we hold ourselves to a higher standard. All we can do is worry about us and the quality of work we deliver.

That's why we put our standards in writing and maybe, just maybe that’s why we are an award winning design build firm.

For a more detailed answer, and to see exactly what we do to separate ourselves from the competition we invite you to download our Contractor Standards Guide by clicking here. In this guide you will find everything you need to judge any contractor…including us.

How Are Your Prices Relative To The Market?

As I have said before; we are the first ones to admit that we are not the cheapest. The reality is that there will always be someone who is willing to work for a little less money or a company that is willing to make a product that costs a little bit less. It's called competition and it’s one of the things that makes this country great. And we are not afraid of "honest" competition.

You have to realize that it's way too easy to underbid a project. In fact, it’s one of the most oft used "sales" tactics in the industry and it is one we absolutely refuse to participate in. The price we quote is the price you pay… no games, no gimmicks, no gotchas.

Let me give you an example. Say you want to remodel your kitchen. Most contractors write in "replace light switches" and then low ball a price on that particular line item. Why? Because the price differences in light switches is astronomical. For example, a simple dual pole on off light switch is about $.67 cents. But if you want a slim line panel switch with dimmer then you are looking at anywhere between $37 and $67.

So you go with the lowest bidder and he remodels your kitchen using the cheapest light switches he can find. You hate them and order them changed. Well, that's a change order and it's going to cost you… a lot.

That is why we are never the cheapest bid. We don't lie to you just to get your business. We detail every line item, making sure that you are going to get EXACTLY what you want… with no surprises later.

Bottom Line: we are not the cheapest, but we are the ABSOLUTE best value for your money…PERIOD.