The Prime Buyer's Report

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San Francisco Bay Area Edition

Bruce Construction
Send an email to this Company
(650) 872-7974, (650) 296-0323
1530 Claremont Dr
San Bruno, CA 94066
State Contractor's License #872600
   Prime Buyer's Report TOP 10  Better Business Bureau NKBA (National Kitchen & Bath Association) Chamber of Commerce-San Bruno

Areas Served: San Francisco Bay Area
Services: fence contractors for new fences, custom fences
Key Brands: Kohler, Merillat Cabinets

Bruce Construction Company Profile

Too many contractors don't get involved in the day-to-day work on their remodeling and building projects. This can result in shoddy work, the hiring of unskilled or sloppy workers and a poor result that often exceeds the time and money homeowners have budgeted for their remodel.

We found a company in San Mateo County that has a combination of highly skilled workers and a personal approach to business where the owner works hands-on with every project. 

Full Service, Full Satisfaction
Bruce Construction in San Bruno CA is owned and run by former police captain Rick Bruce.  Rick is on the job site every day, and it shows in the quality work and superior customer service you can expect from his company. "Contact with clients is my forte," he says. "When I'm on the job eight hours a day, there are more eyes on the drawings and the plans, I can guide the project development. This approach gives better results for our clients."

The customer-friendly business model at Bruce Construction means you get more attention and better service.  "Every question is addressed immediately," says Rick Bruce. "Our client satisfaction has gone through the roof." In fact, customer satisfaction surveys have shown that 100% of customers polled would hire Bruce Construction again.

Rick explains that his carpenters are experienced craftsmen at the top of their trade. "They take pride in their work and know that they are guests of the client, so they treat each project as a person's home, not just a job site."  And that includes showing respect for the client by the way they clean up. "One of the most important tools that each carpenter has at every project site is a state-of-the-art HEPA vacuum," shares Rick.  Peggy, a customer, backed this up during a research phone call to randomly selected customers. "I liked everything about them," she said. "they did what they said they would do on time, and they cleaned up after themselves every night."

Beyond the Norm
Some unscrupulous contractors trap homeowners by demanding illegally large down payments, and then move on to another job to cash in on yet another large deposit. According to law, contractors cannot ask for more than 10 percent of the contract price or $1,000, whichever is less, as a down payment. But dishonest contractors will use illegal pre-payments to cover previous jobs and might never return, stranding their customers. Even if those shady contractors do come back to finish the work, you could be stuck with poor quality and a job with an unreliable timeline.

Rick Bruce never asks clients for those illegal deposits. "We have a good repuation and I intend to keep it. My name is on the company," says Rick. 

With other contractors, it's common for misunderstandings to surface right in the middle of the project, leading to frustration and even increased expenses.  Bruce Construction avoids that by providing full communication right from the beginning.  The agreement includes a written and binding work schedule so clients always know what the crew is doing and when, and that the project will get done on time. Rick shares, "Clients are pleasantly surprised by the level of detail in our proposals and contracts, including the names of the product manufacturers and model numbers, exact finishes, and more. We give the client that detail because they deserve to know exactly what they're getting."

Rick's attention to providing clients with added peace of mind is also reflected in the insurance he carries. Most contractors buy only the minimum amount insurance required by law. Rick Bruce does better. "Most customers don't realize a company can be bonded for about a hundred bucks," says Rick. "That gives you some protection, but it won't cover a major disaster or injury. All legitimate contractors—including Bruce Construction—will carry good liability insurance."

In fact, Bruce Construction goes far beyond the minimum, carrying a two million dollar insurance policy. "That really puts our customers' minds at ease," says Rick.

Constant communication from Rick Bruce also assures his customers. Although he is there to answer every question on the job site, customers sometimes have questions during off hours. Rick is always available by cell phone, and his customers appreciate his quick replies. During a research phone call, a customer named Mary said, "He was very accessible. I always got a call back from him immediately."

Bruce Construction also uses online software that allows clients access to the job schedule, calendar, and to-do lists for the project, reflecting a commitment to full transparancy in a way that separates them from most other general contractors.

Close Ties
Even as a youngster, Rick Bruce loved construction and tools. In the 1970s, he renovated a Victorian home, learning as he went. He purchased books on carpentry and remodeling and visited construction sites to talk with carpenters. After selling the Victorian, he and his wife bought and fixed up the home they still live in. Rick Bruce was hooked on construction and has spent three decades buying, renovating and building homes.

For 30 years, Rick served in the San Francisco Police Department where he rose to Police Captain, so naturally, clients of Bruce Construction feel especially safe hiring Rick and Bruce Construction to do the remodeling in their home. 

How does his officer training play out in his construction company? "I am very security conscious with every project," he says. "and my employees know that this is a priority with Bruce Construction."

When he's not swinging a hammer alongside his employees, Rick Bruce enjoys researching his genealogy. "I've been able to trace our lineage back to the early 1600s in America," he says. "My family lived here before the Revolutionary War. One of my relatives was a contemporary of George Washington."

Rick Bruce and his wife have lived in the same San Bruno home since 1980. They have raised three sons and found their place in the community in the process. "My wife and I are active in community," he says. "I coached all of our three sons' sports teams, from soccer to baseball to football—a total of about 40 teams over the years."

Kids weren't the only ones Rick Bruce impacted through his service. "Through those sports contacts, we got to know hundreds of parents. We feel a close tie to the community and the people we've gotten to know." He also serves as president of the San Francisco Police Activities League and spends time supporting their programming and fundraising.

Homeowners fortunate enough to hire Rick Bruce and Bruce Construction get the extra value of a contractor who is on-site for every project to provide better quality control than absentee owners, and the benefit of a dedicated and skilled crew of experienced carpenters rather than simply laborers. Plus they get the bonus of peace of mind about the security of their home and family during the remodel knowing that Rick Bruce is a respected former San Francisco Police Captain as well as a skilled builder and contractor.

 


—Lauren Bongard Schwarz
Associate Editor
The Prime Buyer's Report


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