Our Clients Have Nice Things to Say
"A great partner in achieving our vision for our house."
Jon Alexander (Sunshine Construction) turned our basement into living space, including adding a full bathroom, expanded our kitchen and constructed a deck for us in 2007. Throughout the process I found Jon to be excellent to work with. We were able to work in an open and honest manner through all the details and issues that arise during a remodel. He met his deadlines and worked within the budget. A great partner in achieving our vision for our house. The quality of the work was excellent. Nine years later all the work that they did has stood the test of time very well. The carpenters that Jon employs are all experts and created some beautiful detail work for us that we continue to appreciate every day. - M. Mayhem
"One of the most passionate, experienced and knowledgable green contractors in Seattle."
Sunshine Construction has built quite a number of our projects over the years, including the widely published Sproull-Radke Green-Roof Garage/Workshop. Sunshine Construction did our first project in Seattle, the View Ridge Second Story Addition; the Medina Kitchen Renovation – renovation of a kitchen and two bathrooms for a chemically sensitive client and her family; the Wallingford Victorian Renovation – a top to bottom renovation of a 1910 Victorian house; and the Siegel-Dors Kitchen—for the drummer of the Supersuckers. Jon and I have known each other since the beginnings of the Northwest EcoBuilding Guild in 1991. Jon is reasonably priced, and an expert in job-site recycling. He has a wonderful facility for the use of healthier, energy- and resource-conserving materials and techniques. He’s one of the most passionate, experienced and knowledgable green contractors in Seattle. Sunshine Construction is a great choice for 5-star BuiltGreen projects, and similar “deep green” work. He’s also recently taken the Passive House Builder’s course, and so becomes one of the few Seattle-area builders I would recommend for a Passive House project. -Harrison Architects
"He is responsible and trustworthy. He will do what he says, when he says."
Jon Alexander, the owner of Sunshine Construction, helped us enormously this spring and summer. We had undertaken, on our own, the buildout of a new brewery for our kombucha manufacturing and a small cafe space. Partway through, I hired him to fill; he had to step in, in the middle: a difficult role. He straightened out our process and helped us finish the job. He called himself a "consultant," for us, rather than his usual title as General Contractor. The skills he put to very good use for us include: •Helping us hew to the "critical path" needed to get us most directly to our goal. He persistently identified for me the things I really needed to concentrate on. He sent us updated lists weekly of remaining priorities. •Hiring high quality sub-contractors. He has worked in this field for decades and has a list of subs he has worked with and whom he trusts. This was invaluable to us. •He has good relations with everyone. He can get people to answer the phone when others who call are routed to VoiceMail. •He is responsible and trustworthy. He will do what he says, when he says.
"Jon is among the most honest and trustworthy people I have ever met."
Jon Alexander of Sunshine Construction designed and oversaw a major basement remodel. He was punctual, fast, exceedingly helpful.. Jon was extremely sensitive to project cost. His cost-saving suggestions saved probably tens of thousands of dollars. His design ideas and practical experience, clearly honed over decades, were essential. Jon's fees were far less than I would have expected for someone of his experience and judgment. Jon also prepared all the paperwork required for the bank's rehab loan. Because of his knowledge and experience, things went very smoothly with the financing and bank oversight of project phasing. Above all, Jon is among the most honest and trustworthy people I have ever met. At all times, he put my interests and preferences first and foremost. -Michael
"Jon Alexander is a patient and easygoing person, with excellent communication skills."
Jon Alexander of Sunshine Construction LLC built a house for my husband and me in Seattle in 1993. He and his team of sub-contractors did an excellent job and were a pleasure to work with. We especially appreciated the beautiful carpentry for our Japanese-style meditation/yoga/guest room and for our outdoor deck, which is our favorite summer room. As an environmental scientist, I was also especially impressed with the team's use of non-toxic building materials and with their recycling of leftover materials. Jon Alexander is a patient and easygoing person, with excellent communication skills. Our neighbors commented on his respectfulness; he informed them when a new phase of the construction was about to begin. My husband and I have loved living in our house for almost 22 years now. We highly recommend Jon Alexander and Sunshine Construction LLC for building and remodeling houses! - Fran Solomon
"Sunshine Construction built the house right, and I am very pleased with it."
Sunshine Construction built my house 22 years ago. It was the first house that Jon had built from the ground up. His remodeling expertise was evident in the finish work, and the house blends in well in a neighborhood where the other houses were built in the 1920s. Jon was easy to work with, despite the nature of construction in which there are so many factors and decisions that can be stressful. I am not an architect, but I designed an unusual house myself, and it totally works. Sunshine Construction built the house right, and I am very pleased with it. -T. Folsom
"Always my first choice."
I am an architect and have worked with Sunshine Construction many times over the course of twenty-five years and they are always my first choice if they are available. Jon's skills at job management, his dedication to green building principles, and his pleasant persona are unsurpassed in a contractor, or in a human being, for that matter. -Ted Granger
"Jon Alexander provided an excellent product, at a reasonable price."
My wife and I first met Jon Alexander, Sunshine Const. LLC, who, working with our architect was hired to do preliminary estimates for the conversion of an existing garage of 682 s.f. into an "Accessory Dwelling Unit," (backyard cottage). Jon was sensitive to our wishes/needs and provided useful and timely estimates, useful and informed consultation as to construction options, systems, and especially "green" construction practices. Ultimately, we hired Jon as our contractor. The project had a number of unusual aspects. There were structural issues such as the connection of two adjacent buildings at slightly different elevations with reconfigured roof ridges; there was the need to stay within the existing building footprint; there was the use of reclaimed wood from the old garages as a design element in the interior of the new building; the installation of reclaimed kitchen cabinets bought at a "reuse" store. He, his employees, and the sub-contractors he selected did an excellent job. Things that impressed us: ~ Jon's ability to relate comfortably with us and our architect who did not supervise the project, but who remained available to answer questions as the project evolved. ~ Jon's list of good sub-contractors. Also, one of his employees, a finish carpenter who is superb craftsman. ~ The fact that Sunshine Const. is a small company and only focuses on one project at a time. ~ Jon's ability to move us through decision points, which were many, in regard to solving specific construction details such as resolving building/fire code issues relating to emergency egress requirements, quick access to key subs including the plumbing, electrical, and HVAC contractors.. ~ Jon's ability to coordinate the project. While small, the project involved a full array of construction trades, materials, and their scheduling. He had materials (e.g., roof trusses, lumber and framing materials, siding, windows) on site as required to meet schedules. He had as sub-contractors at the right place at the right time. ~ With only two significant exceptions, Jon was able to meet or beat his estimated costs. One of the exceptions involved the weather in February and a carpenter who walked off the job on a cold, wet, miserable day; the second was the electrical contractor who, aided and abetted by me the owner, could have used more oversight to control costs. ~ Jon's provision of ongoing reports detailing the work done, costs to date, projected costs, all compared to budget projections, were important to me. In sum, Jon Alexander provided an excellent product, at a reasonable price. He knows his business and is a good communicator. Sunshine Construction LLC won our high regards. -Scott Dills
"Thanks to Jon, we have no 'remodeling horror stories' whatsoever."
In 1998, Jon Alexander of Sunshine Construction renovated and remodeled our home in Wallingford. This included: - Keeping much of the period look and charm of the 1908 house, but updating the infrastructure (e.g., replacing the aged plumbing, electrical, and HVAC systems, adding earthquake bracing, and finishing the basement level). - Renovating the entire house, including a complete remodel of the kitchen and 2 bathrooms. Floors were restored and updated, all interior walls were taken down to the studs and replaced with sheetrock, and the full interior and exterior of the house were painted. A low-emissions fireplace and brick chimney were added, along with a covered back porch. - Improving the energy efficiency of the house (e.g., higher-performance heating, better insulation, energy-efficient appliances, heat reclamation). - Using green materials and environmentally responsible construction processes. The job went beautifully, and the results were everything we hoped for. Thanks to Jon, we have no "remodeling horror stories" whatsoever. Jon is an incredibly skillful and knowledgeable general contractor. He is ethical, well-organized, and a superb communicator. He always discussed all the options very clearly when a decision needed to be made, and kept us informed and up-to-date on the status of the project. His background is carpentry, and he has a phenomenal eye for solutions that look good, are practical, and will succeed. Jon has a deep bench of talented subcontractors who not only did good work, but were also nice people, and obviously enjoyed working with Jon. It was always a pleasure to watch Jon and his team come up with innovative solutions to any obstacles or challenges they encountered. Almost 20 years after the project was finished, we continue to live in this house. We are completely satisfied with the results. The work that Jon and his team did has stood the test of time, and we hope to enjoy our home for many more years. -Jeff Meyer
"I recommend him without any reservations whatsoever."
Jon Alexander is one of the pioneers of greenbuilding in WA and has more knowledge and experience in this field than most contractors. He's also a very effective manager who kept my project moving along and costs reasonable. I recommend him without any reservations whatsoever.
"Jon's deep knowledge of construction...made this otherwise complex project go smoothly."
This was a cutting edge deep green house which was completed on time and on budget. Jon was easy to work with, and always up front about budget choices when the inevitable changes occurred (which considering how innovative the house was at the time were surprisingly few). Jon's deep knowledge of construction as well as knowledge of many typical aesthetic details made this otherwise complex project go smoothly. -Bob S.
"If you are contemplating a remodel . . . it is hard for me to imagine a better choice than Jon Alexander. . . ."
Over 27 years ago (1992) we hired the relatively new contractor Jon Alexander to implement our architect's plan to tear the back off of our tired and tiny 1927 tudor and extend the house by about 10 feet, expanding the kitchen and family room, and creating from scratch a rear entry on the ground floor and master suite across the second floor. This major project was completed on budget and on time, and (as hard as it may be to believe) I have very strong and fond memories of the time spent interacting with Jon during the construction process. The "product" itself has stood the test of time: The new foundation didn't "settle", the roof and windows didn't leak, the electrical/heating/plumbing all function perfectly. And it still looks great. Of course it helped that we gave Jon a pretty good set of drawings, but the lion's share of credit for the great experience and product goes to Jon.
I agree with all the other earlier reviews of Jon and his work. I will briefly reiterate: he is a great planner and implementer of his plans (materials and people arriving at the right time to keep the job on course); he listens carefully to the client and acts on what he hears; he is unflappable in the face of adversity (inevitable in a remodel of an older home), and brings boundless innovation to the solution of problems; he is completely trustworthy and fair in his dealings with the client, architect, and all of his co-workers; his work product is first class. It is no surprise that his clients would hire him again in an instant, if they are lucky enough that he has availability.
A few anecdotes from our project. There were no big "crises" experienced during the job, but there were almost daily issues to think through and resolve. One was the realization that there was no obvious easy route for a critical ca. 13 foot supporting beam to make its way into its proper place. Jon realized that a possible route was to bring it end-on through the side of the house, which required making a new hole in the exterior. It worked! And we were re-siding close to the new hole so it added little or no cost. Another difficult moment was figuring out how a new window could be a perfect match to the existing 4 double-hung windows in the family room. No vendor could supply such a window at reasonable cost. One vendor could hand-make a window but I recall the estimate from that vendor was $1000 (a lot for my family in 1992!). Jon realized that we could buy two commercial sashes and that his crew could build the frame for the new window using parts from a window elsewhere in the house that we were eliminating. The outcome was a window that is a perfect match and didn't cost much. I think these examples are representative of his approach.
What I didn't know when I hired Jon was that I was getting a consultant for life on my house. He doesn't vanish after the job. Perhaps 15 years after he finished our job I contacted him to report a serious water leak under a window he didn't even install. But it was under roof-line he built. Jon showed up at the house on short notice and showed me that the (inexperienced) exterior painter that I hired had sealed some critical drain holes outside the house. Jon cleared the holes and voila no more leak. And perhaps 20 years after he finished our job I contacted him to report that a water condensation problem had developed in our attic as a result of some ultra-weatherizing I had recently done. He came at once to inspect the attic and agreed that the weatherizing I had done had trapped humidity, and now necessitated some new attic ventilation, which did indeed solve the problem. Let me emphasize that neither of these call-backs were Jon's fault. He helped solve these problems as a courtesy, and at no cost to me.
I should also note that I really like Jon's emphasis on eco-friendly construction; he was an early adopter and thus leader in this area. Even on our job in 1992 he and the architect collaborated to recycle as much construction debris as was then possible, and to substitute innovative new materials for eco-unfriendly materials. At the same time Jon is not "eco-crazy" and he did not object to my occasional embrace of a less eco-friendly option.
If you are contemplating a remodel of your home or new construction, it is hard for me to imagine a better choice than Jon Alexander as your partner in this process. Good luck with your job!
Paul Hopkins, Seattle