St. Philip St.

Commonwealth Contracting can renovate, remodel or rebuild historic homes in the greater Charleston area. One of our more challenging projects was 263 St. Philip St., in historic Charleston, South Carolina.

Homeowner Vince Perna shares his experience working with Commonwealth Contracting:

My wife and I purchased an old dilapidated home in downtown Charleston as an investment. The only contractors that would come near the home wanted ridiculous amounts of money to attempt to renovate it. Mike, the owner of Commonwealth Contracting, came in and took his time explaining what we were going to have to do, and gave us a reasonable bid for what was going to be a very challenging project.

Mike and his crew immediately began removing all of the old rotten material from the house and bracing it up to prevent it from collapsing. By the time they had removed everything that was rotten there wasn’t much left. So Mike brought in a structural engineer, who promptly told us that the house had no structural value (aside from the extensive bracing), and that it needed to be completely demolished and rebuilt.

In downtown Charleston getting permission to demolish a home, regardless of how old and unsafe it is, is extremely difficult. Mike worked diligently to meet with people from the neighborhood and gain their support, and then stated our case to the Charleston Board of Architectural Review (B.A.R.) and zoning boards. The process was time consuming and extremely difficult, but Mike got the city’s permission, and we were allowed to move on with the project.

Then Mike and his crew had to demolish the existing house piece by piece with our neighbor’s homes only 5 feet away. They did a great job and got the house down safely and without incident. Mike and his crew then proceeded to build us a beautiful new home under some very difficult circumstances (neighbors very close, not the best neighborhood at the time, and the city’s regulations).

Mike kept us involved at every stage, walking us through the project weekly and making sure that we were happy with what we were seeing. Commonwealth’s employees and sub-contractors were all very professional and never too busy to stop and answer one of our many questions, or just chat with us if we were on the job site. In addition they always made every effort to maintain a clean job site. We are still thrilled with the finished product and it has turned into a profitable rental property. We still use Commonwealth Contracting for anything having to do with our homes, and recommend them as often as possible to friends and family.”   Homeowners, Vince and Jeanette Perna