2018 Chicago Architects: Voted #6 of 15 Best Residential General Contractors in Chicago;
Certifications and Awards
Best of Houzz 2018
Oak Park Preservation Award 2015 & 2011
Angies List Super Service Award 2012-2015
Oak Park Calvalcade of Pride Award 2011
10/24/2013 – Meghan Strubel
We had a fabulous experience with Brett and Element Worx. He has done work for us in the past (built closet; replaced all the windows in the house; designed and built three-car garage) and we were happy to put him in charge of the blowing out the back of the house. He gave excellent advice and guidance throughout the process. Neither my husband nor I are terribly detailed-oriented, and relied heavily on Brett’s design sense in the design-stage and beyond, and other more technical recommendations throughout.
Brett is well-respected in Oak Park’s Village Hall, which is an asset to any Oak Park homeowner trying to get a permit! The entire project took four months, without the delays that we expected! He created a temporary kitchen in our dining room, complete with refrigerator, sink with running water, and oven. It was awesome, and allowed for pretty much normal living throughout.
Scope of project: we expanded the back of the house by 13 feet. Brett worked with our architect to streamline the foundation design, saving us a significant amount of money. Enough, in fact, that we could replace the front concrete stoop with a beautiful front porch.
Brett’s associates are top-notch: the framers, electrician, plumber, and handymen (for lack of better term) were friendly, cleaned up after themselves, and were responsive if we either had questions or a last-minute request to change something. We are very happy with the cabinet supplier - they were easy to work with, delivered goods on schedule, and proved a great value.
We understand from friends who have gone through this that the punch-list can be problematic as most contractors have lost interest or have already moved on to the next project. This wasn’t an issue with Brett. He work through our list without complaint. He stayed on budget, and kept us informed about any changes due to unexpected issues or changes we asked for that deviated from the original proposal. Brett pulled off a total transformation. We are thrilled with the new space. We’ve had numerous people stop by and comment how fabulous the house now looks.
10/29/2013 – Alisha Mowbray
I had worked with Brett and his team before on a renovation of the main floor of my home and was impressed both the skill of the team and their professionalism. They then rebuilt my bathroom which went from skanky to luxury in a matter of weeks. Brett is very pragmatic, but also collaborative and open to new ideas. His team is professional and shows up on time and cleans up after themselves. Once again, I’m impressed by the team and will use them on my next project - the basement...
01/08/2014 – Rob Guenthner
This project went terrific. Brett Williams is a true professional. His crew is respectful, courteous and hard working. Not only did Element Worx perform the contracting work but Brett also designed the look of the finished basement and bath and we could not be happier with it. The project was done in a timely manner and, subject to a few approved upgrades, on budget. We have used Element Worx for a number of projects and Brett is our go to for any repair and remodeling needs.
04/08/2013 – Curt Warner
The project went very well. It was much less invasive than we imagined it would be. Brett is a collaborator, a creative thinker, and a careful problem solver. He is excellent to work with—he brings enthusiasm to his work, he is reliable, honest and trustworthy. What few small problems that did arise, Brett handled them calmly and without stress. We really couldn’t think more highly of him than we do, and our appreciation for him grew as the project grew.
12/17/2012 – Keeli Mickus
This was our first renovation and based on our experience with EW, we would do it all again. The whole process was smooth and as stress free as these things can be. The EW team was always punctual, responsive, honest, straight forward. The workmanship was top notch and they were incredibly professional.
05/16/2012 – Evan McKerns
We were in the market for a house and stumbled on one that was perfect for our family, but it was over 100 years old and hadn’t been updated in several decades. It needed some serious work. Before we even entertained an offer, we consulted with Brett Williams from Element Worx to help us define our vision for the home and to see if we could make that work within our budget. Brett was able to help us successfully prioritize our projects and our dollars to make major necessary renovations to the house while also planning ahead to future projects. Brett is a master at preserving historical character of a home (especially Arts & Crafts style) while accommodating modern conveniences; this was especially evident in his suggestion about how to retrofit the home with new heating and air conditioning vents without installing a single soffit along the 10 foot ceiling (we are very happy about this!). He also did not overlook any detail his choices in finishes were beautiful and very appropriate for style of the home.
All of the subcontractors that Brett used were very professional; a village inspector actually commented on how one of the subcontractors consistently does a great job and always passes inspection. In the end, Brett completed the job on time and on budget, and we couldn’t be more pleased with the results. We have already begun planning for phase 2!
09/11/2016 – Steve Nations
Great! Everything went according to plan. Project was estimated to take 6-8 weeks and it was finished during week 8. The workers were nice and respectful - and my admiration grew when one carried our bathroom vanity up a ladder and in through a window because it was too big to come up the stairs! The workmanship is very high quality and the finished product is beautiful. Brett was always available and quick with answers, solutions, feedback. I am looking forward to hiring him again for a kitchen/family room remodel.
10/27/2015 – Makesha Benson
Brett was great!
After receiving a referral from a good friend, seeing his work and ultimately meeting Brett, it was obvious that he was a great fit for this fairly sizable project. Brett managed all aspects of the project, including ensuring that the design of the garage fit the style of our home and the historic significance of the neighborhood. The finished product has more than surpassed our expectations. Additionally, all of his contractors, both subs and his employees were courteous / professional, highly engaged, and responsive even to the constant interruptions by my lurking family, onslaught of visitors, and my particular and nit picky involvement. We appreciated Brett's patience and trusted him to not only do the job with high quality but we trusted him and his team to have full access to our property and home.
10/16/2015 – Steve Allscheid
Brett Williams of Element Worx and his crew did a fantastic job with the installation of my outside deck. He added excellent ideas to the architectural design to ensure it complemented our home, offered several artistic options for consideration, and provided important guidance on the decking material to ensure the integrity of the structure, and to eliminate deck maintenance. I was originally interested in Ipe or Cumaru materials because of their density and beauty, but he provided an excellent product by Azek which was as beautiful as Ipe and Cumuru, but required none of the maintenance. Brett was adept at obtaining the required building permit, meeting building codes, and passing inspection. Brett?s crew was made up of professional, courteous, high quality craftsmen, and they attended to details that resulted in a deck that exceeded expectations. Brett also did a great job of estimating costs for materials, and the entire project came in at the planned budget. Brett and his crew are consummate professionals, and I would highly recommend them.
10/22/2013 – JENNA RUSSELL
Brett Williams is beyond trustworthy, competent and conscientious. He is an artist from vision through execution--without ever taking a keen eye off the budget . His design for the project was beyond expectation and execution was quite flawless. The vision applied to this project not only added much needed square footage to our home, but really created a wonderful space. I never thought I'd 'love' a basement, but I do!
Element Worx blends off the shelf solutions--take advantage of Ikea cleverness, special finds, etc.--with hand milled elements for truly affordable yet custom solutions. Ikea workspaces, capped with custom butcher block (matched throughout the space) and corkboard wall covering are perfect for my school age girls. A clever, custom built cabinet with sliding doors created a beautiful laundry disguise. Old radiator piping disappeared with the use of innovative tubing. Element Worx provided solid electrical, plumping and structural skills and incorporates into really special areas. The team was very open to my ideas, but transformed them above and beyond..
I have loads of cabinets, closets and cupboards and yet the feel of wide open space was created. Details such as molding, window casements, column design and lighting blend with other selections for a unique room. It is functional, well-built, and truly lovely. I really can not articulate the level of pleasure I have with the outcome of the project. My friends and family are blown away, never having envisioned that this "after" could have been created from the before.
Once work commenced, the team was there everyday through completion. The team moved items to the garage, built custom shelving to accommodate my junk and got right to work. The work was done quickly, thoughtfully and neatly. The crew is diligent, responsive and flexible. Brett is patient, knowledgeable, and highly responsive. Work was done faster than expected, the outcome was beyond my wildest dreams, and the budget stayed intact. Really, Straight A work!
10/29/2013 – Matthew Schoenfeldt
Brett, the owner of Element Worx, is very detail oriented and encourages clients to review the progress & ask questions every step of the way. As we saw the room coming together we recognized a handful of changes that would make the space even nicer & Brett & his crew were quite willing to make on-the-fly adjustments to meet our needs/requests.
Some of the design elements we were eager to incorporate (a sliding queen trundle bed that disappears beneath a knee wall) required the utmost in creativity to engineer & execute well; the crew of workman designed & constructed a flawless mechanism for this purpose.
Brett also takes great care to minimize the impact to daily living when your house is a construction zone. My wife, who was loath to take on another household project while she was pregnant, was very please by the courteous & mindful crew that transformed our third floor over the course of ~2 months.
In the end, the look on the faces of our visitors as we set them up in their 3rd floor suite says it all; they know just how much we appreciate that they have come to stay with us. My mother in-law even referred to it as the 'Waldorf Third-storia' last time she was our guest.