What Our Clients Say
"When we bought our first house back in 2008 it was relatively move-in ready, had good bones and a great location and large back yard. There weren't any major repairs needed. We knew that eventually once we could afford it we would update the linoleum kitchen floors, old kitchen cabinets and a few other things. Ever since first stepping foot inside the house we had a vision to create a master bedroom, expand back powder room to full bath and knock down a wall or two to get better use of the overall space.
Over time we met with multiple architects to see how we could transform this vision to reality and we were very lucky to have worked with JoanBarton and her fantastic team at Dirty Girl Construction. DGC not only made all of our dreams a reality, they took our vision and needs to a level that surpassed all expectations and we couldn't be happier with the craftsmanship, personal touch and overall experience. How many first time renovators can say that?! We will be using DGC for all our future design and construction needs. Thank you for transforming our house into the home we've always envisioned."
Raphaella and Tim Steudler
"Let's face it, there is no one like Joan Barton! She gets the job done, not only on time, but constantly exceeds quality expectations. This is my third renovation with Joan (both residential and commercial spaces) and I could not be happier. Her crews are organized and talented, her sites are impeccably clean and everything proceeds according to her very carefully mapped out plan. I can't say enough about Dirty Girl Construction. I look forward to our next project together!"
KP, Santa Monica
"I could write a book about Joan Barton. Someone should write a book about Joan Barton. Surely it would be easier than attempting to encapsulate a portrait of her into a brief testimonial.
I hired Joan and Dirty Girl Construction during a very difficult time in my life; the passing of my parents within months of one another. Tasked with the emotional weight of that time, the physical obligations were too much for me to handle, including the remodel and sale of my childhood home. A friend of mine had gone through a similar situation the year prior, and she had hired Dirty Girl Construction. On high recommendation, I did the same. I had no true concept of whom I had just hired, but what a Godsend! Like Noah parting the Red Sea, Joan showed up and performed absolute miracles. The remodel she did was tremendous. Her ability to envision and execute is beyond measure. Joan is a true artist and I know of no greater team of tradespeople than Dirty Girl Construction. They are solution-based, communicative, budget-conscious, prompt and friendly. I honestly didn't know that we were under construction most of the time because they are so incredibly clean. And, often times, I was able to forget the great strain I was under because of the simple acts of kindness that Joan and her team perform on a daily basis.
I cannot recommend Joan more highly than to say it is an honor to know her and a true pleasure to have worked with Dirty Girl Construction."
RT, Sherman Oaks
"After years of dealing with shoddy contractors who disappear after the check’s cut, working with Joan and her team was an amazing experience. Not only were they a friendly, fun team to have (basically living) at our house, their work was fast, high quality and sensitive to budget concerns. Everything was clearly stated, every change order discussed logically and, if an issue arose, she was there to ensure things were handled quickly and without attitude. And when an unrelated item needed work at 10pm on a Sunday, Joan was an invaluable resource to get someone trustworthy out within an hour."
AB, Hollywood Hills
"Joan Barton did an incredible job designing and building our kitchen from the ground up. She was professional, attentive, knowledgeable and saved us both time and money. Additionally, we were continually impressed with the level of skill and professionalism of each of her crews. She brought our project in on budget and on time and it is high quality as well as visually stunning. With confidence, I would feel comfortable recommending Joan to anyone based on our outstanding experience."
KB, Hollywood Hills
"As a personal practice, I do not write letters of recommendation or provide testimonials. I will volunteer to be a reference on a case-by-case instance if I feel strongly that the requestor merits my efforts. Having said that, it is with utter glee that I write you about Joan Barton. I’ve known her professionally, then personally and then professionally for over 5 years.
My design partner found about Joan from a close friend. We all worked together on a prospective client woefully naïve about what it took to renovate a home in Los Angeles. We hit it off from the handshake. I found her approach, knowledge and work-style completely compatible with our project and thought processes—it was almost embarrassing… Although the project was never awarded (bummer because the house was amazing), we liked each other enough to stay in touch and share ideas and industry insights.
Last July, I reached out to Joan in a professional context because I was ready to begin a renovation project at my home in Silver Lake. The experience I had with her and her curated team makes me want to remodel more of my house and then buy another house and start all over.
I work in Program Management at the executive level so it is my job to understand inherently how to run a project. Joan does too. As a result, the project was completely mapped out with appropriate flexibility, resources and priorities before the first tile was purchased. I can tell you officially that the rule of thumb for contractors about doubling the price and time is an urban legend when you work with Joan. My project finished early and was over budget by $287 (and that was my fault—I wanted better handles.)
I hold Joan in the highest esteem."
WE MARRIED JOAN
"We met Joan by luck. We weren’t really looking for this type of a relationship since we had heard so many horror stories about this type of arrangement. We ran into her when she was doing some fine interior carpentry for our neighbors across the street who lived in an old house like us. Joan was gregarious, sharp, laughed at my stupid jokes and seemed like she knew what she was doing. And how could you go wrong with an outfit called Dirty Girl Construction? We decided to take the plunge.
We live in a 4000 square foot Craftsman built in 1909. It is a very special house and we wanted someone very special to work on it. We feared contractors, especially since we had never heard of anyone who had had a good experience. Our parents had warned us about contractors. But, we had a feeling about Joan so we went head first into the relationship ignoring conventional wisdom and betrothed ourselves, our house and our finances to this Dirty Girl.
Well, we have never had such a rewarding relationship: We saw each other practically every day, talked all the time and never really had any disagreements. Joan did an excellent job. Joan was at our house practically every day for six months making sure her crew was here and doing what they needed to do and that things were getting done the way she wanted them done. She took on our major job that required replacing all of the wood rot; new roof, new decks, new beams. She had her craftsmen imitate the “Greene and Greene” style of the house and treated our precious darling as if it were her own. In the process she even added a master bathroom remodel.
Joan is a woman of many skills. She has the eye of an artist and the mind of a professional and most important, is a woman of her word. We highly recommend Joan if you want someone who has a very high work ethic, does excellent work, will not desert you and will fit right into your family (if you want)."
KS & GB, Los Angeles
"Let the record show that what I’m about to tell you is all truth and I am of clear and sound mind as I scribe this. With that said, I 100% believe that Joan Barton and her team should seriously wear capes because if a team of superheroes is what you’re looking for, ya found them!
I met Joan through friends a few years ago and was instantly blown away by her chutzpa, intelligence, and no BS style of adulting. She is an absolute straight shooter, genuine, hilarious and trustworthy. Now, I realize writing “trustworthy” about a contractor sounds like a fairytale or an oxymoron, but I assure you, this woman is the real deal.
I met her and loved her instantly, but seeing as how I don’t own a home and wasn’t in any financial position to buy and/or build anything, I filed her badass skillset away for a rainy day and just focused on what an incredible human she is.
Then, as craptastic luck would have it, my parent’s home in the Studio City hills hit a bit of a hiccup. I say hiccup, but I really mean, a total f*cking shitstorm. Thanks to some heavy rains and a hillside that is crumbling and a 1940’s retaining wall that mirrors more of a used Band-Aid than an actual retaining wall, a huge chunk of our property slid down the hill onto the neighbor’s property below and lawsuits were being threatened. Doh!
When I found this out, I was sauced up on vin rouge and stinky cheese in Paris. It was 5:30am and a beautiful French man laid beside me as my phone was blowing up with texts from our not-so-beautiful annoying neighbor telling me to get my ass back to LA immediately to deal with this. Merci de ruiner ma soirée romantique!
I asked the neighbor to send me some pics and remembering I had a rock star contractor in my world, I sent them to Joan. Her timely response was a very subtle: CALL ME IMMEDIATELY!!
See, she’s direct.
I called her up and we talked through the situation and I started to get very nervous. Joan knows this world backwards and forwards and if she says it’s bad, you should worry. Despite having several other active projects going at the time, she sent her rock star foundation guy (Ari) out there the very next day and together, they confirmed that we were indeed, oh what do the scientists call it, oh yes, F*CKED. As it turns out, the hill is in a state of sliding eminency, and with one more heavy rainstorm, our family home is going down the hill
So what do we do now? My Dad is 87 years old and pretty much on his death bed. He built that house from the ground up and thought he would die peacefully in it, so the idea of ripping him away from his home is absolutely heartbreaking. My Mom has dementia and could easily forget she’s not supposed to go in the backyard and tumble and fall down the hill on the unstable land. I don’t even live in LA anymore, so what do we do!?
Well, we let Joan and her team do what they do best; problem solve. For the next 2 days, Joan worked every angle and contact she had. She ran the numbers and gave us an honest quote to fix and support the land. We then talked through the pros and cons of the situation and I can’t tell you how many hours and texts she dealt with from scared me wondering what the hell we were going to do. ButJoan was a pro the entire time and helped me take the emotions out of it and make the smartest decision for my family.
After some gut-wrenching deliberation, we decided this project would be a huge undertaking that would involve a lot of stress for my parents and myself. It would be costly as my parent’s house is land-locked which would mean tons of additional costs to get equipment back there. The house is also 46 years old and starting to show some massive wear and tear. Sure, it could be saved, but given the circumstances and the stress, the writing was on the wall. We have to sell the property.
I was gutted. My parents were gutted and I fought it ‘til the very end trying to think of ways to make it work. Then Joan did what will continue to make me smile for the rest of my life: She flat out fired me. She’s been crushing in this world for decades. She knows the drill. She knew we weren’t up for this and she also knew the best decision was to sell it and find somewhere safe and tranquil for my parents to live out their golden years.
I’m now staring at an accepted offer on a little 3 bedroom/2 bath slice of heaven in Jenner, CA. Our house is also on the market and is swarming with agents and offers. My parents and I are going to get our happy ending after all and Joan is a huge part of that. I honestly couldn’t have gotten through this mess without her and am forever grateful.
So, long story short, if you have the chance to work with Joan and her team, do it. They’ll seriously help restore your faith in humanity and your digs will be the stuff of brag-worthy Instagrams.
STEPHANIE HUGHES, Los Angeles, CA