Last month in this space, I reviewed a series of market projections for 2014 from Harvard University as well as the industry’s leading associations.
Part of the Master Plan
Scott Gregor’s company, Master Plan Construction had worked with Kitchens of Distinctions for almost 10 years, turning to the design showroom for kitchen expertise and partnering on several remodels.
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Scott Gregor’s company, Master Plan Construction (www.masterplanconst.com), had worked with Kitchens of Distinctions for almost 10 years, turning to the design showroom for kitchen expertise and partnering on several remodels. When the 40-year-old business came up for sale last year, the design-build firm snatched it up.
"It was a natural thing for us to look at purchasing it," Gregor says of the $2 million Portland, Ore. company’s action. "The blending of the two companies has provided more continuity and full-service options to potential customers." Gregor saw the integration of Kitchens as a means of capturing leads for the kitchen projects in which Master Plan specializes. "Numerous leads were coming in the door, but because the previous owner did only high-end design, cabinetry and countertops, some business left through those same doors," Gregor says.
Kitchens of Distinctions features Rutt, Neff and Royalty cabinetry (www.ruttcabinets.com/).
"The quality of materials used in construction, their truly unique features, and the outstanding finishes are quickly making Neff Kitchens one of the top choices of architects and designers in fine contemporary home construction and remodeling," Gregor says. "Rutt’s solid reputation in the industry and it’s exceptional ability for ultimate customization has given it unparalleled market appeal for fine traditional cabinetry. The combination of these two cabinet lines gives us the ability to offer the best available in either traditional or contemporary styles. The Royalty cabinets--manufactured locally--are very versatile, can be totally customized, has contemporary or traditional style capabilities, and gives you the overall apparent value without the investment of ultra-high line product. We find that this combination of these three product choices meets the needs of our customers."
Kitchens also displays appliances from two local dealers, and Abbakka and Best rangehoods as well as custom-built hoods manufactured locally. Countertops and flooring complete the offering.
Gregor has incorporated Kitchens into the remodeling firm, but kept the separate name. "We invite other builders to use our show room," Gregor says. "We did not want to have other contractors feel they could not bring their clients in. We have currently three general contractors using our design services and cabinetry lines, and we hope to build on that."
Gregor moved the remodeling firm into a "cramped" office on the second floor of the building in which Kitchens was located. He’s recently acquired about 2000 square feet and is remodeling that area for Master Plan’s new office. "It includes an inside back stairway to the showroom so we can interact," he says. "If remodeling questions arise [in the showroom], they can buzz upstairs on the intercom and I can go down to discuss the project."
The purchase has improved Gregor’s systems. Because he uses the Kitchen staff to sell, he was able to reduce his remodeling sales force while quality leads increased. "Previously, I could not [pick and choose my projects], because I did not have the multiple avenues of referrals I have now acquired," he says. About six of 10 leads are drive-bys or walk-ins, he says, and Master Plan closes about one-third of those that visit the showroom this way.
"We love high-end work and the quality level of the high-end kitchen," Gregor says. "The smooth transition in ownership allowed us to continue business without skipping a beat. We have picked up, at this point, enough work to cover the cost of the purchase."
Rod Sutton is the Editor-in-Chief for Professional Remodler. Please email him with any comments or questions regarding his column.