PR April 2006

August 16, 2010

Features

If you're not a member of one of the two trade associations that directly serve the remodeling industry, you're missing out on beneficial resources that can help differentiate your business from the competition. At the bare minimum, I'd suggest you join either NARI or the NAHB Remodelors Council today.

While stick building remains the standard, remodelers are taking a cue from new home builders' use of pre-assembled trusses when it comes to big jobs. Manufactured roof and floor trusses can ease and expedite the process of installing the roof and floor systems in an addition, and more importantly, provide time, labor and material savings in the process.

It's a no-brainer: Every house has at least one kitchen and one bathroom. Homeowners spend a lot of time in these rooms, and they get heavy use. Trends come and go, but kitchens and bathrooms will always be big sources of remodeling business. The part that's not so obvious — at least, not to homeowners — is how to go about getting a kitchen or bath remodel done.

Who wouldn't want to spend his late 30s working part time, savoring time with his wife and three children in the Southern California sunshine, building a new home, and enjoying the income of a profitable, growing business? Jason Larson, CR, certainly did. So at a time in his life when many remodelers are still putting in backbreaking hours building their businesses, Larson, owner of Lars Constr...

Twenty years ago, Benvenuti and Stein had designed the kitchen of this home on Chicago's North Shore. The new owners liked its basic form and function, especially the center island. But the homeowner, an art collector, wanted the space recast in the modern, minimalist Scandinavian design she loves.

The food at Fiorentino's outclassed the building the way grilled brie outclasses melted Velveeta. Rob and Rose Billas had opened the family-friendly Italian eatery in 1999, immediately after buying the 200-year-old building — once a restaurant, most recently a biker bar.

Vital legislation promoting affordable health care for small businesses will hit the Senate floor for the first time in more than a decade, thanks to a March 15 vote by the U.S. Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee. The Health Insurance Marketplace Modernization and Affordability Act would allow professional associations to provide group health insurance across state lines.

Referrals are the bread and butter of the remodeling business, but not all referral leads are created equal. Whether a prospective client finds a contractor via a friend or a phone book, the remodeler has the responsibility of choosing projects that will fit the company's schedule and resources and be most profitable.

Have you ever experienced emotions running high or out of control in a family business meeting and wondered what happened? You invested time, energy, heart and skill, but nothing was accomplished because people dug in their heels. Many family businesses are run on an emotional family structure rather than an agreed-upon business structure.

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