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2011 - Volume 1 Issue 1
Casas Bonitas
Remodeling
 
Article: Bob Skolnick
 
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We have chosen seven professional remodelers to consult with us on the process of remodeling. We selected our panel of experts based on our evaluations as defined in the preceding article on how to select a remodeler. The factors they all have in common are experience as a professional remodeler and a commitment to the integrity of their profession. Some are old school and do their planning and estimating the way their fathers and mentors did with a tape measure, pocket calculator and a yellow lined tablet. Others have embraced the latest estimating software and cad imaging systems. We thank them for the time spent in providing interviews.

   

Resources

Diemer Building
& Remodeling

1060 S Main St.
Las Cruces, NM 88005
575-524-5800
ddiemer.com

McGinley Construction
2420 Camino Bodegas
Mesilla, NM 88046
575-523-9140
mcginley-construction.com

Jim Martin Construction
425 Stonebluff
El Paso, TX 79912
915-584-5239
jimmartinconstruction.com

Mesa Home Improvement
200 Bartlett Dr. Ste 114
El Paso, TX 79912
915-845-3104
mesahome
improvement.com


Lowenberg and
Associates Construction

222 Hermosa Lane
El Paso, TX 79922
915-581-8333
lowenbergand
associates.com


Artistic Improvements
1055 Humble Unit A
El Paso, TX 79915
915-549-4113
artisticimprovements.com

Guel Construction
PO Box 371513
El Paso, TX 79935
915-595-0979

Dan Diemer - I’ve been in the business for just about 29 years, and we have been primarily a remodeling company all of that time. Occasionally, we have built new homes, and for the past ten years they have only been with ICF (Insulated Concrete Form) products. We have become knowledgeable and a leader of this energy efficient and green building material.

My father has always been involved in some sort of building project that we were associated with at some point in our lives. Most of the on site experience is just that. I was out there doing the work and just getting a real feel for how houses are put together and how they can be improved at the same time. In addition to on-the-job experience, I’ve completed a number of programs with the National Home Builders Association. I’ve taken and completed the course for Certified Graduate Remodeler, and I also completed the Certified Aging in Place Specialist (CAPS). I’ve been Chairman of the Remodeler’s Council and active in it for years. I have served two terms as President of the Building Industry Association.

Kevin McGinley - I’ve been remodeling since the inception of the business, which was founded in 1978. We have done custom homes and then spec houses for awhile, but our bread and butter business has always been remodeling.

Connie, my wife, and I work as a team, along with our sons Marshall and Ryan. She takes care of the business aspect and I handle the sales, estimating and design. I used to oversee all of the production as well, but my oldest son, Marshall, has been with us eight years and he runs production. For the last ten years or so we have had a draftsperson / designer on staff as well as an estimator. We’ve always been involved in the Building Industry Association of Southern New Mexico. I was the founding chairman of the Remodeler’s Council back in 1989. I have also been active in the State of New Mexico Homebuilder Association Board of Directors. I took some graduate remodeler courses, and we actually spend a lot of time at national and regional home and trade shows, always looking for new ideas and approaches. We are a member of Build Green New Mexico and we have had two houses that were certified BGNM Gold and Silver, both earning tax credits for our clients, one of which was a major remodel. We are also well versed in ICF (Insulated Concrete Form) building systems.

Jim Martin - My wife, Becky, and I have been remodeling for over 29 years in the El Paso area and work as a team. I supervise the job site work and Becky handles the administration and customer appliance and fixture selections. I started in custom home building with Becky’s brother, Bart Phillips, a well-known El Paso new homes builder. After several years I broke off on my own and started Jim Martin Construction. At first, the company handled both new homes and remodeling, but over the years, the business moved more towards remodeling. We still build new homes, but our expertise and our passion are in remodeling.

Both of us have been involved in leadership roles for El Paso NARI (National Association of Remodeling Industries) Chapter for the past 10 years and we have both served as Chapter President. Becky is currently El Paso NARI Chapter Executive Director and we are committed to the NARI Code of Ethics and its industry education and networking. Recently we took the training to become Lead Based Paint Certified Renovators.

Bill Murray - I’ve been in the home and remodeling business in El Paso as an owner for 15 years. My father has a remodeling company that is still in business after 50 years in Albuquerque. I was working for my father ever since I was a young kid and I started out as a laborer, then worked my way up to a supervisor, then a salesman. So, I know all aspects about the remolding industry with about 37 years total experience.

I’m a member of the Better Business Bureau in El Paso. We are registered with The City of El Paso and bonded and insured. I also have a New Mexico Contractors License, which requires successfully passing a very stringent testing process. In New Mexico you cannot contract without a license.

I am a member of NARI El Paso Chapter and the El Paso Association of Builders and I participate in their educational programs. Recently we had a program on lead based paint removal with a certification designation for completing the course. It’s good to belong to NARI and the EPAB and meet other people in the same industry.

Patrick Ganey - The company was started in 1980 by Julius Lowenberg, my father-in-law, and it has always been a family owned and operated company. Julius was a high school teacher and football coach for many years. He retired from teaching and started remodeling with another gentleman in town, and after a few years he went on his own. I have been involved in the business since the mid to late 1980s. I took over as President in 2000. We are a full service home improvement company specializing in kitchens, bathrooms, room editions and a full spectrum of home improvement remodeling. We have been very fortunate over the years that 90 percent of our business is referrals and even though we will work in any part of El Paso, our customers have been mostly from the Westside of El Paso and the Upper Valley areas. Over the years we have been very active in NARI El Paso Chapter and Julius was a founding member. We are both past presidents of the El Paso chapter, with Julius also being a past president of NARI national. I like the organization because of its code of ethics and the continuing education that the organization offers. The most recent training offered was the EPA Lead Paint Certified Renovator Program, which we successfully completed.

Max Goldfien - After high school, friends and I began offering minor construction services to earn money for college. Years later, I earned a degree in construction management and worked for several local homebuilders, learning from some of the best, with a lot of emphasis on custom home building. In 2000, I decided to establish my own remodeling business, Artistic Improvements.

My business philosophy is to give the homeowner the best possible product for the money. My job is to offer solutions and remodeling is often more challenging than new construction. A professional remodeler must be a good businessman, managing the project, the cash flow, negotiating with suppliers and sub contractors and keeping up with building codes and new products. We must listen to our clients with the ultimate goal of turning their visions into a reality.

I hold a number of certifications through NARI and NHBA. I earned my Certified Remodeler through NHBA more than 20 years ago. I have been very active with the local NARI chapter and served on the NARI Board of Directors at the national level. My wife, René, and I enjoy attending national kitchen/bath and remodeling trade shows and take advantage of their continuing education courses.

Rudy Guel - My father, Benito, started Guel Construction over 50 years ago. I helped my father and learned the trade from the bottom up while going to high school and college. I aspired to be an engineer and pursued an engineering degree at UTEP. When my father became ill, I had to abandon my educational plans and take over the family business. Thirty-five years later, I have a long list of projects and have continued to learn through experience. Recently, I was selected by the El Paso Association of Builders to construct their new headquarters building, which was quite an honor.

I was one of the founding fathers of NARI El Paso Chapter and have served as both treasurer and vice president. I have been active in the El Paso Association of Builders for over 20 years, having served as president and continuing to serve as a Board Member. I also chaired EPAB’s Remodeler’s Council. ///
 
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