Qualified Remodeler Magazine

OCT 2014

Qualified Remodeler helps independent remodeling firms to survive, become more professional and more profitable by providing must-have business information, namely best business practices, new product information and timely design ideas.

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56 October 2014 QR ForResidentialPros.com Who started your company? I did. I am still 100 percent owner of the company. When and how did you choose this career? There's trade history in my family, and I did pickup carpenter work in college. I then worked as a carpenter in North Carolina and Tennessee before going to work with my father, Steve, who was building new custom homes before the recession. I worked with Dad as project manager, carpenter, laborer, roustabout — whatever was required. When Dad decided to hang up his spurs, I started New Blue as a very small remodeling busi- ness focused primarily on staying alive dur- ing the depths of the economic downturn. What does being part of NAHB mean to you? Teamwork. Education. Being part of an organization that helps keep our business strong. How has the remodeling profession changed since you've been involved? We started in the doldrums of the downturn, building anything and everything we could get our hands on just to keep the ball mov- ing downfield. In the past couple of years as New Blue has grown and our area's market has improved, we are now able to do larger and more interesting projects in partnership with good architects and engaged clients. We've been blessed to stay busy with inter- esting and challenging projects in recent times. What have you done to grow your business during the current economy? Making clients happy one job at a time. Choosing good jobs (and saying no to bad ones). Limited, but targeted advertising; mostly, word-of-mouth has helped us grow. What is the most unusual project your company has completed? We completed an 18-month historical res - toration of a 1906-built home in a historic neighborhood here in Chattanooga (pic- tured). The previously condemned house pushed us to our limits in bringing the project to code and respecting the owner's wishes to be as authentic to the period of the home as possible. We also achieved a green- built certification for the project, achieving a HERS index rating of 66, a first for the program as a remodel entry. In addition to the green elements of the project, we sal- vaged and restored multiple materials in the home: refinishing hardwoods; salvaging unique moldings; and fabricating an island top and the interior stair treads in our shop out of old heart pine salvaged from areas of the demolition. Recycling at its finest. A great job with a great client; we are very proud of the end result. What is your favorite item in your office? A picture of me with my firstborn, Hattie Rose, right after she was born hangs over my desk. Nothing here is possible or worthwhile without my beautiful and supportive wife, Jamie, and all four of my daughters. Anything else you'd like to m e n t i o n a b o u t c a r e e r accomplishments? I would be nowhere without the amazing team around me at New Blue. We have suc- ceeded, in part, by diversifying our business model. We have in-house divisions in paint, carpentry and architectural woodwork- ing. A willingness to succeed at a variety of commercial and residential jobs has been an advantage to our standing here in Chattanooga. QR Choosing good jobs (and saying no to bad ones). Limited, but targeted advertising; mostly, word-of-mouth has helped us grow. What is the most unusual project your company has completed? We completed an 18-month historical res- PROFITS: NAHB Remodeler of the Month The general contracting business specializes in custom home building and home remodeling. Stuart Gaines, CGP, LEED Green Associate NEW BLUE CONSTRUCTION INC., CHATTANOOGA, TENN. NEWBLUECONSTRUCTION.COM TITLE: PRESIDENT FOUNDED: AUGUST 2008 NUMBER OF EMPLOYEES: 15-19, SEASONALLY ADJUSTING TYPE OF COMPANY: FULL-SERVICE REMODELING INVOLVEMENTS: PRESIDENT 2014 REMODELERS COUNCIL HBA OF GREATER CHATTANOOGA Photo: courtesy of New Blue Construction

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