Kitchen Pan

Cooking Up Kitchen Remodel Profits

When I think of Entrepreneurs,I think of risk adverse dreamers going for the gold in new and exciting innovative industries.When I think of General Contractors,I think of “old school” bricks and mortar blue collar small business owners.On the surface both of these types of business personalities seem to be miles apart in philosophy and revenue but things are not always as they appear.Little did I know that kitchen remodels in particular could out perform most business ventures in a 30 day turn around time almost without exception.

“It’s a very specialized field,” says Ryan Dunn, owner of Trinity Builders in Edwards,Colorado.Ryan has built a rock solid reputation as an award winning contractor and custom home builder and has set a new standard as an entrepreneurial contractor.

There is without question a lot money in this business.Dunn’s company grosses between $4.5 million and $7.5 million a year on the 20 to 30 jobs it performs annually. The average custom kitchen remodel, including installation, runs about $90,000 although jobs start at $30,000 and reach $500,000.

I thoroughly love talking to Dunn.He routinely speaks in no-nonsense sentences, like many small-business owners I have met who have no time to waste.He most definitely knows his craft and has that”x-factor”when it comes to designing and constructing mind blowing kitchens.

Dunn swears by premium kitchen appliances made by brands such as  Liebherr and Sub-Zero,with their $12,000 refrigerators and $4,000 steam ovens.Although Dunn’s company Trinity Builders are considered ultra high-end  kitchen remodelers,  many of their clients have received a high quality product at mid- level pricing.

“We specialize in high end,but we also do quite well with competitive cabinet lines,Dunn says,adding that a quality Sub-Zero refrigerator can last for decades and pay for itself in spades.

Details are most essential in designing kitchens, which is why engineering, math and drafting are paramount. Designers must calculate when a cabinet door is too heavy for a hinge. Or whether a “slider system” under kitchen doors delivers a smooth glide.

“You have to be technically outstanding,” says Dunn. “You must be able to draft, and be an expert at math. But you also have to engineer, understand how things work together. You cannot survive in this business unless you have these kinds of technical skills.”

Kitchen designers can earn from $800,000 to $2,000,000 a year, depending on the scope of their business. They generally receive about 25 to 35 percent of the total cost of the kitchen, while Dunn receives a slightly lower margin, he believes in maximum quality delivered dollar for dollar relying on referrals as the life blood of his business.

Interestingly,Dunn confirm’s what very little I know about the kitchen remodel industry: It’s all about the cabinets.

The most lucrative cabinet margins can exceed 150 percent or more, by far the most profitable job in a renovation project. Because each kitchen is different and custom designed, cabinets are often custom-ordered and built by boutique manufacturers.

The bottom line is this.In today’s dog eat dog competition for profits,kitchen remodeling is definitely heating up and giving tradition minded entrepreneurs a run for their money.When considering your options starting out of the gate as an entrepreneur,never discount traditional business models such as running a kitchen remodeling company.







Business Man

Entrepreneurial Failure Is Inevitable

To be a successful entrepreneur you are going to experience constant failure. There is no way around it and there are almost no exceptions to this inevitable fact. Thomas Edison tried over ten thousand different experiments before he finally demonstrated the first incandescent light bulb on October 21, 1879. Bill Gates’ original company, Traf-O-Data, was a complete failure.These are just a couple of examples and if you were to interview any of the top entrepreneurs in today’s business world they would all say persistence is the key and failures are only lessons that must be learned to advance.

In my short time as an entrepreneur, I’ve failed more times than I can remember. I have also had my fair share of success, but these successes are not even close to the amount failures I’ve had to deal with in business. I don’t get discouraged though because I know that as soon as I stop failing, I have stopped trying to innovate which is critical for me. It’s the price of the business of being an entrepreneur, and of success in general.

If success was easy, everyone would be successful. It is crazy to think that every good idea that you have will result in a winning business venture. I have never heard an entrepreneur say “every single idea I come up with seems to work.” Much more likely, your bound to hear something like “I failed at my first four businesses before this one took off and made it big.”

Contemplate that for a second. Four businesses. Sometimes the number is two, sometimes it’s twenty, but the important thing to remember is that most entrepreneurs don’t hit it out of the park with their first Business. It really amazes me how many people have the persistence to fail four times and still start a fifth business? You have to be very confident in yourself to treat those previous four times as a learning experience for the fifth. And if number five failures, you have to do the same and move on to number six.

In my opinion, the most important determining factor for success is how you deal with failure. Once you accept that failure is inevitable, you are able to learn from your the sum of your mistakes and move on to the next venture. It’s easy to let the failure consume you because it can be very hard to see something that you poured all your resources into be ignored or rejected. You must  come to the conclusion that your business is what they are ignoring or rejecting, and definitely not you. The earlier you do that, the faster you can objectively analyze why you failed and learn the necessary tools for improvement in the future.