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Catching Up With the Owners

Mitch Wendt and Carson Yanna of Boom Brothers Property Solutions in Madison, WI

Coming up on Boom Brothers’ one-year anniversary, Carson and Mitch reflect on all they’ve accomplished so far.

As a refresher, what are your roles in the company?

Carson: I lend a hand, outside of my full-time job, wherever and whenever possible. I help with a few of the behind-the-scenes duties such as cleaning up job sites, handling accounting, forecasting when needed, managing accounts, helping strategize, and lending a separate set of eyes on projects.

Mitch: Right now my role in the company is some of the administrative work, estimator, and contractor. I am running the day to day business, booking jobs, estimating jobs, as well as completing the jobs.

How have you grown as a business owner since the beginning?

Carson: We’ve taken away something from each and every project. We’ve learned how to be even more prepared for future projects and provide even better service. We’ve become more experienced in scheduling jobs and making sure we have extra time allotted in case we run into unforeseeable scheduling conflicts further down the line.

Mitch: I feel I have grown as a business owner, simply by growing more comfortable and confident. When I first started out I was way outside my comfort zone!

What is one accomplishment you’re most proud of so far?

Carson: We set out to build a company we would be happy to be a part of and I believe we’re well on our way to building a sustainable business which will be around for many years to come.

Mitch: I would have to say our biggest accomplishment since starting the business, is the whole entire business! One year ago, I did not imagine we would have our own business and that I would be able to work for myself. It is truly humbling.

What are some lessons you’ve learned along the way?

Carson: Communication is key to a successful business. Without communication, everything comes crashing down. If we don’t supply a quality experience and product, there would be no point to being in business. That’s just the way we’re wired. Do it right or don’t do it at all.

Mitch: I would say one of the biggest lessons I have learned so far is how fast paperwork or other administrative duties can pile up. I’ve learned to maintain good communication with subs and clients during any sized project. Keeping the clients up to date with the project, no matter how small the detail, always creates a more positive environment. I guarantee it will make your, as well as your client’s, life much more enjoyable throughout the project.

What kinds of projects would you like to work on in the future?

Carson: I could definitely see ourselves flipping homes, buying more investment/rental properties, and I would really love to get into building new homes.

Mitch: If there is one direction I would like to see our business go, it would better incorporate custom carpentry. I would also like to get into historic renovations as well. I am a true believer in craftsmanship and strive to put that into any project we take on.

Continue To Follow Their Journey

Be sure to stop back and see what else Mitch and Carson and the Boom Brothers team have been up to. If you’d like to contact us in the meantime, give us a call or send us an email.

Prepping for Your Home Renovation

Prepping for your Home Renovation | Boom Brothers, Madison, WI

Finally deciding to renovate your living space is an exciting time, and usually a long time coming. As contractors we work hard to stick to a schedule, keep our work sites clean, and keep the homeowner’s lives as normal as possible. If you’re considering starting the renovation you’ve been waiting for, here are some tips on what to expect:

Unexpected delays could, and usually do, pop up.
It’s a part of the job, sometimes you don’t know what you’ll find until you start to work. As contractors we try to anticipate some of these delays and cushion our timeline. More insulation to remove than expected? Not a big deal, a few more hours added. Outdated electrical found? That’s a different story. Now we need to rely on an external electrical vendor.

External vendors can be booked up as far ahead as four weeks.
Hiring an electrician for the example above could push the project back a few days to a few weeks depending on their availability, which means pushing back the rest of our work that is contingent on the electrical being done. Although it may be a nuisance for the homeowner, it is completely necessary to get problems like those fixed.

Be prepared for the interruption into your everyday lives.
Three weeks may not seem like that big of a time commitment at the beginning, but it will be less of a burden if prepared for ahead of time. Although we try to keep the job site as clean as possible and impose on the homeowners’ schedules as little as possible, the renovation is still an interruption on daily activities. Living in a construction zone can start to grind on anyone after awhile. We understand, and please believe we are doing everything in our power to get the renovation done for you on time.

Speak up if something is wrong.
Remodeling is our specialty, not reading minds. The last thing we want is to have the homeowner unsatisfied. No one wins in this situation, please say something!

When we work together we will build the necessary trust between a contractor and homeowner, leaving the end result satisfactory for both.

Continue To Follow Their Journey

Be sure to stop back and see what else Mitch and Carson and the Boom Brothers team have been up to. If you’d like to contact us in the meantime, give us a call or send us an email.

Victorian Homes: The Pros and Cons

Victorian Homes: The Pros and Cons | Boom Brothers Property Solutions, Madison, WI

We’ve all dreamed about owning a Victorian home at one time or another. Imagine exploring each room and noting the special details in the woodwork and windows. What we may not think about is the amount of work that goes into keeping those details polished and inspiring.

Have you seen Money Pit with Tom Hanks? I think every owner of a home, Victorian or otherwise, has reached this mental state at one time or another:

Don’t worry, it turns out beautiful.

Victorian homes draw our attention because their design and architectural detail are second to none. You simply do not see the time and detail put into houses being built today compared to a century ago. If you’re seriously considering a Victorian for your next home, be prepared to work hard and make the important updates to keep the home in its best possible condition.

A century ago, many of today’s products did not exist. This includes drywall, Romex wiring, pvc piping, etc. What this means is, more likely than not, the home will need to be brought up to code with today’s standards.

A common find in these older homes is knob and tube electrical, and plaster and lathe. If knob and tube electrical is found during alterations to the home it must be removed and updated with new wiring. This can add an unexpected cost to what started as a simple project.

Plaster and lathe are more based on aesthetic preference, but over time it will become brittle and most likely begin to crack.

It is important to be aware of these and other issues that can arise in Victorian homes so you don’t end up with faulty wiring and a smashed tub. These homes take a lot of love to keep them in shape, but the reward is totally worth it.

Continue To Follow Their Journey

Be sure to stop back and see what else Mitch and Carson and the Boom Brothers team have been up to. If you’d like to contact us in the meantime, give us a call or send us an email.

Wood Flooring on a Budget

Wood Flooring a Budget | Laminate, Vinyl, Engineered Hardwood

Updating the flooring in a new space can easily have the most visual impact, and is usually a top request for remodeling. The look of wood flooring, but with easier maintenance, has become a big seller and we’ve implemented the products in our own properties as well as in client’s remodels. Three of these common materials are laminate, vinyl, and engineered hardwood flooring:

Laminate Flooring
The biggest sellers of laminate flooring are lower cost, ease of installation, and low maintenance. Laminate is sold for less because it is mostly synthetic, and can be mass produced using low cost materials. It uses a click and lock assembly for installation – this means no nails, no glue, and it can float over existing sub floors. The clear coat over the top of the laminate makes it easier to care for, but is not necessarily the best for rooms with water like kitchens and bathrooms.

Vinyl Flooring
Vinyl and laminate flooring have a lot of similarities in terms of look, installation, and longevity. Laminate will still be the cheaper option, but the biggest difference between laminate flooring and vinyl flooring is the amount of water each can handle. As said above, laminate is great for general use but should not be used in rooms that may have standing water or leaks. All vinyl flooring is acceptable for wet locations, and some styles are completely waterproof. When installed correctly, the chance of any water seeping through to the subfloor is extremely rare.

Engineered Hardwood
Having the most in common with hardwood flooring, engineered hardwood is likely to be the most expensive option out of the three, but is still worth a consideration. Unlike laminate or vinyl, engineered hardwood has more longevity because the thick wood layer allows the floor to be refinished or recoated, similar to hardwood. Engineered hardwood is also the most realistic looking of the three options, and still easy to install. With engineered hardwood you have the option of gluing and nailing it down, or floating it like the others. Depending on your budget, a mid-range engineered hardwood could be at a similar price point to high-end laminate flooring.

Continue To Follow Their Journey

Be sure to stop back and see what else Mitch and Carson and the Boom Brothers team have been up to. If you’d like to contact us in the meantime, give us a call or send us an email.

Landscaping Plants You Can’t (Easily) Kill

Landscaping plants you can't easily kill | Boom Brothers Property Solutions, Madison, WI

Now that the sun is alive in the Midwest people have been out planting gardens and working on landscaping. As landlords, landscaping needs to be approached with a strategy: durability. You can’t control the people or animals that will choose to walk through the yard, and you certainly can’t trust the weather – especially in Wisconsin. Below are five suggestions of plants you can’t (easily) kill.

Hostas could probably survive the apocalypse. They enjoy shade, can tolerate the sun, and come in a variety of colors. The flowers can vary from white to lilac and the leaves can vary in texture, color, and width. They’re popular for how big they can get and the amount of foliage they provide. If you have a family friend (thanks, Sandy!) whose hostas have provided too much foliage, they may even split some plants for you for free!

Weigela is similar in care to a shrub. It flowers most when planted in full sun, but still fares well in lightly shaded areas. Some weigela plants at full growth may require some pruning, but hey, maybe you prefer the natural state of the plant (we don’t judge). Next to hostas they can add a nice pop of color to a larger area that is still easy to maintain and care for.

Another plant that can cover some ground are petunias. They typically flower in pinks and purples, but can be found in yellow, apricot, red, and white as well. To get the most color out of petunias they should be planted in full sun and, unlike the other plants, they are an annual and must be planted every year.

Native to the Midwest, coneflowers are tough with their drought- and disease-resistant history. The plant does double-duty by flowering in the summer and providing birds food from their seeds in the fall and winter. Coneflowers should be planted in full sun and in soil that dries.

Daylilies have thousands of varieties to choose from and range in color from white to orange to purple. The flowers will bloom briefly, but there are several flowers on a stalk and they vary in the times they bloom. Daylilies should be planted in full sun and can be clipped once all of its buds have bloomed for the season.

Continue To Follow Their Journey

Be sure to stop back and see what else Mitch and Carson and the Boom Brothers team have been up to. If you’d like to contact us in the meantime, give us a call or send us an email.

Painting Products to Make Your Life Easier

Painting Products to Make Your Life Easier | Boom Brothers Property Solutions, Madison, WI

We’ve been doing a lot of painting lately and thought it would be helpful to look for lesser-known tools to speed up the process and improve the quality. We’re eager to give these following products a try during our next painting excursion.

Corner Ease Lambswool Roller
Painting big, expansive walls can be a breeze with your roller and extension. Right as you’re getting into the groove and ready to move onto the next wall you reach that awkward, corner-laden section of the room. Switching from the roller to a hand brush can change the texture and coverage of the paint, leaving that corner to stick out once the paint has dried. The Corner Ease Lambswool Roller is a convenient size to get into the corners or small crevices and, the true selling point, the texture and coverage will mimic that of a standard roller brush.

Anza Painting Brushes
If you’ve ever painted a window, you know how quickly impatience can arise. It’s all about the details with window sills and frames, and a sloppy paint job will be painfully obvious. Anza brushes, although more expensive, offer a quality product. The oval and round brushes are ideal for windows with the ability to evenly apply a generous coat of paint the first time around (with the small, awkward angles and spaces included) and their handles are specifically designed to make the grip comfortable. With the evenly applied coat and comfortable grip, the detailed painting should go much quicker overall.

Quickey Stickey Door Hinge Mask
Typically when painting doors and door frames, the hinges need to be removed from both to guarantee a clean line. The Quickey Stickey appears to be a shortcut, perfectly fitted for typical door hinge shapes. Place the Quickey Stickey on the hinge, paint over the sticker while painting the door or frame, and remove once the paint has dried.

Wonder Buckets
This tool allows you to carry around your entire paint arsenal with you. Eliminating paint trays, which can get messy, you can pour the paint right into the Wonder Bucket and wipe the brush or roller along the side to get rid of excess paint. It even has a spot where you can hook the roller handle in to suspend it above the paint while you take a break. The other compartments in it allow for other materials such as tape, a cloth, or a hand brush.

Continue To Follow Their Journey

Be sure to stop back and see what else Mitch and Carson and the Boom Brothers team have been up to. If you’d like to contact us in the meantime, give us a call or send us an email.

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