Markt & Company Construction is a remodeling company serving the Portland Metro area of Oregon. We can be reached at (503) 657-5557 or on our website at www.marktandcompany.com
One of our owners, Jonathan Markt, has just passed the exam to become a Certified Remodeler through NARI (the National Association of the Remodeling Industry)! Great job, Jonathan!
NARI Certified Remodelers (CRs) are professional remodelers who provide a full range of remodeling services. To become a CR, candidates must possess skill and knowledge in a broad range of business management and technical skill areas.
To qualify for the CR designation, applicants must meet all of the following:
On our website, I reference our commitment to QP3.
What does this mean?
Quality People: When you hire Markt & Company, you're hiring a family business. We opened our business in 1977. This year, we're celebrating our 35th anniversary! In 35 years, we have had no complaints at the Oregon Construction Contractors Board. Our core management group of 4 employees has a combined 70 years of service with Markt & Company Construction. That's an average of over 17 years each! We have integrity. We are trustworthy and have great customer service. We pride ourselves on doing the right thing, both through remodeling projects and giving back to our communities. See staff bios on our website.
Quality Process: We're committed to making our customer's remodel projects look great, function well, last a long time, and cause minimal disruption during construction. We believe that clear, frequent, detailed communication before, during and after the remodel is key to making this a reality. During the project, our customers have access to our online project management and scheduling system. We meet weekly to discuss progress and changes. And after the project is completed, we warranty our work for a full year. We also have a Craftsman Division of our company dedicated to maintenance and repairs, to keep your home in perfect shape.
Quality Product: Excellent craftsmanship is our top priority. If your remodel isn't done right, then it doesn't matter how great our service or our people were. Over the last 3 years, our business from repeat customers and referrals averaged 79% of our total potential customers. This is a huge compliment to us - part of this comes from our process and our people, but without great quality, we wouldn't be getting so many referrals. We have such high quality for several reasons. First, we have 35 years of experience. We've dealt with many different situations, problems, ages of homes and types of needs. We have the knowledge and resources to tackle just about anything we might come across. Second, we have a trusted network of specialty subcontractors who we've worked with for many years. Most of our subcontractors have been with us for a long time, and all are experts in their fields.
Our company operates on QP3, delivering consistent quality through our people, our process and our product. If you'd like more information, please contact us.
Here's a 2nd story addition we did in 1995:
We get asked often to give customer an estimate, and it has me thinking about the work that we put into figuring a price for a customer. We don't call these estimates, we call them proposals. Why the distinction?
When I think of an estimate, I think of a number. I picture a project as I want it done, and the estimate is a ballpark price for all the different parts of the project put together. What we do is a little different. Instead of giving you one total price, we break down the proposal into each area of construction (such as Demolition, Plumbing, Windows, Drywall, etc). We descibe what we're going to do in each of those areas, and the cost associated with each. Of course, we also give you a total of all the areas.
Why is this valuable? We've polled our customers to find out what they like about our company, and this part of our process comes up again and again. Part of the reason is that it makes it easy for people to see where they might save money if the total cost is out of reach. Also, it gives a meaning to the total. It's the first introduction to our way of doing business - clear, thorough, respectful communication with our customers. You can expect the same level of service from us throughout your remodel.
"The most valuable part of our business is the process." - Jonathan Markt, owner
Here's a picture of an elevator we recently added to a church in Aurora, OR:
First of all, let me apologize for my long absence. I had my first child in March, and I've been focusing on her and the business since then, not leaving a lot of time to blog! Here's a photo from a project we just finished. Our designer on this project, Kirstin Havnaer, recommended this gorgeous tile pattern.
I came across an article today about remodeling during the recession that I thought was worth sharing. (See link at the end of this post)
The article says that because the housing market is still low, more people are remodeling their homes instead of selling them. We're certainly finding this to be true with our customers. Remodeling is a great way to make your home fit your needs, and can add to the value when or if you eventually sell it. The author discusses three types of remodels that are still in big demand right now.
First: Aging in place and combined family dwellings.
More people are wanting to help their aging parents by moving them into their homes. This can be more cost effective than an assisted living facility, and may make everyone more comfortable. We did a project a few years ago with an addition designed for just this purpose. We added an elevator, two bedrooms, 2 bathrooms and a kitchen and living room for the mothers of both of our clients. The result was a beautiful space for the mothers to be near their kids. Also, the home is now equipped with features making it feasible for our clients to remain in their own home for a long time. Here's a picture of the elevator from this project. You can also refer to my previous blog post about that project.
Second: Outdoor Living Space.
Since less people are vacationing away, and more families are "stay-cationing" at home, it is important to many that the living space they have is relaxing, fun and usable. Here's a deck with a unique railing that we built in 2006 in Vancouver, WA.
Third: Smarter Kitchens.
According to the article, kitchens are being designed to look less like a work area and more like an extension of living space. This means more customization and more storage. We remodeled this kitchen earlier this year in Hillsboro. It has some great features such as a large pantry and a coffee bar in the nook at the back of the room.
I see a couple of other ways to add value with remodeling during a recessionary time. One way is to bring some of your expenses in house. These clients added a small workout area to their master bedroom, which could eliminate the monthly gym bill.
Do you work from home? If this is an option for you, consider adding a comfortable space to work, such as this built-in desk we added for a client.
In the world of remodeling, the first step is usually getting rid of what's already in the way of the new construction we want to create. There are a couple of different approaches to making way for the remodel. With today's emphasis on green building, more interest is being generated around reusing materials instead of buying all new.
Demolition: Think wrecking ball. Think "demolition parties" where each guest is handed a sledgehammer upon arrival. Think Extreme Home Makeover, where a bulldozer drives through the house. Demolition is a process of quickly destroying a structure and clearing it away. Demolition is relatively inexpensive, fast, and does not require particularly specialized labor. Most projects are done this way, but there is another option.
Deconstruction: Sometimes customers want to save and reuse materials. The most common reason a customer would choose this route is to reduce the impact on the environment. The production of new materials uses much more energy and has more impact on the environment than landfills do, according to the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) and Earth Advantage. (This means that it harms the environment more to produce a new roll of carpet than it does to put the same size roll of carpet into a landfill.) There are several advantages to reusing materials when we are able;
In this 2008 remodel, siding for the addition off of the back of the house had to be specially milled to match the existing siding. We had very little available for reuse because the home was being added onto rather than reconfigured - therefore, there was very little deconstruction to take advantage of. When possible, it can be much less expensive to reuse materials than to have them custom-made. In other areas of the home, many materials were reused, including windows, doors and lighting fixtures.
Deconstruction is much more involved than demolition. It is almost a backwards construction process - taking apart a structure piece by piece. Obviously, this takes much more time, skill and money than smashing a house apart with a wrecking ball.
We recently began a project deconstructing an A-frame house in which we will reuse as many materials as possible, both for environmental and sentimental reasons. We took the old shingles off the roof, then took down the roof decking, one board at a time, taking care not to damage the wood too much. Extra support boards were added to keep the bare structure from moving around.
After that, I removed the nails from each board and stacked them neatly (the stacks need to remain very straight or the boards can be warped by rain and sun, making them difficult to reuse). These boards will be remade into floor decking and natural ceilings in the new home.
Glass from the windows was carefully removed via scaffolding. Again, since we're reusing the structure of the house, we didn't want to simply break the glass, as that could result in damage to the surrounding framing.
Whether demolition, deconstruction, or a combination of both is best for your remodel, we are ready to help you make the most of your project. We understand that there's more to building a home than the finished product. Remodeling is a process coordinating quality new construction and maintaining the character of the home you live in. When you're keeping part of the original home intact, it's important to make a peaceful transition between new and old.
We've updated our logo! We feel that the new logo really encompasses what we do: Distinctive Home Remodeling with a focus on the customer's experience. Quality craftsmanship done by people you trust, coupled with a process that features constant communication so you'll always know what's happening on your project. We want to make your remodeling project fun! If you want to give us feedback, we'd love to hear what you think of the change.
Our new logo:
We're just finishing up the master suite remodel. Here are updated photos:
The laundry room got all new cabinets and marmoleum flooring.
Just in time for Earth Day! I am loving these bathroom vanities made from recycled materials (from Bristol and Bath's Second Chance Collection) that I saw in this month's Remodeling Magazine! We've never used this particular vendor, but I think it's a fabulous idea. They've taken old oil drums, cleaned and refurbished them, and finished in copper or pewter. A sink is then set into the top of the drum, and a mirror is made out of the old drum lid.
They've done the same thing with old wine barrels - very chic!
We love using reclaimed materials in our projects, like we did on this customer's house. A great resource for salvaged architectural materials is Old Portland Hardware & Architectural (view their website here).
Winter weather, regular use, kids, pets and other of life's joys can take a toll on our houses. Often times, an area can be spruced up with regular painting. This customer was getting ready to sell their home, and wanted to make a better first impression. Here's how the front porch looked before:
A little paint goes a long way!!