"Remodelers Corner" (Taken from January 2005 issue of Rochester Women)

(click images to enlarge)

Greg and Wendy Ahrensfeld add an expansion to their original kitchen

Prior to meeting with Master Builders, Greg and Wendy Ahrensfeld had spent a lot of time thinking through the work they wanted to have done to their existing home. Among their needs and desires were adding on a 10' X 24' two-story addition, remodeling and enlarging their kitchen and dining room, adding a half-bath, and enlarging one of the bedrooms. In the pictures you will find their new custom oak cabinetry, granite counter tops, new appliances, and custom trimwork made specifically by hand to match their existing trim. The Ahrensfelds were so pleased with the results that they would say "we received more than we had hoped for..."


Dear Master Builders,

Taking time to sit down and write a letter is, admittedly, something we rarely do. Life gets so busy that some of the important things get left undone. Not this time.

We are writing to let you know that we feel our investment of time and money in our recent building project was very well spent. Sure, our kitchen needed to be bigger and our appliances were terribly out of date. Yes, we wanted to put our washer and dryer nearer to the bedrooms. And giving our son a larger bedroom was important. Anybody could have done these things for us.

From the first phone call we made as we started gathering bids on our project, we felt a level of security in dealing with Tom Gommels. His insights and suggestions to our plans were upbeat and helpful. His confidence in his team's ability to do what we wanted done was evident as he talked with us. Master Builders did not give us the least expensive bid of the six bids we received, but we felt much more comfortable with Tom's approach than we did with any of the other representatives we met with from the other companies. We felt much more comfortable, even than we did with the company that bid our job at more than twice the price. We knew that our project would be done right. Once we chose Master Builders, Tom set up the first meeting with the sub-contractors. The fact that all the subs were there at the scheduled time was very impressive. Throughout the project, Tom's follow up in making sure everything was being done to our liking was first rate.

So it began. Nathan Aaland was appointed to oversee our project. We are happy to say that we saw much more of what we had seen with Tom. On-time workers, clean jobsite, a can-do attitude even when we ran into some pretty tough unexpected issues. It was important to us that we kept the ceiling height the same as the rest of the house and that there was no visible beam showing where the original structure joined the addition. Nathan was vigilant in finding a way to do just that. We even made a couple of calls on the weekend to Nathan's cell phone when we had questions. His professionalism was always showing through.

One of the most important pieces to any building project is the quality of the workmanship when it comes to finish work. We were blessed to have Doug Batzlaff in charge of the carpentry. Our house was built in 1922 and our project called for matching trim that hasn't been produced for decades. Doug used his table saw, plane, hand saw, router, and his experience and love of woodworking to perfectly match the existing woodwork. He used his vision and suggested opening up a window area between the dining room and the new office area that we had planned to leave windows in. This one suggestion really helped merge the two parts of the house.

There were so many people who were instrumental in making our house our dream home. From heating and plumbing professionals to the ceramic tile installer. We now have beautiful, hand-crafted custom cabinets by a person we were introduced to by your team. His bid came in low enough that we were able to have a high-quality granite installation instead of the laminate-style countertops that had originally been in the budget. A long time plaster artisan did a wonderful job matching the stucco that skirted the house. And the most particular electrician we have ever met did the wiring. You can't see most of his work, but under the drywall, every wire runs straight and untwisted.

Truly, you have all earned the title Master Builders.

Thank you for providing us with more than we had hoped for.

Very truly yours,
Greg and Wendy Ahrensfeld

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