Best Tampa Contractors of 2011
Advanced Cooling Systems | Dunedin, Fla.
Owner James Osiel, a three-time Super Service Award winner, got his start in the heating and cooling business in 1992 and he uses that 20 years of experience to inform his own customer service outlook. "If somebody invests $5,000 in a new system from my company, that person needs to be my priority," he says.
Geeta Naman of Tarpon Springs, one of 10 Angie's List members to nominate the company for a Page of Happiness in the last year, praises Advanced for fixing an A/C leak that another company tried to blame on a faulty roof. "Advanced zeroed in on the problem and fixed it for a reasonable cost," she says.
Member Charles Barnett of Oldsmar appreciated their quick service after his air conditioner went out on a Saturday night when he had houseguests. "They arrived within the hour and the system was up and running in less than an hour and a half," he says.
Osiel is licensed as an HVAC contractor by the state and Hillsborough, Pinellas and Pasco counties.
For the second year in a row, members rank Experience Tree Service owner Asbel Parra and his family business as a Best Tampa Contractor with 16 Page of Happiness nominations in the last year.
Parra keeps the business small - himself, his father and brother are the only employees - and stays in touch with local regulators. "I know the inspectors in all the areas I work, and I like to be ready to do the job right before I start," he says.
Angie's List member Linda Thurman of Brandon hired him to remove a lightning-damaged oak tree. "He handled all the paperwork for the permits and county inspection, and completely removed the tree," she says. "Because of his expertise, he remains my go-to tree service person."
Member Clifton Beasley of Valrico says Parra exceeded his expectations when trimming trees. "They did a great job without damaging anything, and they even picked up and stacked the wood afterward," he says. "When I asked Abe if he could take out an additional branch from a tree he'd already finished, he agreed without hesitation."
Parra says he considers that to be good customer service. "I'm not going to charge extra for a few more branches," he says. "I want to please my customer and keep it as fair as I can."
Parra isn't required to be licensed, but he goes to great lengths to keep himself educated on his profession. He takes regular courses, including seminars in environmentally friendly practices, and is studying to receive certified arborist status from the International Society of Arboriculture, which he says is the only major tree certification he lacks.
"The guidelines are there for a reason," he says. "Trees respond certain ways to certain actions, and whatever you do to the tree has to be for the health of the tree. Sometimes people want me to just remove big limbs, and I'll tell them, 'Think hard about that, because four or five months later, you're going to have a new problem.'"
CCI Painting Services | Safety Harbor, Fla.
Member Jeff Jerrell of Clearwater says CCI owner Rich Weinberg gave him an education when painting his house. "Rich is passionate about doing work that both looks great and protects the structure," says Jerrell, one of 11 Angie's List members to nominate the company for a Page of Happiness in the last year.
Weinberg credits his 30 years in the business for his instinct about what colors work best together. "A house doesn't just sit there," he says. "I like it to fit into the environment."
Weinberg, a four-time Super Service Award winner who's making his second appearance as a Best Tampa Contractor, holds painting licenses in Hillsborough, Pasco and Pinellas counties. He uses water-saving pressure washers and environmentally friendly paints whenever possible, and also donates his services to Paint Your Heart Out and a local VFW hall.
CPR owner Tom Hernden takes a bow as Tampa's only four-time Best Contractor honoree, thanks to 22 Page of Happiness nominations in the last year. He attributes his success to building long-term relationships. "I try to give people honest advice," he says. "I don't want to just get in, get out and take their money."
Member Alice Dear of Tampa appreciates his availability after hiring him to diagnose laptop problems. "Since finding Tom, we don't have to spend so many frustrating hours trying to figure out problems," she says. "When you're his customer, you know you're fully protected and up to date."
Hernden, a three-time Super Service Award winner whose work doesn't require a license, recycles old computer systems.
More Best Tampa Contractors of 2011
Find these companies' full profiles at angieslist.com to read more about what makes their service superlative
Aall Bright Window Cleaning | Oldsmar, Fla.
AmeriScot Clean Inc. | Clearwater, Fla.
Clean Car Concepts | St. Petersburg, Fla.
D. Woodall Inc. | Brandon, Fla.
Ed Staib Quality Painting | Largo, Fla.
Gator Mechanical of Tampa Bay Inc. | St. Petersburg, Fla.
Let Linda Locate | Tampa
LOL TRANSPORT & MOVING | Land O' Lakes, Fla.
Omega Remodeling | St. Petersburg, Fla.
Schatz Landscape Design | Tampa
Sliding Door Roller Replacement | Tampa
Vee Super Clean Mobile Detailing | Wesley Chapel, Fla.
Waypoint Property Inspection | Riverview, Fla.