Best Cleveland Contractors of 2011
Joe's Lock & Key | Cleveland
Laura Stack of Cleveland Heights says she doesn't like being on a first-name basis with contractors because that means they're returning to fix problems. But she makes an exception for seven-time Super Service Award winner Joe Fradette.
"He never has to come back, because what he does, he does right," says Stack, who's hired the locksmith for several jobs.
Fradette, owner of Joe's Lock & Key, returns as a Northeast Ohio Best Contractor for the third straight year. He says he got his start as a stock boy for another lock company in 1989, teaching himself the basics by examining lock parts.
"My motto is: Do what I say and say what I do," he says. "I don't try to sell people things they don't need. Things are hard right now, and people don't want to throw money out when it's not necessary."
Johnnie Ratliff of Cleveland says he called Fradette to replace deadbolts, but Fradette told him he simply needed the deadbolts rekeyed. "That told me Joe was an honest businessman," Ratliff says.
Fradette, whose work doesn't require a license, keeps old parts for reuse and recycles everything. Members say he's friendly with children and pets.
Home Safe Home Inspections | Broadview Heights, Ohio
Owner David Macy says he endured a home inspection that was so poor, it motivated him to give it a try. "The guy showed up in this beat-up pickup truck, spent about an hour and I got a 10-page report that I couldn't read," says Macy, who previously worked as a hardware store manager. "It was a disservice to me and anyone else he did inspections for."
Ten years later, Macy's Home Safe Home Inspections is a four-time Super Service Award winner.
"My main focus is not on doing as many jobs as possible; it's to spend as much time as necessary with every client," Macy says. "I won't do more than two home inspections in a day. You may know how to frame a house, but if you don't know how to relay that to the client, it's useless."
Adrianne Frech of Stow, who nominated the company for a Page of Happiness, appreciates Macy's approach. "He didn't talk down to us, but gave useful analogies and was practical," she says. "He really respected our time, and made sure it was used efficiently. He went out of his way to have a good rapport with the seller as well."
Colleen Broomfield of Coventry Township recommended Home Safe Home to her daughter and a friend after Macy inspected two homes Broomfield considered for purchase.
"The things he found would have cost me thousands of dollars to resolve," she says. "He was there for hours, and you knew he wasn't just standing around. The real estate agent was kind of pushing to get the home inspection passed, but Dave told them he worked for the buyers. They weren't happy with some of the things Dave found, but we would have been stuck with the repair bills if he hadn't found them."
Macy, who's licensed for radon inspection, helps clients in need, once donating $500 to a family whose 1-year-old son had leukemia.
Dutch's Mold Inspection | North Ridgeville, Ohio
Scott Hoeflinger of Westlake experienced Dutch's willingness to assist clients when he was trying to sell his house. "The buyers questioned his work, so he stepped up under a tight deadline and helped the sale go through," Hoeflinger says. "He pretty much dropped everything and wrote a report to make the buyers feel at ease."
The mold removal company, which is EPA lead-safe certified and licensed to do radon tests, prides itself on being thorough. "I tell clients what I'm going to do, and no less," owner Rick Nesselhauf says. "In a lot of cases, I do more."
He's a one-man show, but uses subcontractors to assist him on jobs. He works with real estate organizations when they conduct community fund-raising drives for children, and he's offered free services to people he describes as "hoarders" to help them reduce clutter.
Golden Dog Plumbing | Stow, Ohio
Elaine Dombi of Hudson needed a kitchen faucet installed, and didn't like the $200 and $300 quotes she'd received from other highly rated companies on the List. When she called Golden Dog Plumbing, owner Ken Von Glahn told her he'd come right away, but he wanted to see the sink before providing an estimate.
Dombi says she initially didn't have a good feeling about that, but she's glad she called him. "He installed the faucet in less than an hour for $70," she says. "I'm glad I took the risk."
Von Glahn, a licensed plumber with 22 years of experience, started Golden Dog Plumbing five years ago. "I just try and treat everybody the same way I'd expect them to treat me if they were working at my house," he says.
More Best Northeast Ohio Contractors of 2011
Find these companies' full profiles at angieslist.com to read more about what makes their service superlative
A-Z Plumbing | Cleveland Heights, Ohio
Beckwith Heating & Cooling | Akron, Ohio
Blue Star Electric LLC | Lakewood, Ohio
Cleveland Classic TV | Cleveland
Desborough Construction Inc. | Perry, Ohio
DM Plumbing & Heating LLC | Amherst, Ohio
Ed's Appliance | Cleveland
Hank Klink Plumbing | Berea, Ohio
Independence Fence | Seven Hills, Ohio
Mulholland Pest Control | Solon, Ohio
Paramount Door Service | Parma, Ohio
Raymond’s Plastering & Decorating | Euclid, Ohio
Sandman | Moreland Hills, Ohio
Stack Heating & Cooling | Avon, Ohio
Tree Maintenance Services | Medina, Ohio
V V E Computer Consulting | South Euclid, Ohio
Western Reserve Home Inspection | Cleveland Heights, Ohio
Williams Landscaping & Pavers | Columbia Station, Ohio