May 24, 2016

Mostly sunny

Handyman fixes problems big and small

Going back to the days of the handyman, a local business owner brings the trend of one-stop shopping to the door step. In January, Neil Newman opened Handyman Matters, 890 Woodfield Lane, in Brunswick Hills Township, and he’s offering fix-it solutions for homeowners.

“They might have a leaky faucet … or they might need a whole new bathroom put in,” he said. (We do) everything from A to Z basically … it’s a one-stop shop.”

Handyman Matters is a franchise that started in 1998, a Handyman Matters statement said, and there are approximately 135 locations nationwide.

Neil Newman opened his Handyman Matters franchise in Brunswick Hills Township in January. After 25 years in property management, Newman wanted to move on and be his own boss. Newman and his four employees can fix many problems for homeowners. (Shirley Ware | Photo Editor)

Newman decided to open his franchise because after 25 years in property management, he wanted to move on, he said.

“I wanted to start my own business and work for myself,” he said. “I feel far more fulfilled … by having my own business.”

Newman opened his business to help maintain homes, which seems to be more important now than ever with values falling in recent months, he said.

“Since the housing market is in (a) downturn right now … I believe they (homeowners) should be maintaining their house the best they can,” Newman said.

The average household spends about $600 for repairs through Handyman Matters and, Newman said, homeowners can recoup that money when they sell their home. Letting problems go unattended, however, might end up costing more to fix in the end, he said.

Currently, Newman said he has four handymen working for him and each was pre-screened thoroughly and has at least 15 years experience.

When his handymen arrive, customers often find other things for them to fix, like closet doors or loose doorknobs, he explained.

“(It’s) something they lived with so long … and they say, ‘Hey, can you fix this for me too?’ ” he said.

One thing customers can do with Handyman Matters right now is winterize their homes to lower utility rates and get the gutters cleaned, he said. He also mentioned some fixes that are low cost but might help increase the value of a home.

“Painting is a huge, huge improvement,” he said. “Lighting … bathroom fixtures … those items make a big, noticeable difference.”

Newman said he likes his work.

“I like the handyman because they can do so many things,” he said. “(And) if I can’t do a job, I will recommend a skill trade to a customer.”

Newman added skill trades might charge $300 for a job and only take an hour to do it, whereas Handyman Matters charges by the hour and then in 15 minutes increments after that.

It costs $75 an hour for services and on average it takes half a day to a full day to fix all the repairs, Newman said. For information, call 330-220-7700.

“We do it all,” Newman said.

Medina Supply

Medina Supply Co. is selling four of its properties in the area.

“They’re nonproductive assets we’re getting rid of,” said Dave Moreland, vice president of Medina Supply’s parent company, Schwab Industries.

The properties for sale are: 400 State Road, 300 State Road and 230 E. Smith Road in Medina, and a vacant piece of land on Bagley Road in Berea, a Gerspacher Realty representative said.

Moreland declined to comment further.

Business awards

The Medina County Economic Development Corp. recently released the 2008 Business awards winners. They are:

– Entrepreneur of the year — EBO Group Inc. in Sharon Township;

– Capital investment — Brunswick Toyota;

– Small business enterprise — Healthcare Innovation Solutions in Seville;

– Corporate citizen of the year (company) — Dorman-Farrell LLC in Medina;

– Corporate citizen of the year (individual) — William “Bill” Doraty.

The economic development corporation also added a special category this year called “Lifetime Achievement of Public Service” to honor U.S. Rep. Ralph Regula, R-Navarre, for his dedication to public service.

There were 61 nominees in all and it was narrowed down to three in each category. Three judges then picked the winners.

Guinta is a Gazette intern. She may be reached at 330-721-4046 or