This weeks feature is Paul Leonard, owner of Kitchen Tune-Up Portland, Maine. Paul and his team have been updating kitchens across the Greater Portland region since 2015. Thanks for the interview, Paul!
What was your career before becoming a Tunie?
Prior to Kitchen Tune-Up I had been a custom builder. I was involved in large scale construction projects in the energy industry.
What is your favorite part of owning your own business?
Owning the business allows me the ability to work locally and be close to my family. I have the flexibility to make the right decisions for my customers and the best interest of the project – rather than having to send issues up the proverbial chain of command, leading to misunderstandings and miscommunication issues.
What comes to mind as your most memorable kitchen update?
Our most memorable project was an old natural oak kitchen that had plenty of cabinet space, but it lacked functionality and character. We transformed regular base cabinets into drawer base units, added a chef’s drawer, a trash and recycling roll-out, full extension soft close drawer slides and refaced everything with beautiful new white shaker doors & drawer fronts. The transformation was amazing! Refacing really is a remarkable service.
Any advice for someone thinking about taking the leap and buying their own franchise business?
Make sure that you have access to working capital and a strong desire to succeed. Our business is great because the kitchen is truly the heart of the home. Throw a party and everyone ends up in the kitchen. Morning, noon & evening, you find yourself in the kitchen. Realtors will tell you that kitchens sell homes. It’s the one room in any home that offers an unlimited number of features and options to make it uniquely your own.
When you’re not working, what is your favorite hobby or pastime?
Boating in the summer, Alpine sports in the winter. We live in a great area!
What’s something unique about your area?
Southern Maine offers an incredibly high quality of life with easy access to the Atlantic coast, a multitude of lakes, rivers, and mountains. There is something for everyone.
Do you have a favorite cabinet door style?
White shaker of course! It continues to be extremely popular in my area.
What have you found to be the biggest benefit to franchise ownership?
Having control of my schedule.