Looking for a General Contractor in Virginia Beach?
There are so many locally owned businesses in the Hampton Roads area and it’s refreshing to hear about the successes they’ve had. I had the pleasure of being able to sit down for a few minutes with the owner of WHE Construction, Bill Etheredge, who operates his business in Virginia Beach, VA and he had some interesting facts to share about his business.
Can you tell us a little bit about your business?
Bill: We started the business in February 1999. I was working as a general contractor for my dad and I was a superintendent/field supervisor for his company. We had a big contract with the naval base doing window and door replacements and renovations. I was working in the field and had to answer to my dad. I was basically doing quality control for the business. It was a 6-year contract and I really started to work it halfway through.
Since I knew how to do it all myself and I knew the contract wasn't going to last forever, I decided to start my own company.
At first, I was sub-contracting a lot of the work but then I decided to move into more residential work, doing things like siding, roofing, remodeling, room additions and garage builds. Today, we have several crews that handle everything from new construction and remodeling to other projects.
That sounds interesting. What was the toughest thing for you when you were starting the company?
Bill: Keeping busy and having enough work to do would have been the biggest challenges. That, and finding good help and workers. I don't just hire anyone. I prefer to hire people that I know or through someone who was referred to me.
Sounds like you have found a way to make it work for you. If you had start it all over, what would you have done differently?
Bill: I don't think I would have done anything much differently other than perhaps done more advertising, early on, since we were such a new company in the area at the time and people didn't really know who we were. You could be the best business in the world, but if nobody knows who you are, it can be hard to get new customers. You’ve gotta get your name out there.
Very true. What is the toughest part about owning a company in today’s business environment?
Bill: Well, getting and keeping good personnel would probably be the toughest thing. Scheduling the work can get challenging, sometimes, especially when you run into construction issues that take time to fix. You can't predict the weather, either.
If a customer were to choose between you and 3 other companies, why should they choose you?
Bill: I feel like I'm very honest with people. I treat them how I'd like to be treated and give everyone a fair price.
Fair enough. What do you feel is the #1 thing that's bringing in business today?
Bill: That’s an easy one - referrals. We also get some work from our website and other advertising, but about 80 percent is from referrals. When someone refers you, it almost feels like you know that person already. There is immediate trust is there.
That makes sense. So, Bill, as a local business owner, has the internet played a role for you as it has become more prevalent?
Bill: I would say, at one time, the phone book was used more, but it has faded away over time. There are still folks out there that don't used the internet and prefer the phone book whom we still get calls from here and there. I had a guy last week call me, who found us in the yellow pages and he doesn't even use email. I asked him “How will I get the quote to you?” He said “Just call me. I don't do any of that internet stuff, no faxing, no email, nothing.”
Wow, interesting. If you were to look out 6 months to a year into the future, where would you like to see your business and why?
Bill: I'd like to just see the work keep steady. I don't like to see it getting too big because you lose the one-on-one side of the business. A lot of times I'll go out and estimate the job and am also the same one who works on the job. I don't want to get so big where I lose the client contact and only get to see a finished job.
That’s great to remain humble. So, what exactly does WHE stand for?
Bill: Oh, it's my name, and it also stands for We Handle Everything.
Fantastic. Thanks, Bill. It was great speaking with you and thank you for your time.
And there you have it. WHE is another hometown business making a BIG mark in the Hampton Roads area.
Bill has done all he can to maintain personal contact with his clients, while keeping his business humble.
If there was ever a reason to shop with a local-based business, Bill has given many reasons why it can be a huge asset for not only the business owner, but for the customer, as well. They get business and you get one-on-one customer service.
With a company like WHE, you will never be ‘just another number,’ but you will be a face with a name they will remember.
1828 Legare Ln
Virginia Beach, VA
Heading to MacArthur Mall?
Whenever I make a trip to Norfolk to go to MacArthur Mall, it is never complete without a stop in Charming Charlie’s. Unlike Claire’s, that typically caters to the younger crowd of ladies, this store is the perfect accessory shop for anyone who is a bit too mature for “teeny bopper” jewelry.
Until I found this store, I always had a hard time finding ‘career-minded’ accessories for my work outfits, without having to resort to places I wouldn’t normally shop, and often left stores feeling disappointed because I couldn’t find what I was after. Since finding Charming Charlie’s I have not had that problem ever since.
When you walk in the store, you see that key items are on full display, in the smartest of ways. I have never walked out of the store unhappy with a purchase, nor have I been unable to find what I was looking for. Even if I had an idea in mind, they always have something available that gets close to the mark, if not exactly what I needed.
The store focuses primarily on jewelry and accessories, like necklaces, purses and handbags, but they also sell a small selection of clothing. Each section of the store is broken down by “color” blocks.
Depending on what colors are in style for the season, you will see sections of the store, uniquely organized, to showcase all the items they sell in each of those color choices. They take the display ingenuity one step further and dress mannequins in complete outfits that they sell, complementing those outfits with their hottest styles of jewelry. Pretty smart! Upselling their products is taken to an entirely new level in this store.
Each section sells a variety of belts, necklaces, earrings, scarves, handbags, brooches, rings and clothing. It doesn’t matter what section or color you start with each section is set up much like the others and has similar products available in a more than one color. The price points are very affordable and they often have sales that are too good to miss out on.
Buy one, get two free sales are my favorite! In the very back of the store is a Rhinestone collection, which is very popular around the holidays and Prom seasons. When you have a need to get dressed up for special occasions like weddings and parties, this is the perfect place to go! They have tons of bracelets, rhinestone tiaras, headbands and anything else you can think of to provide that extra sparkle you need.
So, the next time you find yourself in the MacArthur Mall, check out Charming Charlie’s. You won’t walk out empty-handed.
Then you've got to check out one or all of these best brewing companies in Virginia Beach. We've been working hard to determine the Top 3 in the area and here are the finalists:
1. Young Veterans Brewing Co.
Owned and operated by veterans Thomas Wilder and Neil Mccannon this young company has taken Virginia Beach by storm. They currently employ 3 people in our local community and are rapidly expanding their business.
2. Wasserhund Brewing Company
Wasserhund, means "water dog" in German, sincethe company was born out of passion and love for 3 things... Dogs, Beach and of course, German Beer. From day 1, company's goal was to familiarize Virginia Beach and it's beer loving residents with true, German beer culture.
Owners Aaron and Christine Holley are committed to improving our local community, which is why, every month they support a cause, chosen by the customers and donate a whopping 5% of their revenue for that month.
3. Pleasure House Brewing
A company with 4 owners: Tim O'Brien, Kevin Loos, Alex and Drew Stephenson. All of them have 1 common goal in mind... Bring joy to local beer lovers and serve our community. Their business is built on trust and selfless giving. They love to brew in small amounts to make sure there's always something new and fresh for you to try.
This concludes our list of 3 best breweries in Virginia Beach.
Be sure to give them a call, try their flavorful brews and leave comments about your findings.
If you'd like to recommend a local business for a review, please let us know here.
All The Iron You Need!
Looking to get in the best shape of your life for the upcoming beach season?
Look no further than Flex Gym Inc!
They're conveniently located right off of Bonney Road in Virginia Beach, fairly close to the Mt. Trashmore park.
We've checked out plenty of local gyms here in Virginia Beach, but could find anything that was very, you know... Old School! Pumping Iron and Heavy Lifting is what you can find plenty of at the Flex Gym Inc.
They do challenges like the Biggest Loser and attend championships like the World Powerlifting.
No fancy signs, no cool ads or posters and that's exactly why we love it. It's straight and to the point!
Show up, lift, repeat!
You can check the Flex Gym Inc at: 4020 Bonney Rd # 112, Virginia Beach, VA 23452
Give them a call at: (757) 631-2445
Their website: flexgymvb.com
What's Better Than Accountants? CPA's!
Espinoza & Company LLC is a Virginia Beach based accounting firm that provides it's services to individuals and businesses all over Hampton Roads.
I had the pleasure of exchanging a few words with Janeth Espinoza, the owner of Espinoza & Company. She took a few minutes out of her busy day to chat with me.
She started her adventure as an accountant due to her passion for problem solving and her love of numbers. After moving back to Virginia Beach from Washington D.C. she started her company.
She absolutely loves helping people, and many do need help and guidance through the complicated laws of our tax code.
Her busiest season, is of course from February all the way thru May. She prepares tax returns and does bookkeeping for individuals, small and medium sized businesses in 757.
Janeth Espinoza is one of the most inspiring local entrepreneurs I've had the please of talking with. Some of her values include: family, community and relationships.
You can reach Janeth by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
Espinoza & Company
1604 Hilltop West Executive Center
Virginia Beach, VA 23451