Cook Brothers Design/Build Remodeling doesn’t expect to be invited to every home renovation bid in Arlington, but as the No. 1 remodeler in Arlington, they can’t understand why they wouldn’t be at the kitchen table.
“All we do is renovate homes in Arlington County,” says Steven Tinter, president and general manager. “We don’t do new homes, we don’t remodel homes in Maryland or D.C. or other places in Virginia.
“Arlington County is all we’ve done for 31 years. If you’re not talking to us, you’ll be missing out.”
Cook Brothers focuses on risk reduction, which is vital when it comes to one of the most expensive expenditures a homeowner will encounter.
“Lowest bid? That is not our goal,” Tinter says flatly. “We’re typically not going to be the least-cost provider. Our prices are very competitive but we definitely are going to be the least-risk provider. And we’re going to give homeowners the best value because of that.”
Cook Brothers is the No. 1 remodeler in Arlington based on the number of building permits issued since the year 2000, when the county began recording them electronically. Those nearly 300 permits outpaces the second place contractor, a national franchised company, by more than a third.
“Reducing risk” is not only important but necessary for Arlington homeowners. “Arlington homes are modest, but they’re expensive homes,” he says. And many of them are older, with residual quirks from previous builders. Cook Brothers’ experience in the area gives them an advantage when it comes to encountering challenges distinct to Arlington homes.
But no matter how good the plans look on the kitchen table, it’s the skilled craftsmen and women of Cook Brothers who do the work. Tinter says his 18-year-round employees have been with the company “on average, close to 10 years. In our industry, that’s remarkable and something we’re proud of. We retain people by treating them well. We’ve made a commitment to our people and it shows. And that’s how we keep our costs consistent.”