When Michael Canright and Jonathan Barnard started Cabinet Craft Finishes in 2018, the longtime friends saw the cabinet refinishing business as an ideal pairing of their skills.
Canright brought his experience in running his own small businesses, as well as carpentry skills. And Barnard, who has a master’s degree in counseling, had people skills and a background in sales and customer service.
Canright actually founded the business in Texas in 2016, but teamed up with his old pal Barnard when he moved it to Colorado Springs.
“I have had multiple businesses, but in the past it’s mostly been just me,” Canright said. “And that revealed a lot of areas of needing growth, and weaknesses, and for various reasons I just really thought having a partner was needed to take things to the next level.”
Looking at the local market and seeing a lack of services like those they now offer, Canright and Barnard said they were confident from the start that the business would be viable in Colorado Springs.
“We knew it would be a good fit,” Canright said.
“The kitchen is one of the most expensive areas in the house to renovate,” Barnard said. “And it’s really where a lot of value is, so as a business we knew it was viable because people don’t mind spending money there and they care about craftsmanship. … So we take old cabinets and make them look brand new, for about a quarter to a third of the cost, depending on the type of finish.”
Since establishing their business in Colorado Springs, Cabinet Craft Finishes has grown to five employees, and has since served more than 300 clients — about 75 percent in Colorado Springs and most of the rest spanning the area from Monument to Denver.
In the first year of operation, Cabinet Craft Finishes served about 120 clients. The following year, they increased their client load by about 50 percent, serving about 180.
“But we are not in the business of volume,” Barnard said. “We’re not just trying to do more. If more happens, that’s wonderful. Growth is great, but we are in the long game. So we are trying to not just do more, but get better all the time.”
When it comes to consultations for their services, Barnard said Cabinet Craft Finishes is highly successful in acquiring new clients.
“We have a very high close rate and I think one of the reasons is the way that we consult people,” Barnard said. “We give them all the options, and sometimes that’s not us.
“So we’re not out there to just make sales. We’re out there to serve customers. We’ve turned down people if we don’t think they’d be a good fit. We’re going to consult you to do the thing we think is going to make you the most happy, not what’s going to make us the most money.”
Barnard said the business is especially rewarding when they can help rescue clients from botched refinishing jobs.
“We recently had three [clients] cry to us within a one-month period because they had horrible experiences with people painting their cabinets. And two of them were in court with those contractors,” Canright said.
“So we came in and saved the day, ultimately — and stories like that are pretty common. So I want people to know that there are people out there they can trust and with their best interests in mind.”
As for the future, Canright said he sees several possible opportunities for expansion.
“We know that there’s a demand for this throughout the state, and also throughout the country,” he said.
“So depending on how some things play out in the future, if we can grow in a healthy way … I think some kind of national franchise or extension of the business is possible, and that would kind of our ultimate goal.”
Cabinet Craft Finishes
Contact: 719-445-7565; cabinetcraftfinishes.com