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Always There Home Services LLC

Submitted by: Lance Farago
Business Website: http://www.athsllc.com
State: Georgia
City: Savannah

Business Description

We are a handyman and home improvement company in Savannah Georgia. Customer service, honest work, and being part of or community are some of our core values.

What one unique aspect of your business will make you succeed over the next year?

Always There is not just our name, it’s who we are. We operate by maintaining our core values of Service, Honesty, and Community in all of our actions. Being true to who you are and your business identity is something we learned early on would differentiate us from the competition. Having a brand identity is overlooked by the home repair industry. Our service is top-notch because of Lance’s great people skills. He is warm and friendly, listens to the customers needs. We answer the phone and return calls, even when its a project that’s not right for us, we’ll let you know. Because our name is on the line, we work hard to build trust with our customers. They may not have the knowledge of the scope of the work they’ve requested, but we are upfront with them on what to expect. Working to build our local network through social, trade, and military organizations gives us strength and name recognition in the community. We seek out to work with local businesses as much as possible to help the economy regenerate. As we grow, we will adhere to these values and become known for them. This will propel us via word of mouth over the competition.

How does your business make a positive impact on the community?

Being a veteran-owned business in a city with an Army base brings respect from the community. Twice this year we have run a promotion giving away free labor to those who are or have served in the Armed Forces. We want to help those who’s own ‘handyman’ had been sent to another country, or someone who did not have the means to keep up the repair of their home after transitioning out of service. It is our first choice to work with veteran owned companies and suppliers. While looking for employees, we give special attention to those transitioning out of service. While they may not have the exact job skills on their resume, we know the training, work ethic, and respect they have gained serving our country matches ATHS’s core values.

What would you do with a $1,000 Sam’s Club gift card, training, and help from a SCORE mentor to grow your business?

This year, we’ve utilized SCORE programs to help launch our business, gain a better understanding of book keeping, and how social media can be used favorably. As we grow and face new challenges, we look forward to utilizing the SCORE mentors for council on obtaining financing and recruiting employees, and learning what challenges to keep aware of. A Sam’s GC would be used to improve the safety equipment for our employees and ease the burden of supplies. In alignment with our values, 50% would be given back to the community. Our community was hit hard by Hurricane Matthew which left a number of people without proper homes. There is a large need for blankets and cold-weather gear this time of year. We would help support this effort.

The following responses will be considered in judging for a SCORE Award.

How has working with a SCORE mentor helped your business?

I can't remember how I became so lucky to stumble upon SCORE when we first relocated, but I'm so thankful we did! I made a call and connected with Bob. He helped us set up our business with the State of Georgia the correct way. He asked lots of questions to understand where we were and where we wanted to be. Along the way, I've been able to reach out to him for proper advice on employee taxes, state taxes and other financial guidance. He also provided leads for local services available to us. It's been a great comfort to know we were on the right path.

Have you had to overcome any obstacles along the way to build your business?

Our first obstacle was relocating from one state to another, understanding the different laws and taxes, and building a new customer base. No problem, we got this! We were in it 100% and ready for the challenge. We used our resources to proactively seek advice before we ran into trouble. It's been very discouraging financially to work as hard as we do and not have the payout we would like, but we are committed to investing back into the company. Working with SCORE and affiliated groups has helped us invest our funds for the best growth return. We've been very fortunate to grow, thanks to good planning and maintaining our values. Our current obstacle is finding qualified employees.

How will you utilize the marketing video and national recognition of winning a SCORE Award to help take your business to the next level?

We believe in paying it forward. SCORE and the network around them has helped us from being just another handyman with a van, to a legitimate business with high demand. It would be wonderful to use the attention from this award to spread the word of how SCORE can help you take your business dreams and make them happen. We've already had TV exposure thanks to our Military Give-Back promotions and would utilize those connections to help promote the services available to other entrepreneurs in our community and nationally. We believe in helping others to help ourselves.
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