“When I was a kid, my uncle, who was a painter, would take me on jobs, let me clean up and see how things went,” says Will Smith, owner/operator of Straight Edge Painting. And that’s how getting into the painting business started for him.
After being a deputy sheriff for three years, Smith decided he wanted to start his own business. He resigned from his deputy duties and took the leap toward becoming a small business owner. Straight Edge Painting, a residential and commercial contracting business located on George Washington Memorial Highway, represents the fruit of Smith’s labor.
As a contracting company, Straight Edge does residential and commercial painting — interior and exterior — dry wall repair, desk refinishing and power washing, among other things. The company has been in operation for a little more than seven years and, as sole owner, Smith had a vision in the beginning of 10 vans being available for business operations. But as the company evolved, “I realized smaller was better, allowing for greater quality of work,” says Smith.
For Smith, the work is all about satisfying customers. “I really enjoy seeing the smile on my customer’s face, going above and beyond to make sure everyone is happy with what may even look like a new home once we’re finished with it,” says Smith. “Everything isn’t perfect, but we fix things when we mess up. I’ve never left someone who wasn’t perfectly satisfied,” Smith says with a smile.
In addition to its residential work, which is quite substantial, Straight Edge has also done some significant commercial work, including a complete repaint, remodel and conversion of an old Farm Fresh into a Harris Teeter, painting at Water Country in Williamsburg and the exterior of IHOP on Jefferson Avenue, to name a few. And, while these commercial projects are substantive, Smith is quick to remind that “our bread and butter is homeowner and residential.”
Homeowners seeking contractors for home renovations, remodels or touch ups are “going to get a fair price based on our quality of work,” says Smith. “We are going to see things that most contractors don’t see. With us, you’ll get a company that has all its ‘t’s crossed and ‘i’s dotted. We will look at what needs to be caulked, sand walls between each coat, cover and protect all furniture — things most homeowners don’t think to ask but we will do anyway,” says Smith.
Testimonials for Straight Edge Painting confirm the quality of its work. As one very satisfied customer says, “Will and his team have managed to make the entire inside of our house look new. We searched for a team who could repair tape joints as well as prep walls and trim, and paint. These professionals did it all with attention to detail that was admirable and at a very competitive cost.” Other testimonials echo this sentiment, confirming Smith’s assertion that Straight Edge offers quality work at a fair price.
Smith’s attention to excellence not only comes through in his business acumen but also in his life outside the job. As a former professional body builder who earned a pro card in the International Federation of Body Builders (IFBB), Smith proves himself a man of detail and determination, both professionally and personally. These days, though, that attention to excellence goes to his seven-year old son for whom he coaches a little league baseball team. “For 15 years, all I cared about was body building,” says Smith; “then a child came into my life and changed everything.”
Well — not everything — Straight Edge Painting stands tall.
Smith says, “My father always taught me: ‘If you know a trade, you’ll never be broke.’” Sound advice Smith clearly took to heart and continues to live by.
TO THE POINT:
Straight Edge Painting, LLC
Address: 4521 George Washington Hwy., Yorktown, VA 23692
Contact: Will Smith, owner/operator