Licensing, liability and workers comp insurance, contract terms, availability — when you’re thinking about hiring a contractor, they’re all factors to consider. But the number of years a contractor has been in business might be the most telling factor of all.

“A company’s longevity speaks volumes,” said Eric Domingo, corporate bonding manager at Honsador, Hawaii’s largest lumber supplier. “Veteran construction companies have evolved and improved over time. They’ve withstood the volatility of the marketplace.”


Bradley Chang, appraiser vice president for Territorial Savings Bank, appreciates the ethics that established companies bring to the table. “Companies with a long history of integrity do things the right way instead of guessing or taking shortcuts,” he said.

Ryan Graham, vice president of operations at Graham Builders, believes longevity can be predictive of quality construction. With an experienced contractor at the helm, he says, projects are more likely to be completed according to plan and budget — with fewer delays and mishaps.

“And a contractor is only as good as his subcontractors,” Graham added. “Successful longstanding contractors have developed partnerships with quality subcontractors and vendors who have proven their proficiency and craftsmanship over the years.”


Seasoned contractors are also able to offer performance bonds on their projects. Free to the homeowner, these bonds provide assurance that a contractor’s supply house is confident in the contractor’s financial stability, credit-worthiness, and ability to finish a project according to plan.

“Bondable contractors have the knowledge and experience to complete a proposed project, and the proven track record to back it up,” said Domingo.

Last but not least, long-lived companies usually have succession plans in place for the next generation of leadership. “That means homeowners can count on them to be around years later, if they decide to do an addition or remodel,” concluded Graham, whose family-owned, local business will celebrate its 30th anniversary next year. “It’s much easier, because you know they did great work the first time around.”


Founded in 1990, Graham Builders remains the only contractor in Hawaii honored by the Better Business Bureau’s Torch Award for Business Ethics. You’re welcome to attend Graham Builders’ free “Building Your Home for Life” seminar on Oct. 5, 9-11 a.m. at the Honolulu Country Club. Register at or call 593-2808.

CONTACT 593-2808
ADDRESS 1144 Young St., Honolulu