Mark and Lynne Stephenson are one of a growing number of couples who own remodeling companies. But theirs is set up differently than most: Lynne (center) does the majority of the selling and design work, while Mark (in blazer) manages the office and does the bookkeeping. "We go on sales calls together," says Mark, who also does some design, "but I almost always become a piece of furniture in the room."

Both owners emphasize the importance of Lynne's role. "The whole remodeling process is female," Mark says, noting that the majority of the projects that they do for married couples are initiated by the wife. Lynne also escorts clients to local showrooms for product selections, bringing a feminine touch to the "shopping" process.

Their business strategy has worked splendidly thus far, as they maintain comfortable margins in a market filled with quality remodelers. HUB Design/Build benefits from operating in a fairly affluent area, and the company provides service worthy of the prices they charge. "We take a very hands-on approach," Lynne says. "That way, we can make sure everything goes as smoothly as possible."