Jim Kabel rode high during the dot-com wave. But after the bust, he took his skills in engineering, high technology, and sales and marketing and turned entrepreneurial. He discovered Case Design/Remodeling and decided to “start from scratch” with them, he says. “The handyman part of the business is close to turnkey,” he says, “but there’s a lot of freedom to create and innovate within the Case model, especially in the remodeling side,” and many of the handyman jobs generate larger remodeling projects.

As the only Case operative in California, Kabel had to establish the Case brand. He evaluates his marketing options based on the type of clients he wants to reach: “busy professionals looking for high-quality professional service and a no-hassle experience from beginning to end.”

To reach these prospects, Kabel earned the Diamond Certified label given by an independent California program that ranks businesses for consumers. The name carries a lot of cache. “If you’re affiliated with this ‘brand’ you get the opportunity to compete,” Kabel says. His other great lead source is Angie’s List.


  • Highly efficient in managing small jobs. The company does 500 jobs a year, with many of the handyman jobs generating larger remodeling projects. 
  • Staff works four 10-hour days. 
  • Has a one-page business plan, with visions of where Kabel wants the company to be from three perspectives: client, peer, and financial. 
  • Belongs to the National Association of the Remodeling Industry, the National Kitchen & Bath Association, and is president of his local neighborhood business association.

- Stacey Freed