Presented April 8 by the National Association of the Remodeling Industry at its spring meeting, the annual Contractor of the Year (CotY) awards recognize contractors who have “demonstrated outstanding work through their remodeling projects.” With categories in local, national, and regional groupings, the CotY awards are aimed at promoting excellence within the remodeling industry. Here is one of three CoTY award winning projects in exteriors.

2016 CoTY Award Winner for Residential Exterior $100,000 to $200,000
AMEK Custom Builders: Bloomington, Minn.

The team at AMEK Custom Builders was tasked with fixing up the exteriors of this 1925 south Minneapolis home. The home faced some serious deterioration problems along with mold inside the walls following a worse-for-the-wear second-story addition. "When we stripped down the home, the house had nearly $100,000 of unforeseen damages," co-owner Paul Schmidt told Remodeling. "And that’s what really caused a tremendous amount of delay in this project."

Throughout the home there were signs of moisture damage, discovered through moisture testing. These interior problems lead to "catastrophic damage," Schmidt said.

To maintain structural integrity, parts of the home had to undergo extensive repairs such as the removal and repair of rotted sections and the installation of new sheathings, windows, insulation and exterior cladding.

For a modern update, the exteriors were modified from rounded corners to straight lines, with added black framing and cedar wood exterior accents. Amek also updated the front entrance, which previously had three doors yet no way for visitors to know which of three doors to go in and out of. The end result was coloring the main door a different shade from the rest to stand out.

A before image of the exteriors
A before image of the exteriors

Of a renovation this intensive and costly, Schmidt says it's not for everyone. He adds that remodelers need to be honest with their clients about the time, stress, and money a renovation like this will take. "Anytime you are undergoing a project like this, it is just as important to be prepared mentally," Schmidt says. "Everybody sees the before and after and there is this instant transformation--and these transformations can be painful. That is just the reality; they can be painstaking. It is important if you are going through a complete redesign that things are spelled out in detail. ...Communication is the biggest thing. On a project like this, if you are getting in over your head you have to let your homeowner know."

Despite the stress and cost, Schmidt says the homeowners kept their cool. And as you can see from the finished project, it paid off.

You can read the full details of the award-winning remodel, here.
The full list of CoTY 2016 winners can be found here.