Up close with local contractors



Chileen Painting is a third-generation, family-owned business started in 1952. Their home restoration techniques range from painting to woodwork to enameling. Greg Chileen brought Chileen Painting to the Twin Cities metro area in the 1990s after his service in the United States Marine Corps to focus on the restoration of older homes.

What are your customers asking about?
Greg: They always want to know how long the job will take. We pay a lot of attention to quality and value good workmanship. For most jobs, we give them a time frame like 5-7 days. Customers worry about picking out the colors.

What tips do you have to share?
Greg: Hire quality contractors that you trust and you will have a better peace of mind with value and quality.

How has COVID, supply chain issues, and hiring issues affected your business?
Greg: In some cases, it has gotten easier as homeowneres are available because they are working from home. Paint supplies have gotten better and stores are close to full strength now.

Q&A with Ray N. Welter heating
Ray N. Welter Heating Company celebrated its 100th year in 2012. Ray 'Rick' Welter, III, shared tips and information on the business located at 4637 Chicago Ave.

What are your customers asking about?
Rick: Lately the most common question has been about heat pumps as these have never been a popular option in our climates. The technology is changing rapidly as to their effectiveness in cold climates. I am still not a big believer that the most common style air source heat pumps are worth it yet. They need 35 degrees outside temperature to kick over to the furnace, and our winters have many days that are below 35. So, I’m not convinced yet, but do believe with improved performance it will be a great option.
Customers mostly fear costly and inopportune timing of breakdowns.

How can people reduce their heating and cooling bills?
Rick: I believe changing your filter often and keeping your outdoor AC condenser clean are the only real options besides changing the temperatures you find comfortable in your home to help reduce costs.
Get regular clean and checks from a professional. And beware of anyone doing a clean and check for too cheap; they tend to be the pushy sales technicians.

What sets your company apart?
Rick: Our honesty and transparency, as well as longevity, seem to be what people gravitate to most as there are several companies that I have seen that can install well but miss some personal touch somehow. My dad has said we are big enough to get the job done well at a fair price but are small enough to really care about the customer.


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