I chuckled out loud when Kevin McGuire gave me his business card and I read the tag line. We met at the buildings being renovated on Market Street and just north of the Courthouse Annex where he and his crew were working. Truly a promise given by a plumber to not drain one’s wallet is both welcome and rare, and I enjoyed hearing Kevin’s story.
He is “purebred and home grown,” as they say, having lived and worked in Limestone County all his life. He graduated from Elkmont High School, and he and Laurie have two kids, Madelyn, 15, and John, 12. They both have worn several hats in their careers, Laurie with real estate, property management/development and hospitality (with her work at Madelyn’s in the Grove), and Kevin with farming, construction, real estate investment and plumbing.
“I got my start with my dad, who is a master plumber, and that’s where I learned the trade,” said Kevin. I thought about the fact that we could use a wholesale return of dads teaching their sons a trade and instilling in them pride in their work as well as a conviction that their word is everything. “We farmed, did cows and hay, and I earned my master plumber’s certification,” said Kevin. Kevin and Laurie “flipped” houses for awhile until the housing and investment markets went sideways, and there was no longer any level of reasonable profit to be had.
Certain aspects of the construction industry became saturated, so Kevin decided to concentrate on the plumbing business. He is one of those rare birds who actually likes dealing with the muck, and gets an enormous sense of satisfaction when a tough job gets “all buttoned up.” One of the things that he also enjoys is listening to his clients while he is on his back under a messed up sink. He has an especially protective heart for our “seasoned citizens,” who at times can be vulnerable and easily ripped off by scam artists or people who do shoddy work. “I do my very best to never disappoint,” he says.
I asked him to tell me about some of his projects, large and small, and the list is impressive. “We did several of the houses at Canebrake,” he said. I asked, “Do you prefer to do residential over commercial?” “Not really,” he said. “I like doing it all.” Some of the commercial projects have included ConAgra, as well as several smaller businesses. Most recently they did all of the plumbing upgrades for the temporary Limestone County Courthouse building down on Jefferson near the new library.
Kevin has been in the plumbing business for over 20 years, and built McGuire Plumbing on reputation, “going-the-extra-mile” customer service and hard work. “We have had to do very little actual advertising,” he said, “and almost all of our business comes from word of mouth and referrals.”
“OK,” I said, “Let’s say I am new to the area, and need a plumber. Why should I come to you?” He answered thoughtfully by saying, “I don’t want to put down any other plumbing companies, but our best advertising comes from homeowners who have called us to come in to repair the work of other plumbers. I thought for a moment about what a challenge that would be. A person would already be upset, probably suspicious and worried that they would be taken advantage of again, and of course, concerned about the cost of the repairs. If someone in that situation can go from being an “unhappy camper” to becoming a “raving fan” customer, that is proof that the plumber indeed “went the extra mile.”
Laurie told me later that she especially wanted people to know that now is the time for folks to let McGuire Plumbing get their pipes prepared for the cold weather ahead. We have already had some bitter cold weather, and while I know that Kevin and his guys are experienced in dealing with plenty of emergency service calls, a little proactivity would go a long way toward making everyone’s holiday just that much less stressful!
If you are in need of a local crew with over 20 years experience in the Athens-Limestone area, and whose business has been built on hard work and honesty, then you need to give McGuire Plumbing a call at 256-233-0806.
McGuire Plumbing, Kevin McGuire, owner
New construction, remodeling and all types service work
Emergency service available
Face book: mcguire plumbing
By: Ali Elizabeth Turner