Our clients, Seaview Cabinets are award winning cabinet makers with a passion for innovative design, quality and durability.
From design through to installation, the small creative team specialise in custom built kitchens, bathrooms and laundries in Melbourne’s eastern suburbs.
They have worked closely with some of Melbourne’s best designers, including Shayna Blaze and have received many accolades and awards fir their work, most recently being 2018’s Best Kitchen over $80,000 from the Furnishing Industry Association of Australia.
This week we chat to founder of Seaview Cabinets, Garrath Jones about why he started his business and how RBK have helped along the way.
Tell us about your business – what do you do and how are you different to your competitors?
We offer a personal touch. The people you have first contact with are available throughout the entire process. We strive for quality over quantity and that’s why our customers keep coming back to us for years on end.
Why did you decide to go into business?
I struggled working for people that weren’t cabinet makers, I pride myself on the knowledge I have earned over 25 years of being in the industry and I was tired of being told to cut corners to save time and money. I decided that if I used my experience and produced a high quality product on time and within a budget, word would get around and it has. I wanted people to be happy at the end of the process instead of frustrated and angry at how they had been treated or avoided like I had witnessed from nearly all my employers.
How have RBK helped you along the way?
RBK has shown me that bringing my company into the modern era of integrating machinery and technology into the business to streamline things isn’t a bad thing. It helps my team achieve more and also allows me to satisfy more customers without losing the small business feel.
What should we be looking for when it comes to choosing a cabinet maker?
As important as it is, because everyone has a budget, don’t always look for the cheapest quote. Be aware of quality hardware and finishes and make sure these are part of the quote. I’ve seen a lot of junk that falls apart after 6 months.
Make sure you are comfortable with the person trying to sell you the kitchen and also with the people installing it. This is a big undertaking and the added pressure of feeling uncomfortable will make it a very stressful process.
Most of all, do background checks. Have they been recommended, do they have an online presence, where you can see their work and feedback from their previous clients? You can call the Australian Cabinet and Furniture Association and ask for a reliable cabinet maker in your area if you have no idea where to start. Arm yourself with knowledge of the products you like, have clippings and pictures of colour combinations. The more you have the better.
What is your advice to other tradies looking to start their own business?
Brace yourself! No only kidding. Be prepared to work hard and miss things. Be open to new ideas, not only from people in the industry but people outside the industry. Sometimes a different point of view can move you along.
Be open to change, things don’t always need to be done the way they were when you started your apprenticeship. Be an innovator and change the way it’s done.
Keep your values, you will never be more disappointed than rushing a job and looking at average results. One of the hardest things to do when running a small business is to leave all the frustration and emotion that goes with it at work. Learn how to deal with it and make your family time count because they are the reason we are doing it and you want to enjoy them as much as possible.
Most of all celebrate the little things, like your first employee, meeting a tough deadline or signing a client that you’ve been chasing. It’s gotta be fun as well!