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The Ins and Outs of a Home Restoration: An Interview with Daniel Rose of C.J. Rose & Son Construction

By Daniel Rose

Tell us a little bit about your company and its foundation.

In the late 1860's Christopher Joseph Rose embarked on a business adventure that turned into a family business which has passed from father to son for over 150 years. He traveled from home to job site in a horse drawn wagon carrying his tools and supplies. In the early 1900's, Christopher's son Henry took over the business operating from his home on Mohawk Street in Chicago. Henry, with his younger brother George, was able to keep the business going through the depression often helping his employees' families during the worst times. Henry's son, Bill, was next in line to run C J Rose and Son. Bill learned most of his construction skills from his Uncle George. Bill was an Army Corp. Engineer serving in the Pacific during WWII. He was one of the first to land on the islands and helped to build roads, bridges, living quarters and trenches. He was wounded twice and received the Purple Heart for his service. Upon returning home he moved to the Chicago suburb of Elmwood Park and proceeded to carry on the family tradition of building and remodeling in the Chicagoland area. In the late 1970's Bill's son Dan took over running C J Rose and Son. Dan moved to Franklin Park and continued to operate out of his home office. Dan began working with his father in his early teens, obtained a Structural Engineering degree from Marquette University and continues to enjoy the challenges of the construction industry. C J Rose and Son's remodeling business now includes building new homes and small commercial projects.

What are some of the services your company provides?

C J Rose and Son does general remodeling and new construction. Services include but are not limited to: kitchens, baths, basements, stairs, windows, doors, siding, roofing, flooring, decks, patios, room additions, garages and new home construction. We offer free estimates.

What are some important questions to ask a contractor before beginning the restoration process?

Is the contractor licensed, bonded and insured? What experience does the contractor have in the area of restoration to be done? References and pictures of restoration work already completed. Are they Better Business Bureau Accredited? Get a detailed estimate and description of work to be done. Establish a time table for work progression and payment. Talk with the contractor about building codes and discuss unforeseen problems that may affect cost, schedule or alter the finished product. To prepare for restoration the clients need to provide clear access to work area, make sure permits and funding are applied for, check out village codes for electrical, plumbing, sprinklers, etc. It is also important to do your own research on materials such as paints, flooring, stains, and exterior finishes. Talk with the contractor and compare bids closely to make sure the work being estimated and the bids presented are comparable.

What are some common issues you face when it comes to restoring homes?

Unforeseen structural or mechanical problems: rotted wood, undersized studs, floor joists, roof rafters, water damage or mold not visible, unsafe or inadequate wiring, undersized or corroded piping. Lack of communication between the homeowner and contractor is a concern along with communication between homeowners. When there is more than one owner involved communication between these individuals is just as important as the communication with the contractor.

As a contractor, please describe your ideal relationship with the homeowner for whom you are working.

Trust is very important. The homeowner has to have the trust and confidence that the contractor knows what he is doing and will provide quality work. The contractor needs to have trust in the homeowner that the contract signed will be adhered to. Weather plays a factor in outside work and the homeowner needs to be aware that work may be delayed because of unfavorable weather conditions.

What advice do you have for the homeowner during this strenuous process?

I would advise the homeowner to keep regular communications with the contractor and ask any questions about concerns he/she may have. Also the homeowners need to talk with each other often to make sure they are in agreement with each other on the renovations being done.

What is your ideology when designing/conducting a home restoration?

I like to find out the needs of the homeowner by asking as many questions as necessary to find out what they need, want and can afford. I like to show them pictures of work I have done and also offer suggestions for different designs/materials that may fit their budget. References are available upon request.

What's the best way for people to get in contact with you?

I can be reached at my office phone number 847-451-1958 or email at My website is

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