Wehmeier Drywall Marks 20 Years in Business

By on August 9, 2018

This year marks the 20th anniversary for Wehmeier Drywall, one of the St. Louis region’s largest union drywall installers.

Within these two decades, the company has grown from a small, family business to a staff of more than 75.

The son of a tradesman, Henry Wehmeier followed in his father’s footsteps. “I come from a family of construction,”  he said. “My father was a concrete finisher, but my buddy was in drywall. As any good son would do, I started taping.”

“I always wanted to own my own business. In 1998, my then-boss decided to retire. With more than 20 years under my belt at that point, it seemed as good of a time as any to start.

At first, it was just me, and then my son started working for me during his summers home from college. Like me, he decided that his dad’s career choice was not for him. Since then, we’ve slowly and steadily grown the drywall and painting companies and now have more than 75 employees.”

Wehmeier said that weathering the lastest recession was a test by fire that made the company stronger. “Around 2010, the St. Louis economy began to improve, the number of new homes spiked, interest rates dropped and business really picked up. I’d consider the company successful prior to the recession, but after weathering the slump, we’ve really grown.”

Among the trends Wehmeier has recently observed are:

  • Rising material costs: “Any homebuilder, contractor, subcontractor and homebuyer will tell you that the increase in material costs has had a huge impact on building and buying. Relationships and planning ahead help us minimize these rising costs for everyone, but it’s a new reality since these fixed costs aren’t subsiding anytime soon.”
  • Change in market demand: “We’ve seen an influx of retirement-age homebuyers looking for homes where they can “age-in-place.” There’s also been an increase in multigenerational living. This combined demographic is demanding elements of privacy with multiple master suites on different levels, especially the ground level. Additionally, open floor plans with wider doors and halls make homes more accessible to its aging or disabled residents.

Overall, Henry Wehmeier credits the work ethic and professionalism of his team with the company’s success. “We employ people who care about what they do. I’m proud of our office staff, estimators, installers, finishers and painters. They are respectful, skilled and take pride in their work.”

 

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