Ziebart Construction brings mid-price point luxury remodels to greater Portland homeowners.
When Peggy and Eugene Bartman bought their Hillsboro home in 2022, they knew they wanted to change its early 2000s feel to make it lighter and brighter and take advantage of current trends. The 1700-square-foot house had been well maintained but not updated. After researching three local companies, the couple chose Ziebart Construction to handle their downstairs renovation — kitchen, living room, dining room, front bath, primary bath, primary bedroom, main stairway, laundry room and flooring throughout.
“Ziebart explained their process, services and fees. How they approached renovation made sense to us,” says Peggy. “Our project manager [Eric Zappe] was exceptionally good at his job. He was a key person in having our renovation turn out as well as it did.”
Matt Ziebart grew up in the construction industry and followed in the footsteps of his grandfather and father as a carpenter and general contractor. “Any lifelong professional remodeler can get the beautiful end result the clients want — the real challenge is delivering an amazing process and price,” he says. Prior to launching this company, Ziebart worked in the luxury design-build industry, which has the results and process everyone wants, just not the price. “I knew how to deliver the process and the results. I set out to discover how to do it all at the mid-price point.”
He realized that homeowners had to choose between either “overspending” with luxury firms for a low-risk process, guaranteed fixed prices and a professional design team or roll the dice with “free-estimate contractors,” of which there are thousands in Oregon, providing variable and vague estimates.
“That’s where the light bulb went off and I said, ‘Well, I know how to do the luxury design-build company model and have all the contacts. So why don’t we just pull our profit margins down and give the clients what they want.’ That became my obsession — to create the perfect client remodeling experience at a mid-priced point.”
Ziebart Construction launched in 2018 and, within just a few years, was the largest full-service kitchen and bath remodeling company in Portland, Ziebart says. The company’s fully transparent pricing, award-winning design team and team of exceptional subcontractors has led to many happy customers, and Ziebart finds himself getting rave reviews and continuous business with little marketing effort.
“We created an entire new segment in the industry — giving homeowners what they want at the price they want,” Ziebart says. “My wife and I were excited after the first year when we realized that the idea worked — homeowners loved the mid-priced luxury model. It took some time to figure out how to make a profit, however, with the key being to do a high volume of work.”
Every client gets a three-person team: an initial sales design consultant, a designer and finally a project manager — with responsibilities for different phases as a project progresses. The first consultation in the home determines scope and price range. A week later, homeowners have a discovery day at the Ziebart design center in Lake Oswego, where they review designs and look at materials, but by then the price has already been set. Clients also are allowed unlimited changes during the design phase.
Well-thought-out processes and technology help the company maintain a high volume — anywhere from 75 to 125 simultaneous jobs. Materials get delivered to the Ziebart design center, where designers open each box and do a quality-control check, even checking dye-lot patterns, to ensure everything matches and meets a designer’s standards before anything gets moved to a building site.
“We have pretty tight deadlines and have to be really organized,” says Ziebart. “Most professionals have experienced doing a full cabinet or flooring install and then realizing a difference in wood color or density. Just by opening all of those boxes, we eliminate a lot of dead days during production.”
In addition, the company uses Buildertrend software, with a client app that displays a project’s live schedule, even showing which subcontractors will arrive on a particular day. Still, some homeowners often prefer to call or text their project manager to get details.
“I try to go above and beyond,” says Eric Zappe, project manager at Ziebart. “Sometimes I answer my phone up until 9:00 p.m. All my customers know if they need something or if there’s a problem, they can call me and I’ll figure it out.”
Matt Ziebert sometimes still puts on a tool bag and heads to a job site, but these days he focuses more on business operations.
“I’m a builder at heart. As much as I love building and remodeling houses, I also love building a business that supports families in the community and supports the whole ecosystem that surrounds us. The Bartman family is a perfect example of my favorite types of clients. They are amazing people who wanted to age in place and needed a low-risk full remodel at a mid-price. They chose to trust us with their investment in their home and it turned out quite well.”
Designers: Danielle Van Leuvan and Abe Werber
Project manager: Eric Zappe
Subcontractors: MD Plumbing, Portland Millwork, Multi-Phase Electric, QMarvin Painting LLC, Xpert Construction Contractors (flooring) and Gaston LLC (tile)