by Len Lear
According to Jeff Jefferis of Glenside, “Ten years ago we were at our wit’s end when along came Dennis Meyer! After several frustrating years of being told by various designers, architects and contractors that we couldn’t possibly do what we wanted done with out home, we repeated the same wish list to Dennis.
“How surprised were we when Dennis said, ‘That’s doable!’ It has been 10 years since he completed the work, and we couldn’t be happier with our home and the work of Dennis and his crews. We’re surprised that everyone doesn’t call Dennis!”
Because Dennis F. Meyer, Inc., headquartered in Ambler, is currently celebrating 50 years in business and since they have worked on so many homes in Chestnut Hill, Mt. Airy and Wyndmoor over the years, we decided it was a good time to do a story about their half-century of work in the area.
Normally, when you do an article about any kind of business — whether it is a restaurant, auto body shop, landscaper, hairstylist, etc. — and talk to enough former customers, you are going to hear about negative as well as positive experiences. Doubters of this assertion have only to check on yelp.com.
The Dennis Meyer firm is apparently an exception, however. For example, here is another testimonial, this one from Ed & Mary Beth Yarish of Chestnut Hill.
“Dennis F. Meyer Inc. is currently completing a full renovation project on our home,” they said. “Mr. Meyer came highly recommended and has not disappointed.
“We have found his work to be excellent, and his employees are skilled craftsmen who understand the complexities of working with older homes. All of the subcontractors that have been assigned to our project have also been very knowledgeable and very accommodating.”
Fifty years ago Richard Meyer, Dennis’ father, started the company in Flourtown. He took it over from a man named Melvin Greeb, who had built many of the great homes in Chestnut Hill and Wyndmoor in the 1930s and ‘40s.
“My grandfather had worked for Mel,” said Chris Meyer, 29, who is also employed in the family business. “My dad (Dennis, 61) has had the company in his name for the past 17 years. My uncle, Rick, is also a carpenter for the company. The general contracting part moved in 1997 from Flourtown to Ambler.”
In 2000 the Dennis F. Meyer firm also took over a local mill shop, Roland’s Custom Millwork, that had already been around for 40 years, from lifelong colleague Roland Korschorek. “We kept the same workers there because they do such great work,” said Chris.
“They’re from Poland, Germany, etc. From 2002 to January of 2014 it was in Chalfont. Since then in Glenside. The mill shop is only about 10 percent of our entire business, but it gives us a competitive edge. We work with so many older homes in the area, but we do not have to farm work out, as other construction firms have to do. We can make a door, a vanity, etc., in our own mill shop. It provides for more quality control.”
The firm also seems to have a competitive edge because of their many long-tenured employees. Six of their lead carpenters have between 20 and 35 years experience each.
“They have the knowledge and ability to carry out any number of projects,” said Chris, “no matter the size or difficulty.”
The firm works routinely with Formica and other laminates, mantels, custom entertainment centers, mouldings, period architectural reproductions, shutters, bathroom vanities, closets, medicine cabinets, custom kitchen cabinetry, etc.
According to Amy and John Shea in Chestnut Hill, “We have been working with Dennis Meyer, Inc. for the better part of 10 years and have never once been disappointed with his teams’ work. Based on many recommendations, we engaged Dennis Meyer to help us with a long-term renovation project that took about two years.
“Our day-to-day interactions with his entire team, from carpenters to office staff, were completely enjoyable. Dennis and his team are consummate professionals, committed to the highest quality product and result.”
Yet another Chestnut Hill homeowner who sings arias in praise of the Meyer firm is Lisa Mancuso. “In 2000,” she told us, “I was introduced to Dennis F. Meyer Inc., by a local architect. Dennis and his very select group of carpenters are vastly knowledgeable about old homes and pay incredible attention to preserving and restoring historic detail.
“In addition to the same talented carpenters who have worked with Dennis over the 13 years we have worked with Dennis, I cannot rave enough about Dennis’ son, Chris, who is as professional and knowledgeable as his dad and also is a master of custom woodwork. Dennis and his team have taken on many challenges in our 125-year-old home, and the end results have been authentic, always.”
For more information, call 215-793-0250 or visit www.dfmeyerinc.com.