Ove the past 14 years, Noel McDonnell Carpentry & Construction has earned a fantastic reputation for delivering a wide range of exceptional, client-focused building projects across the midlands. Building Ireland sat down with Noel to discuss his thriving, in-demand contracting company which always puts customers first.
Synonymous with quality workmanship, impeccable project delivery and invariably providing a personal touch, Noel McDonnell Carpentry & Construction has within a comparatively short space of time emerged as one Westmeath’s premier building contractors.
Specialising in high-quality residential extensions, refurbishments and new builds – generally within a 20-mile radius of its Ballymore base – the company’s stellar reputation is built upon the precise planning, professionalism, attention to detail and meticulous workmanship invested into every project large or small, from an attic conversion or kitchen upgrade to a deep retrofit, complete transformation of an existing property or energy-efficient new build home.
“We’re a small company that gives a personal touch,” Noel confirms. “We like what we do; we have a good team; we always try to do good work; and we get a lot of high-end stuff. We believe in looking after our clients from start to finish of every project and that automatically results in positive feedback.”
Word has spread of the exceptional building services being provided by Noel McDonnell Carpentry & Construction – which was established in 2009 and became a limited company five years ago. The popularity of this relatively small but fully focused company goes back to quality work and the all-important personal touch:
“That’s what people want and expect,” the eponymous founder and hands-on proprietor states. “The most important thing to me when I take on any project is that – upon completion – the client is 100 per cent happy with our work. You can’t put a value on that.”
Noel enjoys nothing more than helping clients realise their objective of a dream new (or reimagined) home. “We vet the people we work for probably more so than they vet us at this stage,” he continues. “We like to do family homes, to work closely with the client. In a sense, building personal relationships with people is as important to me as building homes for them. You have to be there for people and give them your undivided attention while the project is in progress.
“We take great pride from that and a lot of clients will let us put our own personal stamp on the project, if there’s any way we can improve it for them during the build stage. This is my job and this is what I’ve been doing every day for years, so if I see something I can do better, I won’t hesitate in making a suggestion. People will usually place their trust in your experience.
“Everybody has a budget and if something is impractical or unbuildable, then I’m going to point it out. Clients appreciate informed advice. Look, everything is possible with an unlimited budget but nobody has bottomless reserves of money. Everything has gone so expensive in construction these days, so anything we can do to help a client out with lowering or controlling their budget, we will certainly do it.”
Reflecting on the genesis of his successful carpentry and construction business, Noel recalls: “I left school in 2003 and went straight into a building boom. I served my time as a carpenter and things were winding down around ’09 but I was busy on my own so it just made sense to go down my own path at that stage.”
It was an inspired career choice and the hands-on Westmeath man has never looked back. “Today, we specialise in new builds from start to finish as well as extensions and renovations,” he continues. “I did full-time carpentry contracting for the first few years – roofing and first and second fixings – and then started doing full building projects in 2012. The business just progressed from there.
“We’re also doing a bit of commercial work for a developer, where we are carrying out apartment conversions and providing a complete turnkey service including design, planning, construction through to completion.”
Noel McDonnell Carpentry & Construction generally takes on up to six – eight projects at any given time, generating direct employment for an outstanding team of eight as well as a tried-and-trusted extended crew of subcontractors.
“I employ all local subbies and I’ll keep the same lads on from one job to the next,” adds Noel. “They provide me with a very good service and I’m able to pass that on to the client. My subcontractors are loyal to me and I look after them, too, so it works both ways.
“Everybody involved in construction knows that you are only as good as your last job and to consistently deliver high-quality work you need a good team of tradesmen and subcontractors. You need to have good people working alongside you.
“I’m in the fortunate position now of mostly only having to go 20 minutes from my home for work. I’m providing a very local service, for local people, and it is a very personal thing to me. I’d be driving past these houses most days and it’s nice to be able to say that you had a hand in building them.”
Consolidation will be the key objective for Noel McDonnell Carpentry & Construction going forward, with the focus remaining very much on maintaining the standards for which the company is renowned. “You have to keep those standards up and make sure you finish every job on a good note,” Noel concludes. “All our work comes through recommendations from satisfied clients.
“We’re very busy at the minute and I don’t want to get any bigger because it would take away the personal touch that people are after. That’s non-negotiable to me. We want to make sure our standards never drop and there’s also value in giving every job your undivided attention so you can get it over the line in a timely manner for the client, so they can begin to enjoy all the benefits of their new home as soon as possible.”
Noel McDonnell Carpentry & Construction Ltd.,
Tel: 086 3501380
Email: [email protected]
This article was published in Building Ireland Magazine, December 2023, Vol 9 No 12