A traumatic childhood experience ultimately led Travis Thonen to start his own business to help others restore their houses after fire, water, smoke and hail damage.

“I personally went through an experience with my family many years ago when our family home in Raytown, Missouri almost burnt to the ground one winter,” Thonen said. “I can remember the feeling of sorrow standing with the Red Cross team in the dead of winter as I watched my mother talk with firemen and in the same breath restoration contractor companies!”

At Midwest Comfort Homes, Thonen takes pride in his company’s ability to help clients through a difficult time after their home has been damaged. For the past eight years, he has been providing general contracting services for disaster restoration, roof replacement and repairs, remodeling and renovations. He also assures his clients that they have choices, even if the insurance company has “preferred contractors.”

Like many businesses, Midwest Comfort Homes has experienced growing pains that led him to seek the advice and expertise of the Small Business & Technology Development Center (SBTDC).

In mid-2016, Thonen’s SBTDC advisor, Jill Hathaway, guided him through some difficult business decisions, including having him step away from day-to-day operations and hire a field foreman.

“As we all know this might be the hardest thing we do in business,” he said. “But again, the lessons I learned from the SBTDC taught me that I should only focus on the things that I excel in.”

Since graduating from the ScaleUp program in early 2017, and continuous coaching from the SBTDC, “my eyes were opened,” Thonen shared. “As a company, we were focusing on our electrical side and not our restoration side, and the numbers were just not there.”

After focusing more on the restoration business, Midwest Comfort Homes tripled its business in one year. The company is on track to hit its 2018 goals in the first quarter of this year.

“Slowing down to listen to others might be scary, and in our case, it was. But overall it was the best choice we have made in business to date,” Thonen said.


Midwest Comfort Homes

Travis Thonen

1100 SW 24th Street Court, Blue Springs, MO




Posted: April 2018