For three generations now, the Topash family has been painting homes in Wesley Chapel and surrounding areas.
“We’ve always been a family-owned business and we’ve been a second-generation business,” says K.T., who bought Topash Painting from his dad, Paul, in 2009. “But now, we’re getting to be third-generation painting company.”
He explains that his son, Cole, who is 16 and homeschooled, often works as his father’s helper. “He’s working with me today, in fact,” says K.T.
Paul Topash established his company in the Lutz area in 1978. “About 20 years ago, we moved the business out to Wesley Chapel to keep it local to where we live, and we’ve been there ever since,” says K.T.
Never A Subcontractor
When you hire Topash Painting, you will always work directly with K.T.
“Our family is a great team,” says K.T. “My wife, Hollie, does all the bookkeeping, which is a full-time job in itself. Without her, I couldn’t do what I do. She frees me up to do the painting, the estimates, and what I need to do to get the job. Then, my son helps me paint. We all make a great team together.”
“There’s not a job where you won’t see K.T.,” explains Hollie. “His helper won’t be there without him; that will never happen. K.T. does each estimate, does every job himself – from start to finish, including pressure washing – on every job.”
Because his services are so in demand and he doesn’t hire subcontractors or laborers, he often books well in advance, sometimes as much as 90 days in advance.
“When I say I’m going to be there, I’m going to be there,” he says. Hollie adds, “The only thing that gets us off schedule is rain – or the occasional illness or emergency – but we’re usually able to swap an interior job for an exterior, and it works out so that we stay on schedule.”
K.T. jokes that he, “works to support his hobby,” which is another family affair. K.T., Hollie, and Cole are all licensed falconers, training birds of prey. Hollie explains, “They hunt for squirrel or rabbit or pheasant, and are taught to come back to us on a whistle. K.T.’s bird is a falcon that hunts ducks or other birds. The falcons develop a real bond with their trainers.”
K.T. adds, “Whenever we’re not painting, that’s our life.”
How To Hire A Painter
K.T. stresses the importance of protecting your investment in your home by painting the exterior when needed.
“Paint helps to seal off the wood and keep moisture out,” he explains. “Using a good quality paint makes a tremendous difference in how long the paint lasts. Some paints can be really expensive, but there’s a place where you get the biggest bang for your buck as far as quality.”
K.T. will help you get the best paint for your personal circumstances, such as if you’re planning to sell your home soon or if it will be your “forever home.” He offers some additional helpful tips for anyone who is considering hiring a painter for interior or exterior work:
• Ask friends and neighbors about painters they’ve used.
• A clean vehicle indicates a neat painter who takes pride in his or her work. Observe the vehicle he or she arrives in when they come to do the estimate.
• You shouldn’t be asked to buy your own paint before the job.
• Painters should return your calls in a timely manner.
• They must be able to show they are licensed, bonded and insured in your county.
“Always ask,” says Hollie. “If someone gets hurt at your house and isn’t insured, you’re liable. Make sure they’re bonded, too. If something expensive gets broken at your house, K.T. is bonded so you can replace it.”
She adds that if you’re not specific and you only ask, “Are you licensed?,” some contractors might answer “yes,” meaning they hold an occupational license. “Anyone can pay $35 at the county and get an occupational license,” she says. “Ask if they are a licensed paint contractor.” Hollie says this is what K.T. is, and he’s had training, invested money, and had to take a test to earn it.
“There are a lot of companies in Pasco and Hillsborough counties who are not licensed,” says Hollie. “There’s a big difference between an occupational license and a proper paint contractor license. It doesn’t benefit us to be properly licensed; it protects the customers.”
Painting His Whole Life
“K.T.’s dad, Paul, painted for me and my family when K.T. was a kid,” says Michelle, a long-time Wesley Chapel resident who didn’t want to share her last name. “The minute K.T. could hold a paintbrush, he was painting. I’ve seen him grow and watched him become the dad to his son that his dad was to him. He’s just a great guy.”
She says that K.T. also is a man of integrity, which she believes is rare. “I’ve watched him hold tight to his moral code,” Michelle says. “This is a time of uncertainty with contractors. You wonder if they’re coming, if they’ll be on time, (if they’re) using the product they say they’re using. K.T. is true to his word and he really cares.”
She adds, “I think that’s why he has so many repeat customers. Sometimes he gets really busy, but I don’t mind waiting. I just tell him to put me on his list.”
K.T.’s truck touts that Topash Painting is the home of the “neat and tidy professionals,” and Michelle says that’s absolutely true. “I have white carpet in my house that’s 25 years old. It’s that old because I take really good care of it. He’s painted every wall inside and out you don’t even know he’s been in the room.”