Friday, April 29, 2016

Flip to a Different Eagle Section

Business spotlight - Bear Hill Electric, LLC - By Michelle Libby

Bear Hill Electric can wire and fix any electrical needs from replacing a light bulb to wiring a new house. Willis Dicentes and his team of four have over 50 years of combined experience and have seen and done almost any type of electrical work. Commercial or residential jobs, nothing is too big or too small for them. 

“We try to focus on our customers. We have a lot of repeat business, and that says something about who we are,” said Dicentes. 

They do remodels, service upgrades, or lighting upgrades for energy efficiency in commercial settings, which can save customers a lot of money on their electric bill. Dicentes is always looking out for what’s best for the client. He will look for the most affordable way to do a quality job. He won’t start out with the most expensive fix, like rewiring a kitchen to put in a new light switch. Bear Hill is an Efficiency Maine partner, which means that Dicentes can walk through a building, see what a client has for lighting and offer efficient fixes that can help them save money. Many times the little switches he suggests will lower wattage and cut electric bills in half. 

“We want to build a relationship and get repeat business versus we’re never going to see you again,” said Dicentes. Bear Hill Electric is known for its attention to detail and taking care of the little stuff, like cleaning up and vacuuming after a project is complete.
Dicentes started working in the industry when he was in high school. His uncle and grandfather were both electricians. He was part of the vocational program at Westbrook High School when he was in high school and continued his education to become an electrician. 

The home office for Bear Hill Electric is in Hollis at this time, but that doesn’t stop Dicentes from doing jobs all over southern Maine as well as Bangor and even Madawaska. Most of their jobs are in the Sebago region. 

Bear Hill Electric has the right equipment to help with any project. It has a bucket truck that can reach 45 feet to put in a pole light and has a scissor lift to work in buildings with high ceilings. 

Electricians are more than just wiring lights. They can wire septic pumps, water filtration systems, recessed can lights, hard wired smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors. They can also put in an outlet for a hot tub and do pool wiring. 

One of the most unique job Dicentes has done is put a generator at a cell tower on top of a mountain. The road was terrible and rather than drive down for the night, he spent the night on top of the mountain to finish the job the following day. 

“We will do the job right. We don’t cut corners. If there’s an issue, we’ll come back to take care of it,” he said. 

Bear Hill employees work with real estate loans to help close deals, by putting in the smoke detectors or adding GFI breakers in a kitchen or bathroom. The company also sells automatic generators and can wire them safely so if the power goes out the generator will keep the lights on. 

Bear Hill Electric’s goals are to keep growing in the area and to find a location in Windham. Dicentes wants to continue to build relationships with other businesses too. The company and its employees are licensed and insured. 

They keep up with training that is required including a class on code updates, which happens every three years.

Bear Hill Electric is a member of the Sebago Lakes Region Chamber of Commerce and multiple BNI chapters and was named number one in The Eagle Choice Awards for 2015. 

For more information or to set up an appointment, call 894-7000 or email You can also visit their website at They gladly accept all major credit cards and offer emergency services 24/7.  

Friday, April 22, 2016

Flip to a Different Eagle Section

Business spotlight - Marston's Tree Service - By Michelle Libby

Specializing in sunlight is a life’s work for John Marston of Marston’s Tree Service. Since he was a teen, he has been working with trees and now as owner of one of the largest tree service companies in Maine, he takes pride in helping customers with their tree issues large and small. 

Marston’s is able to get into many tight areas to trim trees high in the air. The company is in the process of purchasing a spider lift that goes 70 feet in the air. 

“We only need 36 inches of space,” Marston said. “I can get into those tight areas, even in people’s doorways.”

Marston’s works all over Maine doing commercial tree jobs. He is currently taking bids for commercial landscaping accounts, as well as working for the State of Maine doing tree work. They are always ready to bid on corporate jobs.

On the residential side, Marston’s will come to inspect the work first. They offer free estimates and advice. Sometimes trees don’t need to be taken down, but instead just need to be trimmed. They are well versed in waterfront rules and regulations and will help get permits to have trees taken down. 

“We love a difficult tree job with crane work. But, there’s no job too big or too small,” he said. 

In 1998, Marston opened the business in Naples, where it is still headquartered today. He now owns a redemption store and has a towing company in Naples that is AAA certified. 

“We work hard and are friendly. You can’t please everybody, but I’m out for customer satisfaction,” he said. “I try to tell people I do what I say I’m going to do.” 

Marston’s receives a lot of customers by referrals from other customers. 

“We do everything to do with trees.” He’s a licensed arborist, EHAP certified to work around electrical wires, first air certified and insured. They are in good standing with the Better Business Bureau.
“We do safety quite well,” Marston said. “In all the years of business we have only had one Workers comp. issue. I don’t put guys in dangerous situations.” 

People should make sure that the tree service company they hire are licensed and insured. They need to show a proof of a policy on the customer’s property, Marston said. “You shouldn’t have someone working who’s not covered,” he added.

They have a 24-hour emergency call line that Marston staffs. He is the detail keeper for all of the businesses. He no longer works in the woods due to medical issues, but he is still involved in the day to day operations of the business. “I always like to know what’s going on,” he said. 

“We’re family-owned and operated. My son works for us, my son-in-law works for us,” he said.  

None of the wood that Marston’s process goes to waste. Each part is recycled for mulch, pellets or firewood. The company has 16 employees and is hiring more tree professionals. All of the top employees are licensed arborists, Marston said. 

Appointments can be scheduled and Marston looks at 98 percent of the jobs himself. “I’ll look at any job.” 

Additional services consist of stump grinding and chipping as well as spring and fall clean-ups. In the winter, they offer full service snow removal services including snow plowing, sanding and salting services.

Marston’s main office is at 212 Roosevelt Trail in Naples. 

Marston’s Tree Service can be found on Facebook, where clients can see many of the jobs they have done, on LinkedIn and at For an appointment, email or call 693-4631 or 888-332-1640.

For your convenience they accept all major credit cards. <

Friday, April 15, 2016

Flip to a Different Eagle Section

Business spotlight - Sebago Gardens Landscaping - By Michelle Libby
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Nathan Sawyer is the owner of Sebago Gardens Landscaping. He has run the business since 2005 and
bought it four years ago. With great word of mouth advertisement, he has customers who seek him and his company out for all of their landscaping and gardening needs. Now he is ready for new customers and clients to benefit from his expertise.
“We have a ton of experience,” Sawyer said. “We have worked putting in leach fields, hot tub pads, stone walls and plantings of all kinds. There’s a broad spectrum of what we can do.”

Sawyer grew up around his family’s various companies doing excavating and building. He has an electrician in the family and his wife is a florist. “We have a lot of businesses in the family. That’s a lot of support and knowledge,” Sawyer said. 

Sebago Gardens Landscaping does spring clean ups, mulching, lawns (hydro seeding and sod), mowing, weeding, planting shrubs, flowers, vegetables, landscape lighting and some excavating. 

Sebago Gardens Landscaping will also do stonework and hardscaping, creating gardens, retaining walls and walkways for new or existing properties. They can take a bare lot and create the yard that will wow friends and family. The company has many corporate clients like Portland Housing, Aroma Joe’s in Windham, the plaza with Studio Flora on Route 302 in Windham as well as quite a few banks, condo units, and of course, residential properties. 

“Customer service is big with us,” said Sawyer. Sawyer employs seven or eight people on two crews, a mowing crew and a labor crew that does complete yard renovations. 

His customers range from people he has worked with for years and others like real estate professionals who want to make a property look nice for pictures or for a showing. Often times, rental agencies contract him to fix up rental properties before clients move in. 

“We’re good at everything we do. We’re very meticulous,” he added. “At Christmas time people send us cards and gifts or bring us food and coffee to show their appreciation.” 

Located behind Rose’s Italian Restaurant in Windham Mills Park, Sawyer offers mulch and compost pick up at his location or he will deliver to your location for a small delivery fee. 

In the winter time, in addition to plowing, sanding and snowblowing, Sawyer builds one-of-a-kind furniture out of birch logs. He can also use some of his building skills when creating a backyard oasis for his clients.  

Sebago Gardens has also dug foundations for new construction. He can do just about anything and encourages customers to call him and ask if they are unsure if what they need is something he can do. 
On January 15 of this year, Sawyer was recognized by the Maine State Police for his involvement in the community with the Business Recognition Award for Maine. Sebago Gardens Landscaping is involved in Project Everlasting Gratitude with Studio Flora, his wife’s company, which provides a wreath for every Veteran grave in Windham just before the holidays. He also donates to the schools and gives back to the community whenever he can. 

Their prices are comparable to other similar companies; however, with Sebago Gardens and their extended family of businesses, they are able to be a one-stop-shop for many landscaping needs. For the second year Sebago Gardens is offering driveway and parking lot sealcoating, where they will do the work by hand, not spraying on watered down sealant, he said. “It lasts a lot longer.” 

Sebago Gardens Landscaping offers free estimates and billing at the end of each month. There is no job too small. From a weekly mowing to installing patios, steps and stonewalls, Sebago Gardens can do the job right the first time. 

Sawyer is a dog lover and can be seen with his pup all over town. For more information or to get a quote, call 318-7825, email or visit them on Facebook to browse some of their top of the line work.

Friday, April 8, 2016

Flip to a Different Eagle Section

Business spotlight - Portland Harbor Group of Raymond James world of 50 years ago was a lot different than it is today. An individual often worked at the same job all his or her adult life, lived in the same house, and stayed married to the same spouse. In those days, too, one spouse could support a family, paying for college ordinarily didn't require taking out a second mortgage, and people could look forward to retiring on Social Security and possibly a company pension.
Today, your hopes and dreams are no different. Like most people, you probably want to buy a home, put your children through college, and retire with a comfortable income. But the world has become a more complex place, especially when it comes to your finances. You may already be working with financial professionals--an accountant or estate planner, for example--each of whom advises you in a specific area. But if you would like a comprehensive financial plan to help you secure your future, you may benefit from the expertise of a financial advisor from Portland Harbor Group.

You might not expect your financial advisor to be there when a pipe burst, to help with wedding plans or pick up the phone when you need to hear a reassuring voice.  But maybe you should.  After all, there’s more to your goals than an investment portfolio or retirement plan can account for, so there should be more to your relationship with your advisor.  That’s why, in addition to our knowledge of financial and investing, the biggest part of our job is to become expects on you.  We can help you fit all the pieces of your financial life together as easily as we can help you decide which new car is the best fit for your family.

However, you don't have to wait until an event occurs before you consult a financial advisor. The Portland Harbor Group of Raymond James,  can help you develop an overall strategy for approaching your financial goals that not only anticipates what you'll need to do to reach them, but that remains flexible enough to accommodate your evolving financial needs.

Some misconceptions about financial advisors
Maybe you have reservations about consulting a financial advisor because you're uncertain about what to expect. Here are some common misconceptions about financial advisors, and the truth behind them:
• Most people don't need financial advisors--While it's true that you may have the knowledge and ability to manage your own finances, the financial world grows more intricate every day. A qualified financial advisor has the expertise to help you navigate a steady path towards your financial goals.

• All financial advisors are the same--Financial advisors are not covered by uniform state or federal regulations, so there can be a considerable disparity in their qualifications and business practices. Some may specialize in one area such as investment planning, while others may sell a specific range of products, such as insurance. A qualified financial advisor generally looks at your finances as an interrelated whole, and can help you with many of your financial needs. 

• Financial advisors serve only the wealthy--Some advisors do only take on clients with a minimum amount of assets to invest.  Many, however, only require that their clients have at least some discretionary income.

• Financial advisors are only interested in comprehensive plans--Financial advisors generally prefer to offer advice within the context of a client's current situation and overall financial goals. But financial advisors frequently help clients with specific matters such as rolling over a retirement account or developing a realistic budget.

• Financial planners aren't worth the expense--Like other professionals, financial advisors receive compensation for their services, and it's important for you to understand how they're paid. But a good financial advisor may help you save and earn more than you pay in fees.

The Portland Harbor Group of Raymond James takes an approach to financial planning, investment management and personal service that are highly sophisticated, thoroughly analytical and deeply human- we can weigh the numbers and the markets in terms of your current needs and lifelong goals to create an overall wealth strategy that is precisely yours. We use a three steps process: The Financial Plan, Investment Plan, and Service Plan.  First we establish goals and objectives.  Then we craft investment strategies that address your goals and objectives.  Using five portfolio models, we use a tactical approach that attempts to reduce risk.  Lastly, we use a detailed personal service strategy to keep you informed of your progress toward your goals and apprise you of where your asset allocation stands at points along the way. 

Applied specifically and personally, the services we offer can help you plan for success as you see it, whether it includes a second home on the coast or a financial legacy for generations to come.  Our comprehensive services include:  Financial planning, retirement planning, educational planning, estate planning, insurance/long term care and corporate retirement plans.

When is it time to consult a financial advisor?
In many cases, a specific life event or a perceived need may prompt you to seek professional financial planning guidance. Such events or needs might include:
• Getting married or divorced
• Having a baby or adopting a child
• Paying for your child's college education
• Buying or selling a family business
• Changing jobs or careers
• Planning for your retirement
• Developing an estate plan
• Coping with the death of your spouse
• Receiving an inheritance or a financial windfall

In these situations, a financial professional can help you make objective, rather than emotional, decisions.

For more information on financial planning from The Portland Harbor Group of Raymond James, call 771-1800 or visit them online at

Friday, April 1, 2016

Flip to a Different Eagle Section

Business spotlight - Stiles Dock Service - By Michelle Libby

Living on the lake is a great thing, until it comes time to put in or take out the dock. From small one section docks to large marinas, Stiles Dock Service is your dock superhero. Owned by Bob Stiles, Stiles Dock Service will bring his team of experienced employees to install any dock. 

“The big guys have lost the ability to pay attention to the details,” Stiles said, who worked for other companies before going out on his own nine years ago. “I pride myself on my good service. When you call my business, I answer the phone.” 

The average dock has five sections, but every dock is different. Stiles has installed docks with one section and he has installed them with 25 sections, like the one at Kokatosi Campground in Raymond. 

It’s a very short season, according to Stiles. People want their docks in before Memorial Day at the end of May. Last year it was the third week of April before he could get in the water. This year he has already put docks in Sebago Lake.
Now is the best time to call to get set up for an install, he said.  

Ninety percent of his business is installing, removing and adjusting heights to docks in the Sebago region and in southern Maine. Stiles is familiar with most lakes in the area from Norway Lake to Estes Lake. He prides himself that he is the same guy who will put in and take out the docks every year. He will pay attention to what customers like and need.
One man asked for nylon washers to be used because his dock squeaked at night and his wife wanted to listen to the loons. Stiles made it happen. 

Stiles will also help those who are trying to put in their own dock and are having trouble. He will show a client how it’s done and let them decide to continue to do it on their own or hire him. He has saved more than one marriage this way, he said, jokingly. 

The other 10 percent of his business is selling custom built wooden docks and aluminum docks. He delivers the new docks and installs them as soon as they are done. Don’t have the money for a whole new dock? Stiles will work with a client to put in half one year and half the next.  

His vast knowledge of options available ensures that he makes competent recommendations for equipment and layouts that will fit your specific needs. 
“What sets us apart is the ability to pay attention to the fine details. To get what the customer wants done without having to go back,” Stiles said. 

His prices are very competitive and his customer service blows away the competition. Stiles Dock Service gives a $50 referral fee off service for those who refer a friend or neighbor and they use Stiles to put their dock in. 

Stiles puts in docks for private home owners, but also for associations, camps and towns. He does not work where the water is tidal. 

Twice a year, he sends out letters to his clients reminding them to make an appointment for dock removal or install. If they pay before the due date, they receive a 5 percent discount. For removal reservations for this year, they must be booked and paid for before August 31. That doesn’t mean the dock has to come out then, he pointed out. New customers who mention this article will receive 20 percent off their first dock service with Stiles Dock Service. 

Stiles would like to see his customers double this year and he knows that his team is ready for the action. He understands that your time on the lake can be limited. That’s why he invites you to let his crew do the work for you so you can spend more quality time on the lake with friends and family.

If you’re tired of struggling with a dock in the frigid spring water, call Bob Stiles at 712-2163 or email him at He offers free estimates and is fully insured. He is the area’s dock superhero.  <