Billy Alcantara: An Unexpected Opportunity
By James Florence, Diamond Certified Resource Reporter
BENICIA — Following a hiatus from the construction industry, Billy Alcantara found himself drawn back into the field by an unexpected opportunity. “I’ve always been a hands-on type of person, so right out of high school I put on a toolbelt and got into construction,” he remembers. “My older cousin got me into the trade and showed me the ropes. A few years later, I left the construction field to work in sales, and after that I took a job in the manufacturing field. After the financial crash in 2008, my wife and I began to invest in and fix up real estate properties. I started meeting other investors and getting hired to fix up their properties, and the next thing I knew, I was doing it full-time. Eventually, I decided to get my contractor’s license and start my own remodeling business.”
Today, as owner of Safeshield Construction Inc., Billy says his favorite part of his job is solving problems. “I like listening to the problems my clients have with their homes and coming up with solutions. It’s fun to figure out new ways of doing things, and it’s always rewarding to see how happy the customer is to have their issue resolved.”
A resident of Walnut Creek (where he lives with his wife, Karina), Billy spends his time outside of work on a variety of active pastimes. “I enjoy reading, as well as water sports like snorkeling and surfing,” he details. “I also like taking weekend trips with my wife and going biking, hiking, and camping.”
In his life and career, Billy espouses the virtues of continuous improvement. “That was instilled in me from the very first day I started working with my cousin,” he says. “He told me that if I wanted to succeed in the field, I should always strive to be better. He’d say, ‘Whatever I teach you, find a way to do it better and always keep innovating.’ That had a big influence on me and it still does today. A lot of contractors don’t like to try new ideas or ways of doing things, but I’m always looking at how I can improve and serve my clients better.”
When asked what he would do if he were to retire tomorrow, Billy says he’d pass on his expertise to aspiring construction professionals. “I’d like to be a consultant to contractors who are just starting out. It would be rewarding to pass on my knowledge and give them a boost so they don’t make the same mistakes I did when I was starting out.”
Ask Me Anything!
Q: Are you an early bird or a night owl?
A: A night owl.
Q: What’s your favorite type of food?
A: Mediterranean food.
Q: Music or talk radio?
A: Talk radio, especially debates on interesting topics.
Q: Do you collect anything?
Q: What’s your favorite snack?
A: Chips with lime and hot sauce.
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