“El querer es poder” – Walter Casteneda, Owner and Founder of Casta Construction, Inc.
This month’s INSURENEX MovingUp Client Spotlight is on Walter Casteneda and his company Casta Construction.
Walter started his construction company on his own, back in 2005. At the time, he was working for a company where he had reached the highest position possible. With limited education and poor English, he was informed he could not and would not be promoted unless he went to school and got some kind of degree and also learned better English. Although Walter realized that he could accomplish going to school, getting a degree and advancing his English language skills, he also knew that working for someone else was NOT his ultimate goal in life. Since he had reached a lid to his advancement at his employer, he realized that the timing was perfect to venture out and start his own business. Fast forward, Walter has grown his company to over 30 employees taking on medium to complex construction projects through out California.
Walter was determined to make something of his life and to leave a legacy for his family. He always kept his family in mind, wanting to give them a better life. Venturing off from his past experience, he decided to swing out and take a stab at construction. Armed with determination and with his family’s welfare motivating him, he set out to create a construction company that focused on new residential construction, as well as commercial and residential remodeling. Finding capital to start his business was one of his early challenges. However, it didn’t take long for him to get his name and reputation out there in the community for his company’s outstanding work product and, by that means, gained the trust from his clients which gave him something to build on. He also found that finding good employees was challenging in the beginning.
Over the years, he has gained the trust and respect of his clients and demonstrated a powerful connection with the community. He feels that what distinguishes his company from all the others in this very saturated industry is their work quality coupled with the best competitive pricing. They are also personally involved with job completions. Walter also makes sure he is personally involved with each client project. That personal touch has built his business to the level it is today. They maintain close relationships with all their clients. Known for his calmness, Walter believes that their work quality speaks for itself.
He has no regrets about choosing not to return to school, though he does wish he had managed to get more education around what it takes to actually RUN a business. He learned the hard way, by trial and error and he moved forward building a solid foundation for a strong business that provides service to the counties of Los Angeles, Ventura, Inland Empire and Orange County.
Born and raised in Guatemala, in a small town of approximately 35 homes, Walter only completed the sixth grade. As a child, he was no stranger to hard work. He managed to attend school while also working in the fields, getting paid 1 quetzal a day (the equivalent of $0.13)! It was when he turned 19 that he decided to come to the United States and look for a better life for himself and his family. This has not been an easy road. Walter tells us “I’ve always set high goals, because I strongly believe in God and in myself, even when so many didn’t believe in me – I believed in me. I’ve reached my goals, regardless of the obstacles, thanks to my drive and passion to succeed in life along with my dedication to help my family and others.”
Married with three children and one grandchild, Walter has always felt close tight family bonds. He grew up with three brothers and two sisters. “We are very close.” Walter tells us. “We love to spend time together and travel together.” His household includes his two dogs and in his spare time, he works on improvements for his home, and he also really enjoys the outdoors.
Walter tells us, “I always felt in my heart that I was meant to be more than just a small town boy. I wanted to help my family and I knew that I had to leave my small town to be able to succeed. So I did!”
Walter has strong community ties. He’s currently involved with the new construction of a Christian church in Simi Valley, donating time and money to the project. He believes strongly in giving back to the community and also participated as a corporate sponsor, supporting TEAM INSURENEX in their recent AIDS LIFECYCLE, a 7 dat, 565-mile cycling event from San Francisco to Los Angeles to raise funds to find a cure for HIV/AIDS.
He’s not all work and no play, however, for fun, he enjoys watching sports, especially soccer games and he loves to spend time with his family. He feels that the future is bright for his company. He is committed to focus more on new construction, and wants to create more job opportunities. He also wants to own his own warehouse office building.
Walter’s advice for up and coming entrepreneurs is: “Learn as much as possible about your industry. Create a plan and set goals for yourself. Education is a very important key to success!”
When asked how INSURENEX has been a resource to him and his company, he told us that he was recommended to them by a colleague years ago. He says of his relationship with the Alfaro brothers and their insurance agency: “INSURENEX has been my one point of contact for all my personal and commercial insurance needs. They have a great team that has assisted me and my staff in a very timely manner. They are able to provide me with different options and, most important, they focus on protecting my assets.”