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It started as a summer job and ended up as a lifelong career

Aaron Steininger in Front of Sunlight Housepainting Banner Home Show

I’ve lived in Columbus my entire life, and could not imagine living anywhere else. I grew up in Westerville, and attended Worthington Christian Schools. In my youth, I earned money by raking leaves and shoveling driveways for people in my neighborhood. As the middle of 5 kids if I wanted anything extra, I had to use my own money to pay for it. When all my friends were sledding when school was closed, I was shoveling driveways until it was dark. If I made $50 on a snow day I was rich! That is where my entrepreneurial spirit was born.

My love for painting started with a great summer job painting homes in and around Columbus to earn money while in college. I needed a steady job and a way to pay for books, rent, and other college related expenses. I enjoyed working outside, and the variety of houses we worked on changed constantly so it was never boring. The best part of the job was that you start with something ugly and made it beautiful. You are not only helping people protect their biggest investment, but beautifying it as well.

Steininger Family with Dog

Once I realized that college was not for me, I really put all of my effort into learning the business side of painting. I worked for another painting company for 7 years and learned the ropes. I oversaw multiple crews, I handled estimates, I met with customers and picked colors, and I even learned how to power wash. After leaving that company I also worked for PPG Paints as a paint sales rep for 1 year. That was an amazing opportunity. During my time there I learned all about the coating industry and what paints are the best for each individual application. At the downturn near the end of 2007, beginning of 2008, PPG laid me off. Although at the time it seemed like the worst possible thing that could happen, it was the “kick in the pants” that I needed to go out on my own.

Why I Started Sunlight Housepainting

When I was let go from PPG, although unsure of where or how to start, I was attracted to running my own business. I liked the idea of being able to set the standard of quality, rather than have the boss set it.

When I started Sunlight Housepainting in January of 2008 I had very little money, so my “marketing budget” consisted of printing flyers and going door to door. From that point we were able to book some work and grow the business from there. I am very thankful for my first few customers who took a chance on us and allowed us to paint their homes.

Sunlight Housepainting Team on Ladders Painting Window Trim

Although I now use traditional forms of advertising, the main source of our success has been referrals. They are the life blood of any good business, and I am truly appreciative for my customers having enough faith in me to promote me and my services to their friends and family.

Running your own business can be challenging at times, but it is so worth it when you see the look of satisfaction and joy on a customer’s face after you transform their home from boring to beautiful.

My Family

I met my wife Kerri in the fall of 1998 about a week after I accepted a new job working at The Limited at Tuttle Crossing Mall. She worked on the sales floor and I worked in the stock room. I often made up excuses to leave the stock room just to talk to her. She didn’t know it at the time, but I knew within about a week of meeting her that she was very special, and that she was the woman I was going to marry.

It took a few months of asking her out to convince her otherwise, but I was persistent. Our first date was the inaugural Columbus Crew game in the brand-new Crew Stadium on May 15, 1999. We dated for about a year and were engaged the summer of 2000 at Nags Head OBX right on the beach. We were married on June 15, 2002 and we welcomed our son Chase in to our family in June of 2005.

Aaron Steininger with Wife and Son

Kerri is a second-grade teacher at Indian Springs Elementary School in the Columbus City School District, and she has been teaching since 2001. Chase is a student at Worthington Christian School, where I am also a proud Alum of the class of 1997. Our Christian Faith is very important to us, and we love the Christian teaching and teachers at WCS. We enjoy watching baseball games, OSU Football, Golf, and helping at our church. I am a member of the Westerville Sunrise Rotary and the New Albany Chamber of Commerce where I am able to find awesome ways to give back to the community as well

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