After serving in the United States Navy from 2008 to 2012, Jay Brakefield wasn’t sure what his next steps were. He moved to Denton, Texas, to be near family and started working for a property management company.
Brakefield overheard his boss speaking to someone about a large pool company that had been out to his home three times, yet couldn’t repair an issue with his pool automation. Brakefield, who had a background in electronics, offered to take a look at it. Within 30 minutes, Brakefield resolved the issue — and his boss asked him to take over caring for the pool.
While Brakefield’s pool-care experience was limited, he says word spread at how well he cared for his boss’ pool. By 2016, Brakefield had 19 pools and quit his other job. Since 2017, Brakefield Pool Service has come in second place in a best-business competition hosted by the Denton Record-Chronicle, beat out by a 50-year-old pool company. However, in 2019, Brakefield Pool Service was voted the best company in Denton County.
There are now nearly 200 pools on its weekly routes, and last year, Brakefield landed his first custom pool build within one week of branching out into those offerings. While Brakefield started his company in the hopes of dominating his local region, his priorities have since shifted.
“I would rather be known as the best premier pool service company in my area than to take on too much,” Brakefield says. “Normally in our business, when quantity goes up, quality goes down. I will grow [with the market] and maintain the quality as if I were cleaning each individual pool myself. I want to offer the highest level of training, best pay and one day be rated as one of the best companies to work for in this area.”