About Me


My name is Raylan Willis. I'm a San Francisco State University graduate with a B.A. in Industrial Design. My coursework focused on how stuff worked, quality control and how to manufacture products. I gained a lot of knowledge about to how to problem solve when designing something from the ground up. More recently, I've honed my skills buying and fixing up houses and also as a I hobby enjoy buying and fixing up cars. 

My wife 2 dogs and I recently moved to Buffalo in January 2016. We made the trek to Buffalo from SF for my wife's job as a professor at UB. She teaches in the Environmental Engineering department at the north campus. We bought a beautiful old craftsman in north Buffalo near UB south campus. We're loving the vibe here and its the people that have made this transition so easy. We're happy to have found Buffalo as it's truly a hidden gem! 

Family & Interests
My wife (Lauren, picture above), dog (Maddox) and I grew up in San Francisco and have recently moved to Buffalo NY. I'm an avid cyclist and have enjoyed working with youth in San Francisco. When I'm not cycling or taking Maddox out for walks I'm fixing a bike, car or something around the house. I've fixed nearly everything in our own home and I'm am looking for new challenges and projects. 

I also help my parents and in-laws manage their properties. I do a range of tasks from overseeing remodeling projects (see pictures below) to being the first one tenants call when, for example, the dryer isn't working or a faucet is leaking. It's a pleasure to help family make their homes safe and cozy.

Attention to Detail
I'm passionate about doing things right the first time. While working with contractors over the years, I've realized the old saying "If you want something done right you have to do it yourself" holds very true. Its frustrating to try to get contractors to come back to finish that last 5 percent of their job, whether its cleaning up after themselves or touching up a little paint. I believe those details count.

I enjoy repairing and replacing anything that will bring new life to it. It's rewarding to fix something little that'll bring a smile and a sigh of relief to someone. I continue to learn something new everyday, and with that approach to life, I've gained a lot of useful knowledge.

Past Projects
Another SF apartment in the family. I did most of the work on this one on my own. From flooring to cabinet installation, dishwasher install, toilets, and paint.

My most recent project was the renovation of a SF apartment. We were on a tight budget to get this old Victorian back to its old glory. I designed and sourced all the materials and oversaw the entire project from demo to rental. Check out the photos below.


      headed up Mt Whitney