Working with your hands and being a builder is an honorable way to live your life, and that’s why we’re excited to share Colby’s story with you and how he uses his scissor lift dump trailer to get things done. Let’s get to it!


Who are you and where are you from?

“My name is Colby Stephens. I’m originally from Salem, Oregon, but have lived in various places around the West.”



What do you do for a living?

“I am a general contractor and owner of Stratified Solutions. My company primarily builds new homes on behalf of spec investors in and around Portland, Oregon. Our projects are typically characterized by tight urban-infill lots.”



How did you get started?

“I got my start in a non-traditional way. I went to grad school in Reno, NV and earned a Masters of Fine Arts in Sculpture. The projects I was doing required me to get help from computer programmers, electrical and mechanical engineers, and other specialists. My sculpture education thus ended up functioning a bit like a project management degree.”

“After graduating, my wife and I returned to the Portland area to start our family near my in-laws. I figured building homes would be a lot like building giant complex sculptures and would be a natural transition into a broader market economy. I asked Rich Kassebaum of Bluestone Homes to teach me to manage the construction of his infill projects.”

“We were able to come up with a good working arrangement, and he trained me up in new home construction practices. A couple of years ago, Rich started transitioning towards retirement, and I started Stratified. While I have various clients now, I still build for Bluestone. I feel really fortunate to have such an excellent mentor in this industry.”



What’s your favorite part of what you do?

“Building homes is a noble profession. Everyone, at a basic level, needs shelter. I love participating in meeting that need, especially when it requires coming up with elegant solutions to challenging building problems like those present in urban-infill environments.”

“The human element of home building is a big part of what I enjoy as well – I get to work and become friends with subcontractors from all sorts of cultures and backgrounds, and I feel privileged to have that opportunity on a regular basis.”



How does your scissor lift dump trailer help you get work done?

“My trailer has been a major game changer for me, and I’ve used it almost every day since I bought it. I have an F150, and I spent many months evaluating if I should transition to an HD truck to meet the demands of my work better. Ultimately, I decided to purchase this MAXX-D D6X Dump Trailer instead, and I’m so glad I did.”

“Having this scissor lift dump trailer increased my work capacity dramatically more than an HD truck would have. I can haul more lumber, bigger equipment, and more construction debris with this trailer than I could have done with an HD truck alone.”

“Staying small with my truck, and going with the small dump trailer, means it’s easy to navigate the tight urban neighborhoods in which I work, while simultaneously giving me more flexibility in my work than an HD truck would have done.”





Colby, we agree with you one-hundred percent! Building homes is a noble profession, and one worth doing. Working with your hands and getting things done is what moves our communities forward, and we’re glad we can be part of what you and your team are doing out there in Portland. Keep building something, great man!

You can follow Colby online at:

Facebook – @StratifiedSolutions

LinkedIn – @Colby Stephens

Website –

The trailer Colby uses is a MAXX-D D6X Dump Trailer.