The Art of Luxury Home Construction: From Concept to Realization
Part I – What You Need To Bring To The Table
For over 35 years we’ve masterfully built high-end homes to fulfill our client’s dreams.
Although the process is very intimate, we cultivate trust with our clients, nurturing their hopes and respecting their values as they make decisions that will impact their lives.
It’s also a process of self-discovery for our clients as the initial vision for the home gets shaped by their evolving life situations and the decisions they make during the build.
Setting Expectations At The Outset Is Key
It is important to set expectations for our clients, with the understanding that the vision they have at the start of their journey will evolve over the course of this multi-year project.
If you’re thinking about building your dream home, you need to understand that in addition to the design, engineering, and craftsmanship you need from your General Contractor, there are critical attributes that you should bring to the table for the project to come to fruition.
The First Is Patience
We tell our clients up front that this is a long process. From initial meetings to handing over the keys, depending on the size and complexity, it can easily take two years or more to complete. During that time, thousands of decisions will be made, and our clients need to be involved and available.
Even if they hire the best design team – client input is important in decision making because of the impact on timing and budget.
The Second Is Engagement
Clients who have never built a home before are always stunned by the number of choices and decisions that must be made to build their home.
If you just take the simple example of an interior door. Is it hinged, pocket or pivot? What is the door design? Contemporary or traditional? Panels or slab front? Glass or solid? Is it paint grade? Is it stain grade? What species of wood? Are the hinges concealed or exposed? What type of hardware? Does it lock? Mortise or bored? Are there electronic controls? Etc.
Now think of all the elements of a home…flooring, cabinetry, finishes and trim, roofing, gutters, exterior windows, façade materials, lighting fixtures, bathroom fixtures, appliances, etc.…each with a myriad of options, styles, and materials to choose from. There is no right or wrong answer, it’s all preferences.
Our best clients are actively engaged in the process, making decisions in a timely manner to keep the project on schedule.
The Third Is Teamwork
This is a collaborative process. Everyone involved will be working closely together.
If a client comes to us and wants our input on how to build their team, we start with the architect.
Choosing an experienced architect in your local area is paramount. They are familiar with local zoning and building codes and the approval process. Selecting a team that isn’t familiar with your area may present challenges because every municipality has some nuanced rules and regulations that can hamper or delay the permit process.
Finally, you need to like and respect them. Are they team players? Do they have a client-first, whatever-it-takes attitude to see the job through?
We believe it’s important for the entire design team to stay engaged throughout the process. Sometimes, clients think that the architect’s job is finished when the plans are complete, and a building permit is issued. In our experience, the best projects are the ones where the team stays engaged, attends weekly meetings, and advises the client on critical decisions until the very end.
As builders, we know how important teamwork is and pride ourselves on having a deep roster of subcontractors and specialists that we have worked with over the years.
We see our role on the team as experts in construction, and trusted advisors when choices must be made.
Once You Build The Team, It’s Time To Shape The Dream
It’s not uncommon when people come to us, they have a vision for what they want in their dream home. But there are a lot of unknown, unknowns. Over the course of building the home, the dream evolves because clients start thinking about what really matters in their life now, as well what their lives might be like in 10 -20 years.
No one foresaw a global pandemic and how dramatically it would change the way people work. As remote work became more and more the norm, there was a new demand for more elaborate home offices.
The rise in Accessory Dwelling Units (ADUs) as living quarters for aging parents, adult children, or guest quarters is a new phenomenon, and may be a great option now that California has enacted laws to facilitate their construction.
Events like wildfires and floods and severe storms are raising clients’ awareness of sustainable building and protecting the home and the property from extreme climates. Earlier we referred to the process as a journey of self-discovery. We facilitate that journey by asking questions about your motivations. What is important to you?
What we find is that these conversations all reach their decision point when we present budgets. Once a budget is presented a client’s decisions are typically prioritized by their “must haves”.
Are We A Good Fit?
Building a high-end luxury home is a major undertaking for all parties. We need to be selective when we look at taking on a project.
Our best clients align with our values of patience, engagement, and teamwork.
You bring those values to the table and Conrado Home Builders will help you realize your vision and build an extraordinary home. Contact us today to learn more!
Stay Tuned For Part II – Building A Dream From The Ground Up