Everything evolves and changes with time, especially if you practice continual process improvement. You grow, you respond, you adapt. Sometimes changes happen, and you realize you have to change the outside to match the inside.
When I started Red House in 2006, my intention was to provide excellent building and remodeling to clients who were planning custom solutions to the obstacles in the way of living their best life at home. I started with just myself and a work truck and soon after hired my first carpenter. I led each job as a Lead Carpenter, and I also did sales, bookkeeping, estimating, marketing.
These were busy but fun times. I met many of our oldest customers, who are now good friends. I found that I had a knack for solving structural and design problems. I found that I truly loved this part of the job. Talking about problems with people and helping them solve those problems through rearranging or repurposing space.
There was one problem, however, that I kept running into over and over. I remember one of the last times I encountered the issue. I’d met with clients in Barrington about a remodel and addition they were planning. I inspected their home, and I looked through a beautiful 18 page set of architectural plans. I asked if they had a budget in mind for the project. They pushed back and said they’d rather hear my number first. So, I hazarded a guess that the project might run in the range of $300-$350K, and I asked if that kind of budget was what they were prepared for. They both looked at each other, sighed, and said they only had a budget of about half of that. This wasn’t a solo story. It happened over and over again.
What is frustrating about this is the wear and tear it puts on the homeowner. There is an emotional toll that comes with falling in love with a design, spending months refining that design, and then when you think you’re ready to bid and build, finding out its time to go back to the drawing board. (Which I did sometimes.) But I thought there must be a better way. What if I started off earlier in the project? Before the whole plan set was complete?
In 2010 I started partnering with architects and designers and found that there was a better and more cohesive approach to building and remodeling. Being a process-driven person, over time these partnerships developed into a coalition with an in-house design staff under the Red House roof. These teammates have been an essential part of our team, and they’ve helped to develop and refine our proven process for project delivery.
The Dream2Build process assists our team and our clients. Homeowners are able to dip their toes into spatial solutions and then make informed decisions, having the right information at the right time. This is Design-Build, and Red House Design Build best signifies who our company is and how we approach our work. When you bring together architectural design, professional estimating, and construction knowledge, that diversity of experience yields meaningful and timely input, guiding clients and our team to the best possible solutions.