Renaissance man (or woman) is defined by Merriam Webster as a man (or woman) who has functional knowledge of a broad variety of subjects – an expert in several areas.
By that definition, your custom home builder most certainly qualifies for that title. It’s one of the reasons a highly skilled and experienced builder is worth every penny you spend on him or her.
Everyone who decides to pursue homebuilding as a profession must have a certain modicum of skills with the various aspects of building of course. He or she should know about lumber, concrete, tools, scheduling, etc.
But “drill down” a bit and you’ll see that your builder actually has to know quite a bit about an awful lot of things in order to do the job really well.
What Denver Custom Home Builders Must Know
To be the best custom home builder in the Denver area one must understand surveying and land topography well enough to translate land dimensions and hills, valleys, swales and such into a coherent placement of the house on the land. Place the house too high and you run afoul of zoning or code officials, or neighborhood associations. Place the house too low and you’ll never get the drainage right.
Your builder needs some engineering skills, or at least a very fluent engineering vocabulary, because plans very often do not work as they’re drawn, or minor mistakes are made in the field, so it’s important for your builder to be able to translate the plan mistake or the physical mistake into a sensible story problem so that a structural, mechanical, civil, or electrical engineer can solve the problem for you. Sometimes, the custom home builder will have enough field experience to simply solve the problem himself or herself.
Denver Soil Conditions
Throw in a little geology – because the builder has to understand Denver soil conditions well enough to have an intelligent conversation with the soils engineering folks, and the structural engineer – mistakes here can be really, really costly. Knowing the right way to use piers, footings, or bearing points, can change the way the soils engineer makes his or her recommendations – saving thousands on foundation or soil movement costs.
Math skills are a must. The best of the best can take an overall house dimension, subtract out wall thicknesses, drywall, siding, and a half dozen other minor dimensions and tell you exactly how much baseboard to order from the trim supplier.
Financing Custom Home Building in Denver
Banking and accounting skills and a basic knowledge of spreadsheets and other technical software are must haves! A good builder can make the absolute most out of the absolute least by knowing how and when to use the dollars he or she has to work with.
Your builder had better have a basic understanding of the weather and a keen eye for the weather forecast. Pouring concrete at the right time of day is pretty critical because of the physical and chemical properties of water, lime, cement, sand and gravel. Other finishing materials like stone, stucco, brick, paint, metal, wood, siding, roofing, etc., must be properly managed to take advantage of good weather, or avoid bad.
Denver Custom Home Building Logistics
Logistics expert – YUP! Good project management of a custom home project is all about making the materials show up at just the right time so that there’s room in the checkbook to order more when required, and room on the real estate to store what’s needed for the next few days of work.
Historian – you better believe it. The folks who are best in this industry understand not just how homes are built today, but how homes were built 50, 100 and maybe 500 years ago. Certain principles of construction never change, and even though today’s homes are built with absolutely amazing and wonderful materials, an understanding of techniques and materials from 100 years ago can lead to an eye-opening solution to a current-day problem.
Negotiating with Denver Inspectors
Selling and negotiating are pretty obvious requirements. Sometimes, it’s necessary for your builder to sell a tradesman on the particular requirements of the job, or make a convincing argument regarding construction details so that an inspector sees the right thing, and passes a crucial inspection. Every builder is going to spend a couple of hours every single day, negotiating with inspectors, trades, suppliers, bankers, surveyors, engineers, and sometimes YOU, in order to make every day and every dollar deliver as much progress as possible in the completion of your custom-built home.
Throw in a little bit of chemist, politician, psychologist, counselor, and maybe magician, sometimes contortionist, and you’ve got the recipe for a modern-day builder. Find someone with that skill set, and you can be pretty sure he or she can handle the job for you. Find someone who’s done several hundred custom homes in the Denver area, and you can be positive they’ve got most if not all of the skills and talents named above.
Want to meet a few of the renaissance men at HomeWrights Custom Homes? Give us a call or drop us a note, anytime!