July 01, 2015

Writing a couple of articles for this issue and for the previous one about recycling and salvage conjured memories of my Dumpster misadventures years ago. When my brothers and I were old enough to pull a hoe, my dad had us labor for his tuck-pointing jobs on Saturdays.

May 11, 2015

Efficiency is in the blood of a carpenter, and Florida builder Josh Wynne, profiled in “Custom Builders on the Move,” relies on a lot of common sense to build what he has learned along the way.

February 26, 2015

When I see surveys that show most Millennials aspire to buy a home, I think of Australia.

November 11, 2014

During a question and answer session at a recent industry conference, a home builder asked Moody’s Analytics chief economist Mark Zandi for his thoughts about the labor situation in light of young people not being interested in entering the trades. 

Numbers can be funny things. When the population for a subset of consumers is large enough, then plausible projections follow about how that group will impact macro economics.

The idea of running my home from a smartphone sounds like the ultimate in convenience and control.

Politics are local; real estate obviously is local, and the rate of economic recovery varies by locale. Talk to builders in Orange County, Dallas-Fort Worth, and Florida, and they’ll tell you their businesses are furiously busy.

Great design starts at the high end of the market, and that is the rarified air in which custom and luxury home builders work. If a no-step shower with 12 body spray heads, slim sink for the kitchen, or wine bar is on their clients’ wish lists, these builders are going to embrace it.

Remember Body Smart chocolate bars and fruit chews? I bet you don’t.

At one point during my three days of walking the Las Vegas Convention Center and taking in the new products at the combined International Builders’ Show/Kitchen & Bath Industry Show, I was standing in the shuttle bus line with a few designers.

A trend I am seeing throughout the country is that builders are stepping up their game relating to elevations. Why? In past years the consumer has been influenced primarily by what they see in their neighborhoods, while traveling, or on television.

I have taken quite the respite from my blogging activities, despite statistics that showed a growing readership.  For whatever reasons, I felt the blogging juice just didn’t justify the squeeze.  I wrote of topics ranging from referral sales, to customer service, to ultra-marathon running in an a

In business so often what one wants is a silver bullet, that one solution that will solve everything, improve the whole business in one swoop.

Mel Tucker is the new Defensive Coordinator for the Chicago Bears. In theory, that’s a good gig.

During Operation Desert Storm in the early 90s, France’s decision to not support the U.S. intervention revived an old joke from the World War II era.  

Q:  How many French troops does it take to defend Paris?

Elon Musk, the founder of PayPal, the SpaceX project, and the promising new Tesla Motor Company, is the kind of entrepreneur you want to have in your neighborhood. He is the Bill Gates of his generation, creating good, high-paying jobs that will likely last for years. 

Not so long ago basements were merely utility space, but those days are gone.

Hurricanes, floods, tornadoes, and countless other destructive weather events cost billions of dollars in damage in North America every year. Specifically, storm damage accounted for more than $110 billion in 2012 alone.



This Month in Custom Builder


Fully automated indoor hydroponic appliance that allows anyone to grow herbs, vegetables, and microgreens right in their kitchen all year round without pesticides


A seaside retreat follows the Passive House standard to maximize energy efficiency

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