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Team up to succeed Communication, respect and teamwork are the keys to creating a highly detailed custom project

also inside Business Excellence Awards winners My plan for survival Manufactured stone trends

Residence of Designer Tess Giuliani New Jersey Tess Giuliani makes her bathroom a ‘magical reality’ with Geberit® Designer Tess Giuliani wanted to create a bathroom that gave the feeling of an elegant powder room, but with all the amenities of a full bath. Positioned on the first floor as part of an addition to her home, the bathroom’s tight space required all of her creativity to achieve her vision of a serene, beautiful Japanese garden. The Geberit in-wall tank and carrier system was the perfect solution. Having the tank in the wall and the toilet off the floor makes the toilet discreet and entirely opens up the room. The tiles, which are painted as a continuous sea of water with swimming Koi fish, are easily seen because the toilet is off the floor – giving it maximum exposure. Aesthetically, Geberit was the perfect solution, giving the bathroom design a clean, warm, and Asian flair. See how the Geberit concealed tank and carrier system can inspire you. For a free copy of the Geberit Now DVD, our full line digital resource, visit us at or call 866/787-3924.

Photographer: Peter Rymwid

It’s Technology Enabling Design.

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cover story: project showcase

16 Team up to succeed

Communication, respect and teamwork are the keys to creating a highly detailed custom project


24 Business Excellence Awards

Two exceptional firms are recognized for community involvement and marketing practices



28 My plan for survival

Succeed, struggle, collapse and pick up the pieces to succeed again


product trends

32 Manufactured stone

Manufacturers share information about new products, trends and technologies in the manufactured stone segment




Editor’s Comments. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4

Product Gallery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34

Luis Jauregui, AIA, on Design. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8

Literature Gallery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36

Jay Grant on Building. . . . . . . . . 10 John Wagner on Green Homes. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Joseph Dellanno on Communication . . . . . . . . . . . . 14 on Video Network Design, marketing and more Editor’s Blog Homeowners can be your best advocates Industry News All the news in one place

Product Focus: Roofing . . . . . . 35 Advertiser/Editorial Index . . . 37 Finishing Touch: Water walls . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38

32 38

Read RD+B on your iPad!

35 residential design + build

october 2011


editor’s comments

Take your business one step further


Managing Editor Laurie Grant Contributing Writers Joe Dellanno, Jay Grant, Luis Jauregui, AIA, John D. Wagner Production Mgr. Steve Swick Circulation Mgr. Jackie Flack

Because her target client is an affluent one, she says they are more likely to be connected to these sites via an iPad, laptop or smartphone. Richardson has a lot on her plate with her regular every day responsibilities but she continues pushing the online marketing because she believes so strongly in it. It was refreshing to hear her take.


was also impressed during my conversation with Richard Laughlin, president, Laughlin Homes & Restoration. His passion for community involvement is hard to miss as it oozes out of everything he says. When asked why he is involved in so many things, his answer was simply because it’s the right thing to do. Laughlin and the company are represented on many organizations in Fredericksburg, Texas, and each organization gets the attention it deserves. These aren’t resume builders for Laughlin; they are honestly and truly to make his community a better place — a place in which his family has strong roots. These two firms make extra time to complete tasks outside the every day routine, and it’s inspiring to hear how and why they do so. Read their full profiles on page 24. Does your firm participate in extracurricular business practices? I’d love to hear from you:, 920-563-1675 or on Twitter @MaureenAlley. ■

By Maureen Alley, editor

O c to b e r 2 011

EDITOR Maureen Alley

art director Richmond Powers

he best part of my job is talking with you — those who are on the front lines every day. I enjoy hearing about your business, what you need to do your job better, and where you think things are headed. I learn a lot from these conversations, and I’m humbled to have them every time I work on a new issue or attend an industry event. In this issue, two winners of the 2011 Business Excellence Awards are profiled (page 24). I enjoyed talking to these two people about two very different business practices: marketing and community involvement. Charles Cunniffe Architects in Aspen, Colo., won the marketing category; Laughlin Homes & Restoration, Fredericksburg, Texas, won the community involvement category. Speaking with Rebecca Richardson, director of business development, Charles Cunniffe Architects, it was clear how much the firm values marketing, reaching clients — potential and past — and maintaining a positive, professional online presence. Richardson handles all the blogging, Twitter, Facebook, newsletters, videos and so on. Oftentimes, I hear custom trade professionals say they don’t have the time for these things. But for Richardson and the firm, these tools are non-negotiables — meaning they will get done because they are too important to be ignored. Richardson said something very powerful in the interview: “You are limiting yourself if you haven’t done it.” Another common argument I’ve heard in the industry is that “my clients aren’t on those sites.” So I asked Richardson just that: “Are the clients you are reaching on these sites the younger generation?” She said it’s clients of all ages, not limited to the younger generation.


Editorial Director Rob Heselbarth

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Reader Service Mgr. Rich Hendricks Production Services Rep. Kathleen Weaver Administrative Assistant Kasey Strike

CEO John French CFO Paul Bonaiuto EVP digital Tom Kohn EVP Building & construction Kris Flitcroft VP content Greg Udelhofen VP Marketing Debbie George VP Sales Steve Beyer VP manufacturing Tom Martin VP Audience Development Julie Nachtigal VP technology Eric Kammerzelt VP Production OPERATIONS Curt Pordes human resources Ed Wood ©

2011 by Cygnus Business Media, Inc. All rights reserved.

No part of this magazine may be reproduced in any form, including electronically, without written permission from the publisher of Residential Design + Build. Residential Design + Build (ISSN 1934-7553, print; ISSN 2150-7694, online; USPS 070-080) is published nine times yearly (January, February/March, April, May, June, July/August, September, October, November/December) by Cygnus Business Media, 1233 Janesville Avenue, Fort Atkinson, WI 53538. Periodicals postage paid at Fort Atkinson, WI and at additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Please send all change of address to Residential Design + Build, P.O. Box 3257, Northbrook, IL 60065-3257. Printed in the USA. Subscription Policy: Individual subscriptions available without charge in the USA to qualified readers. Publisher reserves the right to reject nonqualified subscribers. One-year subscription to nonqualified individuals. U.S. $33; Canada $49; all other countries $71, payable in U.S. funds, drawn on U.S. bank. Single issues available (prepaid only), $10 each. Canadian GST #231910168. Canada Post PM40063731. Return Undeliverable Canadian Addresses to: Residential Design + Build, Station A, P.O. Box 54, Windsor, ON N9A 6J5. Vol. 76, No. 8.

We grew from 12 to 23 employees. We don’t just want to grow, we want to grow healthy. I met with my broker and she cleared up a lot of questions. The conversation led to UnitedHealthcare. They use data and information to help individuals make more informed decisions that may lead to better health. I like that. I also like the power of straightforward answers. Like “yes,” I can provide my people with benefits. I understand numbers. In particular ones that may improve my bottom line. With so many medical plans to choose from, I can provide my people with coverage. There are even plans for vision, dental, life and disability. Call 1.866.470.8293 or contact your broker.

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L u i s J a u r e g u i , AIA o n d e s i g n

Right-brainers rule the future History proves good, quality design makes products successful and in demand


he idea for this article came from a book that has been sitting forgotten on my credenza for about two years. I mostly listen to audio books and I happened to download this particular book to my smartphone this week, “A Whole New Mind — Why Right Brainers Will Rule the Future” by Daniel H. Pink. As I was listening to the book, it brought to mind a bit of a past column, “Spread Love for Good Design” ( June, page 6). The left hemisphere of our brain is associated with analyzing details, performing mechanical calculations and the more engineer-

ing part of our thinking. The right hemisphere is the synthesizer, seeing the big picture and is the creative part of our intellect. This book emphasizes how much in demand creative thinkers — right-brainers — will be and how design will rule the future. Pink summarizes it this way: “High-concept and high-touch aptitudes are moving from the periphery of our lives to the center.” Design has permeated every aspect of life, and the psychology of consumer patterns and preferences drives product design. Pink expounds about good design as king across industries in a global way. He quotes


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Robert Lutz, the former executive at General Motors, as he describes his approach to drive the company: … “more right brain … as being in the art business. Art, entertainment and mobile sculpture, which coincidentally also happens to provide transportation.”


onversely, Pink provides an example of bad design and its profound consequences: The butterfly ballot from the 2000 presidential election confused thousands of voters due to its poor design, and ultimately changed the course of United States history. Pink says the demand for high design is

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exceptionally strong. With the changes the global markets have experienced due to automation, recent influences from Asia and the incredible abundance of products created and consumed, good design becomes the differentiating criteria for consumers’ product choices.

Not all architects are created equal, and those with a higher level of creativity are going to take leading roles in firms and projects. Through my professional experience, I have struggled to find new design talent with creative juices that meets the growing demand and work volume.

Buyers recognize good design brings added value and associate it with quality performance Buyers recognize good design brings added value and associate good design with quality performance. Products that are well designed and also perform well will be in greatest demand. Whether you are an architect, builder or design/build entity, it’s all about good design that performs well.

Many of my industry colleagues concur that finding candidates for these mature designer positions is one of the toughest challenges an architect’s office faces.


t’s important to cultivate and value good designers. If you are an architectural firm and

lucky enough to have team members that are qualified at this level, appreciate what you have. It’s this kind of talent that propels your firm to higher ground. If you are a building entity, make sure to associate yourself with design firms that possess the highest level of creativity to best ensure your future endeavors. If you are a design/build firm, allow your design talent to take the lead. Otherwise, design-focused companies will eat your lunch. I highly recommend reading this book for its entertaining anecdotes and compelling outlook. If you’ve been around the design industry for some time, you will recognize that Pink’s predictions are very well based. If you’re new to the industry, there’s a wealth of good advice that will change your future. ■ Luis Jauregui, AIA, has been a member of the local and national chapters of the American Institute of Architects for more than 20 years. He is an active leader within the Homebuilders Association of Austin, Texas. Send email to Read past columns at

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Jay G r a nt on building

Use yoga practices to evaluate business health Three basic principles can provide direction in a different climate


e can safely say that it has been six years since our market peaked in 2005. Many of us have endured bumps and bruises while seeking to remain viable and striving for the holy grail of any business in a capitalist society, specifically, to do our jobs admirably and achieve profitability. It’s more essential than ever to stick to the basics. Borrowing a theme from one of my many yoga teachers, I suggest a quick review of three basic principles of good personal and business health: attitude, alignment and action. Attitude. Today, this is a tough one. How many times can you dust yourself off after putting forth your best effort and failing to achieve the goal you have set for yourself? It is not easy. If you are an entrepreneur by choice — not by default — then you are naturally predisposed to being optimistic and upbeat. Your glass is always half full, never half empty. In business, the supply and demand chain is tilted against your efforts; there are too few jobs and too many competitors vying for the same project. Your prospect is nervous, full of self-doubt accompanied by lofty plans and a dismal budget. Perhaps worst of all, he seeks multiple bids and believes he deserves top-quality labor, material and service while paying a project rate that is set by the low bidder. Perhaps your attitude is also affected by a new condition brought on by the present economy: bid fatigue and burnout. Until recently, I was energized and happy when I received a plan to bid. Now, not so much. Undoubtedly, custom building begins with a plan to bid, but an all-time low conversion rate coupled


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with the knowledge of the time and expense required to secure proposals from trades and suppliers all contribute to the feelings associated with bid fatigue. The sales methodologies I have used for combating these feelings include advising the prospect that to do a complete and thorough bid proposal will require them to share some of

the lifeblood from your business and checking account? Have you noticed the difficulty of remaining positive when the primary draw on your finances are expenses that are not balanced by adequate income? Unfortunately, the state of our industry demands we confront these challenges, and the responsibilities we have undertaken as

It’s more essential than ever to stick to the basics my cost to create a qualified detailed bid. We summarize these costs, objectives and scope of work in our Professional Service Agreement document. Alignment. In my yoga classes, the teacher stresses alignment of your body core with the extremities by energizing from the middle and strengthening the muscles that are being used for the pose. The correlation between alignment of body parts in a yoga pose and the alignment of your business practices and objectives is the key element to connecting to your action plan. If your attitude and goals are aligned, then your action plan can be written with relative ease. Do you have a written plan of action to deal with the economic obstacles you are navigating daily? Are you feeling worn down by the constant barrage of challenges that invariably arise like a modern day vampire looking to suck

residential design + build

business owners demand we succeed. Lean on your employees, colleagues and trades for the support and understanding necessary to continue. Strengthen your relationships with existing clients, and open your communication to prospects so they too can become part of the solution and not part of the problem. Today is a good day to ask for help. Offer help and be a team leader that rallies your troops while reinforcing your own plan to remain positive, aligned and focused on success. I wish you the best. ■

Jay Grant, president of Grant Homes, a residential design/build firm in Mendham, N.J., focuses on building luxury custom homes and renovations/additions. He is the recipient of more than 20 industry awards including best website for Grant is available for business consulting. Send email to Read past columns at

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john d. Wagner on green homes

Put aside solar and wind … for now Government regulations are the key to reducing energy demands live in Vermont, zone 6, where we have 7,771 heating degree days (base 65 degrees). We burn gas in our household for hydronic baseboards; we don’t have air conditioning. Out of curiosity, I started ball-parking costs for a rooftop solar photovoltaic system, which I would link to a new ground-source geothermal heat pump. I was curious what it would take to get off petroleum and leave the grid, where we get most of our electric power from Canadian hydro sources. First, the ground-source geothermal heat

pump system would run around $30,000. Then, to put up enough rooftop solar to power the heat pump’s compressors, it was potentially another $20,000. We are in a cloudy area and I’d need batteries. Even with the rooftop solar, I would still have to tap into the grid to kick over the 40-amp geothermal compressors. That’s a total of $50,000. At 5 percent bank rates over 30 years, that’s $270 a month ($3,240 a year), minus the deductibility and the state and federal tax credits. It’s more than I pay for my gas bill now. But my gas payments are in cash, and I don’t

have to sop up so much credit nor assume debt to pay the gas company. Worth it? Not really. In fact, that sort of a solar-geo setup is a trophy system. It’s an impractical fantasy — and bad energy policy — to think it could be viably installed on a house-by-house basis. I costed-out these energy solutions because of some information I learned from Robert Bryce’s book “Power Hungry: The Myths of ‘Green’ Energy and the Real Fuels of the Future.” As glamorous as it is to express love for solar and look with pride at windmills spinning on ridge-



Cost more? No. Work better? Yes. End of story. O c to b e r 2 011

residential design + build

lines — believe me, I’m a museum-quality environmentalist — you have to ask if those systems can deliver a meaningful contribution to our grid or energy reserves. In addition, that has to be seen in the light of how much energy it takes to manufacture the alternative generators and how much land is required to make them work. Robert Bryce points out that California’s peak electricity demand is about 52,000 megawatts, of which around 17,000 megawatts will soon have to come from renewable sources by law. The new California-based $2 billion Ivanpah solar plant will provide a whopping 370 of those megawatts. The size of that solar farm is 5.5 sq. miles. That’s $2 billion to produce .02 percent of the total required renewables. How about wind? Bryce further points out in a recent New York Times op-ed that the Texas-based Roscoe wind farm covers about 154 sq. miles and generates 781.5 megawatts. In California, that would add another .04 percent of power contribution toward the 17,000 megawatt required renewable total. The answer is deducing overall energy demand through new codes and efficiently burning domestic gas. Reducing demand will

Reducing demand will not come from uncoordinated volunteer efforts not come from uncoordinated volunteer efforts. It will come from government regulation. Articles I have written in the past that support government energy regulations have been met with negative responses from some readers, so keep those cards and letters coming. But honestly, stricter government regulation of the energy performance of a structure is what’s required to solve our energy consumption problems, which are real and will only get more costly. The 2012 implementation of the (proposed) International Code Council International Energy Conservation Code is a good start, and its goal is a 30 percent incremental energy savings compared to the 2006 IECC. The IECC approach is ideal because it focuses on thermal envelope performance, which is the keystone to

any energy-efficient future. As a companion to the IECC regulations, we have seen a dramatic rise in innovative green energy products and efficient HVAC units. I’m all for solar and wind solutions — the more innovation, the better. For instance, hyperlow-friction, rooftop, mag-lev wind holds promise. But solar and wind have to be seen in the unglamorous light of their embodied energy and how much they can realistically and costeffectively contribute to our energy future. ■ John D. Wagner is an award-winning author of many books and articles about construction, and a frequent contributor to the industry’s leading trade magazines. A sought-after speaker for industry events, he can be contacted at Read past columns at

The outlook is always sunny for builders who install pointSIX™ Flooring. And no wonder. With pointSIX Durastrand Flooring, there’s no sanding, no cost surcharge, and no headaches caused by edge swell thanks to a patented tapered-edge technology. There are no guarantees on weather. All the more reason to choose flooring that’s guaranteed for life.

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O c to b e r 2 011


Joseph Dellanno on communication

Manage your reputation at all times Employee practices can make or break a client experience Editor’s note: The following stories are true and happened recently. Names were changed to protect identities.


oe, the customer called last night and asked if you would make sure to lock all the doors of her house at the end of the day,” the design/build company owner says. “OK boss, I am on it,” Moe says. The customer came home only to find the door was unlocked. Locking a door is an easy task, and the customer’s expectations were not lofty or unreasonable. But Moe dropped the ball and ruined the chances of any potential referrals that might have been generated for future work. “Larry, Hurricane Bob is on the way. Make sure the third floor dormer cheek walls are tarped off and the house does not leak,” the design/build company owner says. “OK boss,” Larry says. Not only did Hurricane Bob nail the third floor, but it also drenched the second and first floors, which were recently renovated by the company. Instead of the construction crew working on the third floor, the homeowner now has the crew working on all three floors. The scope of work increased and the profit on the project magically vanished along with any potential referral that might have been generated for future work. “Curly, the homeowner has a house cat. Make sure the cat is not allowed outside for any reason. Do you understand?” the design/ build company owner asks. “OK boss,” Curly says.


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Curly went one step further and told the customer he just saw a red-tailed hawk perched in the tree in the backyard dining on fresh rabbit. Within the hour, the cat escaped and the hawk’s buddies began circling the house. The homeowner was beside herself and Curly spent the next three days looking for the cat. This guarantees the project will not produce a profit or a referral.

a game plan or a plan B when something goes awry. In Moe’s case there should have been someone to back up Moe or checking the checker. A few extra minutes could save a whole bunch of headache. In Larry’s case, the bomb was forecasted weeks in advance. When weather becomes extreme, the building team needs to take extreme measures to keep the home dry. Communicate with the

The jobsite is like an open factory for the entire world to see These stories are too typical in our industry. But, seldom do you hear about them. On the one hand, asking a contractor to babysit a cat as part of their work is really not in the job description. It certainly was not a priority for the craftsman while he was rebuilding someone’s house. Probably, the cat should have been crated or taken to another location during construction. But, the bigger issue was about managing the task and the job. The jobsite is like an open factory for the entire world to see. Homeowners are now armed with smartphones with digital cameras that can capture high-definition images that can be shared with building departments, OSHA officials, other governing agencies and Uncle Bob in Wichita. It is extremely important to communicate with your building crew that people are tracking their behavior, craftsmanship and attitudes. Now more than ever, your crew must perform to higher professional standards to ensure long-term business in a recovering market. Like a well-balanced team, you need to have

residential design + build

homeowner during the weather event, drive by to inspect the conditions, and most importantly use proper materials and methods to battle Mother Nature. Curly’s tongue was the most dangerous weapon used in Curly’s case. We all do it from time to time; open mouth, insert foot. Curly did not mean to cause the homeowner panic but the word flew out and so did the cat. Less is more in this case. You probably have one or two classic Moe, Larry or Curly stories. Send me your best story and it may make it in my next column. Make sure you change the names to protect the not so innocent. Keep your story under 400 words and email it to ■ Joseph Dellanno is the founder of My Design/Build Project, a Web communication application for design and build teams, and president of My Design/Build Coach, providing design/build business training. He is also president of Design Solutions, a national design firm. Send email to Read past columns at

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cov er story: project showcase

Team up to succeed Photos: Miro Dvorscak, DM Photography

 Interior designer, builder, architect and homeowners worked closely to accomplish a highly detailed 6,500-sq.-ft. home in a gated community.

Communication, respect and teamwork are the keys to creating a highly detailed custom project By Maureen Alley, editor





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y pure definition, a custom home meets the needs and wants specific to a client. The only way these needs and wants can be met successfully is with open communication — especially when the end result is a highly detailed 6,500-sq.-ft. home in a high-end gated community. The details are unclear on how each party became involved in the design and build of this project, the Gracious Estate in Kingwood, Texas. Danny Foster, vice president and partner, Sugar Creek Homes in Kingwood, Texas, says there is a good reason for that. “The best way for it to work is for a professional builder, interior designer, architect and homeowner

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to work together in unison,” he says. “And because of this, it’s hard to remember when people became involved in the process.” The interior designer played a major role in this project, helping the homeowners decipher the level and type of details needed to go into this home. The open communication between the interior designer, architect and builder guaranteed the process moved smoothly without any surprises. Meeting wants, needs

The homeowners were extremely involved and clear about what they wanted in this house. “The first thing she requested was that she liked contrast; she wanted a lot of contrast in the house. We accomplished it

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cov er story: project showcase

To prepare the lighting plan, it was important for Jane Page Design Group to understand how the homeowners lived. By understanding their lifestyle, the interior designers were able to create a lighting system that met the homeowners’ every day needs. Most rooms have an average of five light sources, Crump adds. Approach challenges head on

This house, like many other custom projects, had its handful of challenges. “One of the initial challenges was getting it to fit on the lot,” Foster says. “The lot sits halfway in and halfway out of the city. Getting this close-to-7,000-sq.- ft. home positioned correctly and then trying to permit the house whether in the city or county was a big challenge.” The solution of getting the home to fit on the lot properly is due to Oggero’s expertise, Foster says. “It required a lot of geometry, allocating space, trying to maximize the number of rooms on the back of the house,” he says. “We pushed the house farther back toward the lake. Almost every room has a view of the lake. [Oggero] was able to make it work.”

 The homeowners were specific about what they wanted in the house. Contrast was one of the features they requested.

with our finishes and designs — using a lot of greens, blacks, creams,” says Jane-Page Crump, president, Jane Page Design Group, Houston. The homeowners also wanted views of the lake. “They both emphasized to me the beauty of their waterfront, heavily wooded lot and explained their desire to take advantage of all views of the lake in rooms which faced the back,” says Bat Oggero, AIBD, partner, Sullivan, Henry, Oggero, Houston. “Within an hour [of the first meeting], the floor plans of both first and second floors were roughly sketched. At this point, I gave [the homeowners] the homework assignment of cutting out pictures of house elevations they liked from magazines and bringing them back to our next meeting. They were to make notes on these cutouts as to what


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specifically they liked and even noting features they disliked, in order to give me a clear idea of this couple’s taste preferences.” Jane Page Design Group prepared the interior design, proposed it to the client and presented it to the architect and builder. “There were never major issues because we were good about giving the architect and builder our specifications early on,” Crump says. Certain factors in the house needed to be prepared early on including the lighting according to Crump. “It’s easiest if the lighting system is prepared early on because you have to determine what the light source will  The interior designer on the project, Jane-Page be — hanging, ceiling, accent lights,” Crump, president, Jane Page Design Group, says Crump says. the theater is one of her favorite parts of the house.

residential design + build

++Interior designer Jane Page Design Group Houston

++Builder Sugar Creek Homes Kingwood, Texas

++Architect Sullivan, Henry, Oggero Houston

++Project name: Gracious Estate Location: Kingwood, Texas Size: 6,500 sq. ft.

++Exterior Roofing: MonierLifeTile Windows: Andersen Windows and Doors

++Interior Doors: TruStile Tile: Thorntree Slate and Marble, Walker-Zanger, Daltile Flooring: Cangelosi, Thorntree Slate and Marble Lighting: Fine Art Lamps, Lighting Inc., Laymance Art Lighting, Currey & Co., Visual Comfort Fireplaces: Isokern


 The back of the house includes an outdoor kitchen and views of a lake.

Oggero emphasizes that working with Sugar Creek was a great part of creating a solution to this problem. “Although it was a full acre lot, its shape was a long and narrow trapezoid which presented a challenge due to the largeness of their desired house. Through working and negotiating with [Sugar Creek Homes], I was able to place the house at its most advantageous position meeting all restrictions while utilizing the lot’s intrinsic lakefront scenic views,” Oggero says. Working in unison

When asked what’s their favorite part of the house, Oggero, Crump and Foster all provide different answers. “I love walking into the space; it feels good,” Crump says. “The theater is also one of my favorites.” Foster likes the backyard and back porch. “It has a great summer kitchen with tile that has the homeowners’ initials laser sketched into it. The Phantom Screens protect from bugs, there are great views of the lake, and the giant yard with trees are great,” he says. “My other favorite is the whole house automation and media room. It has a whole house Crestron

system that is pretty awesome.” Oggero’s favorite part is the home’s flow literally and figuratively. “Not just because of the open floor plan, but it is our combined team’s expression of using flow to express our clients’ descriptions of how they planned to use their home. ” No matter whom you ask, Oggero, Foster or Crump, they are all in unison when they say the success of the project relied on teamwork and communication of all involved. “It was the formation of our triad, a team working at times together and other times separately with the single purpose of creating a home full of the many obvious and subtle architectural components, multilayered design features, and complex building techniques which uniquely expressed our clients’ vision for their home,” Oggero says. “It does help that we’ve worked together before, but it really helps when you have the right personalities of each member,” Crump says. “If you have someone who cares about the client and giving the client quality, then we are all on the same page.” ■

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Countertops: Bolfing Brothers Sinks: Julien Inc. Faucets: Dornbracht Range: Wolf Appliance Exhaust hood: Vent-A-Hood Ovens: Viking Range Appliance drawers: Viking Range Refrigerator/freezer: Sub-Zero Inc. Wine storage: Sub-Zero Inc. Dishwashers: Asko Appliances Microwave: Sharp Appliance

++Bath Countertops: Bolfing Brothers Tubs: BainUltra Showers: Hansgrohe USA Toilets: Toto USA Faucets: Altmans Products, Rohl, Phylrich Sinks: St. Thomas, Linkasink, Bates and Bates Washer/dryer: Whirlpool Corp.

++Technology Home control system: Crestron Electronics Lighting control: Crestron Electronics Structured wiring: Crestron Electronics Security system: Crestron Electronics Theater projector/TV: Crestron Electronics Sound containment: Crestron Electronics Media server: Crestron Electronics Touchpanels: Crestron Electronics

++Outdoor living Lighting: Crestron Electronics Grill: Viking Range Refrigerator: Viking Range

Two exceptional firms win the 2011 Business Excellence Awards By Maureen Alley, editor




Marketing here and beyond n January 2011, Charles Cunniffe Architects in Aspen, Colo., rolled out a social media strategy. This included a blog, Facebook page and Twitter account. In addition, the company provides quarterly e-newsletters that share company and industry news, a company website and LinkedIn profile. “The main reason for the rollout was [Search Engine Optimization] to expand our reach. We do projects all over the U.S. and the world, and we wanted to make sure we were reaching that,” says Rebecca Richardson, director of business development for the company. Richardson handles all the marketing tools, and admits it is a lot of extra work on top of her regular duties, but she believes strongly in them. “I’m passionate about it so that helps,” she says.

“Because we design nationally and internationally, a client might not necessarily see our ad in a regional magazine. So if you’re searching ‘architecture’ and ‘Aspen’ and you’re in Rio de Janeiro, we will show up higher on the list. We want to reach anyone and everyone.” Scheduling is key

The company uses its blog to discuss different happenings in the industry, talk about current projects, post videos, and promote the many pro bono projects it works on. The blog is updated twice a week and is connected to the company’s Facebook page and Twitter account. “We try not to post too much so people aren’t overwhelmed. It’s a fine line especially for architecture because it’s a slower [industry] say compared to retail,” Richardson says. Setting a biweekly schedule does put pressure to find content, but Richardson has a routine that relieves some of that pressure: She sits down and writes the posts for the following two weeks. “I get coffee, sit down and it flows,” she adds.” New world, new tools

 Charles Cunniffe is principal of Charles Cunniffe Architects in Aspen, Colo.  The office of Charles Cunniffe Architects in Aspen, Colo.


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The company’s marketing strategy has changed dramatically in the five years Richardson has been with the company. “Primarily we

Aspen, Colo. Website: Blog: E-Newsletter: pid59.php Twitter: @Cunniffeca Facebook: Search Charles Cunniffe Architects

did print advertising and websites five years ago,” she says. “You are limiting yourself now if you don’t do [some of the social media]. It keeps the momentum up with the potential client. There is a lot for them to see so they can feel confident they have hired the right company.” In addition, Richardson doesn’t see the social media usage being used only by her younger clients. “Everyone has an iPad or laptop — it’s all clients across the board no matter the age,” she adds. The marketing world is an ever-changing one with tools introduced daily, so it’s important Richardson understands which ones to invest her valuable time into. “You have to read and talk to the right people, and stay up to date. And then find out what works for you,” she says. “We are a luxury brand architecture firm so the bells and whistles that make sense for restaurants, don’t apply to us. We have to watch for what’s going to benefit us.” ■

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For free catalog, call 1-800-888-2418 or visit For more info circle #18




Leading with community involvement


hen Richard Laughlin, president, Laughlin Homes and Restoration in Fredericksburg, Texas, talks about his involvement in the community, a modest tone comes out of his voice and surrounds his words. It’s clear his intentions for being involved in his small town of 10,000 are truly to make the community better.

 The team at Laughlin Homes & Restoration in Fredericksburg, Texas.

“We live in a small town and I am very much in favor of maintaining a quality of life,” he says. His family has roots in Fredericksburg, and he believes strongly in doing the right thing by giving back. A few ways Laughlin is involved in his community range from being on the Historic Review Board, Gillespie County Fair and Festivals Association, chamber of commerce and more.


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For all of these involvements, Laughlin has been contributing for years, with no end in sight. Many types of involvement

Laughlin has been on the Historic Review Board for eight years. Fredericksburg has a historic district on the national registry and the HRB’s goals are to review any changes planned for the district. It’s a volunteer, six-person council. “I’m involved because I want to make sure history is preserved,” Laughlin says. The GCFFA dedicated this year’s fair in part to him for his past community involvement. “I was a director on that board for 16 years and continue to volunteer,” Laughlin says. “We are the oldest fair in Texas and it’s a part of preserving our culture. We are a tradition-based community.” The money raised by GCFFA goes to scholarships at the local high school, mostly for agriculture-related careers, he adds. Laughlin’s involvement in the chamber of commerce includes helping with events that will raise money for the chamber, the economic impact it has on the community as well as the great networking opportunities it provides. At the time Residential Design + Build spoke with Laughlin, he was preparing for the next day’s chamber golf event. “We raised $25,000 for the local chamber which is 10 times the amount raised last year,” he says. This is impressive especially considering this was raised when many news reports hint at a double-dip recession. In addition, the golf event was going to include double the capacity of golf-

residential design + build

Fredericksburg, Texas

ers compared to last year with 144 players at this year’s event. “I worked with my subcontractors and clients. Hopefully it’s a big success,” he adds. All these community involvements don’t surpass Laughlin’s experience with Extreme Makeover: Home Edition. In February 2011, Laughlin and his carpenters participated in an Extreme Makeover: Home Edition in his area to help out a soldier hurt during the Fort Hood shooting. “The Texas Association of Home Builders asked for volunteers, and I asked my guys and they were excited,” he says. “We worked all night into the next night. It was the most rewarding thing I’ve ever been a part of.” Laughlin donated his and nine carpenters’ time and materials to the project. Advice for others

During a time when so many builders are struggling to find jobs, RD+B asked Laughlin what keeps him motivated to continue to donate his time to so much community involvement. His answer was as simple as do the right thing. “We’ve been blessed with the amount of work we’ve had because we never focused on taking a job to make a lot of money. The focus is always on helping the community and doing the right thing,” he says. Laughlin calls on other builders — and business owners in general — to get involved. “There are always people who say they aren’t ever asked to do anything. But you shouldn’t have to be asked,” he says. “You should pick up the reigns and help the community — set an example.” ■

For more info circle #19


My plan for survival

Succeed, struggle, collapse and pick up the pieces to succeed again By Andy Rosenthal

Editor’s note: This is the second installment in a series of survivor stories as told by the survivors themselves. These brave builders and designers share their stories of struggle and ultimately survival, as a method of therapy for them and to let their peers know they’re not alone in their challenges.

As we were able to take on a few projects at a time, we hired a superintendant. We continued that way for the next 18 years building custom homes and adding remodeling to our business plan in 2001. After watching our business up close, working nights and weekends, our sons, Josh and Neal, both said while in college they did not want to join us. Josh graduated from business school and was happily climbing the corporate ladder at a marketing company. Neal graduated with a degree in business management. He began looking for a job and found the process daunting. We offered him a part-time position to help us out while he was job hunting. As the months passed, he became more and more involved and began to enjoy the out-of-the-office lifestyle that construction offered. We were fortunate that he stayed on as my wife had some very serious health issues. Neal helped keep the business

 Andy Rosenthal of Innovative Homebuilding & Remodeling Consultants.

In 2005, Josh reached a plateau in a business owned by two brothers. Unbeknownst to Emily and me, our sons met for formed Rosenthal Homes in the midst several weeks and came up with a plan for of the bank failures of 1991. Prior, I had Josh to join the business with him in the been with Saddlebrook Development Co. for 10 years and helped it grow to a $25 marketing and management side while Neal million per year semicustom builder. The would continue to be responsible for running field operations. good news, I was a nonequity partner and had I must admit, our decision to have a true no financial responsibility for the company. I started Rosenthal Homes as one of the few family business concerned Emily and me. We builders who had no debt, no inventory and a agreed to go forward, but we needed guidance good reputation. on what we would need to do I loved the interaction to support three families. We with the clients, but not the enlisted Dennis Duroff as our management and operation business coach. Dennis and I of 40 employees. I set up had become friends while shop in the den of our working and ser ving on different committees at the house. It was very strange; I National Association of was now all alone after Home Builders. We all being in an office for so long. I set about finding a worked hard to come up with lot in a good area and was our strategic objective which able to get a construction peered eight years down the loan surprisingly easily. I road. We completed a business sold the house before the plan, a working budget and basement came out of the began our journey. At that time the economy ground and that was the way  Rosenthal’s new company provides consulting to homeowners as they move I operated for a year. In 1992 was blasting and our business through the home building and remodeling process. my wife Emily joined me. was growing to reach the She had been with my old projected volume. We decided company since I hired her as marketing going as I had to split time between our to move the office out of our house, which director and customer selection manager. business and tending to my wife. had been a safe haven for 18 years. We selected


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residential design + build



T H E P O W E R O F Y E L L O W .®

Vinyl. Evolved. The future is now. Introducing the next generation in vinyl: the new Pella® 350 Series windows and patio doors. Advanced technology — including 61% more vinyl, plus metal reinforcement — makes them some of the strongest and most durable in the vinyl industry. An exclusive energy-saving system helps give them a U-Factor as low as 0.17 and makes them up to 83% more energy-efficient*. And a robust frame creates a more premium look inside and out. Innovative solutions to put your business light years ahead. That’s The Power Of Yellow. Call 866-590-8814 or see your Pella representative for more information.

For more info circle #20 * Calculated based on average projected energy savings in a computer simulation using Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory Resfen 5.0 standard criteria for a 2,000-square-foot home when comparing a Pella 350 Series Advanced Low-E with argon triple-pane vinyl window to a single-pane vinyl window. © 2011 Pella Corporation


ďƒĄ A family company: (left to right) Josh, Andy, Emily and Neal Rosenthal.

an office near our house and designed a professional space for us to grow. We hired two project managers, one part-time and two fulltime office employees. With all the new overhead, our projects were still right on target.

an afterthought. We fell into the common trap of working in our business instead of on our business. Our confidence made us complacent. Within two weeks of each other, both custom homes were cancelled. We had permits and were ready to go when both clients had their financing pulled. We went from complacent to desperate. We had a family business meeting and revised our budgets and plans. We had to begin cutting overhead. This downturn was different from the others we had survived. We had an office, a large staff and three families who were making a living on this business instead of one. We started laying off staff until we were down to family. We decreased overhead, but still had the office and all the expenses that came with it. We began to lose money and struggled to get jobs, just like most everyone in the industry. As the market began to pick up in the

We fell into the common trap of working in our business instead of on our business The downturn begins

The economy started to turn for the worse at the end of 2007 and beginning of 2008. We were lucky because we had already booked two custom homes with a total value of $6 million and several other good prospects. We had become so busy that all our work with Dennis Duroff had become


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D.C. area, we began to see signs of decent projects on the horizon. We had taken some risky projects in the meantime, despite my objections and three difficult clients who did not make final payments totaling about $140,000. This has never happened to us during our 20-some years in business. We reassessed our future and realized that our trade contractor debt and our uncollectable $140,000 from past clients prohibited us from taking on any new projects. Our sons left the company in April 2010 and formed Cabin John Builders. Their relationship with our prospective clients, whom we could not build for, enabled them to start with a decent group of jobs. They are in their second year now and flourishing. Emily and I struggled to finish up the few projects we had ongoing. We did not want to leave any of our clients with loose ends. Unfortunately we were not able to pay many of our trade contractors. We ceased business operations in early 2011. We went through a personal bankruptcy and had a difficult time envisioning our future.

Read the first installment of this series online at

What came next

Emily has worked as an independent consultant for Cabin John Builders with client management and selections. I was trying to come up with a concept for my next adventure. I knew I did not want to go back to the day-to-day grind of building. I was not going back into business and working with the trade contractors I had hurt. I had always thought I would like to consult, but to whom? I realized the one thing that was evident in 99 percent of our projects: The client was an outsider and had to depend on many

different people, all of whom had something to gain. They need somebody to “speak builder” for them. I could use all my experience to help them solve the puzzle of building or remodeling. I would set up a consulting business to advocate for the client in the process. I would help with budgeting, selecting architects that suit their project best, and write specifications so when they selected a builder, they could do so apples to apples. Emily can help them manage the selections, design kitchens, brainstorm floor plans, and create wish lists for the architects and designers. I have spent the past several months developing a website, marketing plan and brochures, and now it is time for me to rock and roll! Life lessons learned: 1. Listen to my gut. It has worked well. 2. Family businesses are very difficult; the more members, the more personalities.

3. When you seek help, listen to advice. 4. Work on the business. 5. All the stuff I had acquired over the years was just stuff. 6. Family (outside of the business) is the most important thing. 7. My risk aversion vanished and should have been remembered. ■ Andy Rosenthal is president and owner of Innovative Homebuilding & Remodeling Consultants. Rosenthal is also the former president of Rosenthal Homes, a company specialized in highly customized new homes and major renovations. He has served as chairman of Maryland-National Capital Building Industry Association’s Education Committee, and is an active member of the National Association of Home Builders including its Builder 20 Club. He attended Franklin & Marshall College in Lancaster, Pa., and lives in Rockville, Md. with his partner and wife, Emily. Contact Rosenthal by sending an email to

For more info circle #21

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product trends: manufactured stone

Art imitates stone

Manufacturers share information about new products, trends and technologies in the manufactured stone segment Eldorado Stone Industry: “Industry leaders like Eldorado Stone will continue to offer a highly superior facing, with key benefits of authenticity and attainability at prices less than natural stone,” says Brent Spann, vice president of marketing, Eldorado Stone.

Product offering: “Eldorado Stone offers a wide selection of stone and brick profiles, in addition to highly attainable solutions — all interior and exterior applications that can transform a space into something memorable and personal. One of Eldorado Stone’s most recent product launches was the highly contemporary, yet textural LedgeCut33. The linear-style profile installs with a clean, dry-stack application that creates instant visual appeal. The profile is 3 in. high and comes in three different lengths: 24, 18 and 12 in. It also comes in three colors — sage, birch and dune — all natural earth tones,” Spann says. “In recent months, Eldorado has also expanded its product offerings by launching a line of nine fireplace surrounds that are lightweight, easy to install and emulate natural limestone. The Eldorado Fireplace Surrounds are available in two finishes and two different color palettes,” he adds.

Where it is going: “There is a general movement toward more linear style profiles, which provide a more contemporary feel, yet still provide a highly textured look and feel for a natural stone appearance,” Spann says. + For more info circle #32

Ply Gem Industry: “According to the Principia Partners Masonry Veneer Report 2010, the most current report, there’s been an increased demand in the residential remodeling and renovation market for manufactured stone since 2008,” says Jerry Blais, vice president, marketing, Ply Gem siding group. Product offering: “Ply Gem Stone’s nine styles, from popular Ledgestone and Cobblestone to a unique Tuscan Fieldstone, are available in numerous colors and are molded from real stone casts. They are then handpainted with mineral oxide colors by professional colorists. This technique differs from dusting on the color, which is used by many manufacturers and creates spotty colors that don’t hold up well,” Blais says. “For a seamless look with application, Ply Gem Stone has a 90-degree corner piece that’s not often seen in the industry, in addition to a complete accessory offering to finish the design.”

Where it is going: “Because manufactured stone is such a versatile product, lighter weight, more costeffective and easier to install than real stone, we anticipate continued usage in commercial and residential applications. Beyond the exterior facade, we’ve also seen a trend of manufactured stone being incorporated into both interior and outdoor space applications such as kitchen backsplashes and fireplaces,” Blais says. “We’re continuing to see more applications in residential new construction, mixed with other exterior cladding products such as vinyl siding, shingle siding and architecturally styled windows.” + For more info circle #33


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Dal-Tile Corp. Industry: “There is an unmatched elegance that stone exudes, and now that look is more accessible than ever before with manufactured stone. We’re seeing slight growth in the manufactured stone industry, as it is seen as a viable, and cost-effective alternative to natural stone,” says Lori Kirk-Rolley, senior marketing director, Dal-Tile Corp. “We’re now seeing an increase in use of [manufactured stone], not only on exterior surfaces, but interiors on accent walls, fireplaces and columns as well.” Product offering: “Chiseled Ready Stack is one of Daltile’s [Dal-Tile’s product brand] most innovative manufactured stone lines. This panel system brings modern architecture in a wide range of colors to complement any décor,” Kirk-Rolley says. “It combines the intricate detail, rich colors and beautiful texture of rustic, dry stacked stones with the ease-of-installation of a panel system. Each piece fits together perfectly so the panels blend together seamlessly, making separation hard to detect. Our top selling Chiseled Ready Stack colors include moon glow, harvest blend and dappled shade.” Where it is going: “We will begin to see more manufactured stone products that are easier to install, saving consumers time and money,” she says. “Panel products are also becoming increasingly popular, bringing the ambience of stone, of the highest quality, into any space with ease.” + For more info circle #34

For more info circle #22

residential design + build

October 2011


product gallery

Navien American introduces its condensing 98 percent tankless gas water heaters and Combi gas boiler/ water heater. The tankless gas water heater relies on the company’s dual stainless steel heat exchangers and uses 3-in. PVC venting. + For more info circle #01

Progressive Foam Products’ Fullback FC siding insulation for fiber cement is designed for easy one-person crew installation. It provides an R-value of 3.0 to reduce energy loss. + For more info circle #02

The 36-in. multitemperature CoolDrawer from Fisher & Paykel can freeze, chill and become a pantry or wine bar at the touch of a button. Everything from fresh food to fine wine can be stored at the correct temperature. It integrates seamlessly into standard cabinetry and provides 3.1 cu. ft. of space. 2011-368A_2011-368 6/6/11 3:37 PM Page 1

+ For more info circle #04

The freestanding Savoy from MTI Whirlpools is a slipper tub that cradles your upper body as you lean back. It is 65 in. by 34.325 in. by 31.5 in. and is constructed of the company’s engineered solid-surface material, a poured mixture of organic minerals and binding agents that looks and feels like natural stone. + For more info circle #03

WingIt Innovations introduces its Master Anchor. It is designed for easy installation into all hollow walls, rated up to 300 lbs. in drywall and handles vector forces of 360 degrees. + For more info circle #05

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residential design + build

product focus: roofing

Owens Corning introduces Deck Defense high-performance roof underlayment to its roofing portfolio. Designed to perform under extreme weather, it protects the roof deck for up to six months of UV exposure and comes with a 30-year limited profile. + For more info circle #06

DaVinci Roofscapes’ Bellaforté product line is a patented snap-fit, self-locating 12-in. slate roofing tile. The tiles include an integrated rain gutter, leading edge tab and rain dam. Tiles are available in a variety of colors. + For more info circle #07

InSpire slate cool roofing from The Tapco Group uses advanced pigment technology to provide high solar reflectance. It is designed to reduce heat transfer into a home and cut peak cooling demand by up to 15 percent. + For more info circle #08

Follansbee TCS II, an architectural stainless steel coated with patented zinc/tin alloy, weathers naturally to a gray patina and does not require painting. It can be tailored to a variety of design forms — from the traditional standing seam roof to vertical walls, barrel applications, shingles and customized sections in flat or spherical shapes. It is solderable and virtually maintenance-free.

CertainTeed Corp. introduces GlasRoc Roof Board, an alternative to fiberboard and perlite roofing cover boards. It is designed for mechanically attached roofing systems and offers moisture, mold and fire resistance.

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2011-361_2011-361 4/4/11 10:45 AM Page 1

Easy Lightline® door canopy kits are simple to assemble and effortless to maintain. They come in a variety of eye-catching styles with stainless steel support arms, acrylic visor panes, and integrated rain gutters. And the patented Click-Lock feature makes installations a breeze. Free catalog,


More products from visit For more info circle #24

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Liter ature galler y


elcome to our Literature Gallery, a special showcase featuring new and innovative building products.

For more information, simply circle the number of the item on the Reader Service Card. If you would like to advertise in this special section, please contact Nancy Campoli at 800-547-7377, Ext 6127. email:

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Discover This Year’s Kitchen Innovation: Touchless Paper Towel Dispensing. This revolutionary appliance is a fit for any kitchen. It’s operation uses new LED Breaking-Beam Technology to cut any brand/size of paper towels to any length, regardless of perforation. Great sample pricing to try it out today! Call 866-599-7066 or visit For more info circle #27 36

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The Geberit Concealed Tank and Carrier System hides unsightly plumbing hardware for true beauty in your bathroom designs. The system’s flexibility and adaptability showcases your individual style…water savings and cleaning will never be easier. Experience clean lines, clear space and elegant beauty throughout the bathroom. Get Inspired. Visit and click on the “Get Inspired” icon for great new ideas. For more info circle #28

residential design + build

INCLINATOR® Home Elevators Since INCLINATOR® handcrafts each elevator one at a time, custom really is standard. Inclinator has engineered its drive system to allow us to place a deeper and wider elevator in the same shaft than any other manufacturer. Or, place in open stairway. Visit or call 800-343-9007 Ext. 289

For more info circle #29

advertiser index

Ainsworth Lumber Co., Ltd. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8-9, 12-13

Pine Hall Brick Co., Inc.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33

Arthur Harris. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36

Simpson Strong-Tie Co., Inc.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11, 39

Feeney, Inc.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25, 34, 35

Smart Vent Inc.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36

Steve Beyer, VP Sales

Foster Printing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34

SwimEx . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27

3030 Salt Creek Lane, Suite 200

A Cygnus Business Media Publication SALES OFFICES

Geberit North America . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2, 36

Trex Company, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6-7

(847) 454-2725 • Fax: (866) 420-8581

Imperial Cal Products, Inc.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36

United HealthCare Services, Inc.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5


Inclinator Company of America. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15, 36

Weiland Sliding Doors & Windows . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31

Arlington Heights, IL 60005

John Huff, Publisher

Litesteel Technologies America . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17

3030 Salt Creek Lane, Suite 200

Pella Corp.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29, 40

Arlington Heights, IL 60005

* Selected States

(847) 454-2711 • Fax: (866) 577-7397 email: MIDWEST

editorial index

Mike Mandozzi 3030 W. Salt Creek Lane, Ste. 200 Arlington Heights, IL 60005 Phone: (847) 454-2715 Fax: (866) 348-4221 email:

CertainTeed Corp. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35

MTI Whirlpools. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34


Dal-Tile Corp.. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33

Navien America . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34

Joseph F. May

DaVinci Roofscapes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35

Owens Corning. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35

Marlborough, MA 01752

Eldorado Stone. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .32

Ply Gem. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32

Phone: (800) 547-7377 x2718 Fax: (866) 671-3250

Fisher & Paykel. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .34

Progressive Foam Products . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34

Follansbee . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35

The Tapco Group. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35

H2O Walls. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38

WingIt Innovations. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34

297 Concord Road

email: WEST Kim Carroll 7355 19th Avenue NW Seattle, WA 98117 Phone: (206) 781-0714 • Fax: (206) 781-0724 email: LITERATURE GALLERIES Nancy Campoli 6 University Plaza, Suite 310 Hackensack, NJ 07601 Phone: (201) 487-7800 x127 Fax: (201) 487-1061 email: CIRCULATION & SUBSCRIPTIONS Phone: (920) 563-1761 Fax: (920) 563-1704

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email: List Rental Elizabeth Jackson


Phone: (847) 492-1350 x18 Fax: (847) 492-0085 email:

Cygnus reprint services To purchase article reprints please contact Foster Printing Services at (800) 875-3251 or email Website:


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october 2011


finishing touch

Water walls


 H20 Water Walls provide various sounds, visuals and materials.

2O Water Walls add another layer to water features by offering various sounds, visuals and materials. Using a computer, water can display waves, waterfalls or a combination of effects to create different visuals and sounds to a space. In addition, the material used on the product can provide different appearances. “Our specialty is high-tech computerized water features,” says Scott Sutker, president of the Elk Grove Village, Ill.-based company. “By using a touchscreen, a homeowner can easily adjust and control the water feature for sound and visual effects,” Sutker says. “They can tell the feature to wave the water as it comes down to create an exciting visual instead of a


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continuous flow of water. Or the computer can provide a random setting of speed and sound that can change throughout the day.” The product uses a small amount of water — no more than 10 gal. — in a stainless steel tank. The water is kept cold to minimize any evaporation. “It also has a self-cleaning system that will drain and refill [the system] with fresh filtered water as needed,” Sutker adds. The water features are available in a variety of materials including glass, stainless, stone, granite and solid surface. “Glass is a popular background to use to separate a living and dining room, giving the appearance of a wall with an open view,” he says. A contractor can install the product or H20

residential design + build

has its own installation crew that can be used. Requirements include a water and drain source. As of now, it cannot be connected to a home automation system. Lead times are four to six weeks. Sutker adds that all products are custom, and not restricted by any size. “If you can think it, we can build it,” he says. “The smallest we’ve done is 2 ft. by 3 ft. and the biggest was near 35 ft. tall.” The company recently introduced a new product that displays water rods — three streams of water that fall. In addition, colors can be added to the features for drama. For more information on H20 Walls or its products, circle 11 or visit — Maureen Alley ■

economical invest in stainless steel – it’s worth it

When evaluating the cost of upgrading to stainless-steel fasteners, “economical” is probably not the first word that comes to mind. However when compared to the overall job, the small additional cost of stainless steel is inexpensive insurance against corrosion and unattractive staining that can occur with other fasteners. Stainless-steel fasteners are reliable and long lasting, and reduce costly callbacks, which means happier customers and repeat business. And by choosing Simpson Strong-Tie ® fasteners you receive our commitment to quality, performance and service. scan this code with your smartphone to easily find the right fastener for your job

© 2011 Simpson

For outdoor construction, make sure your fastener is stainless steel. It’s worth it. Download the new comprehensive Fastener Catalog and check out our online Fastener Finder tool by visiting or calling (800) 999-5099.

Strong-Tie Company Inc. SSFASTEN11-EC

For more info circle #30

T H E P O W E R O F Y E L L O W .®

As with all great views, the sky’s the limit. Choose Pella® Architect Series® windows and doors and revel in the design possibilities. Our finest rendering of the window-crafting art, these exquisitely detailed Mahogany, Alder, Douglas Fir or Pine windows and doors will indulge your clients with endless custom choices. Virtually any size, shape, color, glass or grille design they can imagine, Pella can build. That’s The Power Of Yellow. Call 888-210-0972 or see your Pella representative for more information.

© 2011 Pella Corporation

For more info circle #31

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residential design + build

volume 76, number 8

Residential Design+Build - October 2011  

Team up to succeed Communication, respect and teamwork are the keys to creating a highly detailed custom project also inside Business Excell...