Track record reflects build quality
The genuine pride Invercargill firm C Brown Builders takes in its workmanship is evident in its completed projects including new houses for which it is a multiple award winner.
The company employs eight staff and is owned by husband and wife team, Craig and Jo Brown.
Craig Brown’s commitment to building quality and the wider construction industry is endorsed by his previous service as a vice president of the Southland Master Builders Association and by the company recently scooping four regional Registered Master Builders House of the Year awards.
Achieving excellence in building requires having staff who are also committed to the same values and who are prepared to do whatever it takes to achieve a top result within agreed time frames, Craig says.
In the case of some commercial work, this can mean working to tight deadlines outside of normal hours and in weekends to minimise disruption.
“We did a commercial job in Invercargill last year, a shop fit-out and we did seven weeks’ work in four weeks to get the job done.”
The variety of work the company undertakes ranges from jobbing, to kitchen and bathroom renovations and new builds.
C Brown Builders’ qualified craftsmen are accomplished at working with both new and old materials when undertaking renovations.
“The key to successful renovation often lies in its sympathy to the age and style of the original home.”
“In our back catalogue you’ll find modern bathrooms and kitchens in 1920s brick and rough-cast bungalows and turn-of-the-century wooden villas that look like they’ve always been there.”
C Brown Builders have gained a have a wealth of experience undertaking Ministry of Education contracts in conjunction with private asset management, property and project management company School Support Ltd.
“We understand the importance of working within a school community, from refits, new classrooms, maintenance and upgrades.” This work has been invaluable at times in maintaining a steady work flow as the Southland residential building market is relatively quiet.
Earlier this year the company moved its operations from the Brown’s home to a dedicated office and showroom in 54 Liddell St, a move which has helped the couple separate work from their home life.
The company’s most recent House of the Year accolade was the 2015 Master Builders southern region Builder’s Own Home award for the Browns’ new house.
Described by judges as “edgy”, the monopitched roof house is clad in black-stained negative-detail cedar and stacked block with charcoal mortar.
Built with eco-features in mind, its interior features polished concrete which stores heat created by solar gain during the day and releases it at night, while an ultra efficient diesel boiler provides under-floor and radiator heating.
Three of the four bedrooms open to alfresco spaces.
Once visitors have admired the exterior, they are greeted by a large front entrance door which is 1.80 metres wide and 2.4 metres high.
“I wanted to do something that other people hadn’t done before.”
Quality of workmanship was a key factor in achieving the award as well as for a previous build which won the 2013 regional House of the Year Gold New Build $250-350,000 category, Craig Brown says.
Another key has been using the same subcontractors since the company was established 13 years ago.