Client-builder bond focus for firm
With a reputation for supervising almost every nail that goes into a house, Mark van Zoelen’s approach to his building craftsmanship is old school – building the way it used to be.
Husband and wife team, Mark and Michelle van Zoelen are managing directors of Richmond based residential building company MVZ Builders Ltd.
The business was established thirty years ago, not long after Mark completed his apprenticeship in Nelson.
Over the years the couple has tended to specialise in more complex architectural builds along with major alterations, though Michelle says that no job is too big or too small.
Mark and Michelle have been passionate about their building journey, placing particular emphasis on developing the client-builder relationship, ensuring that the client is very much part of the build process.
The relationship they have enjoyed with their clients throughout the building experience has been a point of difference for MVZ Builders, earning it the rewards of client satisfaction, referrals and repeat business over the years.
Michelle says that relationship often starts when they invite clients to their home to sit around the couple’s large dining room table and share the client’s vision for their future home.
“Mark is inclined to work with the architect as well,” she says. “You can actually work a lot of things out at that stage without constantly going back to the drawing board.”
Mark adds that he can often save some hours for the client in the process and also work out how special elements of the build can be achieved in a way that’s not going to cost horrendous amounts.
“I feel that we work a lot more with our clients, who are welcome on the building site,” says Mark.
“We really understand what they are looking for in the build or alteration. What that means is saying to the client – ‘can we look at doing it this way or what to you think of that.’”
He says that the company has done major alterations where it would have been cheaper to build a new home.
Retaining the bones of the old home means that existing heights can be maintained along with beautiful flooring, ceilings and quite unique features. Often existing materials can be repurposed and given new life.
In recent times MVZ Builders completed an architectural build for an Austrian couple passionate that eco-friendly materials were used throughout.
That meant ensuring the cladding was untreated, solar systems were installed, the windows and concrete flooring were all designed around heat retention and the stain used was chemical free.
Mark says that he is currently working on a house that is in the Indian Vastu design that requires various elements of the house to lie in specific ways in order to comply with the buildings spirituality.
It is these bespoke builds and the need for frequent client liaison that Mark and Michelle excel in.
“Each day you can set yourself a goal and see what you have done,” says Mark.
“It’s creating and helping clients achieve their dream.”