4-story Craftsman Style Home
Lavallee Construction I had been working for these people on and off for the last ten years. I started in about 1999 doing various things for them. They had me start out by building a deck on to their house. Their parkway goes all the way down to the water. I built a beach house down on the water in 2004. Midway on the property there's a lane for neighbors to get access. There was a little garage and I put a second floor on that complete with a bathroom and a wet bar. First of all, they wanted me to do a big remodel on their house. The house was poorly constructed, so we came up with the idea to tear down that house and put up a new one. The owner's wife grew up in New England and she wanted the house to be New England themed. I grew up in New Hampshire, so I knew exactly what she was after. We collaborated together, and now they have it all. You go down to the beach and it's like a different world. They have their house now. They don't really need to go anywhere.
Lavallee Construction We tore down the whole house and built the present house.
Lavallee Construction Project Duration: 3 years To get permit: 18 months After permit: 18 months
Lavallee Construction One day she showed me a house from New England, where they used boards on the sides of the walls. This is called shiplap. We used poplar wood and that is on a lot of the walls. It gave it a whole different look on the inside. We used bead boards on the ceilings. I came up with the idea of doing huge crown molding around the steel high beams. It really dresses up the place. She wanted sliding doors from the master bedroom to the master bath. I had redone their dock a few years earlier and saved all the weathered wood, so we made doors from that. It was all about understanding what she wanted and making that happen. At the end of the day, they stand inside their house and it is exactly what they wanted. In some factors, it is even better than what they wanted.
Lavallee Construction It was on a steep slope, so we had foundation challenges. I am hands-on with my crew, and we only do one project at a time so we were there every day. It is extremely custom. A couple of other challenges were that the ceilings were very high and the owner wanted the house to look open. We had to have steel beams craned in. Also, the husband and wife each wanted different things in the house. It is my job to meet both their needs, but keep them on the same page instead of being fragmented. He bought a wood stone pizza oven. We had to buy a palette jack and build the oven around that. For the kitchen, he loves to cook, but she wanted a certain look in the kitchen. Putting that together was a challenge but a lot of fun. One of the other things was she wanted marble for the kitchen with two islands. I wanted the countertop to be all one piece, so when it came to putting in the countertop we got a crane and craned it over the side of the house. It took five guys, and we picked it up and put it on the cabinets. Everything was all ready to go, and we put it in place. It was a show piece. She was very excited about that.
Lavallee Construction Craftsman New England
Lavallee Construction We made the house as energy efficient as possible with an energy efficient heating system. For this reason, they use very little electricity. For a house that size, their heating bill is much lower.
Anonymous Homeowner We live on the lake, so we were going to be there for a long time. For us to capitalize on the lake and how long we were going to be there we wanted to build a whole new home.
Anonymous Homeowner We interviewed a couple different people and we thought Russ's price analysis, knowledge of the product, and commitment to his work were the best in the business.
Anonymous Homeowner My favorite part was our French doors looking out on to the lake. I wanted it to have that Parisian style in my house. We have 17 ft. ceilings and you can open all the doors and look out at the lake.
Anonymous Homeowner I think the biggest challenge for us was working with the environment. Since we live in the Pacific Northwest and it was the beginning of October, it was very rainy. We were building on a huge slope, and we had to comply with a lot of city ordinances that I think might have been challenging for the builders.
Anonymous Homeowner We splurged on the pizza oven in our New England style kitchen. We created the kitchen around my husband's desire to cook as the head chef of our family.