Beechwood Homes is a builder with a history. For more than 25 years, they have provided families in South Australia with quality custom designed homes. That tradition continues to today – Beechwood still delivers quality craftsmanship, timeless appeal and strong service to their customers.
In the beginning, the company dealt primarily with clients on sloping blocks. At the time, not many of their competitors were skilled or experienced with building on sloping blocks – especially at affordable prices. But Beechwood Homes were economically able to build custom designed homes on difficult terrain. Their early success earned them a reputation for quality and character they have lived up to ever since.
Contract Administrator Nathan Bennett joined Beechwood in 2001. He’s always had an eye for design and detail, and wanted to give people good and honest service, so Beechwood made a natural fit. “This is a company that is very much like that. It was an easy step to take in my career,” he says.
Beechwood builds between 15 and 20 homes a year, all of which could be characterised as medium to upper class. They are predominately of large-scale stature, between 300 and 800 square metres. “They’re usually fairly large and luxurious,” Bennett says.
Beechwood’s open and straight-up approach with clients when it comes to costs and details sets them apart from other home builders. When a client approaches the company, Bennett says they are completely upfront and honest and do not hide a thing. They discuss all the costs associated with the project. “We bring everything to the table,” he says. “We genuinely care for people and we want to give them the best service we can.”
The honest approach is one of many reasons why Beechwood has enjoyed significant repeat business – as high as 50 per cent of their clientele, Bennett says. “We want to include everything straight up front and point out any hidden costs so they can get a clear snapshot of how much the build is actually going to cost.”
Keeping people happy and responding to them in a timely manner is critical. The purpose to building with Beechwood is to make the process as fun and easy as possible, Bennett says. “You can’t place enough importance on building good relationships with clients. If you can keep the client happy throughout the entire build, you’ve achieved a great thing in the building industry,” he says.
“We’re approachable at anytime between working hours to ask questions or address any of their concerns,” he adds. “We can put their concerns to rest quickly.”
Beechwood currently employs four people in their office. They’re a small, but well-oiled and well-run team, Bennett says. The rest of their work is done by sub-contractors, most of which have been with the company since day one. The sub-contractors that come on board with them tend to not move on as they enjoy the work ethic and relationship that Beechwood have worked so hard to create.
“We’ve always had good working relationships with trades and work colleagues,” Bennett says. “Subcontractors love dealing with us. They’re paid well and on time.”
Like clients, subcontractors also enjoy dealing with Beechwood because of their courteous nature. “We’ve got good relationships with everyone.”
Beechwood’s new display home incorporates the latest in technology advances. The home automation, for example, is run off an Apple iPad. This controls music, climate control, alarm, intercom, Internet and televisions. The iPad was carefully chosen and integrated because of its widely-renowned user friendly interface.
“We’re trying to push the envelope all the time in showing and displaying what can be done in these new homes built in South Australia,” Bennett says.
Also used in the home is a large glass sliding door that sections the kitchen and family area off from the rest of the home, making it ideal for keeping adult and child activities separate. This door also allows for climate zoning control, which was critical to achieving the high energy efficiency rating the home has.
An evolving industry
Beechwood’s main challenge is contending with the slowdown of the housing market as a result of the still lingering global recession. Despite that slowdown, however, they have managed to keep their “head above water,” not showing any signs of weakening. Bennett credits this resilience to their continued focus on maintaining positive client relationships.
Another challenge has arisen from cost increases to most building materials. People have expected new house prices to come down due to the slowing housing industry. Bennett says. “Suppliers are still putting their prices up regardless. It’s getting really difficult to compete.”
To overcome that challenge, Beechwood again turns to their focus on relationship building. The company promotes itself as a different brand of home builder that concentrates on strong customer relationships and exceeding expectations.
In the long-term, Beechwood Homes is considering moving into commercial projects, which they have already begun to. As with their residential projects, the small amount of commercial work they have completed to date has exceeded client expectations. Another source of work and revenue is the aged care industry, which is growing all across the country, Bennett says.
As for the residential market, Beechwood will continue to do what they do – design and build high quality homes for satisfied clients.
For more information about Beechwood Homes visit www.beechwoodhomes.com.au or contact them at 08 7422 1100