Category: Management Memo

President Bill Farnsworth, general manager Scott Blain.

Management Memo: 7 Questions to Ask About ADUs

In case our last post has sparked your interest in an accessory dwelling unit (ADU), here are seven important questions to ask yourself before moving forward.   Can we even consider building an ADU? Some communities have certain districts that are zoned for single-family dwellings. In these areas, ADUs may be prohibited or may require […]

President Bill Farnsworth, general manager Scott Blain.

Management Memo: Taking the Fear out of Remodeling

Investing in a home renovation or addition is an exciting prospect, but it can also be scary. While there’s considerable upside, there are also perfectly understandable concerns about everything that could go wrong. At Custom, we get it. That’s why from our first conversations with potential clients, we follow a number of best practices to […]

President Bill Farnsworth, general manager Scott Blain.

Remodeling Spending on the Rise – CCI Management Memo

In our Management Memos, we often like to share our perspective on what we’re seeing in the local remodeling market. Lately, one trend has clearly stood out: Homeowners are spending more on their remodeling projects.   To cite just one example from our historical data, our average kitchen project has gone up about 80% over […]

President Bill Farnsworth, general manager Scott Blain.

Are We a Fit for Each Other? CCI Management Memo

At Custom, we don’t see ourselves as salespeople. We’re not here to sell you our home remodeling services. Rather, starting with our initial interaction, we’re focused on determining whether we’re a fit for you and your project — and whether you and your project are a fit for us. It’s a totally different mindset than […]

President Bill Farnsworth, general manager Scott Blain.

Is Now the Time to Remodel? – CCI Management Memo

The Greater Boston residential real estate market is still going strong. That’s great news if you own a home (perhaps less so if you don’t own but are looking to buy).   Now suppose you own but think you want something bigger, more updated or simply different. Your best option might be to sell — […]

President Bill Farnsworth, general manager Scott Blain.

Accessory Apartments & Multigenerational Living – CCI Management Memo

It’s no surprise to us that the number of multigenerational homes is growing across the country. We’re certainly seeing that trend among our clients. A 2016 Pew Center analysis of census data found that “in 2014, a record 60.6 million people, or 19% of the U.S. population, lived with multiple generations under one roof.” That […]

President Bill Farnsworth, general manager Scott Blain.

Turning Small Kitchens into High-Impact Kitchens – CCI Management Memo

For an experienced general contractor like Custom, renovating a large kitchen is simple. A small kitchen, on the other hand, introduces all kinds of challenges that can be difficult — and rewarding — to solve. Many of the communities in which we work have older homes. Back in the 1950s (and earlier), the kitchen was […]

President Bill Farnsworth, general manager Scott Blain.

CCI Management Memo: Why We Believe in the Lead Carpenter System

Since starting Custom in 1990, one of the mainstays of our firm has been the lead carpenter system. In this Management Memo, we’d like to explain what this system is all about and how it benefits our clients. At Custom, we don’t manage projects from our office. Rather, once the project starts, it’s overseen by […]

President Bill Farnsworth, general manager Scott Blain.

CCI Management Memo: What Customer Service Means to Us

For this Management Memo, we thought it would be interesting to get the perspective of production manager Craig Lielasus on what’s involved in delivering first-rate customer service. As he explains, customer service covers everything from the initial call a prospective client makes to our office to the actions of every employee or subcontractor working a […]

Custom Contracting Team

CCI Management Memo: A Dedicated Team Is the Key to Our Success

Outside of quality of work, price has traditionally been the most critical variable for homeowners evaluating general contractors. In Eastern Massachusetts today, however, availability may well have moved ahead of price.   In the March newsletter, we wrote about the challenges of finding a qualified remodeler who can take on your project within a reasonable […]

Making Sense of the “Cost vs. Value Report” – CCI Management Memo

Remodeling magazine’s 2016 “Cost vs. Value Report” is out and, as usual, contains some interesting data for homeowners to mull over.   The report “compares average cost for 30 popular remodeling projects with the value those projects retain at resale in 100 U.S. markets.” To see local results, visit www.remodeling.hw.net/cost-vs-value/2016, select New England and then […]