It’s in the Finish Carpentry Details
Throughout the construction of the Hillcrest, we’ve chronicled the quality workmanship, contractors and techniques that really set Regency Builders apart. As finish carpentry begins…spotting the little things that make a big difference becomes very easy! In homes of lesser quality, finish carpentry can bring out the flaws from earlier phases like rough carpentry that is out of square or drywall that is improperly hung.
Today, we talk with Jeff Thuot, a proud Regency partner for 32 years. Jeff has so many fine details to share, so grab a good cup of coffee and keep reading. This is going to be a real treat!
Fine Finish Carpentry – Picky about the Details
Those of you who have worked with Regency in the past know just how picky Mike, Chad, Kevin, Nick and Jon can be. But we’ll let you in on a little secret…Jeff is much pickier. From perfectly mitered corners, to getting a cope just right, it’s done perfectly…every time.
Jeff simply said, “It’s not the best my team can do it, it’s the best that it can be done.” That’s his standard of work and that’s what makes his team a valued partner of Regency Builders. In fact, while Jeff is one of the most personable guys you’ve met…don’t expect him to make eye contact when walking around a home. Even if he’s going to grab a tool from the next room, he’s always on the lookout for details gone awry. He’s proud to say he doesn’t work for Regency, he works for the homeowner…and it’s evident in his passion!
Some examples of quality that Jeff shared:
- Screws vs. Nails: The simple rule of thumb, no nails, no movement. When you are trying to achieve a fine ceiling beam detail over the dining room table or a staircase without bounce, using screws may take four times as long but provides strength, stability and no squeaks for years to come.
- Straight Crown and Base: There will always be some imperfections in walls to work around…and other finish teams might “cheat the process” by fitting crown and base to the shape of the wall, regardless of how square that installation would be. In Regency homes however, all moldings are installed perfectly square and the drywall team returns to the job site to fill any gaps between the wall and the woodwork.
- Furniture Style Cabinetry Base: The trend towards furniture-style cabinetry is made even more attractive by a skilled finish carpentry team. Installing a decorative furniture-style base and shoe around the kitchen island could be 3-4 bedrooms worth of mitered corner work, but it makes for a showcase appearance that cannot be achieved with the traditional cabinetry kickplates and quarter-round that other builders use.
- Extra Miters at Returns: When a soft and elegant look is desired, nothing achieves that better than adding an extra mitre or two where woodwork terminates or returns around a corner. By adding an extra angle, a clean, smooth look is achieved.
- Hand Carved Special Touches: While they take added time, the art of finish carpentry can be seen in the hand-work of a skilled team. Here you’ll see that Jeff’s team actually hand-carved the profile of the decorative base into the face of the stringer on the stairs, a finishing detail that couldn’t be achieved with a simple mitre.
- Sanded Edges: Throughout the home, each edge of each board is hand sanded to achieve a soft look. This takes extra time and can be back-breaking, hand-aching work, but achieves a much more attractive final product.
Partnering for the Best Product
When you’ve partnered for 32 years of business, you know that it takes a team to achieve the best possible outcome. Jeff told us all about why working with Regency Builders is a strong relationship that he truly values:
- Regency Gives Me Time: Because of all the fine woodwork detail, a typical Regency home can be anywhere between a month to 10 weeks worth of work for Jeff’s crews. That’s a lot of sawing, screwing and sanding! But it isn’t just about proper project scheduling, it’s about choosing higher quality products and taking the time to get the installation just right. Jeff gave us a great example…typical colonial crown takes a finish carpenter 45 seconds to cope, while a wider, more elegant and decorative crown seen in many Regency homes can take up to 15 minutes! Multiply that times every corner in the home, when you invest in higher-quality material you have to match that with higher-quality work! That’s a project you wouldn’t want rushed.
- Regency Controls the Climate: A home moves a lot throughout construction, with a two story home typically shrinking up to 2” in height due to gravity and materials drying out. Climate is everything when it comes to carpentry. Regency brings in commercial humidifiers and dehumidifiers into the home to prepare for finish carpentry…working to maintain the ideal 30% relative humidity. And, by ensuring HVAC and April Air systems are fully functional when finish carpentry begins, Jeff’s team is able to create the best possible environment for the product they are working with.
- Regency Believes in Team: As you can imagine, working around other trades can be tight quarters. From scheduling to respecting each other’s craft, Jeff enjoys the team environment that Regency has created over the years. On other job sites crews can step on each other’s toes and even lead to damage of workmanship or product. That doesn’t happen with Regency. We work together, we communicate, and our contractors respect the trades that come before and after their time in the client’s home.
- Regency Bids it Right: Starting at the beginning of a project, Pat’s work to craft a job sheet, finish schedule and room schedule is incredibly detailed. Not only does this help the carpentry crew plan for their work, it also helps them bid more accurately and competitively. Knowing the amount of woodwork, detail and trim in a home, as well as the quality expectations of Regency, allows Jeff and other contractors to avoid extras down the road! And you all know how much we hate extras at Regency Builders!
- Regency has Excellent Project Managers: From scheduling and site preparation, to rushing extra product to the site to avoid construction delays, Jeff shares that Regency’s project managers are top notch. Other expediters may not have even come from the trades…and have much to learn. While Regency’s construction knowledge has been consistent for three generations.
As for the Hillcrest, you’ll see evidence of all of this. Dedicated workmanship. Strong relationships. Superior quality. It’s evident in all the fine details of this home. That’s why Regency is proud to call Jeff and his team partners for more than 30 years, and know that his work truly brings out the best in ours.
About Thuot Builders
Thuot Builders and Regency Builders have been valued partners for over 30 years. From perfectly mitered corners, to getting a cope just right, it’s done perfectly every time with Thuot Builders.