by Mary Beth Schwartz
The design of today’s home is constantly evolving. According to Houzz, houses of 2016 are implementing a few concepts. In the entryway, homeowners want heated floors and a farmhouse look with storage cubes and benches. For the bath, statement mirrors and extra large format tiles are in. As for the powder room, bold design features make this tiny room stand out in the home. Formal dining rooms and sunrooms are making comebacks. Living rooms are returning to the quiet spaces of past without technology, but with fire features or fireplaces. In the bedroom, there is still the need for an oasis feel. Kitchens now have workhorse islands, two-tone cabinets with deep drawers, and colored stainless steel appliances. Whether it is one room in the home or an entire home, clients in Bucks, Montgomery, and surrounding counties can work with the team at Brett King Builder Contractor Inc. to turn their remodeling dreams into reality.
Founder and President Brett King started his remodeling business in 1982. To-day Brett King Builder Contractor Inc. is headquartered in Quakertown. Design and Product Selection Consultant, Kim King, Brett’s wife, says, “Clients can be overwhelmed with all of the choices out there—countertop surfaces, wall colors, appliances, fixture finishes, and so on. I walk alongside and give them guidance. It is gratifying when all of the details come together to get the final result.” Kim and Brett’s son, Nathan King, is Vice President and Operations Manager.
Growing up spending his summers as a carpenter working for the business, he graduated from Cairn University receiving a B.S in Business Administration. After devoting six years to having started an e-commerce company and successfully building sales to over two million dollars, he returned to his family run business. Nathan used this time to develop a rich skill set that has proven to only enhance the company’s core values and strengthen its foundation. “In the last year, he has grown the company from a paper and memory operation to a technology advanced environment that increases the organization and provides a sophisticated mechanism of customer support and scheduling efficiency,” says Office Manager Laura Weller.
Out in the field, the design/build company’s team of master carpenters is turning blueprints into historical renovations, additions, kitchens, bathrooms, household upkeeps, and remodels. “It has been exciting to come into a company that has such a strongly established reputation in the remodeling industry. Eighty percent of our clients are repeat business and referrals. Once someone has us as a contractor, they keep us for life and tell their friends. We pride ourselves in our close-knit team; both in the field and in the office who are all passionate about client satisfaction and customer service. Our clients give us the opportunity to do what we love and we are so grateful for them,” Nathan King adds.
The professional family run business has a long history of success. Through the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI), they have the certification of Certified Remodeler (CR). Since 1996, Brett King Builder Contractor Inc. has been consistently awarded the Contractor of the Year (CotY) award on national, regional, and local levels. For 2016, a CotY was received for Residential Detached Structure. “The clients wanted to enjoy the year-round beauty of their extensive landscaping from an indoor living space with an outdoor exposure. We created a unique version of a sleeping porch, a charming architectural tradition highly valued at the turn of the 20th century, by transforming an independent historic out building on the expansive property. We designed a symmetrical plan highlighting the period structure as the centerpiece. Challenges included fortifying the centuries-old building, which had no foundation, restoring and then graphing in twin additions followed,” comments Brett King. Brett King Builder Contractor Inc. also is a member of Remodeling’s exclusive Big50. Through Houzz, they received the Best of Houzz 2016 Design award. Last but not least, one of the full-service firm’s historical renovations was featured on both HGTV and Good Morning America.
Recently Brett King Builder Contractor Inc. completed a unique project in a historic section of the Borough of Doylestown. The company will be entering this project for consideration of a future CotY award. The house dated to the early 1900s and was owned by a longtime client.
The project took nine months to complete. We touched the entire home. We tore down a one-story addition that sat on the side of the house and redesigned and rebuilt a second-story addition in the general footprint that was there before,” says Nathan King. The architect for the project was Robert Nase of Harleysville. “This project was exciting because we had to meet the expectations of a his-oric area. There were several criteria that we need to meet. We had to get a variance for the project by the borough council. It also was our job to be good stewards and incorporate the client’s wishes into the home,” adds Brett King.
There was an extensive list of work done on the outside. On the exterior, a lot of natural materials were used to meet historical guidelines. Vinyl siding could not be used. According to Brett King, they created what is called a bell for a special design touch. Cedar shingles were used to create a flair on the bottom of the house. New windows were installed throughout the home. The old windows were not operating ef-ficiently. “These windows had hidden screens so that you could always look through clear glass. The screens rolled down from the top of the windows.” There was an old screened-in porch on the home that was furbished with a new floor, fresh paint, and columns. On the back of the house, a small porch was added to create a charming little area for some privacy. Some columns were incorporated into the dormers on the third floor, which also enhances the home. A new flagstone walkway was added as the entrance of the home was changed.
The inside of the home was overhauled as well. Brett King Builder Contractor Inc. addressed issues with the antiquated electrical system and plumbing. A master suite oasis was created including a bedroom with custom designed closet space and a bath retreat with plenty of counter space, a spacious shower, giant mirrors, and a sep-arate makeup area. There was a need for a more functional kitchen. “The kitchen was cramped and uninviting. Now you do not have to be a cook to enjoy the kitchen.” The homeowner wanted the new kitchen to have a gas stove, Viking refrigerator, a coffee maker, and a small under counter refrigerator just for her children. The kitchen also fea-tures specifically designed custom cabinetry and soapstone countertops. Another must was moving the laundry area from the basement. “We made an area to have the laundry room with additional closet space. A special two-way door was installed for efficiency.” Also on the list was more space to enjoy with family. “We expanded the family room space where we opened it up into the kitchen. We took out a number of walls to try to maximize the space. Once the space was opened up, it really made the place feel like home.” The new space features a gas fireplace surrounded by tile. There is a flagstone hearth in front for people to sit and enjoy the charm of the room. Above the fireplace is a flat screen television. Other projects inside the historic Doylestown home included additional remodels of bedrooms and bathrooms, as well as installation of wood flooring and crown molding. “We had the trim specially milled to match the trim that you just can’t buy today. We wanted the house to look like it had been in its natural state.”
“The house is a beautiful makeover, yet you feel like coming inside and taking off your shoes. You feel like you are at home. The homeowner wanted the house to be welcoming for her children and friends. While we were working on the house, someone would stop every day and tell our crew that it was the most beautiful addition done in the borough. They spectators loved watching the changes and how much the home had been regenerated,” adds Brett King. “Our customers become like extended family. All of our hard work is rewarded when we finish a project and feel as though we have added another family member to our team. It’s not uncommon for a homeowner to comment on how they will miss having us in their home once the project is completed; this homeowner was no exception,” says Nathan King.
Brett King Builder Contractor Inc. is dedicated to craftsmanship, excellence, cleanliness, and integrity. To schedule a consultation for your special project, call 215-536-1145.
Mary Beth Schwartz is a freelance writer who frequently contributes to regional publications.