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By Kevin Jackson

 

Have you ever seen a leader who is on fire? A confident, charismatic, contagious and consistent winner? Well, this person probably has mastered the “C’s”. Here are a few of them!

Connection:

Great leaders realize that their success was not achieved purely based on their skill, efforts or great looks. The connection with like-minded partners, colleagues, friends and mentors all play a critical role in the development of a leader and their associated teams. However, the contrary is also true, so please be mindful. Surrounding yourself with those who may not have your best interest in mind, or who do not fit into your value system, could contribute to your demise in the long run. Start making appropriate, powerful connections today!

Confidence:

True confidence comes from failing forward and getting back in the game. It comes from hours and hours of preparation and practice in and on your craft. It hails from the acknowledgement of self-worth that you’re worthy of this opportunity and that you should be in this space at this appointed time. Confidence is knowing that you must bring your “A” game and that you are willing to put in the effort consistently to do so. We must be confident every day in our approach because the opportunity in front of us right now may never present itself again.

Credibility:

#1. Be the best at what you do. #2. Never stop at #1! Always be on time, on purpose, on budget and on point! Listen intently to your customer’s desires and do what you say you are going to do when you said you were going to do it. This sounds extremely simple on paper, but unfortunately most miss some very key elements in the delivery of service to their customers. If you or your work are not credible, no one will ever listen to you, take you seriously and hire you to fill a void – period!

Control:

Be careful what you post. Be careful who you host. Be careful what you like. Be careful what you say on mic. Be careful what you tweet. Be careful what you eat. Be careful what you say. Be careful how you spend your day.

Regain control, as there are many things that are designed to trip leaders up in today’s society.

Charisma:

Many leadership authors talk about gravitas. If you don’t know what it is, google it! People and organizations who have a magnetic approach will always leave a positive long-lasting impression on you. All leaders should research and practice the traits of a charismatic person (humility, maturity, bringing value and substance to those around you). This is what gets you the job, the promotion, the deal you wanted or simply the satisfaction that you have moved something forward in the right direction.

Don’t you clearly “C” now? Influence is necessary to lead. Make a difference by focusing on these “C’s” in the next few weeks. You’ll be glad you did!

Connect with Kevin on LinkedIn

 

Read his original article here

NADRA launched a member spotlight award for 2017. We are excited to showcase our next winner:

Member Name: Rudolf (Rudy) De Keersmaecker

Company Name:  CriterionHomeInspections.com

Position: Owner

Member Category: Inspector

Location: Laporte, IN


What inspired you to join NADRA? I believe that a deck is an integral part of a home structure, and as such requires a critical examination to protect the clients interests. Joining NADRA and operating under NADRA and ASHI standards allows me to give my client the best possible inspection report. This is why I joined NADRA.


What was the first thing you ever built? Debt.

How do you define success? Success is not about money – it’s about happiness. If you’re happy in what you are doing, wealth will come to you.

What advice would you like to share with fellow members that you have learned in your career? If a man is to be judged by a single act and you have a choice, the one to pick is how he looks at himself in a mirror.


If you could ask your fellow industry professionals one question, what might it be? Why is it that people don’t clean up after themselves anymore? I do not trust technicians or workmen who do not carry a broom and a dustpan with them.

 

A little more about Rudy: I have worked in the field of high-rise engineering, inspection, and real estate in the city of Chicago for the last 42 years. Being semi retired, I now operate a home inspection company in LaPorte County Indiana. I am a contracted FEMA emergency disaster inspector, as well as being a residential high-rise code safety instructor, teaching high-rise code compliance classes for Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local one training fund.

A little advice from Rudy: 

#1. Walk to the beat of a different bass cello.
#2. Don’t lie. Not even to yourself.
#3. Be happy in your dreams – be happy in your life!
*   Remember – it’s all about passion!

*A Member Spotlight winner will be chosen each month. For a chance to win, please fill out the questionnaire found here

Custom stainless rails seamlessly integrate interior and exterior spaces in Parade of Homes Masterpiece!

(Complete Project Case Study with images can be found here) Overlooking the scenic Minnehaha Creek sits one of the most unique and energy-efficient homes in the greater Minneapolis area. This 5,144 square foot home features elements such as: a glass bridge spanning two separate wings of the home, a two-story fireman’s pole, kids’ bedrooms with their own private lofts and a modern staircase with open risers. The home is also composed of structural insulated panels providing the best in energy efficiency, and was awarded the coveted “Dream Home” designation in the local Spring 2016 Parade of Homes tour. The award was the second for the environmentally-focused, Twin Cities-based building and remodeling firm Sustainable 9 Design + Build.

In the past, Sustainable 9 Design + Build utilized a local railing fabrication team to create custom railings for their homes. Increased new construction and remodeling activity happening throughout their Midwestern market backlogged those fabrication crews and caused them to demand premium prices. Time delays and increased costs simply were not an option on this custom home, so the Sustainable 9 team reached out to AGS Stainless.

“Before this project, we never considered the option of prefabricated railings – now I foresee us working with AGS Stainless on all our future remodeling and new construction projects,” explains Ryan Hanson, Partner at Sustainable 9 Design + Build. “The ease of installation, at nearly half the cost as custom fabricated railing and quick turnaround really helped us meet the project deadline and budget. Its modern aesthetic and overall high-quality look really resonated with potential homebuyers and existing customers too – so much so that we already have a few clients altering their existing remodeling projects to now include AGS Stainless railings.”

AGS’ Rainier cable railing with flat stainless steel top rail is showcased throughout the home, indoors and out. It’s even a feature of the “hiding forts” (lofts) within the kids’ bedrooms. “Cable railing was an ideal choice for those loft areas,” added Hanson. “It allowed the kids’ secret spots to not feel completely closed off from their bedrooms while still providing a level of safety in an elevated space.”

Another unique feature appreciated by kids both young-and-old is a two-story fireman’s pole. AGS Stainless designers worked closely with Sustainable 9 Design + Build to develop a custom locking access gate for this”transportation apparatus.” With the help of AGS’ Rainier cable railing, the project achieved an overall consistent look and feel that provides unobstructed views of all the natural beauty, both inside and out.

AGS Makes it Easy

Working AGS Stainless is straightforward and simple. They generate exact drawings and details for your project from initial approximate dimensions and photos submitted by the customer. Then, they work directly with the homeowner/contractor to make certain every detail is just right.”Each AGS Stainless railing system is designed and prefabricated at our facility located in the Pacific Northwest. Every individual nut, bolt and handrail fitting is just right.

Our unique process greatly reduces the labor expense normally associated with traditional custom-fabricated railing systems,” explains Kevin T. Harris, Director of Sales & Marketing at AGS Stainless. “This Minneapolis-area home perfectly depicts how Sustainable 9 Design + Build and every AGS Stainless customer essentially has their very own outsourced railing factory, complete with world-class welders and state-of-the-art fabrication machines to create a beautiful high quality railing system specific for their project.”

The Result  (View slideshow of photos)

In addition to the numerous compliments and customer inquiries regarding the railing system,the Sustainable 9 team was very impressed with how accurate and complete each railing section arrived to the job-site. “Initially, we had apprehension about ordering a customized railing system for a project sight-unseen but their team of designers – and overall customer service I might add – was absolutely great on guiding us through the installation which (Read on)

Project Details: 

Location: Edina, Minnesota

Specifications: 

New construction; 5,144 sqft – 5BR/5BA

Recognition: 

2016 Spring Parade of Homes “Dream Home”

Design/Build Team:

Sustainable 9 Design + Build (www.sustainable9.com) | Jalin Design (www.jalin-design.com)

Photography: Images by @Spacecrafting

Railing Products:

AGS Stainless (www.AGSstainless.com – 888-842-9492)

 

 

February 2017 Member Benefits Tips: 

NADRA Members Benefit by Earning NADRA Bucks

NADRA has used a grass-roots approach at expanding and growing the association since 2004. It not only saves the association money, but also saves our members money too. Do you know that for every new member

(branch excluded) you refer, you will receive $50.00 towards your membership?

Yes, you earn $50.00 for a new member referral! We call them NADRA bucks. You are eligible to earn up to your yearly dues in NADRA bucks. When you refer a new member, it means you are referring professionals that you have already built a relationship with. They are businesses you believe in.

If you are a deck builder you might suggest your local lumberyard, retailer or distributor to join. As a manufacturer you could be referring your pro builders and dealers to join NADRA. Referrals are not limited to manufacturers, builders or distributors / dealers. Industry Service Providers are a fantastic resource for our members, and we encourage you to refer business services that you value.

How many NADRA Bucks have you earned? It’s easy to earn a free membership with NADRA. This type of word of mouth referrals is the foundation that helps build NADRA.

Will you help us continue to grow?

All you need to do is simply have the new member fill in your name under “referred by” found in the application.

Support, refer, and save!

 

 

January 2017 Member Benefits Tips: 

Whether you are a new member or a renewing member, it is important to understand what your membership has to offer. Think of it like a gym membership. You don’t just join a gym and get fit (although that would be fantastic!) It feels good to join, and you’re heading in the right direction, but your journey has just begun. The more you put into it the more you will get out of it.
  • Step 1. You learn more about the gym & what is included with your membership.  You can check out the exercise machines, weights, and other equipment. They all come with your membership so you want to utilize them. NADRA too has basic benefits like a free profile page, photo gallery and the option to download the NADRA logo for marketing.Step 2. Learn what additional programs are offered. In a gym setting you can get more instructions with a TRX or boxing class, sometimes even take a class in nutrition. Similarly, you can get more involved with NADRA by joining and/or supporting programs such as Deck Safety Month®, Deck For a Soldier®, and Educational Certifications.
  • Step 3. Get involved with networking events. Staying healthy is strongly supported when you surround yourself with like-minded people. Same goes for surrounding yourself with professionals who can help take your business to the next level. Sign up for golf tournaments, trade shows, seminars and more. Per NADRA members, “…networking is one of the top reasons to be a member!”
  • Step 4. Stay connected! When you join a gym you can often sign up for newsletters or like them on Facebook. This allows you to stay in contact and learn about upcoming events. Likewise, NADRA has a weekly eNewsletter, Facebook page, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest. Follow us on one or all, but be sure to stay connected!
  • Step 5. Get your family and friends involved. Gyms often have incentives to bring your friends and family to the gym. NADRA too, has an incentive program called “NADRA Bucks”. For any new member, excluding branch memberships, we offer $50 towards your next renewal.

March is here, and that means we’re entering “Home Show Season”. It’s the end of the winter, the early customers are calling and inquiring. Now is our last chance to button-up any policies, procedures, and give our companies one last “spring cleaning” before the rush!

 

A few questions to ask yourself:

  1. Is there any last-minute education to wrap up?
  2. Are all of our vendor agreements in place?
  3. Are your trucks and trailers lettered and in good shape?
  4. Are you displaying the NADRA logo and pledge on your marketing materials? (stand out from the competition!)
  5. Are your business cards printed with updated industry certifications and social media information?
  6. Do you have marketing pieces ready?
  7. Jobsite signs in good shape?
  8. Crew T-shirts and hats stocked?
  9. Do you have a good camera for your before and after pictures? Or is this the year to consider adding a drone?
  10. How is the website, email signature, and voicemail greetings?

If you don’t have these things ready, you have time, but that time is now! Go get it done. You’ll feel better prepared, and at the end of the day, you’ll know you did everything you could to be ready for the season.If you’re wondering where to get the best job-site signs, or you’re not sure where to order your T-shirts, don’t forget to reach out to your fellow NADRA members to ask. That’s what we are here for! Ask away. Use NADRA’s social media platforms to ask questions, hop on LinkedIn to start a discussion, Tweet! Use whatever platform makes it easy for you to ask your question. It’s human nature to want to help. Someone will answer you. Use your NADRA network to better your business. We are here for you.

Your NADRA Board of Directors, and Home Office staff are here to help. Feel free to call or email any of us, if we can assist in any way.

Sincerely,

Your NADRA Board of Directors

GARLAND, TX (PRWEB) FEBRUARY 24, 2017

Today, Fortress Deck™, an innovator in the decking industry, announced 2017 distribution plans throughout the central United States. Starting in January, Fortress Deck’s™ Infinity™ Decking and HULK™ Clips and Fasteners will be available in most of the central United States through distributors Hallmark Building Supplies, Inc., Mid-States Wholesale Company and JM Thomas Forest Products.

“Fortress Deck™ is excited to expand its presence in the Central United States,” Gary Smith, National Sales Manager at Fortress Deck™, said. “This is a competitive market, and customer reception in this region has proven strong demand for our innovative product offerings. We have partnered with some of the region’s leading distributors and are confident these partnership will deliver results to customers down the channel.”

In January, Hallmark Building Supplies, Inc. opened a new division to focus on the distribution of Fortress Deck™ products in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Illinois, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Arkansas, Louisiana, and Texas. The business will be supported by distribution centers in St. Louis, Missouri; Milwaukee, Wisconsin; and Dallas, Texas with planned expansions of the Chicago, Illinois and Houston, Texas areas.

“We were so impressed with not only the product but with the story of the how the product came to life. The inability of the current US composite market to perform in the harsh climates of South Africa created a need for a better deck product. This lead to the development of the Infinity™ product line of deck products. The synergies between our two companies and the passion for providing quality and style were a perfect fit,” Robb Buechler, Executive Vice President at Hallmark Building Supplies, Inc., said.

Mid-States Wholesale Company who is already a distributor of OZCO Building Products and Fortress Railing Products™ —two other Fortress Building Products™ businesses — will begin Oklahoma distribution of the two Fortress Deck™ product lines, Infinity™ Decking and HULK™ Clips and Fasteners.

“Mid-States’ experience in composite decking spans some of the industry’s biggest brands, but we have never seen a product like Infinity™ before,” Mark Musgrove, Product Manager at Mid-States Wholesales Company, said. “The dense, bamboo and recycled plastic core with a 360 cap is a combination built for longevity, and the boards are beautiful. We are confident it will have a huge impact in Oklahoma and wanted to be the ones to take it to market.”

JM Thomas Forest Products was a part of the soft launch of the Fortress Deck business in 2016. JM Thomas has already begun to establish a network of lumberyards and deck builders that are promoting Infinity Decking and Hulk Clips and Fasteners. Even with a limited launch in 2016, the products have been well-received in the Colorado market with high expectations for the full launch in 2017.

“The variegated color and matte texture of the post sleeves and Modern Rail have a hit in the Colorado market,” Scott Gates, Purchasing Manager at JM Thomas Forest Products, said. “The Stair Tread and unique distressed hardwood surface are also getting lots of attention as these products have never been available to this market.”

Fortress Deck™ Infinity™ Decking and HULK™ Clips & Fasteners adds to the growing list of products offered by Fortress Building Products™, which includes railing, fence, pergola and other exterior focused building products. To learn more, visit http://www.FortressDeck.com

###

About Fortress Deck Fortress Deck™ is the newest member of Fortress Building Products™, a privately held, family of innovative building product solution providers. Fortress Building Products™ boasts nearly 50 years of combined experience in building products supply and design. Fortress Building Products™ is comprised of Fortress Railing Products™, Fortress Fence Products™, OZCO Building Products™ and Fortress Deck™. Fortress Building Products™ is based in the Dallas, Texas area with extensive product distribution throughout North America and expansion occurring to many other global markets. A young, innovative and entrepreneurial culture is alive and well at Fortress Building Products™ where the team is always looking for ways to lead our industries forward. Learn more at http://www.FortressBP.com or http://www.FortressDeck.com.

 

 
  

 

February 28th, 2017 UPDATE:
NADRA CPAC Committee Update:

The Consumer Product Awareness Charter (CPAC) Committee works in conjunction with NADRA and NTA to develop and implement consumer friendly labeling programs for outdoor living products.

  • NTA as the appointed third-party agency administers the certification programs.
  • The program will recognize applicable tests conducted by accredited third-party testing agencies.

The overall intent of this program is to provide the consumer with a simple, straightforward labeling program to assist in their product selection.

  • Product comparisons simplified – allowing consumers to choose the product best suited for their needs
  • Certification reassures consumers of quality products
  • Easy to find technical information

This will assist NADRA members by providing useful information about product performance requested by consumers.

  • Certified products carry a higher level of credibility with consumers
  • Higher credibility = increased sales
  • Improved products through Quality Programs
  • Third-party involvement at lower cost
  • Reduced returns, warranty claims, and consumer questions

A recognized label will accompany easy to understand product performance measurements to educate consumers so they can make more knowledgeable product selections.

The example below for alternative decking represents performance measurements of items consumers have requested, and are under consideration by the CPAC committee.  The first phase for alternative decking products Consumer Product Awareness Specification is nearing completion.

  • The committee continues to work diligently; taking input from a range of supportive sources to drive the program to completion.
  • The alternative decking product committee has one  remaining voting positions available.Those interested in providing technical representation or being on the committee should fill out this form here with your contact information and request.
  • Base line data requirements and test protocols are on schedule for completion before or during the second quarter of 2017.
 
 
 
NADRA CPAC Committee Chair,  Andrew Clements

BrightClaim Inc. Customer Service / Warranty Claim Solutions / Compliance
Mobile:  540-454-7111 Office:  770-779-0940 Email:   andrew.clements@brightclaim.com

 

January 4th, 2017 UPDATE:
NADRA CPAC Committee Update:
The NADRA Consumer Product Awareness Committee (CPAC) has been working diligently and is making very good progress in the creation of the Consumer Product Awareness Specification (CPAS).  The current CPAS draft contains three main metrics for testing and providing performance ratings for deck boards:
  • Slip Resistance
  • Fade Resistance
  • Swell and Water Absorption Resistance

The overall intent of this program is to provide the consumer with simple, straight-forward information to assist in their deck board selection and to provide the industry with a standardized rating system for aspects of particular interest to consumers which are beyond the requirements of a certification program.

The current goal is to have the initial release of the CPAS ready for the next NADRA meeting in April.  If anyone would like to contribute by providing ideas, data, or input regarding the CPAS please contact Michael Beaudry at 215-804-6679 or mbeaudry@nadra.org.  Your support is very beneficial to the continued advancement of this program, thank you!

October 21, 2016 UPDATE:

Special Note to All Interested Parties:

The Consumer Product Awareness Committee (CPAC) was created to work in conjunction with NADRA and NTA to develop and implement an association sponsored labeling program for deck board products, which are already in a certification program.  This labeling program will be based on the Consumer Product Awareness Specification (CPAS), which is currently under development.

The overall intent of this program is to provide the consumer with simple, straight-forward information to assist in their deck board selection and to provide the industry with a standardized rating system for aspects of particular interest to consumers which are beyond the requirements of a certification program.

Thank you in advance for your support, which will be very beneficial to the continued advancement of this program.

Sincerely,

Michael Beaudry, NADRA Executive Vice President & Your Board of Directors

NADRA, “Doing things for the right reason and having fun doing them”.

TAMKO® Announces Launch of Two New Websites

JOPLIN, MO–(February 15, 2017) - TAMKO Building Products, Inc. is proud to announce that the all new www.TAMKO.com and the brand new www.EnvisionDecking.com are now live. TAMKO.com primarily focuses on roofing and related products, while EnvisionDecking.com focuses on decking, with a convenient link between them. Homeowners and customers alike are invited to visit the new websites to experience their exciting features firsthand.

TAMKO.com now features a cleaner design with quick, easy access to visualization tools, product photos and useful information.

With bold new imagery, the new TAMKO.com design accentuates product charm and appeal for homeowners along with features that enable them to choose roofing shingles by color or style and easily locate a TAMKO Pro Certified Roofing Contractor.

The responsive design of the new TAMKO.com optimizes the experience on popular devices and platforms for increased consumer interaction and a more engaging consumer experience with the ability to share items across multiple social media channels. The site also includes a space for Team TAMKO, which is dedicated to professionals and builders and contains access to a wealth of business building tools. Additionally, application instructions, data sheets and literature are easily available directly from the product pages.

As a one-stop, all-inclusive resource for consumers to learn about TAMKO’s composite decking and railing offerings, EnvisionDecking.com is a useful new platform where homeowners can learn, explore and view the beauty of TAMKO’s family of decking products.

EnvisionDecking.com features stunning new decking imagery and an Idea Gallery devoted to the concept of guiding homeowners to find their decking style.

Additional new features include a page containing a live feed of TAMKO’s decking social media content with links to all of those social media feeds for full consumer engagement, a page highlighting TAMKO’s new decking leadership team, and access to beautiful imagery that shows how anyone can Envision life on their new deck.

About TAMKO

TAMKO® Building Products, Inc. is one of the nation’s largest independent manufacturers of residential and commercial roofing products. For more information about TAMKO, visit our website at www.TAMKO.com.

About TAMKO Composite Lumber

From decking to railing, TAMKO’s composite lumber offerings provide homeowners with exceptional options to create a beautiful outdoor space where beautiful things happen. These offerings include Envision Distinction™, Envision Inspiration™, Envision Expression™, EverGrain®, Marquee Railing® and TAM- RAIL®. For more information, visit our website at www.EnvisionDecking.com.

Note to editors and writers — The correct capitalization of the company name is TAMKO, due to the fact that it is an acronym. The letters stand for Texas, Arkansas, Missouri, Kansas and Oklahoma — the company’s original trade area when founded in 1944. TAMKO’s trade area is now all 50 states.

 


National Nail Expands Warranty for its CAMO® Edge Deck Screws to Cover Deck Board

 

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich., Feb. 13, 2017 — National Nail announces that it has expanded and updated its warranty on CAMO Edge Deck Screws, which are part of its CAMO Edge Fastening™ system.  Designed to meet today’s market demand for cedar, tropical woods, capped composites and capped PVCs (square or grooved, including brands such as Trex®, AZEK®, TimberTech®, Fiberon®, EverGrain®, Wolf® and other similar products), the new and expanded warranty will cover the replacement of deck board products when the replacement of the deck board is directly related to the non-performance of the CAMO Edge Fastening™ system. The CAMO system is not designed for hollow composite or PVC boards, or metal framing systems and the new coverage does not replace decking manufacturer’s responsibilities under their warranties.

“We have always stood behind the unequalled experience and performance of the CAMO Edge Fastening system.  By expanding our coverage to now include the deck board, we are simply stating what we are confident of.  CAMO Edge fasteners can be used without concern on any decking project it is designed for,” said W. Scott Baker, CEO, National Nail.  “CAMO fasteners have been used in all types of composite, wood and PVC applications for years.  Our history with warranty claims – or more accurately lack of warranty claims – over the years has reinforced that confidence.”

He adds contractor feedback has been overwhelmingly positive, with dozens reporting the CAMO system enhances their deck installation, making them more beautiful and “barefoot friendly” while providing a faster, easier and less expensive installation.

CAMO Deck Screws simply go into the edge of solid or grooved deckboards for fast installation and offer automatic 3/16″ spacing. CAMO edge fastening guides are part of a system designed to work specifically with CAMO Edge Deck Screws and CAMO Driver Bits.

To learn more about the new CAMO Edge Deck Screws new limited warranty, visit www.camofasteners.com or call 800-968-6245 and ask for the CAMO Product Manager.

AZEK® and TimberTech® are registered trademarks of CPG International LLC and is unaffiliated with CAMO® or National Nail Corp.

Trex® is a registered trademark of Trex Company and is unaffiliated with CAMO® or National Nail Corp.

Fiberon® is a registered trademark of Fiberon and is unaffiliated with CAMO® or National Nail Corp.

EverGrain Composite Decking® is a registered trademark of Tamko Building Products and is unaffiliated with CAMO® or National Nail Corp.

Wolf® Decking is a registered trademark of Wolf Home Products and is unaffiliated with CAMO® or National Nail Corp.

About CAMO Edge Fastening

CAMO Edge Fastening™ from National Nail delivers beautiful, fastener-free, Barefoot Approved™ results with virtually any wood, composite or PVC decking. CAMO® offers a variety of guides, fasteners, and accessories, as well as a collated system to suit project requirements. For more information or to locate a dealer, visit CAMO Fasteners or call 1-800-968-6245. Be sure to “Like“ CAMO® Fasteners on Facebook.

About National Nail

We are 100% employee-owned and our growth is directly related to the demand our customers have for our products.  We value transparency and participation, and have a strong bias toward innovation, accountability and growth that makes our customers better financially, relationally, and executionally – an experience our customers won’t find anywhere else.  We follow eight positive traits in everything we do: Servant Leadership, Integrity, Sound Judgement, Courage, Curiosity, Discipline, Energy-Giving and Mentoring Others. We strive to create unique experiences to ensure that your story is better and for us, it’s a privilege to be a part of it. We are always seeking people who share these traits.

SOURCE National Nail Corp.

 

When an adventure-loving couple decided to build a second home in the mountains for hosting friends, grown children, and-someday- grandchildren, they enlisted California based Studio Bergtraun Architects to design it on a steep site in the Sierra Nevada’s near Lake Tahoe. The firm took cues from the owners’ active, family-focused lifestyle to create a highly customized house on a challenging terrain

Situated on a 23-degree slope that receives some of the region’s heaviest snows, the steelframe structure’s poured-in-place concrete-mat slab is pinned to the hill’s underlying granite. Lead architect Alex Bergtraun undertook a considerable study of the steep site to create a driveway with a less than 5 percent incline that would allow the clients to pull in easily and, after a long day of skiing, enter the mudroom without having to navigate stairs.

In order to accommodate different combinations of occupants, Bergtraun designed a two-level structure with a lower floor that can be closed off. There, built-in bunk beds (accessible via rock-climbing holds) and two bedrooms for the couple’s adult children flank a central family room. Upstairs, the main floor contains the master suite and kitchen, living, and dining areas. A concrete bridge extending off the kitchen provides a small patio for grilling but requires minimal snow shoveling. (Thanks to the installation of climbing hooks on the edge, it also provides a platform for rappelling down to the creek below the house.)

“When it’s just the two owners, they can close off the lower section and heat only their area,” says the architect, “but in the future, when the whole family is present, the lower floor can become a space for younger generations to bond.”

LED uplights throughout the house reflect warm tones from the Douglas fir ceilings, while hot-rolled steel on the fireplace and cabinets provides contrasting texture. Custom furnishings continue the rustic-and-industrial theme: Bergtraun built an extra-long dining table with a galvanized-steel top, large industrial wheels, and leftover glulam.

“The clients wanted to make this a place that was really their own,” says Bergtraun. “It’s already become a hub of activity for family and friends, and it will be for years to come.”

See more Images of Project & Case Study

See the complete article in Architectural Record Magazine