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REAL ESTATE - INTERVIEW

Interview with David Supple, Founder and CEO of New England Design & Construction from Boston

David Supple became interested in architecture in his high school years, and since the day he founded New England Design & Construction in 2005, he has been designing houses to make his clients’ dreams come true. I talked about his career and basics of residential projects with David Supple.

Tuesday, October 23, 2018

David Supple

David Supple

REAL ESTATE - INTERVIEW

by Meryem Aksoy

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The secret of a successful design is understanding the expectations of the clients. At this point, a good dialogue should be conducted before the drawings start. Since founded in 2005, New England Design & Construction has been offering residential remodeling projects in the Boston area with this knowledge. I talked with Founder and CEO of New England Design & Construction, David Supple about his career and basics of residential projects.

New England Design & Construction

New England Design & Construction

David, why did you decide to pursue a career in architecture? What inspired you?

I took an art history class in high school where the teacher exposed me to pictures of all of the places she visited. She showed our class the Sistine Chapel, a few gothic cathedrals, and other architecturally amazing spaces. It really opened my mind to how space could change my disposition.

How did you decide to establish your own firm? Could you tell us about New England Design & Construction and your team?

I graduated college with a degree in architecture, and was employed as an architect in an architecture firm. I realized during the course of completing these complicated drawings that I had no idea what I was doing, because I had never actually built anything in my life comparable to what I was directing others on how to execute. This made no sense to me, and I realized that I needed more hands-on experience to fill this void. I worked as a carpenter for a while until I was actually fired (I really wasn’t a great carpenter). At this point, I needed a job, and decided to just start my own company that would handle both the design and the building aspects of a project.

Over time, I was able to grow and fire myself as a carpenter, hiring more skilled craftsmen to complete the construction while I focused more on design and other aspects of running the business. It has been a continual cycle of getting other, more competent people to take on different facets of the company and allowing me to focus on the vision and growth of the company.

New England Design & Construction

New England Design & Construction

How could you define your architectural design approach?

The derivation of the word architect is “master builder”. The design is a huge aspect of a successful project but is still only one part of a project. All parts of the project have to be excelled at, otherwise, the design just leads to ink on paper. Our approach is to be fully accountable for the entire lifecycle of a project, ensuring that our clients receive the best possible design, schedule, budget, and management for their projects.

What is your signature in your designs? How do you make your homes unique and creative?

We listen to clients and make their vision our own while always aspiring to create something great. We focus on our mission statement of “lifting spirits with spaces” for every project that we complete.

New England Design & Construction

New England Design & Construction

Which type of projects does New England Design & Construction specialize in? What type of services do you offer your customers?

We offer residential remodeling projects from the initial conception through architectural design, construction, and a two-year warranty.

Where is the most popular location for new residential projects in Boston?

We focus on remodeling specifically. The Boston real estate market is very competitive right now, so we see many more people opting to stay where they are instead of relocating. Some hot zones we’re seeing include but are not limited to Somerville, Roslindale, West Roxbury, and East Boston.

New England Design & Construction

New England Design & Construction

Do you offer turnkey projects to abroad customer? At which steps should your client have to be next to you after the first moment of the project?

We have managed projects for clients abroad in the past. We prefer to confirm material, fixture, and finish selections in person prior to construction, but otherwise, most of the process can be completed remotely.

How many months does it take to complete an average residential project?

Currently, we’re averaging about 14 weeks in design and 17 weeks in construction, with an average project size of about $250,000.

New England Design & Construction

New England Design & Construction

What are the most important factors that affect the project cost?

This really depends on the type of project you’re taking on. Typically, moving walls or changing structural elements tends to take you from one ballpark range to another. Moving plumbing or utilities is also typically has a big budget impact.

In your opinion, what is the relation between Low Budget - Short Project Time - High Quality? Is it possible to combine all in one project?

It can be difficult to isolate a professional who can provide all of these. Typically a short project time and low budget are either associated with a lower level of quality, or a much lighter scope of work. Usually, if it’s a lighter scope of work, it isn’t a project that a high-quality professional is very interested in taking on. While possible, it’s kind of like that elusive unicorn that is very difficult to nail down.

New England Design & Construction

New England Design & Construction

What is the best advice you have received, and what advice would you give to young architects?

The best advice I have is to just look for yourself, keep your own counsel and make your own decisions in relation to the current state of the industry. This industry needs to get back to having a single entity that can guide the entire process… the majority of history has been design-build but the Universities today have obfuscated that to make it seem like the design is separate from the build. They are not.

What is coming up next for you?

I am writing a book that will change the world and the methodology and mindset in which buildings are built. The mindset I am promoting is one of accountability and efficiency where a much better end product is achieved.

Thank you David.

For more information, please visit the website of New England Design & Construction





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