What makes Orren Pickell Building Group different as a builder?

Simply put, Orren Pickell Building Group takes the risk and worry out of architectural design and custom home building. Your custom home or re-model will be finished to your specifications on time and within budget thanks to our award-winning team that will make your project our top priority. Our longevity, time-proven process, demanding standards and our ability to expertly manage every aspect of the building process from design to home maintenance set us apart from other builders.

Do you design/build true custom homes?

Yes – Designing and building custom homes is our passion. We have built hundreds of homes throughout the North Shore, Chicago, Lake Geneva and beyond, and no two are alike. From Adobe style to Country French, from Ultra Contemporary to Arts and Craft, each home has been custom designed by a team of the finest experts in their field and according to the uniqueness of each client’s vision

What is a custom home?

A custom home is the home of your dreams! You design and build the home you want, not what someone else wants and without compromise. At Orren Pickell Building Group we strive to make your dream home a reality!

What professionals do you employ?

Orren Pickell Building Group’s professional team includes architects, estimators, service technicians, real estate professionals, as well as home building professionals. Additionally, we have selected lists of the most experienced landscape architects, interior designers, and engineers in the industry. An experienced building and construction superintendent will oversee your job from the moment the construction process begins. Our carpentry department employs the best craftsmen in the business. And our estimators track the details and costs. We also have legal and financial experts who will work with you. At Orren Pickell Building Group, we have the total team in place, allowing us to effectively and efficiently orchestrate the building process from the very beginning to the grand finale. These experts cost you no more, provide you with the highest level of service, make the experience much easier and more fun, and most importantly, they ensure excellent results

How does the selections process work?

We allow our clients to be just as involved as they would like in the selections process. You can select everything, from door hinges to the fireplace stone, from switch plates to the grade of cedar shake or color of slate roofing. We offer our clients the world of choices as to design/cost alternatives as well as ranges of grades and materials. They can also choose to save time and rely with complete confidence on Orren Pickell Building Group’s established, high-quality product standards/specifications. Selections are also available for them to view on their computer, any day, any time, any place.

How does the builder make this detailed, important, and sometimes overwhelming process easier?

We know the custom home building process can seem overwhelming. Rest assured that our award winning team is here to make your project an enjoyable experience. Not only do we track each home in progress, but we will give you your own password-protected web site to utilize throughout the duration of your home building project. The site will show you architectural plans, photos of your home as it is being built (your superintendent will take new digital photos periodically), give you a live, up-to-the-minute timeline, and remind you of what essential selections need to be made. It also links to our own customized, proprietary online design center, Selections On-Site. Here, door hardware, window styles, floor finishes, and tens of thousands of other items are at your fingertips, so that you can make many of these choices – all of them, if you wish – on-line, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, from wherever you are in the world. We absorb all these costs – this web site is free to you.

With two full-time careers, can we really find the time for custom building?

If you have busy, hectic lives, you cannot build with a company that requires you to personally take control of your project. At Orren Pickell Building Group, we wrap our arms around your homebuilding experience, offering as much help as your project requires, and then some. In fact, our company has designed and built custom homes for clients who were away in other parts of the world during the entire process. We are just as invested as you are in making your custom homebuilding experience an enjoyable one.

What is your on-time record?

We have a 95% on-time record at Orren Pickell Building Group. We pride ourselves on consistently bringing our jobs in on-time. This directly translates into money savings – TIME IS MONEY, less aggravation, and a more satisfying experience for you.

How does the weather affect the building process?

We build 12 months a year. With today’s technology, building can begin during any season. Even in January and February when the weather drops to freezing temperatures, there are several windows of opportunity when foundations can be poured without any difficulty. Concrete walkways and driveways and masonry work cannot be done during extreme cold, but these can easily be deferred without any effect on the overall schedule. Our team is here to work around your schedule and make sure that your desired timeline is implemented to the best of our ability.

How much supervision will my house have during construction?

Your main point of contact is an experienced construction superintendent, who will visit the site each day. Additionally, one or more of our in house carpenters will be at your specific home site during the majority of the construction period. And of course, your Sales Consultant will be with you through each and every step of the process.

How important is landscaping to the project?

Our firm believes that landscape design is as critical as the architectural style of the home. That being said, your landscape architect is an integral part of the design team. He/she will provide insight into the positioning of a home on a specific site, while helping to create a view from every window. A successful custom home isn’t just the building alone, it’s the entire property.

Does it make sense financially to build a custom home?

A custom home should be considered an investment for a lifetime, and at Orren Pickell Building Group, we have built our reputation on offering exceptional quality at an affordable price. We take great pride in the lasting value that Pickell homes retain over the years, and in the ever-changing real estate markets, the Orren Pickell name is considered a valuable and enticing asset. When you choose Orren Pickell, you engage a leading home designer and builder with over 40 years of expertise to not only design and build, but also expertly maintain your home to preserve the beauty and quality for years to come.”]

Can we afford to build a custom home?

Certainly. As most of our clients realize, this is an investment for a lifetime. Our affiliated financial experts at various lending institutions are up-to-date on the marketplace and can provide invaluable insights into packages available and what is most appropriate for you. We are always happy to make introductions to these financial professionals for our potential clients.

How does the builder guide us toward the best values?

Our estimating department is constantly on top of checking prices and quality levels. Their job is to get you the best possible specific value, line item by line item, without sacrificing the quality of the project. Orren Pickell Building Group also offers the value of our buying power. Because we build numerous luxury custom homes per year, our subcontractors, which are the best in the state, are able to base their bids on volume – giving you a more competitive cost in return.

Does it cost more when requesting specific architectural detailing?

It is logical that the more complex and difficult the detailing and finishing, the more costly a project will be. There are also some styles that take more time to build than others. However, our firm has developed cost-effective techniques to save on both labor and material while still creating faithful architectural detailing. Our team will take all of your desired detailing into consideration while also ensuring we stay within budgetary outlines.

Will we spend more by the time our home is completed?

Any budget increases are the direct result of change orders or upgraded selections requested by the homeowner. We make it our business to see that few change orders are necessary, owing to the exacting detail that goes into the initial planning stage.

When should we put our current home on the market?

The timing of when to sell your current home is your decision. We find that our clients often build a custom home when they have six months or more to sell their current home comfortably.

How can we be sure the builder is financially secure?

Talk to your own financial institution about obtaining information and credit history from the prospective builder’s bank. Check with the builder’s past clients. Talk to a reputable title company. Ask individuals in the real estate community.

How long does it take to put the financing together?

Over the years, we have compiled a list of lending institutions that share our values in terms of offering excellent customer service coupled with the best products for the client’s specific situation. These include vacant land loans, construction loans, bridge loans, and end-loan mortgages with fixed to variable interest rates.

Will you build our plan on our site using our architect?

Yes. In working directly with your architect, we often offer suggestions for plan adjustments, including siting of the house, grading and drainage of the property, etc., as part of your proposal. This helps better manage construction time and the overall cost of the project.

What if we already have a site to build on?

Wonderful! In order to provide you with the information needed to feel confident about moving forward, our architects will coordinate any relevant due diligence issues pertaining to the site. Examples of this include soil testing, environmental testing, topographical surveys, zoning regulations, and architectural review board guidelines, to name a few.

What kind of warranty should we expect on our custom home?

A custom home warranty can vary widely from builder to builder. Orren Pickell Building Group provides a one-year warranty for our clients. We also have a comprehensive thirty-day service program. Our Closing Manual given to each home buyer contains not only our warranty, but a detailed description of our service program, and a copy of final specifications, together with all appliance warranties so you can feel as comfortable as possible upon the completion of your custom home project. Our Home Maintenance Department also conducts a thorough review of the home before the one-year warranty concludes in order to identify any items that need attention. We have also done free, unsolicited 5 and 10-year inspections. Many clients choose to hire and enlist our home maintenance department long after the first year, ensuring the same quality professionals that built their home will maintain it.

How can we be certain of the "inner quality" we expect and are willing to pay for?

In a single word, reputation. We also welcome you to hire an inspector or have a very knowledgeable friend inspect just before the drywall is applied.

Can you help us conscientiously renovate our existing home rather than build new?

Often times, undergoing a home re-model is a more practical and efficient solution for some of our clients. The Orren Pickell Remodeling Group undertakes high-quality restoration and/or re-modeling projects in existing homes. Our architects and craftsmen are among the best in the industry and have particular knowledge of time-honored building techniques – ensuring your renovation project leaves your current home feeling refreshed and fit to your custom needs.