Friday, December 14, 2012
I got your email last week, and I have to say that quite a wave of emotion
washed over me as I thought about the last 12 months. It was just about a year
ago that I first spoke with Brandon, as he and Norma and the kids were on the
road, driving from Texas to Virginia to start a new life, and wondering where
they would be living, since the rental house they thought would be waiting for
them had fallen through.
It was a tough few days, but we found a place we thought they could call home,
and they signed the lease. Only afterwards, did it become clear that the
property was not in the condition that it had been represented, and the owner
and management company were incapable or unwilling to make things right. Weeks
and months of pleading for the most basic repairs turned into some pretty
unfriendly behavior from professionals who should have known better, not only
because they are professionals, but because the owner was herself the wife of a
disabled veteran. It was a time of tremendous stress for the entire family,
with the kids starting a new school and Brandon starting his new job, and Norma
trying to keep family life as normal as possible. It didn't seem like the
situation could get much worse, or that it would get any better any time soon.
Then we started talking about whether they should purchase a home when the lease
was up, and if that was the plan, should they have a home built. Now, I've
worked with a few builders - mostly the big, national companies - and I'm always
a little leery that promises made won't equal promises kept. I did not want
another heartache for these good people on my watch. But along you came with
The Charleston Company, and it seemed that either you were too good to be true,
or the Boyds had just found their guardian angels in Fredericksburg. As time
has gone by, I have come to the conclusion that it is the latter. I can't begin
to tell you how grateful I am for the care that you took to make sure the plan
of the house would work for everyone today, and with the future challenges they
may face, and also for the beautiful work that has been done by your crew.
When we did the pre-drywall inspection, my inspector was impressed. He's not a
guy who gets all excited over stuff, but I've known him a long time, and as he
walked through the house and explained what we were looking at to Norma, it was
clear to me that he was really finding nothing "wrong" with the house that
wasn't simply a matter of your contractors hadn't gotten to that part of the
work yet. He remarked on the quality and obvious pride the men who were working
on the house took in their work. One of the crew even came over to mention that
the item the inspector was talking about was something they hadn't gotten to
yet, and it would be done before the county inspections. All in all, I think it
was time and money well spent, as it confirmed what we already hoped was true,
that you were building a beautiful home with quality workmanship for the Boyds.
One other thing the inspector said, when Norma told him what the projected
finish date was, (after he had expressed some doubt that you would really finish
by that date), "Oh, well if it's a woman-owned company, they probably will
finish on time. Woman-run companies usually make their deadlines." I had to
laugh. He's a good guy.
So thank you, every last person involved in the building of this home, from the
bottom of my heart. Thank you for taking such good care of my clients, this
lovely family that has been through so much. The care and thought - and love -
you have built into this home will keep watch over them long after the papers
are signed and the keys are passed on to them as new homeowners.
I'm looking forward to seeing you at the closing. If it is OK with you, I'd
like to come along for the walk-through.
Linda Cork, RealtoR
December 21, 2012
Dear All at the Charleston Company,
My family and I would like to thank you form the bottom of our hearts for making our dreams a reality. When we walked into your model home we were scared out of our minds, little did we know the amazing people that God would bring into our lives.
We were not treated like just a customer, we were treated like family and that meant the world to us. The care that The Charleston Company has given to our family has been phenomenal. Our home is gorgeous and being able to be there before Christmas is a dream come true for our family. Thank You and Merry Christmas and God Bless.
July 12, 2012
My husband and I are writing to thank everyone (Lisa, Barbara, Sheila and Sandy) involved in the process of building our new home in Everette Estates. We have been in our new home for 2 months and we absolutely love it!
We have owned several homes, but this was our first experience in building a new construction home. We had researched other builders in the area, but Charleston was able to provide us with a custom rambler that suited our needs at a reasonable price. We are extremely pleased with our decision!! I would highly recommend Charleston to prospective buyers- especially first timers, the entire staff is great and easy to work with!
A special thank you to Sandy and Lisa....thanks for putting up with us through the entire process - we wouldn't have been able to do it without you!!!!!
Kathy and Gary
May 1, 2012
The Charleston Company Builders
We want to let you know how much we are enjoying our new home in Southern Hills. We are pretty well settled in now and really appreciate the beauty of the setting of our new home and the quality workmanship evident in it.
When we decided we were moving back to Virginia we looked at several locations and builders, some small local builders, some national ones. After a lot of thought and thorough research, we decided that Charleston was giving us the most for our money, and we liked the idea of dealing with a local builder. Sandy, Barbara and Sheila all did their parts in helping make our move to Virginia and the building process easier.
We have built several homes over the years, and we feel that Charleston Co. has been by far the best builder we have ever worked with. Sandy and Lisa especially went out of their way for us in guiding our decisions as we went through the process from lot and floorplan selection to the many changes and upgrades we finally decided on. There was never a "we don't do that" in our conversations, only a "let me find out how we can get this done for you" attitude demonstrated by everyone we had contact with. The result is a home we love and we¡¯re sure to be happy in for years to come.
In closing, we would like to say it has been a pleasure working with everyone at Charleston Co. Your company is the friendliest and most professional we have ever dealt with. Please feel free to use us as a reference in marketing your new homes.
-Jim and Sandi B.
May 4, 2012
14 months ago this was all a dream. With your patience and guidance you helped me, the boys, and Michelle to achieve our dream.
There are not enough words to express my thanks to you and the Charleston Company. The Charleston Company has exceeded my expectations. The Charleston company from top to bottom is truly a class act.
To: Ms. Barbara words cannot express the way we all feel about you, we love you.
February 1, 2011
Dear Sandy and the Charleston Company,
I wanted to write you a letter and express how happy we are with our new home. You helped make our transition from Hawaii to the East Coast a pleasant one.
The Charleston Company and Sandy Norwich, the sales manager, was with us every step of the home buying process. We were able to select every color and item in our home. At first, we were hesitant to move to a rural area. However, after living there for several months now, we are so happy we did. Westbury is a very quiet community with many families. Because we are a small community everyone is friendly with each other. The local area is already expanding before our eyes. We now have a ¡°restaurant row¡± with many new places to eat and a Wal-Mart super center that will be opening up this summer. However, we are only 30 minutes from the hustle-bustle of the big city.
During the home buying process, we were given a tour of our new home and a detailed explanation of how everything worked. Our house turned out beautiful. One overlooked benefit of buying a home from Charleston Company is the typical amount of land that comes with the house. We have been able to do many things with our backyard because it is so huge!
I highly recommend Charleston Company to any prospective home buyers, especially 1st timers. Sandy, as well as her whole staff, is awesome and very easy to work with. Thanks for everything!
-Alexander and Esmeralda F.
We decided on Charleston for two reasons initially. First, they went out of their way to help educate and support us doing our home construction experience. Second, they provided a very competitive price compared with other quotes we received on our custom home design. They were also more than willing to provide their experienced opinion throughout the process. While they may not have initially known all the answers to our more vague questions, they strove to find them in a timely manner. When it came to the actual construction process, everything went fairly well. In fact, we¡¯d say extremely well considering it was a custom built home. In the end, there were only a couple of minor problems which were quickly worked out.
At this point, we could go into the all specifics about the house, but we¡¯ll keep it simple. It yawned at the recent Earthquake, slept thru the tsunami, and because we had it built in Stafford we didn¡¯t even hear about the flood until a few days later. The few bugs we¡¯ve seen since moving in were quickly remedied by Charleston. Finally, one of the most impressive bits of news has been our electric bill. Charleston helped get the home an Earthcraft Certification for energy efficiency and we weren¡¯t expecting too much considering how many windows we have. We were hoping the certification would balance out the windows. However, we were shocked when this new house has been costing us on average 30% less in energy bills a month compared to our old house which was half the size.
February 21, 2011
Dear Sandy and the Charleston Company,
My wife Jennifer and I would just like to say thank you for building our new home. We have been in our new home for about 4 months now and truly love it.
When we started looking for a new home in February 2010, we weren't completely sure where to begin. All we knew was that we wanted to be in the King George area of Virginia. After performing some research and checking the BBB, we decided on the Charleston Company. And we are sure glad we did! We went and talked with Sandy and Barbara and came away knowing that the Charleston Company was going to be our choice for building our new home. We then spent a day walking through the woods in Southern Hills with Sandy and Danna to try and decide on a lot! Rain and mud couldn¡¯t keep all of us from finding the lot we wanted.
Through all of the building process, Sandy kept us informed of every detail along the way. Every month we visited Sandy and Barbara and went over the details of the building process. Lisa provided us with a very thorough walk-thru and we came away knowing that we were receiving a quality product.
All in all, we had a pleasant adventure in buying our new home from the Charleston Company and would highly recommend them to anybody looking for a custom home, not a ¡®mass, cookie-cutter¡¯ home builder.
-Glenn & Jennifer M.
Dear Charleston Company - Dana, Sandy, Lisa, and all the wonderful people I've met along the journey to our new home.
I just wanted to say thank you for making our dream home a reality! We had a lot of options out there and are so glad we chose a custom builder with the integrity that people wish for but rarely find.
The Charleston Company made me feel like I was family, not just another client. Through the whole process, Sandy Norwich continually updated me and researched more things than a sales manager ever wants to :)
However, she always did it with a smile.
We were so specific and knew exactly what we wanted. We also changed floor plans around on top of everything else. During this whole process Sandy and Lisa were very patient. These ladies did not stop until we were truly happy.
But I guess that's what happens when women are running things :)
I will recommend Charleston to anyone who is looking to build a new home. Charleston is "NOT" your cookie cutter builder. They built us a house, we made a home, and the friendships we made along the way were just a bonus!
I know I would not have had this same experience with any other builder!
February 13, 2011
I'm writing this letter to thank everyone (Lisa Ogelsby, Scott Cleveland, and Sandy Norwich) who was involved in the process of building my new home. Just love my new home and the neighborhood that I'm living in.
I've been the owner of several homes and this was the first time I've been involved in the construction process. Being a single woman, I was a little nervous about such an undertaking. Sandy Norwich, the sales manager for Charleston Builders, made the entire process so easy. I don't know what I would have done if it weren't for her. She kept me on schedule and informed every step of the way.
I wouldn't hesitate to recommend Charleston Builders to my friends and family.
Thanks so much for all that you do to go above and beyond the call of duty.
-Mary Beth B.
Charlie and I wasnt to thank you for your guidance and PATIENCE during the process of building our new home. from the moment we met you we knew instinctively that you were someone we could comfortably work with.
You were correct the other day- it WAS New Year's Eve when we happened upon you and the model home at Everette Estates. It seems like yesterday!
Thanks especially for your enthusiasm - your emails were always so positive and reassuring. You helped us remain confident that we would ultimately reach our goal. We honestly LOVE our new home!!!
So, in addition to our Italian basket of goodies, we offer an "Italian night out" for you and your husband. Please enjoy dinner on us!
Multe grazie e cento anni*
Thank you very much (multe grazie),
-Charlie and Claudette B.
* "cento anni" is a popular Italian toast which translates to "May you live a hundred years!"
¡°You'll find that the Charleston Company is a friendly family and a 'family-friendly' builder.
Our credentials were not perfect, our timing was tight, and our lender was a pain, but the friendly faces of the Charleston Company were always there, from the point of signing our contract, through our picky preferences in design, to our move-in and through the first year of sub-contractors tweeking things to be just right. Not all builders- I hear from my neighbors- area as reliable as the Charleston Company on follow-through.
I'm sorry to say that we will be moving again to Chicago. It's too bad that the Charleston Company can't build this same home for us there.¡±
"Thank you so much for all of your help. Joseph and myself would like to give each of you a hundred hugs and kisses, you made our home buying experience so easy. We put off buying a home because we thought that it was going to be a long and hard process. I can say that the Charleston Company made our assumption wrong and we are glad that we bought our first home with you."
My wife and I give a high recommendation to Charleston Company Builders for the "quality" of custom homes they build. This is our second home we have built with Charleston Company Builders, and were pleased with both. We realize that no builder is perfect in construction of new homes, but some are better than others. Charleston delivers quality homes and My wife and I would recommend Charleston as a "good start" for first time home owners and second. The Everette Estates is a small wonderful community, and we enjoy living there very much.
-Benjamin and Pannee W.
"We moved here because:
-Ray & Debbie
- We outgrew our previous house.
- We¡¯ve been looking in King George for sometime because of the ¡®small town¡¯ feel.
- We liked Wendover Square because it¡¯s small and convenient to stores and schools.
- We LOVED your house plans and the ability to customize.
- The lots were big enough and private.
- We liked the variety of houses built in the neighborhood (not cookie cutters).
- Charleston Builders were helpful and answered all our questions and concerns through the whole process."
"I just wanted to thank you for having such a professional Realtor in Sandy Norwich. From the beginning, Sandy lightened up my interest in buying the property from the planning process including mortgage alternatives and building choices that I was able to consider along with all the details the process itself involves. I called Sandy two weeks ago and asked her for your names because I truly wanted to let you know what a valuable asset she is for your company.
I also wanted to tell you how impressed I am with the building quality you are offering. I am looking forward to buying one of your homes in the near future".
"My husband and I wanted to contact you in regards to your new home salesperson, Sandy Norwich. We have been looking for a home since December and have seen some Charleston homes several times; unfortunately, due to price and location, we were not able to build with Charleston, but Sandy was one of the most professional and courteous salespersons we¡¯ve ever dealt with. She took her time in answering all our questions, and even after we did put a contract on another home, she congratulated us and wished us the best.
We will definitely recommend our friends to Charleston for their quality of work and their salespeople."
-Barbara and Paul G.
"I live in Lake Land'or in one of your homes. As a first time homeowner, it has been a very good experience. We have had issues but they all have been taken care of in a very timely manner. Your employee, Angel Utt has been such a help to me. She is very efficient and anything that I have wanted to know or have a question about, she has found an answer for me. You are very fortunate to have an employee like her. Whenever I have any problems. I come to her, because I know she will get the job done.
I know a lot of times all you hear are problems, but I wanted to let you know something good. Thank you for the services that she supplies.
"We will continue to spread the word among our friends, neighbors and co-workers of the wonderful home you have built for us"
-Valerio and Sonia V.
"I am writing to praise Sandy Norwich for her outstanding work in our purchase of our home in the River Club Development. Sandy's energetic efforts to bring us back to Charleston after our initial visit were essential to our decision to become Charleston customers. She stayed in constant contact with us after our first visit. Her phone calls were designed to let us know that she was there for us, to help us find what we wanted. Needless to say, many salespeople were in contact with us during that period, but Sandy stood out far and away as the most genuine, helpful and committed salesperson.
We knew more than anything else that we did not want a "cookie-cutter" home and we had special needs that only a builder who cared enough to listen and be flexible could meet. Sandy embodied that ability and we chose Charleston largely for that reason. It is service such as hers, that brings customers back again and which spreads the word about your great work. I refer everyone to Charleston now!"
-Annie K. & Eliott C.