Dave Mitchell, Mitchell Associates Architects

Mitchell Associates Architects has worked with Key Builders for more than ten years on design-build commercial and industrial construction projects.

Q: How did you first come in contact with Key Builders?

A: Through a CECO building representative. He basically put the two of us together. I was looking for someone in need of an architect who does design-build construction work. That is mostly what we do together is design-build construction.

Q: What are the benefits of design-build construction?

A: At the end of the day, design-build construction is the way to do things. Design-build streamlines the project, establishes construction project costs up-front, and helps meet the expectations of the client.

When it comes to design-bid-build, the client may actually go with the low bid, but then it may not be the lowest once construction is complete. But with design-build, we’re all working as a team with an overall budget and defined expectations from the beginning.

Q: From your perspective, what are Key Builder’s best qualities?

A: Customer service. Attention to detail. Their word. Their professionalism. It is a top-notch organization in the way that they do things.

Q: How does working with Key Builders make you feel?

A: It’s a great relationship that we have. I feel comfortable working with Key Builders, rather than working with a contractor on a bid-basis, because I know we’ll be working together to get the project built as a team. That’s what I enjoy the most.

Q: What is Key Builders like on price?

A: The problem with price and other firms is that the initial price and the final price are often not the same because of change orders. But with Key Builders, there are no surprises. The price needs to be refined during the decision-making process to ensure an “accurate” number. This is possible in a design-build scenario, as the design-builder or contractor is included from conception.

When Key Builders is involved, clients see what they’re paying for and they get what they pay for. With other firms, the owner may not know what they’re getting, they just know that it’s cheaper up-front. The approach Key Builders uses to present and provide cost and budget estimates is more cutting edge. When it comes to cost estimating and cost control, they are ahead of the curve.

Blake Dunn, President, CADM Architects

In 2006, Key Builders won a $1.2 million contract for the construction of Prophets Riverview, a 24,000 sq. ft. independent living / assisted living facility in Prophetstown, Illinois. CADM Architecture of El Dorado, Arkansas, was so pleased with the relationship and Key Builders’ work, that the firm has invited Key Builders to go on the road to Lodi, Wisconsin, to complete the renovation of a skilled care nursing facility.

Q: From your perspective, what are Key Builder’s best qualities? What differentiates them from their competition?

A: They are good all the way around. They are very helpful when the owner has questions or concerns about the project, and they are very accommodating about changes. They are also easy to communicate with and are very good at keeping the client informed about the status of the project. And of course, the quality of their work is very good. Compared to a lot of contractors, they make my job easy.

Q: What is Key Builders like on price, in comparison with other firms?

A: They have been very competitive on price. In fact, on the two projects that they have been contracted on, they have been the most competitive price of all received. 

Q: Do you have a favorite experience in working with Key Builders?

A: They go that extra mile in dealing with things that may not be necessarily their responsibility, but because it would be in the best interest of the project to do so.

Q: How does working with Key Builders make you feel?

A: I enjoy working with them, because I know the people involved and the quality of their work. They will do everything they can to keep projects moving according to schedule. I also know that they will take action to deal with problems that arise during construction.