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Hillcrest Custom Homes

Thank you for your interest in learning about Hillcrest Custom Homes! We are proud to introduce you to our philosophy and want to assure you that our entire team is committed to working for you to create your dream home. We hope the information we share on this web site will entice you to visit us to discuss how we can be of service.


By definition, design is the driver behind a remodeling project, and we would like to present our thoughts on how design fits into the process of creating your dream home with Hillcrest.

What is Custom?

There is a wide spectrum within the custom home category. Many of our customers started their process by examining "standard" plans, either from Hillcrest or elsewhere, and concluded that their design objectives were best met by a custom design approach. Typical design objectives are driven by the desire for unique appearance, specific functionality, or simply to obtain a high level of luxury. In addition, specific features or constraints of the land frequently drive customization for our clients.

Architect or In-House Design?

We offer total flexibility in our approach to the design process. We work with architects and design consultants already chosen by our customers or can recommend an architect based on the specific design criteria and vision of our customer. Just as often, our customer simply sits down with our in-house team consisting of our designer, our President and our sales consultant to develop the concept. This approach offers an efficient and cost effective alternative that has elated many of our satisfied customers.

Interior Design

As with the architectural design, we are completely flexible when it comes to interior design. When working with the customer's designer, we can either source and install based on the designer's specifications or simply set aside allowances for certain items (such as specialty faucets) to be sourced by the designer and installed by us. Alternatively, we offer a wide array of samples for exterior and interior finishes and fixtures in our Hillcrest Design Center. Our in-house designer provides excellent assistance with selections. Our process offers the convenience of all-in-one-place selections samples so you can concentrate on expressing your style, not running from one show-room to the next. Sometimes customers use our Selections Center for the majority of their choices and a third party interior designer for other elements.

Product Knowledge

Designing a custom home avails our customers of a vast array of construction methods and recently developed technologies. At Hillcrest, we offer our experience and thorough analysis of alternative products and methods. As an example, we offer deep expertise in the so-called "green" area. While the objective of "green" is simple, the analysis of cost vs. benefit is complex. The prioritization and assessment of energy-efficiency choices is an example of what makes Hillcrest stand out. So, for questions such as windows, HVAC design or home automation, Hillcrest will share its analysis and recommendation to guide its customers in reaching the right decision based on aesthetics, performance and budget considerations.

Land Considerations

Buying a lot or a piece of land is obviously an integral part of creating the dream home.  With our broad experience both developing land and building homes on lots ranging from raw land to city tear-down, we can add significant value to a wide range of issues such as zoning and permitting, DNR approvals, home placement and lot improvements. We are happy to assist before the land is purchased on a free-of-charge consultative basis to help avoid surprises later during design and construction. Hillcrest Realty can assist with the actual purchase process and negotiations as well.


Our trade partners are proud to work on Hillcrest Custom Homes. Our long standing relationships are based on respect and the shared vision of creating the perfect home for our customers. Hillcrest is not confined by the skills of in-house trades. Rather, we select from a large stable of specialty trades to achieve the "best of breed". We review all our work and invite our customers to participate in this process to any extent desired.

Cost Effectiveness and Predictability

At Hillcrest, we use a different approach to costing and pricing than most custom home builders. For the most part, we leverage our purchasing power and formula-based costing from our pre-priced home plan division. This translates to a significant price advantage for our customers. Because of this formula-based approach, we find our customers can include more items from their wish-list and have a high degree of confidence about the total cost – something the residential construction industry is not renowned for. In terms of pricing, while we accommodate customers who request a "cost-plus" approach, the majority of our customers take advantage of the Hillcrest up-front pricing which creates more certainty.

Construction Timing

Scheduling custom home projects is not an exact science. Planning, trade resource availability, weather, materials delivery, and other factors are part of the mix. At Hillcrest, we consider the commitment to the promised delivery date a critical component of customer satisfaction. Our staff and trade partners have developed processes that make our record of on-time delivery a source of pride.