Thursday, August 17, 2017  



Turney & Turney Designer/Builders, Inc: An Affordable Twist on Custom Craftmanship

Envisioning the perfect home and seeing that vision come to fruition is one of life’s greatest pleasures. But in today’s economy consumers are necessarily becoming more cost conscious. With the cost of construction and materials continuing to rise, consumers need to respond to current economic conditions. For builders this means that cost efficiency is essential in their designs. For Turney and Turney Designer/Builders, Inc this means investigating a new way to cut costs but keep the high standard of craftsmanship their work embodies. So with determination and research, they set out to make custom building synonymous with affordability.

The Foundation of an Idea

In March 2011, Richard and Susan Turney traveled to Litchfield Beach, South Carolina on vacation. While walking on the beach one morning they came across an 8,000 sq. ft. home being built on the ocean front. This massive beauty had nine foot ceilings, arches with columns, custom cabinets with granite countertops, hard wood and tile floors. For an experienced custom builder, the detail and craftsmanship was nothing new, especially in a house as extravagant as this design. What did surprise the couple however, was that as they watched, 80% of the home was built before their eyes in one day. They had in fact stumbled upon what they believe to be the future in home building—custom factory built homes.

After seeing the potential for custom building to be more affordable, Richard, Susan, and and their son Matt spent the next year researching custom factory built homes. They traveled all over the east coast visiting plants in order to find “the best of the best” in custom modular building with one objective in mind: to combine the best of two worlds—the hands on of custom workmanship of their company with the quality and cost savings of factory built construction.

The Factory Built World

When first thinking about the world of modular homes, one prominent fact comes to mind—speed of construction. The misnomer however is that the speed of construction outweighs the craftsmanship and custom design quality of the home. With these modern modular homes you get the best of both worlds.

It takes approximately three to four months from start of construction to moving into your new home. This saves on the cost in a number of ways, one being the reduced accumulation of construction loan interest while the home is being finished. Due to the process of factory built homes, the building costs are also fixed which means no surprises and no overruns. With now being able to use custom designs in a factory setting, cost is also cut down by use of technology, environmentally controlled materials, quality control, and personalized options for the home owner. This allows craftsmanship and quality to play a prominent role without having to cut back due to costs.


In the last ten years CAD Design programs have become advanced enough that combined with architects and engineers, new doors have been opened allowing for top quality homes with sizes up to to 20,000 square feet to be achieved. With the modular home companies the Turney’s partner with, house plans can actually be sent straight to the factory where they will be engineered and built. Instead of the cookie cutter modular homes society is so accustomed to seeing and knowing about, these new factory built homes are actually custom designed to the desires of the client.


One major reason using a factory built home keeps costs down is materials. The huge buying power of these big modular home companies enables the manufacturer to dictate the quality standards needed for construction at a lower cost. The materials come from the mills straight to the factory where they are environmentally controlled. All wood is kiln-dried meaning that it has less than seventeen percent moisture content making all normal issues in the field, like warping, virtually nonexistent. This enables a quality of construction not available in the field.

Another way costs are cut on materials is by using large computerized saws. Using the CAD software, all measurements and specifications are entered into the computer system for exact cuts. The floor, wall, and roof systems are built in large jigs to ensure all construction is straight and square. Everything has to be square and straight for it to work so the jig only accepts good, straight materials. As the materials will later be transported, these systems and house sections are then assembled far above normal construction standards to enable them to be transported to the home site without damage.

Quality Control

Once cutting is complete and assembly begins, the home rolls down the assembly line where quality control is continuously maintained. Each worker signs off on all work that they have completed. There are also management teams who are supervising the construction at all times and making sure no step is skipped or slighted. As each home is built to the local building codes where the house will be located, certified inspectors scrutinize all parts of the building process throughout.

Going Green

Going green can be expensive, but not when it comes to factory built homes. These homes are “green by nature” due to the building process. The houses have thirty percent more material than the typical house, which adds strength and insulation. The exterior walls are 2 X 6 instead of your normal 2 X 4. All the plumbing and wiring connections are sealed with foam which is something that cannot be done in the field. The home is actually built from the inside out enabling all cracks and crevices to be sealed to decrease air flow.  An endless variety of green products are available depending on the customer’s preference.


Another way the modular home has become custom is that the home owner can choose the components of the house. Due to volume contracts with vendors, homeowners are able to get the volume discounts while still having a full range of products to choose from like windows, doors, flooring, cabinets, and a plethora of other elements. This allows the homeowner to control their budget with their choices. Again, large buying power ensures a great value.

Combining the Best of Both Worlds

Turney and Turney specializes in both custom homes and custom home renovations. In their eyes, modular construction is only the beginning. Their biggest focus is to provide the custom finishing touches that make the home special. Starting with the actual design they see every process through to ensure that the project is customized just the way the owner wants. With the introduction of the factory world into the custom building and renovation setting, they are able to build new homes—or additions to match the current design of the house—saving overall cost and time of completion without sacrificing quality of craftsmanship.

Due to their extensive experience and knowledge, Turney and Turney Designer/Builders, Inc is able to facilitate every facet of the process. They take care of everything starting with design and ending with a satisfied customer. From the onset, Turney & Turney makes sure that the factory built portion is constructed perfectly to the home owners wishes by using the customers personal plans and ideas, or one of over one hundred plans that Turney and Turney has available. They also work with local architects in the design process depending on the needs of the client. They then take care of all details of the construction process including all lot preparation, well and septic installation—even the final landscaping of the property. With this hands on approach from the early stages of design to completion, they personally supervise the house from beginning to end.

Richard, Susan, and Matt like to think of the custom modular as the “guts” of the house and once assembled they provide additional exterior and interior customization. One of the many advantages of this company is that they provide all encompassing services that would typically require multiple contractors. Some of these elements include porches, decks, garages, hard scape stone work and custom siding on the outside. They also specialize in arches, columns, tray ceilings, built-ins and custom trim on the inside. Custom kitchens, bathrooms, and flooring are the norm not the exception for all their renovations and homes.

With twenty five years of experience building and renovating homes, Turney and Turney have found that custom modular homes and additions are a great option to serve their clients with quicker completion time and overall savings, especially in today’s economy. With quality construction in any price range and fixed pricing with no surprises and no overruns, the Turney’s allow their customers total flexibility to customize their homes to their needs. Turney and Turney Designer/Builders, Inc.’s unique ability of combining custom homes with production quality control, cost savings, and the means to complete construction in only three to four months, makes them the perfect choice for all your home building needs.

Turney and Turney Designers/Builders, Inc is comprised of Richard and Susan Turney and their son Matt. They have experience in home building and renovations of twenty five years. Turney and Turney is a member of the Rappahannock Home Builders Association, the Lancaster by the Bay Chamber of Commerce and a proud member of the Green Builders Association. They also participate in Habitat for Humanity. They currently service the areas of the Northern Neck and Middle Peninsula, Richmond city and the surrounding areas. Richard and Susan currently live in Kilmarnock, Va. For more information visit their website at www.turneyandturney.com and/or to contact for services please call 804-435-2767 or e-mail at turneyandturney@gmail.com.


Written by Kate Tressler