With so many real estate, design and building firms to choose from, selecting the right one can prove to be the most important part of your decision-making process.
Jeffrey Collé, known for designing and building luxury residential and commercial projects from Quogue to East Hampton offers some insights. His projects have included the total restoration of Maidstone Hall, the 16,000-square-foot historic mansion once owned by the Gardiner family; the record-breaking moving and renovation of a 20,000-square-foot mansion in Water Mill; and creating a recording studio for Billy Joel.
The Sotheby’s International team of Hamptons brokers, including Senior Global Advisor Beate Moore—the firm’s #1 agent in the Hamptons and #3 in the nation—are collaborating with Collé to make things easier for their clients by delivering a turnkey solution for buyers of custom estates. They are offering a one-stop solution for wealthy clients with myriad property needs.
Collé says, “The first thing I always ask clients is where they want to be in terms of location. Once I know that, we can discuss their budget and how that will work with their preferred location. It’s also important to know whether or not their home will be used all year long or only in the summer, because people’s needs can change depending on this, as well as how they like to live; if they prefer an open floor plan, or a traditional layout, for example. After that’s settled, we’ll usually drive around throughout the different areas and look at houses, which gives them a good opportunity to see different styles and determine what they like. I also ask them to flip through architecture and design magazines like Veranda, Architectural Record, Architectural Digest and Elle Décor and pick out interior and exterior components and details that stand out to them.”
“All of these steps help to determine what their preferences are and how we can create a custom home to highlight their personal taste,” Collé continues, “Prior to construction, we’ll discuss and select different styles of windows and doors, as well as flooring, tile, cabinetry and different finishes and materials.”
Location, location, location is key, and it can increase the value of a home for years to come. “The most important thing to consider is where they want to live. Whether they want to be north or south of the highway, close to town or the beaches, or have a bayfront, pond-front or oceanfront property will make a big impact on the next steps,” Collé says.
The timeline is also important to clients. With a reputable builder, you can be confident they will deliver. “The average time after the foundation is complete is about one year. The average time it takes to complete the design portion is three to four months,” Collé says. Moore points out, “You save time, time, time, and probably cost and potential aggravation, by sitting down with one experienced, knowledgeable individual who can make it happen.”
“[Choosing someone who is] both a master builder and designer with a proven track record of success can offer an excellent ‘shortcut’ to creating your vision, because you can work with him as a sole source for all of your design/construction needs, rather than working with several parties, including, an architect, designer, general contractor, etc.,” Moore adds.
When designing your home, research current trends. This can add value to your property and increase your asking price for future resale. “Some of the new trends in home design include outdoor rooms, home theaters and other special outdoor amenities. We are seeing keen interest in new construction versus antique/historic homes. Modern design is enjoying a renaissance,” Moore says.
To see additional examples of Jeffrey Collé’s work visit jeffreycolle.com.
To contact Beate Moore at Sotheby’s International, call 631-537-6000, 516-527-7868 or email her at