December 2019

The Name Says It All: For owners Kevin and Lisa Lapinski, Built Right isn’t just a name. It’s a promise.

Author: Barry Kaufman | Photographer: M.Kat Photography


For owners Kevin and Lisa Lapinski, Built Right isn’t just a name. It’s a promise.

For 27 years, Captain John Liberty has served on the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Force with distinction. The head of the LVMPF’s largest command, he’s overseen an elite force tasked with handling nearly 105,000 separate calls each year in a town where the world comes to indulge in some of the most sinful vices known to man. The point being, when he retires in a year and half, it will be well earned. And when he retires, he’ll be heading down to Barton’s Run, to a home built with the utmost care.

“That’s my dream house. I think about it every day,” he said. “And I wanted to make sure that house was designed correctly.”

Operating across 2,500 miles and three time zones meant that Liberty needed to be selective about who he worked with. As such, he started his journey with a list of 15 different builders, a list that was quickly whittled down to zero. “None of them seemed to really want to build my house; they wanted to build a house for me. There’s a big difference between the two.”

That brought him to Built Right Homes. Liberty knew right away he’d found his builder. “After talking to Kevin Lapinski, we hit it off, and I got that feeling that he was really listening to me,” Liberty said. “He wanted to build my house, not just a house.”

Creating that feeling, letting people know they’re truly being listened to, is just step one in the Built Right Homes process. “The most important thing we do is listen,” said Kevin, who owns the business with his wife Lisa. “We work very hard on earning people’s trust.”

And earning that trust goes far beyond that first phone call.

A penchant for planning
Sit down with Kevin and Lisa Lapinski and talk to them about their business and how it started, and you’ll soon find out how vitally important early planning is. Even starting Built Right Homes as it exists today was a meticulously deliberate process of nearly five years.

“We first moved here 12 years ago,” Lisa said. “Kevin spent nearly five years framing and installing exterior siding because we wanted to get acclimated to the area.”

While framing and siding, Kevin found himself more and more as the face of the operation, dealing directly with clients, architects and inspectors on every job. As his profile grew, he also found himself at the center of a network of vendors and professionals he could trust.

“We wanted to feel like we had a good team around us before we really got started, and we’ve done that,” he said. With the team in place, it was time to add the key ingredient: Lisa. Having distinguished herself in the corporate world, Lisa’s singular talent for design, informed by the Southern manors around which she grew up, was in need of an outlet. The husband and wife duo made it official, and Lisa took point on design, finishes and communications.

And careful planning doesn’t just apply to their launching of Built Right Homes five years ago. Handling major stressors up front is a big part of the Built Right difference. “We do a lot of due diligence,” Kevin said. “Planning, selections, all of it’s done up front. We like to come up with a lump sum contract and stick with it so there are no surprises at the end.

Planning starts before the first hammer is swung. Whether building in Barton’s Run, Hampton Hall, Rose Hill Plantation, Historical Old Town Bluffton or Palmetto Bluff, Kevin has worked hand in hand with municipalities and ARBs to streamline the process. “We have great relationships with all the municipalities we work with,” Lisa said. “By the time we’re done, they’re thanking Kevin for doing all the paperwork right.”

“If you do your job, they like you,” Kevin said. “It’s that simple.” That’s as true with municipalities and ARBs as it is with clients.


It’s that simple
During construction of Liberty’s home, Kevin was on site nearly every day, ensuring that everything was completed to exceed expectations. “He was really willing to take the time with me,” Liberty said. That ran the gamut from regular updates to the always popular weekly event they started calling “picture day” every Friday. With Liberty half a world away, his only visibility into the project came from photos that Kevin and Lisa would send him as regular as clockwork.

“With the three-hour time difference, at 6:05 every Friday he was getting a phone call because I was excited to see pictures,” Liberty said with a laugh.

Beyond constant communications, there are so many aspects of the experience that Liberty points to in order to underscore his immense satisfaction. The budget they set at the beginning was treated like gospel, with only minimum changes by Liberty. And when there were surprises, they were only the best, like when Kevin asked to show off his skills with the gorgeous two-tone coffered ceiling in the living room.

“Every step of the way, there was just nothing but craftsmanship,” Liberty said.

Building relationships
When the Lapinskis launched Built Right Homes, they knew they were entering a crowded field of quality builders, and they knew standing out was crucial. Beyond careful planning and dedicated craftsmanship, they knew it was the relationships built that would create the strongest foundation for their business.

“We’re very hands-on with every client we have,” Lisa said. “We don’t just talk about their home; we talk about their vision and how they see themselves living in this house.”

“She’s almost like a therapist,” Kevin said with a laugh. “It’s really a deep dive into their life.”

Whether they’re building relationships or building a home, the underlying philosophy is the same. If it’s going to be built well, it first has to be built right. 

For more information, visit builtrighthomesbluffton.com or call (843) 297-7033

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