The company has been a valuable member of the organisation, entering and succeeding in the Registered Master Builders PlaceMakers House of the Year for a number of years, and taking on a range of apprentices who have gone on to enter the Registered Master Builders Carters Apprentice of the Year competition.
BJ Carter Ltd first entered the House of the Year competition in 2002, winning regional awards up until 2010.
It was in 2010 that the company won its first National Award, the PlaceMakers Heart of the Home Kitchen Award for a stunning home in Queenstown.
The home was designed as a relaxing getaway for family and friends, and the winning kitchen was placed and finished to serve as an important social hub within the home.
The five metre-long bench underscores the kitchen’s spaciousness, providing an extensive workspace, and the joinery is styled on large Victorian Ash panels with not-so-much as a handle to break the clean lines.
Competition judges were blown away by the joiner’s crafting of the exquisite kitchen.
“The joinery integrates beautifully and consistently with quality joinery throughout the home, with high levels of craftsmanship in the timber and faultless invisible work,” judges said.
“Not only beautifully designed and crafted, this is a functional kitchen that is very much the heart of the home.”
BJ Carter Ltd managing director James Carter believes the workmanship, uniqueness and complexity of the kitchen is what made it a winner.
“It was quite a complex kitchen to fit, and had a lot of negative detailing where it had to be fitted up against concrete walls and into the glass windows. I have to give praise to the guys who made it all work out,” Mr Carter says.
This year BJ Carter Ltd has entered the House of the Year competition again, submitting a property in Waikiwi, Invercargill, in the New Homes $600,000 – $1million category. The property has already won its category and taken out a Gold Award in the Southern region.
If the home is one of the top 125 Gold Awards across the country, it will become a Gold Reserve finalist and will then be re-judged by a new national judging panel, which will determine the National winners.
“This house has a unique design, and we’ve played around with a lot of old and new materials. But at the end of the day, it is the workmanship that helped us win the regional award,” Mr Carter says.
“We’ve done a lot of hand scribing and a lot of timber finishing, so you can’t hide anything with a coat of paint,” he says.
Mr Carter says the awards have definitely helped his company to win business, and advises other builders to put their best foot forward and enter.
“It is a big ask. You’re putting yourself on the line, but even if you get a bronze, remember you’re still 50% above industry standard,” Mr Carter says.
“I think your clients feel proud that you feel proud of the project, and that you’ve taken accountability for what you’ve done. No matter whether you build a mailbox or a palace, it’s got to be 100% right, because you’re only as good as your last job,” he says.
Mr Carter describes BJ Carter Ltd as a traditionalist building company. The builders pour concrete floors, cut their own framing, and fit their own roofs and Gib board.
“We don’t subcontract anything out. We have always been into employing apprentices, and we succeed because our guys are all-rounders and take pride in what they do.”