Last time we sat down with Doug Buer, President of Buer Homes, Inc., he was telling us about the upcoming Northern Colorado Home Builders Association 2018 Parade of Homes, in which he had an entry. How did things go for him in that Parade?
“Let’s just say awards night was a lot of fun,” he laughed. Doug is not sure if he will have a home in the Parade of Homes this year, saying, “We are still contemplating whether or not we’ll have a home in the right stage of completion to enter, and while we could enter one that’s not complete, we struggle with that, since our focus on detail is what usually draws people to tour our entries.”
Buer Homes’ 35th anniversary is September 1. Doug says that he has been able to weather challenging times over the years and keep his business strong because he is able to do a lot of the work on his projects himself if the need arises. He learned everything from the ground up, and can step in at any phase.
Design and Build
Buer Homes handles most of its home design in-house, although if someone has their own plan they want to build, Doug’s happy to do that too. Buer’s custom designs reflect what they’ve discovered by listening carefully to what buyers want. Doug tracks industry trends to keep abreast of market changes and new products, and works hard to take a plan and a piece of land and make each home as special as he can.
“We look for great lots with great views and then design our homes to capture everything we can of those views. We’re starting a two-story spec home on a two-acre lot in Berthoud; it has the most incredible views and the house itself is going to be spectacular. For someone who wants to have a more country feel with a little more elbow room, that house will be a great choice. It’s right down the street from the new Heron Lakes TPC golf course too, so it’s a great location. But, for someone who wants to be closer to the action, yet still go home to a view of the beautiful Colorado sunsets, we’re starting a spec on our last lot in Thompson Crossing II, right behind Scheels. The location has a beautiful view and is close to the freeway and to all of the shops and restaurants of Centerra, so it’s a little more urban, if you want to call it that.”
Buer Homes also builds on land that buyers own. From two side-by-side 40-acre lots in Sedona Hills for father and son, to family Boyd Lake acreage, to 35 acres of sweeping mountain views in Livermore, they design and build all over Northern Colorado.
Doug personally manages all of his builds, and each project is a family affair: his son, Jared, is his site supervisor, while his brother, Mitch and Mitch’s son, Garrett, craft the beautiful trim you see in all Buer homes. Doug and Jared showcase their craftsmanship occasionally, too.
“Recently, our designer wanted arched beams in the living room of a spec home. I checked into buying them and couldn’t find anything that looked the way we wanted them to, so my son and I made them. It’s satisfying to make beautiful accent pieces like that and see them transform the home with that special added touch,” Doug says.
Doug relies on strong, long-term relationships with his subcontractors and suppliers to produce quality. “I know that no matter what comes up, these folks have my back, and that’s what really matters.”
What attracts buyers to Buer Homes? Doug says, “People are more savvy shoppers these days than they’ve ever been. We credit the internet and all its real estate and design resources for that. But trends aside, most people are looking for quality and they can see it in what we do, so even though I’m probably never the least expensive build, people appreciate what we put into our homes.”
And, he says, he is up-front with potential buyers on what it will take to build for them. He does not take every project that comes his way; instead, he does his best to assess whether he feels a relationship is the right “fit,” for him and the buyer.
Buer’s Commitment to his Industry
“I find myself more involved with the Home Builder’s Association (HBA) every day, and not just for the recognition from Parade awards,” he laughs. “We’re constantly battling the regulations, code changes and legislation that affect our industry and keep us from accomplishing, at any price level, a key goal of the association: attainable housing.
“The HBA is here for all of us— homebuilders, subcontractors and suppliers alike—which is why I like to do business with HBA members: They know why they’re paying those dues every year. This year in particular, the HBA is the reason that during the COVID-19 shutdown, building and related businesses were declared essential. And we thank each and every person working in local, state and national positions and all of those who support HBA with their memberships.”
Doug, a past Chair of NOCO HBA, still serves on the Board of Directors at local, state and national levels as well as serving on several committees. He knows how important it is to stay involved and pay his dues with more than an annual check.
Built by Buer
Doug strives for excellence in all of his homes; after all, his name is on them—and that name lives on. When he worked for Pat Powers in the early 80s, they did a lot of work for Homes by Holtz and Doug remembers the status that the name conveyed, how it was used to resell homes for years after. He is proud to say that his name is used in resale listings now the same way, something that tells him he is doing things right.