Washburn Construction was recently featured in Luxury Homes Quarterly for their outstanding work in coastal construction. Here is an excerpt from the article:
"Building coastal homes is in the blood of Steve Washburn, owner and president of Washburn Construction located in Quonochontaug, Rhode Island. Specializing in second family homes for clients from New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and California to Florida, Washburn Construction has been crafting coastal vacation homes for nearly half a century. Washburn’s father started the business in the 1950s and the tradition is being passed down to a third generation, through Washburn’s three sons who also work in the family business.
The longevity of Washburn is attributed to the systematic schedule essential to building homes within the popular vacation spot. The time between Memorial Day and Labor Day is prime summer time for coastal living. So much so that large construction work is not permitted during June, July and August. To ensure the satisfaction and happiness of owners, “Our philosophy is to get jobs done right, on time by following a regimented schedule,” states Washburn. That means construction for these unique homes, which must be built to withstand hurricane-force winds, must be completed in roughly nine months. Hurricane proofing includes roofs that are anchored through to the foundation, high-impact windows, stainless steel nails and mini-septic treatment systems for each home.
Building homes in an environmentally sensitive area requires an in-depth understanding of the engineering, survey, architectural and legal issues inherent to the process. More than just a construction company, Washburn is also a neighbor on the coast, providing an uncanny perspective and commitment to building homes that will endure the elements.
One of Washburn’s recently completed projects, Rhode Island Cottage, was finished with all the safety details to withstand hurricane-force winds, and refined with natural stone, light fixtures from old steamships and a lush landscape. “The Rhode Island Cottage is a quaint cottage, perfect for the family in coloring, size and detail,” says Washburn. The 3,000-square-foot home has three bedrooms, two-and-a-half baths, a small wine cellar, and includes a pool house that doubles as a guest cottage. The backyard pool is kidney-shaped, framed by a stone deck with a path that leads to the main house. The site is picturesque, with the feel of a larger home, taking advantage of the beauty of the area.
“We are best known for the amount of stonework we incorporate into our homes, the masonry and hardscaping set our designs apart,” says Alex Michelman, project manager. Yet, even more vital is the way Washburn Construction builds homes. To stay on schedule, Washburn has a full complement of trades in-house. From electrical to mechanical to plumbing to carpentry, the Washburn construction process is completed on-site. “Having our own trades gives us complete control over the timetable, which can be impeded when you have to wait for an electrician or plumber to complete another job,” states Washburn. “Despite careful planning, you don’t know how jobs are going to flow. We are able to eliminate further delays because we can send our crew out as the project dictates,” explains Michelman.
Yet it is Washburn’s commitment to Old World artisan craftsmanship that sets the company apart. Washburn not only crafts cabinetry and other built-ins, they also build raised-panel doors with attention to detail that produce works of art that are timeless. Other signature details of a Washburn designed and constructed home are the stone walls and archways that accentuate the architectural features of the design. “We also make sure our homes take advantage of the lifestyle of the region, such as clamming, scalloping and fishing,” remarks Washburn. “For example, the Rhode Island Cottage has a fish cleaning station outside.”
From excavation to stonework to handcrafted original woodworking, Washburn Construction is creating homes that are tough enough to withstand the elements and beautiful for the most discerning eye. “Building homes is not just a job. I get excited with every new project,” concludes Washburn."