Home Building Project- Purchasing Fiberglass Door Materials

Tom Quackenbush, the managing partner at Glenwood Homes, responded to one main observation when he founded a homebuilding company that strives to balance quality results, functional floorplans, and reasonable prices. What did he observe? A lack of new, single-family homes in Raleigh, N.C., that were at the right price point for the average family.

When Glenwood Homes opened its doors in 2017, its staff members brought with them decades of experience, along with existing supplier relationships that had been carefully crafted over time.

Currently, the company’s team of four builders and four staff members constructs 250 single-family homes each year. “We are able to build high-quality homes in an affordable price range because of the connections we’ve built,” says Guy Dark, purchasing manager for Glenwood Homes. “For this reason, we’ve been profitable from day one. We build nice, spacious homes that aren’t caught up in overly fancy trends.”

Responsible for procuring building materials—from windows and doors to lighting and appliances—Dark nurtures lasting supplier relationships and secures pricing that gives Glenwood Homes an edge. Many of the company’s partnerships are based on connections Dark created years ago when he worked for other builders.

Although price may be what attracts homeowners, Dark says it’s the high level of service that keeps them happy—and Glenwood Homes can only offer that level of service through trusted relationships with vendors.

“We use name-brand products because brand recognition sells homes and drives sales,” he explains. “I’m always on the hunt for better products that fit into my budget. You find that sweet spot with a vendor that puts out a quality product you can afford—and they stand behind it.”

The company’s partnership with Plastpro is a prime example: After learning about Plastpro at a tradeshow nearly a decade ago, Dark was intrigued by the manufacturer’s fiberglass entry doors. He got to know the company and its products, did some negotiating, and decided to give the doors a try.

“The quality of the doors was equal to or even better than what we were using at the time,” he explains. “The pricing is good, the styles we need are there, their supply chain is good, they can get the product out to distributors and installers, and they always stand behind their doors.”

Today, he feels so strongly about the partnership that, when he was searching for a new lumber supplier, Dark had one stipulation: If the new lumber supplier wanted to work with Glenwood Homes, then it had to use Plastpro doors.

After getting its start in Raleigh, Glenwood Homes has now expanded into the Greensboro/Winston-Salem area and is moving toward the East Coast. By next year, Dark says the company plans to ramp up to 350 units per year. Connections with vendors like Plastpro will be even more crucial to maintain the balance between competitive pricing and superior quality.

“Relationships are the key to this business,” says Dark, “especially on the purchasing end. I have trade partners that have been with me for 30 years. We take good care of our partners, and they take good care of us.”

Originally Published by Architect Magazine:


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