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Awarded Best Accessible Residential Home in NC

November 8, 2019 2:57 pm Published by Leave your thoughts

Durham REALTORCollins Design-Build, Inc. was recently honored with a 2019 STARS Award presented by the North Carolina Home Builders Association, at the annual STARS Awards Gala. Awarded Best Accessible Residential Home. This award is a strong testament to Chad’s commitment for home plans and features that are accessible to all.

The Rutherford Manor Castle is just under 5,000 heated square feet. Dubbed Durham’s First Castle, the social photos during construction were a hit. The exterior architecture style is French Country. Like a real castle with turrets, all stone exterior, dark bronze casement windows and an oversized three bay courtyard style garage.

The interior architecture style of this home is inviting, modern and open. The Rutherford Manor castle is built on a maturely wooded 10 acre estate overlooking the South Fork Little River. A Certified Natural Wildlife Habitat, the home is an ENERGY STAR Qualified home and met the stringent National Green Building Standard earning a Silver Certification. The HERS Index Score for this home is 62. Green home features include Sealed Crawl Space, Advanced Framing Practices, Manual J Calculated HVAC Systems, Energy Recovery Ventilator and Spray Foam Insulation.

The design appeal of the home, aside from the wow factor of the exterior, are the open rooms. The family room boasts twenty-five foot tall ceilings, a wrought iron balcony railing and oversized windows for natural light.

The home features Creative use of Interior Space in many ways. One feature that is growing in popularity and allowed us to be recently featured in a national publication is the pet washing station. It’s basically an elevated shower that allows you to wash your pets with ease. …All castles have one.

Creative integration of plan design includes the clients love for plants. So much so, we installed a hose bib in the interior rooms to allow for an interior means of watering plants.

Sites considerations include the Aging in Place zero entry design. The no step design is almost an engineering marvel with a house plan seventy feet wide and over a hundred feet long. The home is custom designed into the land as if the foundation blossomed up from the Earth non-invasively and perfectly blending in with the surrounding lay of the land preserving the indigenous surrounding trees and plants on the river.

Aging in Place building practices are design elements that allow one to have a full range of mobility no matter the task. The core “basic” elements are incorporated; items like wider doorways, level style door handles, and bathroom grab bar blocking.






The Rutherford Manor took Aging in Place to the next level by utilizing deeper elements of Universal Design Principles. We mapped out and designed electrical devices at an adaptable operation. We utilized softer sconce lighting in lieu of harsher overhead lighting. After research, we learned there are shades of blue that thwart eyestrain causing headaches. We designed for furniture placement to allow for a clear line of sight to important elements by any user, seated or standing.

By modifying plumbing components, we were able to create a living environment of low physical effort to operate. The location of the zero entry, wheel chair accessible shower valve is an example. The Rutherford Manor is ahead of its time. A wonderful castle feel with all of today’s best building practices employed.  



REALTOR Emilee Collins and Builder Chad Collins

Chad & Emilee Collins

An unlimited licensed general contractor as well as a licensed home inspector, Hillsborough NC custom home builder Chad Collins transforms clients’ dreams into elegant, fashionable, timeless homes while maintaining a reputation for skilled craftsmanship, superior quality, and incomparable client service. Collins Design-Build is consistently ranked by the Triangle Business Journal as one of the top custom home builders in the Triangle.

Chad’s commitment to excellence has earned Collins Design-Build numerous top industry awards, including the National Certified Green Professional Builder of the Year. The Durham, Orange & Chatham’s Builder of the Year, and twice awarded the coveted Triangle Sales and Marketing Council’s MAME Building Company of the Year. Chad is one of fewer than 50 Accredited Master Builders in the state of North Carolina.

From the outset of his career, Chad quickly impressed others with his professionalism, integrity, and astute operations management skills. While in high school and college, Chad worked part time with home improvement retailers and building material suppliers, which opened opportunities to work for regional and national home builders throughout much of the 1990s. Chad capitalized on these experiences with local and regional builders to acquire considerable industry knowledge and to forge strong relationships.

Earlier in his career, Chad served as a team leader to local and regional production home builders, distinguishing him by developing processes, tools, and quality-driven teams that improved ROI, cut annual costs, reduced project completion time, and decreased attrition. As a result, Chad advanced to increasingly through management positions. Evidence of his talent for coaching and leading teams is that some of the team members and craftsmen he developed over a decade ago continue to work with him to this day.

Following that success, Chad was recruited by a national builder opening operations in the Triangle, and he played an important role in helping the company establish operations with a market presence in the region. His efforts in closing just under $6,000,000 in custom homes in a single year earned Chad the 2001 Builder of the Year award.

Chad has earned the highest designations available, such as Accredited Master Builder, Master Certified Green Professional, and Aging-in-Place Specialist. Among other industry recognition’s, the company has received multiple Best Green Built Home STARS Awards, Major Renovation Awards and the coveted Parade of Homes GOLD Award.

Prior to being elected as the President of the Home Builders Association of Durham, Orange & Chatham Counties, serving over 600 members, Chad was nominated to a five-year term with the North Carolina Home Builders Association as regional vice president; serving the largest territory region in the nation.

Throughout his career, he has served on various boards of directors and has earned numerous top awards for membership recruitment from the Home Builders Association of Durham, Orange, and Chatham Counties; the North Carolina Home Builders Association; the National Association of Home Builders; the Triangle Community Coalition; and the Hillsborough/Orange County Chamber of Commerce.

Chad is honored to be an approved speaker for the National Association of Home Builders Chad has written and taught several courses on green building as well as project management to fellow builders across the Southern United States. He is also an instructor for Duke University’s OLLI Continuing Education Program, serving as the Aging-in-Place Specialist.

For more information and how Hillsborough NC Collins Design-Build may serve you please connect with us through the following:

  • Home Building/Remodeling/Additions/ Consultations:

Collins Design-Build, Inc.   www.collinsdesignbuild.com

  • To find a lot or land / Buy or sell existing Real Estate:

Emilee Collins, REALTOR  www.collinsdesignrealty.com

  • To learn more about Aging In Place or how to make your existing home accessible:

Planning Tomorrow  www.planningtomorrow.com

  • Have your existing home painted by our award winning professionals:

Acento Painting, LLC  www.acentopainting.com

Chad direct line 919-422-2818  | Chad’s Email chad@collinsdesignbuild.com

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This post was written by Chad Collins


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