Building every home like it’s their own: meet our site team
- Meet the team
We have a saying here at Geelong Homes, “treat every home like it’s your own”. And if you meet any one of our site managers, you’ll quickly see that it’s a saying that’s earnestly applied to every home they help build!
If you’re new to building a home, a site manager is in charge of the construction of your new home — at Geelong Homes they are your point of contact during this stage, making this relationship one of the most important during your building journey.
You first meet your site manager at our head office before construction begins. During your build, your site manager provides you with weekly updates on how your new home is progressing. They also provide you with regular emails and access to our client portal so that you can keep track of the progress. And once each stage is completed, your site supervisor will invite you to the site to see the progress.
Geelong Home’s site team is led by Construction Manager Cory Bauer who has more than 20 years of experience in the construction industry. As a cabinet maker by trade, Cory knows the importance of exceptional finishes, attention to detail and outstanding customer service.
“Site management is such a fluid role with so many moving parts so as a site team we need to be flexible in what we do and how we do it,” Cory says.
“Overall, my main objective is to have a group of site managers that are accountable to our key performance indicators, display a passion for what they do, are positive in how they do it and respectful of all stakeholders within the business.
“Our site team is made up of an eclectic mix of experience and unbridled enthusiasm. The team are extremely proud of what they do, extremely proud of the homes they deliver and are passionate about those around them.”
Let’s meet the Geelong Homes’ site managers!
A team backed with experience
It’s easy to lose count of the combined years of experience the Geelong Homes site team has! Our site managers have many years’ experience in a broad range of areas including carpentry, concreting, estimating, drafting, bricklaying and landscaping, plus three have university degrees in construction management. All this experience brings a high-level of expertise and knowledge to each Geelong Homes build.
Terry Brady is a senior site manager at Geelong Homes. Terry was a carpenter before he moved into a site supervisor position almost 20 years ago. In that time he has managed the construction of about 650 homes across the Geelong and Surf Coast region.
“Everything is changing every day, especially compared to when I first started,” he says.
“Experience wise, we’re learning off each other, and I’m learning something different off the new site managers every day.”
Site manager Andrew Ogilvie works on Geelong Homes sites in Fyansford, Highton and other parts of Geelong and has a broad range of experience from his 15 years as a landscaper to eight years as a site supervisor. His last job prior to working with Geelong Homes was supervising multi-million dollar high-end residential builds in Melbourne—experience that greatly benefits the construction of a Geelong Homes’ home.
“I have always taken pride in high quality work,” Andrew says. “As a landscaper you come in to finish the job and make things look beautiful. When I moved into high-end residential builds, the finishes were ultra high-end quality. The last project I worked on was a multi-million dollar build, and when you’re working on projects of that scale—everything has to be perfect.
“But the only difference between a high-end residential build compared to a Geelong Homes build is purely the product and materials you put into the home. So instead of a handmade carpet made in Nepal in a high-end home, you’ll get a quality local product in a Geelong Homes home.
“The quality of craftsmanship from our trades is outstanding. We have long-standing relationships with our trades, some of whom have worked for us for more than 20 years, and I truly feel that we’re building homes with the same quality of craftsmanship that I’ve seen from high-end Melbourne builders.
“Our construction manager, Cory is very particular with quality being the biggest focus of our homes.
One of the newest site managers to join the team is Ross Celi. Born and bred in Geelong, Ross Celi has been in the construction industry for 27 years starting out as bricklayer before making the change to site supervising. He spent almost 20 years at a volume builder before making the move to Geelong Homes in 2020. At Geelong Homes, he’ll be servicing the Colac and Western Districts region.
“I have been in the building industry for a long time and I believe it’s an advantage to have the experience of a trade behind you,” he says. “That experience helps me pick up on any issues and I can make sure the trades maintain the quality and attention to detail that we expect in our builds.”
A team with high standards for quality
Site manager Geoff Miller has worked with Geelong Homes for more than 10 years and works on Geelong Homes homes in Ballarat, Bannockburn, Lethbridge and Inverleigh.
“We all strive for perfection,” Geoff says. “I am confident in the quality of our homes. I believe that Geelong Homes does give you bang for your buck, particularly from what I have seen of other builders. If something goes wrong, we’ll stand by what we say we’ll do—we’ll never grab the cheque and run.”
Site manager Michael Kelson, an experienced concreter, is in charge of supervising all the foundations, or slabs, of each Geelong Homes build. He agrees that each site team member brings a high level of care to each build.
“We’re not that builder who will leave you with a list of problems at the end of the build,” he says. “We care. We build each home like it’s our own home. You know you’ll get a really good quality home with Geelong Homes.”
Site manager Hannah Butler says the approach of building each home like it’s their own is something that they apply to every step of the building process.
“We are seeing this build in the flesh, looking for things that we would notice if we were the client. I can’t imagine not thinking of it that way,” she says.
“I wouldn’t want to walk away from a job with a client being unhappy. I couldn’t live with that. You think about the clients and how they would feel building their home, putting all that money into a build. You want them to be happy.”
One of Geelong Home’s newest site managers is Jeremy Bond, who now services the Bellarine region. For 18 years Jeremy has worked in the construction industry, first as a carpenter and for the past six years as a site manager. He says his past experience working for smaller builders has instilled a high standard in quality and attention to detail that he has always applied to all aspects of his work.
“In this business there’s no real shortcuts,” Jeremy says. “You can’t take shortcuts because it will always come undone. The great thing about Geelong Homes is that their trades have worked with them for so long that they already know what quality is expected of them, the precedent is already set.”
Site manager Richard Martin manages Geelong Homes’ builds along the Great Ocean Road and says he is proud to be part of the team that deliver quality on every job site.
“The quality of our designs, the quality of our tradespeople and the customer service delivered along the building journey are why so many locals trust us as their builder,” he says.
Terry says Geelong Homes’ Quality Assurance procedures ensure that each home ticks each box in terms of meeting high quality standards.
“You’re also dealing with the same manager throughout the process,” he says. “I have fortnightly meetings with my clients to keep them updated on their build. It’s a big investment, you are building their dream home, so you want them to feel confident they can trust their site manager to do the job.”
Ross says by continuing to strive for the best, the results speak for themselves.
“At the end of the day you want to build a good quality home and if a client is happy with the home, they’ll be back to build a second and keep coming back. It’s always a great feeling when a client comes back to build again.” he says.
A team that values communication
One of the major differences with Geelong Homes compared to other builders is its open communication.
“At every stage we include the owners,” Geoff says. “They can see the progress of their home, and they get a real kick out of feeling included.”
Hannah says she always listens to a client’s needs and together they can work through anything that comes up along the way.
“I make sure they have been heard,” she says. “I do really love the interaction with people, clients and trades, that is the part I enjoy most and get the most job satisfaction out of. I also love to problem solve—it’s satisfying.”
For Richard, living and working on the Surf Coast, he knows why so many are drawn to live in the tight-knit communities and natural environment along the Great Ocean Road.
“My clients are often building their dream home or doing a complete sea change – so understanding what they want to achieve and ensuring we are communicating along the way – that is what builds success and what Geelong Homes has built its reputation on,” he says.
“We want people to know they’re not just another number. All our site managers take pride in delivering a high quality job every time, we are always wanting to do right by our customers and it’s so satisfying handing over the keys to happy clients.”
“I don’t think you can meet clients at every stage of the build and not treat the home like it’s your own home. Being a client myself, I know that I can expect that from our team.”
Jeremy says being one of Geelong’s biggest builders hasn’t affected the personalised service that Geelong Homes offers.
“Geelong Homes is great because it still has family values and a small-company feel that really puts the onus on servicing clients and building homes, not houses,” he says. “You build a relationship with clients and it’s always enjoyable to build someone’s vision.
“It’s one of the biggest things you can do in someone’s life and it’s daunting for some but it’s good to be able to put them at ease.”
Terry says it’s all about building a partnership with clients—he would know, he has had repeat clients coming back to him up to five times to build new houses.
“It’s the way you deal with people—you get what you give out,” he says.
Site manager Fraser Gill returned to Geelong Homes after 11 years of working for another builder. First time around, Fraser joined Hamlan, Geelong Homes’ sister company, in 2004 after completing his degree in construction management. He started out in contract administration before becoming an estimator and then a site manager. He’s excited to be back with the tight-knit Geelong Homes team. In addition to the high-quality homes and excellent communication that Geelong Homes offers, Fraser says it’s the team environment that’s the best part of Geelong Homes’ business structure.
“It’s that team environment, feeling part of a team,” he says. “I have worked with guys who are individuals. But I thrive on the social side and supporting others when the need arises. You won’t be producing the same quality of home, if you have seven individuals supervising each home. If you have a team, you will all be producing the same quality of home every time.
A team that’s committed even after your home is built
“Quality is super important and communication. It’s amazing how quickly word goes around. That’s Geelong—you have to do the right thing. Customer service and quality, once you’ve got that right, it comes up in spades.”
Other builders have teams of staff working on the maintenance issues that arise after an owner has moved into their new home. At Geelong Homes, it only takes a two person team—maintenance superviser Alby Lah and building administrator Carmel Scott.
Alby and Carmel are two long-serving Geelong Homes staff members with more than 34 years combined building experience —Alby first started working for Geelong Homes in 1992 and has held various roles from site manager to sub-contractor—and Carmel has worked in Geelong Homes’ administration department for 14 years. Together they have developed and refined Geelong Homes’ maintenance department into the well-oiled machine it is today.
“We get great satisfaction from happy clients,” Carmel says. “Alby is very good at what he does and together we’re passionate about making sure our clients are 100% happy. It’s part of our customer service, to go above and beyond what is normally required. It’s always pleasing to touch base with our clients after handover and to hear that they’re still very happy with their home. We also reassure client’s that they’re welcome to contact us if they have any concerns or questions about their home in the future.”
For Alby, who has worked for Geelong Homes for more than 20 years, high standards of quality is an absolute necessity when delivering dream homes. Especially when it’s his job to inspect each home three months after each owner has moved in.
“We treat every house like it’s our own,” Alby says. “When I visit a client’s home it is very unusual if I have more than an adjustment of a door and this can be credited to the thorough work of our site managers and our quality control inspections that are done prior to handover.”
Alby says every issue is dealt with quickly and efficiently thanks to the processes Geelong Homes has in place.
Geelong Homes site managers treat every home like it’s their own. And as your site manager is in charge of constructing your new home, then you can feel rest assured your build is in safe hands.
If you build with Geelong Homes, you can feel confident our site team is:
Backed with experience. It’s easy to lose count of the combined years of experience the Geelong Homes site team has! Our site managers have a broad range of experience across the construction industry. Our site supervisors have many years experience in areas including carpentry, concreting, estimating, drafting and landscaping, plus two have university degrees in Architecture and Construction. All these experiences bring expertise and knowledge to each Geelong Homes build.
A team with high standards for quality. Every site manager approaches each build with care and consideration by treating the home, like it’s their own.
A team that values communication. One of the major differences between Geelong Homes and other builders is its open communication. Prior to the commencement of the construction of a home, clients meet with a site manager at the Geelong Homes head office. During this meeting, the site manager is on hand to run through everything about the build and answer any questions.
“At every stage we include the owners,” site manager Geoff Miller says. “They can see the progress of their home, and they get a real kick out of feeling included.”
Committed even after your home is built. Other builders have teams of staff working on the maintenance issues that arise after an owner has moved into their new home. At Geelong Homes, it only takes a two person team, made up of two of the longest serving team members, Alby Lah and Carmel Scott, who pride themselves on their exceptional customer service.