If You Don’t Look for Anything Else in a Builder, Look for This

If You Don’t Look for Anything Else in a Builder, Look for This

I happened upon an interview last week on business radio with the longtime CEO of General Electric, Jack Welch. One comment in particular really caught my ear.

“Leadership,” Welch said, “distills down to two words – truth and trust. If people trust you, if you’ve been authentic, you’ve got to get truth in your company. And you’ve got to get rid of the spin and all that. You’ll only get that if people trust you, if you’ve been authentic.”

Wow. I couldn’t help but think how relevant Welch’s words were in our world of residential construction. Sadly, our industry is not always known for truth and trust. Custom home building is an industry fraught with opportunities for the unsuspecting consumer to be swayed by not-so-truthful promises from not-always-trustworthy sources. Anyone can hang out their builder shingle in Texas, and in boom times like these, they do. And, low-balling bids is a common tactic to land a project. Get the foot in the door, base bids on low-quality finishes and then hit the customer with change orders to get what they had originally envisioned to begin with. More often than not, that’s not going to win long-term happy clients.

That’s never been how we do business. But we see it time and again. I recently ran into a guy who had asked us to bid a large remodel and pool project not long ago. When we walked the project and listened to the customer’s vision, we pulled no punches […]

By | 2018-02-23T15:15:16+00:00 February 22nd, 2018|blog|0 Comments

Believe It! One-Story New Construction in The Hills

Home sites in The Hills of Lakeway that will accommodate a one-story design are virtually non-existent. That’s why we were thrilled to recently uncover this gem at 8 Cheverly Court.  Cheverly is a quiet cul-de-sac of established homes, and this tract is an oversized pie shape lot at the heart of the cul-de-sac.  With trees perfectly positioned around its perimeter, the building site is the perfect palette for a one-story design with lots of privacy, plus plenty of room for a pool and spa.

Over the past several weeks, we worked with Lakeway architect Janet Hobbs to convert our vision for this home to blueprints, and couldn’t be happier with the final drawings. We opted for a modern farmhouse design, complete with barn doors, shiplap and generous use of windows to bring the outdoors in. One of our favorite features is the craft room with direct access outside. In addition, 8 Cheverly features four bedrooms plus a huge game room that opens to the covered outdoor living area with fireplace.  The wall of windows in the great room and kitchen overlooks an L-shaped outdoor kitchen, living and porch, with generous space for an adjacent optional pool and spa.  This home totals 3,750 square feet.

For pricing and detailed plans on the only one-story new construction home in The Hills, please contact JKD Builder at 512/771-1660.

By | 2018-02-08T17:16:24+00:00 February 8th, 2018|blog|0 Comments

Breaking Ground: 11 Glenway, Hills of Lakeway

Activity got underway this week on JKD Builder’s latest project in The Hills of Lakeway, at 11 Glenway Drive. The lot has been cleared to reveal oak trees that are ideally positioned to frame the front and back yards, and we’ve staked out the slab.  

We worked hand in hand with our architect to bring our vision for this custom home to life. This Texas contemporary style encompasses 3,080 sq. ft. of living space. The master and study flank opposite sides of the downstairs, providing each with great privacy. The office even has its own bath and direct outdoor access. Upstairs are two additional bedrooms and baths and a large game room. We took great care to precisely position this home on the site to maximize the existing trees and privacy from neighboring homes. Best of all, we allowed plenty of room to include a pool around the large outdoor living area.

If you have been looking for home with contemporary flair in a comfortable, livable floor plan, check out 11 Glenway. Give us a call at 512/771-1660 to see complete plans, and discuss how you could make this home your own.

By | 2018-02-01T16:20:57+00:00 February 1st, 2018|blog|0 Comments

#PrettyGoodDay to Build Your Home in The Hills

Lake Travis area homes for sale in the The Hills Of Lakeway Community.

Our friend Bonni has a favorite hashtag she uses when good things happen in her family: it’s a #PrettyGoodDay.  So when we recently uncovered two spectacular home sites in the Hills of Lakeway for our next projects, we couldn’t help but know that it indeed was a #PrettyGoodDay.

To say that nicely treed, affordable, buildable lots in attractive communities around Lake South are hard to find is a gross understatement. If you’ve been looking for such a home site, you know how rare those lots are.  That’s why we were so thrilled to find not just one, but two, gorgeous home sites in The Hills of Lakeway that meet those criteria and our high standards.

We looked for months to find just the right home sites for our next projects.  We are breaking ground this month on these two beautiful projects in The Hills of Lakeway.  Since late fall, we’ve been working with our architects to put our vision on paper, with site-specific designs that maximize the best features of both lots. Over the next few weeks, we’ll share more about the floor plans, home sites and design styles of these two custom homes.

In the meantime, drive by 11 Glenway Drive and 8 Cheverly Court in The Hills to get a sneak peek.

If you’ve been looking to live in a new home in The Hills, without steep sloping driveways or challenging terrain, these are a worth a look. Give us […]

By | 2018-01-26T17:13:37+00:00 January 26th, 2018|blog|0 Comments

The 2018 Outlook for Lakeway: Firing on All Cylinders

Lakeway continues to be a draw for people seeking great schools, affordable homes and beautiful surroundings.

If you love good news like we do, this week’s Lake Travis Chamber of Commerce’s Economic Forecast Luncheon was the place to be. We joined around 250 other Lakeway business owners and representatives at the lovely Vintage Villas to hear what is in store for Lake South this year. Here are a few factoids that caught our attention:

  • We’ll continue to see strong growth in 2018. The City of Lakeway gains about 500 new residents a year, and will continue at that growth rate this year. From its sleepy beginnings as a tiny retirement getaway, Lakeway’s population now is around 15,000.
  • Property values will continue to rise. Since 2015, City of Lakeway property values have increased on average 10% per year.
  • Lack of lots will impact the availability of new homes. Some 275 new home permits will be issued, in line with the last four years. “That is driven in large part by the lack of available, buildable lots,”said Steve Jones, Lakeway city manager.
  • Home sales will remain robust, following five years of skyrocketing sales. Last year, the Lake Travis ISD (known as Lake South) area notched 1,662 sales totaling nearly $1 billion. “Five years ago we were doing half that number,” says Kuper Sotheby’s broker-associate Doug Land. “Real estate drives our economy.”
  • With growth comes the need for […]
By | 2018-01-18T23:44:49+00:00 January 18th, 2018|blog|0 Comments

Coming Home for the Holidays

You’ve probably seen the real estate ads this time of year, enticing with their “home for the holidays” headlines. No doubt, there truly is something special about spending the holidays in our warm, comfortable homes surrounded by family.

But when we think of what “home for the holidays” means this year, it isn’t so much about our home or those we’ve built for neighbors. No, instead, we are thinking back to Thanksgiving week, and the incredible opportunity we had to work alongside other Lakeway folks to make “home” a reality for another family.  

The trip was coordinated through Casas por Cristo, and organized by the Lakeway Church.  The goal: to build a home for a family of four in less than four days – he, a pastor, and she, a hairdresser – in Acuña, Mexico, just across the border from Del Rio. Our group of 22 Lakeway volunteers must have looked like an unlikely construction crew when we arrived early the first morning, our team ranging from elementary-school age to retirees. But before lunch that day, we had a slab poured where earlier there was only a blank dirt canvas. By end of day one, walls were framed and placed in position and roof rafters readied. For the next two days, the job site resembled a bustling ant mound with small groups teamed up on the roof; others installing insulation, sheetrock and electrical inside, while yet others tackled the exterior wall board and stucco, set windows, painted trim, and even built a dog house out of scrap lumber. 

This family is one of hundreds who have […]

By | 2017-12-20T17:30:47+00:00 December 12th, 2017|blog|0 Comments

Break out the Balloons – It’s Our Sweet 16!


If spring and early summer are wedding season, it seems the fall is anniversary season. At least it is around Lakeway.

The Lakeway Municipal Utility District (you know the MUD, with the big golf ball water tower) is celebrating 30 years of serving this community. The Village of the Hills also is marking a big one – 20 years since the Hills became an officially incorporated village. Even the Hill Country Galleria is getting in the anniversary action; it’s been 10 years since the Galleria’s grand opening.

We, too, are celebrating.  It was 16 years ago this fall that we began building homes under the JKD Builder brand. It was 2001, just after 9/11 and admittedly not the best time to be opening a business, as we were cautioned. But we had cemented our love of this community long before and knew this is where we wanted to live, raise our family and grow a business.

In reality, though, our roots in the Lake Travis community go back a lot further than that – all the way back to 1983, when as a young couple, we built our first home off Clara Van Drive. We had fallen in love with Lake Travis during college weekends camping and boating with family. Our first “big” purchase after graduating, in fact, was a brand-spanking new 15-ft. ski boat for what were a few thousand precious dollars to two young newlyweds. Weekends on the lake, we’d dream about someday living here and, with hard work and luck and more hard work, we made that dream come true within a few years.

Back then, there was one elementary school, no local hospitals or […]

By | 2017-12-20T17:36:53+00:00 November 8th, 2017|blog, Uncategorized|0 Comments

The Big Reveal: Peak in This Contemporary Design

This past year, we worked on two side-by-side amazing custom homes in the Hills of Lakeway. If you’ve looked for new quality construction in the Hills – especially with views and minimal slope – you know the options are limited. So when we spotted two buildable lots on Wingreen Loop, with little topography and gorgeous Hill Country views, we knew they were special.  We worked hard to be sure the architecture and floor plans would ideally suit each lot, take advantage of the views and maximize privacy.

We loved having our Hills neighbors stop by along the way to follow our progress as we went from breaking ground to handing the keys to their new owners and latest addition to the JKD Builder family – whom we count as great friends. How many builders can say that they truly are friends with their clients? We love our clients!

Since we completed these homes, we’ve had lots of folks ask about the interiors, so … (drum roll), get ready for the big reveal of the first of the two. Here’s the virtual tour we recently shot. Isn’t it a beauty?

We’ll give our second homeowners a few more weeks to get settled in and then we’ll share their big reveal, too.

If you are looking for quality construction by a builder whose clients trust, respect AND consider a friend, talk with us. Better yet, talk with our clients.

By | 2017-12-20T17:19:29+00:00 October 26th, 2017|blog, Uncategorized|0 Comments

Fall in Love with Lakeway!

Cool(er) weather is here at last – or at least, it’s here occasionally! And with it is our favorite time of year.  We love the outdoors, we love sports, and we love hanging with our friends and neighbors. Fall in Lakeway gives lots of opportunities for all three, with a full calendar of great activities in the ‘hood. If you are looking for some fun ideas, here are two on our calendar this fall:

  1. Want to stay fit and support a great cause? Join us (I should say, one of us) Oct. 26 at 6 p.m. for Fitness on the Lawn and Think Pink Happy Hour at Vintage Villas, off Eck Lane. It is about time more locales get acquainted with this incredible event and hotel property right in our backyard. This event is the first of several upcoming community events on their fall calendar.  Gather some friends for this donation-based workout on the lawn with the under-new-ownership Pure Barre of Lakeway, with proceeds benefiting Susan G. Komen for Breast Cancer Awareness After the class, Vintage Villas is hosting a happy hour and informational session with Susan G. Komen, with information about how to check for Breast Cancer. There’s even childcare. Check out Vintage Villas Facebook page to RSVP.
  2. If you’ve never taken part in the Hillsfest in the Hills of Lakeway, this is a great year to put it on your calendar -Sunday, Nov. 5, from 1:30-4:30 p.m. at The Hills Park. Being the 20th anniversary of The Village of The Hills, the planning team has gone all-out on this one. This year, it begins with a parade starting at the […]
By | 2017-12-20T17:19:29+00:00 October 19th, 2017|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Don’t Try This Yourself; Ask 5 Things Instead.

“Don’t do-it-yourself” lists from Popular Mechanics to The Huffington Post agree on one thing – roof repair is better left to the experts!

“Besides the fact that working on top of a roof is very risky because one could easily lose their footing and slip, it can also be detrimental to your home’s structure if you don’t know the proper way to install or repair roofing,” notes the Huffington Post in its top 10 No-DIY list.

Instead, leave the roof to a roofing construction expert.

But how do you choose the right contractor? Before you trust your roofing repair project to someone else, check out the following:

  1. Talk to references. Choose a construction expert who has multiple satisfied clients in your area, with similar types of construction. How satisfied are they with the work quality? Timeliness? Service?
  2. Observe their work-in-progress. Drive by the contractor’s projects underway; note the job site cleanliness. Talk to the homeowners.
  3. Ask for credentials. Is the contractor bonded? Insured? Experienced in working with Lakeway codes and permitting processes? Be sure the contractor carries both workers’ compensation and liability insurance. Without an experienced, insured and bonded construction expert, you risk liability claims if injuries occur on your property and permitting delays that can be costly.
  4. Know what’s being installed. Will the company tear off and haul off the old roof, or will shingles be installed over existing roofing? Are vents included in the bid – and how many? Is the product the same, or better, quality than what you currently have? Some contractors will cut corners like these as a way to give you a low price – but you’ll pay the cost ultimately. Look closely at proposals, ask questions, and be sure you are comparing apples to apples.
  5. Understand […]
By | 2017-12-20T17:19:30+00:00 February 23rd, 2016|blog, Uncategorized|0 Comments