Cornerstone Contracting Corporation
- Written by: Matt Dodge
- Produced by: Nick Randall
- Estimated reading time: 4 mins
Serving the Connecticut and New York residential building markets from its headquarters in Cos Cob, Connecticut, Cornerstone Contracting Corporation is a high-end custom homebuilder with nearly 25 years of experience in the industry.
Founded in 1992 by George Pusser and Robert Kolton with a mission to build exceptional custom homes to its own set of rigid specifications, Cornerstone’s work is defined by three guiding factors: superior craftsmanship and attention to detail, outstanding project management, organization and coordination as well as excellent value.
Cornerstone works with clients, architects, interior designers and engineers to ensure that every project meets the standards of its discerning client base. While the company serves clients across both New York and Connecticut, a majority of Cornerstone’s work is concentrated in affluent towns such as Greenwich and Fairfield.
Building the future of green homes
While renovations and typical home constructions still represent a large portion of the company’s business, Cornerstone has moved increasingly into building more contemporary homes. Integrating the newest in homebuilding technology and sustainable features, these houses represent the future of the building industry.
“We’re always going to have renovation of more traditional homes, but there is a whole younger and different type of consumer that is looking for homes that are easy to maintain and that use the latest technology and natural resources to power, heat and cool their homes,” says George Pusser, president of Cornerstone.
As these types of smart homes and sustainable building practices become more common, the products needed to realize these projects have become both less expensive and more readily available, according to Pusser. “Manufacturers are becoming more involved in the process of bringing these products to the market,” he says.
The company is currently working on one such smart home on the water in Rye, New York. The contemporary glass and steel home required Cornerstone to integrate some of the latest in green technology, including LED lighting, geothermal wells and a superior building envelope.
“This sort of technology is still expensive to install, though I’ve seen the prices cut in half over the last five years and there are more vendors and subcontractors involved in some of those technologies that are making them more readily available and cost-effective,” Pusser says.
As green, sustainable building technology continues to move into the mainstream, Cornerstone will be advising clients on how to best integrate it into their residential building projects. Pusser is particularly excited about the future of solar energy generating windows, which will allow homebuilders to cut energy costs without installing any additional materials such as dedicated photovoltaic panels. “I see a lot of potential in capturing all of those different types of natural resources in the future,” he says.
In addition to its focus on sustainable construction services, Cornerstone also specializes in custom millwork, smart-house electronics, timber framing and site amenities such as pools, gardens and tennis courts.
Flexibility and partnerships drive success
Pusser credits Cornerstone’s success in part to the company’s ability to quickly respond to shifting market forces. “I think a challenge for any homebuilder has been the ability to gear up or gear down at the right time and adjust to the market you’re currently in. It’s always been a real struggle but we’ve been fairly good at staying a little behind the market so that we don’t really feel the effects for one or two years after the market has changed,” he says.
Building a team of trusted industry partners has been another major factor in the company’s success, says Pusser. “It’s important that we find clients and architects that have our same values. A vast majority of builders are only focused on the profit margin but we want to build the best homes you can find and we want our clients to get what they pay for.”
Cornerstone has been recognized with numerous industry awards in recent years, including the 2015 Palladio Award for outstanding achievement in traditional design, the 2016 Family-Owned Business Award from the Fairfield County Business Journal and the 2014 award from the Home Builders & Remodelers Association of Connecticut.
As the company gears up for future growth, Pusser is working to ensure that the company has a staff of dedicated, qualified workers for years to come. “You’ve got to be very careful about making sure you bring the younger generation into your business. We’ve done that on a consistent basis and it brings new ideas, new thoughts and good work ethic,” he says.
With a growing expertise in sustainable and smart building technology, a strong reputation in a lucrative market and a strong vision for the future of the company, Cornerstone Contracting Corporation will remain a leader in Connecticut and New York’s high-end residential building market.
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