As an experienced high performance prefabrication company who has maintained a relatively small size, our strength comes from maximizing the value of our combination of know-how and flexibility to suit the challenging, ambitious projects we encounter.

But whether we’re the right fit for your project can often depend not just on what we do, but what you need.  It often helps to consider a few questions:

  1. Are you early in your design process and wanting to work on a strategy for the building envelope that will optimize prefab efficiencies?

  2. Are you looking for a super-insulated building envelope package, with a significant portion of the insulation and airtightness work happening off-site?

  3. Are you (or are you working with) a local general contractor who is interested in working with a prefabricated panel package, either because of a lack of sufficient skilled labor, a short building season, or a remote location?

  4. Is this your first attempt at achieving stringent standards for airtightness, and you want a reliable system that is designed in 3D specifically to achieve your goals, or are you aware from experience that airsealing is costing you too much time to achieve reliably on site?

  5. Does your location limit you or are you lacking in experience with sourcing innovative high performance building materials like wood fiber insulation, mass timber beams and panels, or 100-year age-tested building membranes and tapes, or are you looking to support a Canadian company while benefiting financially from a favorable exchange rate?

If you’ve answered yes to some of these questions, Collective Carpentry could be the right fit for you.  We pride ourselves on our experience, flexibility, communication, and commitment to quality, and look forward to applying these to your next project.

Experience

Building a structural, super-insulated, airtight shell in a factory and then installing them on site requires more than just some tools, a roof, and a crane.  Perhaps someone should have told us that when we started our prefab shop, because like many early ventures, we had to learn the hard way.  While our design and timberframing sensibilities gave us a strong foundation, it’s the little things – from connection details, to designing in tolerances, to the importance of strong communication and feedback loops, to constant incremental improvement – that accumulate over time and contribute to success.

After 6 years focusing on prefab and over 25 prefab structures delivered across the US and Canada, we’ve learned how to work as a member of a strong team, and to stand by our accumulated knowledge while remaining open to input from others in order to find the best solutions to the complex challenges we find in the design and fabrication process as well as on the road and on site.

Flexibility

Staying small has allowed us to not commit too strongly to any one way to do things, and we pride ourselves in remaining open to trying new things and keeping custom, fine homebuilding a part of our core, even when we’re building fire houses, senior centers, churches, multifamily buildings, or any of the other challenging projects that come our way.  While we encourage others to recognize the realities of the prefabrication process and take advantage of its capabilities (not forcing square pegs through round holes), we know that we aren’t the exclusive holder of all good ideas, and encourage professionals to elevate the discussion with new approaches.  It’s why we’ve used cross-laminated timber (CLT), massive glulam structures, wood fiber insulation, and other innovative, new building materials and strategies which help us redefine our relationship to health and environmental impact in the built environment.

Communication

We put an exceptional amount of time and focus into our efforts to be available, responsive, and attentive when it comes to communicating with clients and partners.  You’ll notice the difference from your first contact to your last.  Whether you wish to send a design question by email, ask a question about one of our projects through Instagram, or just pick up the phone and call us, you will always find us engaged in your project and in the larger conversation around building better.

Commitment to Quality

We don’t believe in selecting cheap, low-end building materials just because the rest of the industry uses them.  We believe that materials matter, and choose to work with materials that are proven by building science and field performance, paying for the value they provide.  We put a far greater amount of focus on the importance of air, moisture, and thermal control in the building envelope than the vast majority of construction projects ever attempt, and guide our choice of materials by buying local, buying responsibly, and buying in quantity for maximum purchasing power.  We are detail-oriented perfectionists who believe that doing things the right way saves time, money, and stress in the long run.

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