How did you get started in homebuilding?
Mike Hartman started Hartman Construction in 1985 in his hometown of Alma, WI. What began primarily as a roofing and remodeling business quickly grew to framing and then custom homebuilding and land development. Today, the company (now Hartman Homes, Inc.) works mostly throughout the Twin Cities Metro and Western Wisconsin. We’re known as a diverse building company in all markets from single-family and rebuild construction to luxury homes.
What inspires and influences your work?
Each custom home built by Hartman Homes is thoughtfully designed and executed with our customer’s vision and influences. Our inspiration comes from exceeding our customer’s expectations and providing a home they are proud to call their own.
How would you describe your team’s approach to a new project?
“When navigating the long list of decisions that come with building a custom home, the key is to start with the exterior and then move inside to lighting,” says designer Julie Speer, who shepherds Hartman Homes’ customers through the arduous decision-making process. “Lighting really drives the direction of everything else.”
What are the most important elements of a successful build team?
Communication, trusting relationships, systems, and organization are keys to a successful team. Hartman Homes has sought out the best subcontractors, vendors, and employees in the industry and prides itself on the long-standing tenure of the team members. Throughout the years, Hartman Homes has refined operating and build systems to increase quality, efficiency, and communication between the customers and the entire Hartman Homes team.
What sets your company apart?
The Hartman Homes team works with clients throughout every step of the building process. The company’s in-house showroom allows homeowners to easily make selections and our interior designer helps each project come full circle.
Over the years we’ve also found ourselves surrounded by a great team of subcontractors. Rarely will Hartman Homes hire a large subcontractor team. Instead, two- to three-man crews are what you can expect.
A close circle of contractors and a well-respected team is at the heart of the business and is what sets our company apart. Hartman Homes has the expertise and resources of a large company, but is a close-knit team that shares a passion for the process. Building is all about starting from scratch, creating something from nothing. It’s the American dream. Simple, yet grand. That’s what you’ll get when you build with Hartman Homes.
What makes you most proud to be a builder?
When prospective customers walk through our model homes, they often say, “Oh, I can tell this is a Hartman home. It just feels different.” But what makes us the proudest is that our clients consistently tell us that they chose us because they wanted a home that stands out from the rest or that they would build again if they didn’t love their house so much. Exceeding customer expectations is what Hartman Homes strives for with each build.
Photography by Erica Loeks