By Annie P., Lombardo Homes Marketing Coordinator
If the sales team is the heart and soul of Lombardo Homes, the construction team is the backbone. Like our sales managers, our construction coordinators also wear a variety of hats – from educating our buyers throughout the build process, to managing our trade partners, to keeping to a schedule despite what Mother Nature might throw at them each season. Each Construction Coordinator maintains a superior expectation for quality, while managing multiple homes throughout multiple communities. They typically do all this with a smile on their face, as customer service is an important part of why they do what they do each day.
Travis Marine is one of our construction coordinators at Brookside in O’Fallon, MO. I recently chatted with Travis to learn a little more about him – where he started, what he likes about his career, advice for homebuyers and more.
How long have you worked for Lombardo Homes?
Four years in August
How long have you worked in new construction (or construction in general)?
I interned with Centex Homes in 2004 and signed a contract upon graduation the following year to move to St. Louis and start my career in the home building industry. The industry has been stuck with me ever since.
How did you get into this business? What interested you in the beginning?
My dad has always built cabinetry and furniture during the winter as a hobby, so as a kid I would go to his shop with him and was always fascinated by what you could do with tools. Growing up, however, I noticed that everyone that I knew that had made a career in carpentry or like trade had shoulder issues, bad knees, or some other ailment. I thought that management was the better path so that I could enjoy retirement more. Getting where I am today started at Southwest Missouri State with a degree in Construction Management. From there I worked for Centex Homes made a move to Consort Homes as the economy was starting to slip and manpower was being reduced. I stayed there through most of the downturn in the market and, with a little luck and an old friend, found myself at a position with Lombardo Homes.
What does a typical day look like for you?
Most days start for me around 5:30. Drop our baby off at daycare around 6 and head to the job site. From there, I usually make a pass through to make sure everybody has access to the homes and begin walking houses. Since there are two of us in Brookside, we can normally walk each home and check schedules and PO’s by lunchtime. With that being completed, we will do frame inspections, pre-quality inspections and some of the more quality control stuff. Around 3:30 we go to the display, send off lists and followup emails and get a plan of attack for the following day. A day with no customer appointments usually wraps up around 4:30 or 5. From there it’s a 2-minute drive home to playing with the kiddo and eating dinner. She normally goes to sleep around 8, leaving my wife and I an hour or two to hang out before going to bed and repeating.
What do you like best about your job?
The flexibility and family atmosphere. If we ever have to slip out for a doctor appointment or some last-second situation, somebody is always ready to jump in and help so that you can take care of what you need. I have worked for a corporate builder and I can appreciate our family-like atmosphere where everybody has a voice.
What do you like to do when you’re not working?
Fishing, hunting, cooking, and golfing. I’m ready for my baby to get older so she can hopefully tag along.
What is your favorite restaurant in the area? What do you usually order?
We rarely go out for dinner. I like to cook, so if that counts, I would go with a ribeye with an onion/mushroom sauce and some asparagus off the grill. I love fried chicken, so if I had to pick a restaurant I would have to go for some King Edwards Chicken in St. Charles.
What is one thing you wish all homebuyers knew about construction on their new home?
Just because you saw it on HGTV, it may not relate to your new home. Boards have knots, clay soil does not allow water to soak in, etc.
What advice do you have for new homebuyers to help the building process run smoothly?
We do this for a living and build homes for customers in all sorts of professions, so we may take for granted the amount of construction knowledge that you bring to the table. Do not be afraid to ask questions because if you don’t ask it, we will never know it was bothering you. At the end of the day, we want you to be happy, as you are paying us to build your dream home!