by Stephen Dafoe
Denis and Andre Morin have been building homes in Morinville since 2002. Twelve years later the sibling builders and owners of HomesBy2Broz broke ground on their 100th home, a single-family product on the corner of 97 Avenue and Grandin.
Andre Morin said he and his brother built their first home on the corner of 107th and 101st after brother Denis talked him into coming back to Morinville to get into the building business. “Our family has been here since 1966,” Andre Morin said, adding he moved away from the community in 1989 but returned in 2002 to join his brother in business. “He said, ‘Come back. I have a piece of land and we’ll start building some houses.’”
Family first, business second
Despite being blood brothers, the siblings say the partnership has been a good one. “Some days are good. Some days are bad. As long as you have more good days than bad days, it works out,” said Denis Morin. “Sometimes you’ve got to hold back a little because it’s family first. Business is business, but family comes first.”
The first step was for Andre to get his real estate license, something Denis already had. The same year the two brothers developed their piece of land into seven residential lots and started building. “His background was real estate; mine was roof and floors and design,” Andre Morin said. “It’s a good combination with the way it’s been working. I’m out in the field. He’s in the office doing the PR work and paperwork. I’m out on site making sure everything gets done.”
Over the past 12 years the two brothers have continued to meld their different skills to build a product they are proud of, a home they would live in themselves. “We built the first house as if we were going to be moving into it,” Andre Morin said. “So we put a lot of things into it we liked. We had a pretty good idea of what people wanted.”
Those elements – quality doors, stone fronts, and plenty of windows to allow natural light in, are all elements the brothers have kept an integral part of their product over the years.
But regarldess of the ingredients that go into their homes, the Morins have one simple ingredient that has kept them going. “We love what we do,” Denis Morin said. “There is nothing like getting it from paper to shingle and everything in between. It makes you excited to get somebody into a house that is excited to have it. It’s not just a product. You put your heart and soul into it.”
The company has had a record year in 2014 doing what they love. “The market has been strong. The phone has been ringing, and we have been building product and selling them,” Denis Morin said. “We want to keep on rolling into 2015.” The brothers bult 10 homes in 2014, 25 per cent more than the eight they usually build in a season.
The brothers are looking to continue putting heart and soul into building projects in the coming year. Though they will continue to build the homes they have, they are both wanting to develop a larger project for seniors, a development that would be larger than apartments and condos currently on the market but smaller than the product they are building now. “Morinville needs it because there is nothing here like it,” Andre Morin said.