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Crisp Green Homes

Based in Melbourne’s Fairfield, Crisp Green Homes is a unique construction business that helps people build greener, more sustainable homes. Its owner, Angus Crisp, started the business in 2010 after many years working in construction and property development.

Changing the construction model 

Angus’s business was born when he identified a gap in the market.

“I’m really passionate about sustainability,” he says. “And having worked in the construction industry for years, I noticed that emerging trends weren’t all that sustainable and nobody was catering for that market.”

After identifying this niche in the market, Angus set to work with like-minded architects. “I was very determined about my own ideas, but there was only one way to know if they’d work.”

So he decided to “have a crack” at running his own business.

7 years and counting

The business idea certainly had legs. For the past seven years, Crisp Green Homes has worked with architects who have a similar interest in sustainability and boutique architectural design.

Angus describes the business today as a small residential construction business with a conscience.

“We understand sustainability, particularly around ways to set up a house so it works well for thermal mass, passive heating and cooling, and also the suitability of certain products and waste management.”

Managing the ups and downs 

Like many SMEs, Angus says his biggest business challenge is dealing with cash flow. He also thinks it’s important to be transparent with client expectations and acknowledge the emotional investment that goes with building a home.

“There’s the realisation that we’re dealing with mums and dads who are investing large amounts of money,” he says. “A lot of emotion goes with that.”

Despite these challenges, Angus says he can’t see himself working for someone else again plus there’s a huge reward every time he finishes a home: “I get enormous satisfaction from building a beautiful architecturally designed home, that’s also benefiting our environment. I love seeing the reaction we get when the project is done and families get to start a new chapter of their lives.”

Based on all of his experience, Angus advises budding business owners to follow their dreams. “Just do it. Find a niche and work towards doing whatever that is really well. Don’t try to be everything for everyone. But jump in with both feet and be confident.”

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