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Pinnacle Homes

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When Rodney Martin and Thom Seeger opened Pinnacle Homes 16 years ago their focus was entirely on custom home building. A shift in the economy in the late 2000s brought remodeling opportunities. Today Rodney and Thom continue to enjoy a solid reputation for both custom builds and major renovations.

Pinnacle Homes owner’s, Rodney Martin ( left ) & Thom Seeger ( middle ), visit with homeowner, Matt DeSalvo ( right ) in front of the DeSalvo home in The Dunes Club in Myrtle Beach, SC.

Both men have a background in the building industry.  Rodney takes the lead in construction, making him the face of the company. Thom, who has an accounting degree, manages finances.  A native of Myrtle Beach, Rodney said, “I’ve been in the building industry all my life, my dad was a builder.” Rodney’s construction training came from the “after school program” of learning – starting with cleaning up job sites. “I’m just a local guy who’s learned from the ground up,” he said.

Business comes to Pinnacle via word-of-mouth, not advertising.  Rodney said, “I don’t want to get to the point that I’m having to throw my quality down and worry about quantity. That’s not me, this is all I’ve ever done – custom builds.” His suppliers have been known to remark, “You sure like challenges don’t you?” In Rodney’s eyes he sees projects as the chance to create unique residences with some very cool custom touches. Rodney said, “I’ve run into some great, great customers over the years that have turned from clients to friends. I feel like I’ve done my job if it turns out like that.”  Thom noted, “Sometimes Rodney has a hard time saying no.” Rodney admits that’s true, especially when it comes to former clients. Pinnacle Homes employees a couple full-time staff to trouble shoot jobs, though Rodney is almost always on site. They have a close body of subs and suppliers. Rodney said, “I’m kind of loyal to my subs and suppliers. My siding guy, for instance, did work for my dad years ago and he’s still with us. I’ve had homeowners ask me the difference between siding on their house and what I’m putting on a new house. The product is the same, but the details are different because of how we stage it out.” 

Rodney and Thom have low-key demeanors despite building high-end custom homes and taking on complex renovations. Rodney summed up, “I like to have a good time during the building process. I like to get a friendship and openness going. My dad told me a long time ago if you give a client a good product, at a fair price, you’ll stay busy.” 

Building Industry Synergy spoke with three Myrtle Beach homeowners who readily substantiated the superior quality of Pinnacle Homes, and Rodney’s ability to cultivate friendships. Jason and Taryn Goebel chose to build a custom home with Pinnacle completely by word-of-mouth recommendations. Jason’s dad built custom homes in Charlotte for 20 years before moving exclusively to design / draftsmanship, and he designed Jason and Taryn’s home. The hand-drafted plan comprised 20 pages. Jason said, “The house is built with very simple geometry. The depth of the house to the wings that comes off the house at a 45° angle are all specifically designed so that the pitch of the roof worked together and you don’t have weird angles coming into the roof.”  The house is entirely stick-built including the roof system, and there’s no wasted space within. For such a special build the Goebels interviewed four different builders. Jason recalled, “My dad always said, ‘Don’t take the highest, just throw out the lowest price automatically, and pick amongst those you like.’” 

Building for someone who grew up in the industry could be a mixed blessing. In the Goebels’ case Jason understood that and said, “We never micro-managed Rodney. I remember the horror stories growing up of people driving my dad crazy when he was trying to build them a house.” Jason loves woodworking and building furniture, so he was particularly keen on the specialty woodwork. Taryn said, “Rodney is so amazing – how he handled every single detail and put so many special touches in our home.” When asked what Jason’s dad had to say about the finished product, Jason shared, “My dad loves Rodney. He said, ‘Rodney is a whole lot better of a builder than I ever was,’ which is a big compliment.”

It could be that Rodney Martin is a builder’s builder. Two other homeowners who did extensive remodeling using Pinnacle Homes also have working knowledge of the industry. Before Matt and Debby DeSalvo put an offer on a house they met with Rodney. Matt said, “I had some pretty radical ideas about it, and thought if he couldn’t pull it off probably nobody could and I shouldn’t buy the house.” The house was gutted down to the crawl space, the first floor was reconfigured, and a 1500 square foot second floor was added. The electrical, plumbing and HVAC were all replaced. Matt said, “It’s a new house basically in the shell of an older house. Because of the trees (old live oaks) we couldn’t really tear down and rebuild.” Debby is from Holland and her design sensibility leans toward clean, linear lines.  Transforming the house from a traditional one-level to a contemporary two story gave the couple what they wanted. Matt said, “Rodney has a lot of vision and he’s really creative, but he’s also technically sound in construction.” Matt’s dad is a retired GC and his brother has taken over the family construction business in another state. Needless to say, they scrutinized the work before giving their seal of approval.  Matt and Debby are enjoying their upstairs retreat, especially the screened porch with a sleek gas fireplace set in a stone wall with cascading lights. For the outdoor space the couple told Rodney the major elements they wanted and let him have a “really long leash” to create it. Matt said, “The house still has a cozy feeling even though it’s almost 5,000 square feet; it lives like a more intimate home and I really credit Rodney for that.” 

Susan and Chad Carlson bought their house as a couple, but with a growing family they needed more space. Chad said, “We loved the neighborhood and loved our lot, so we had to figure out a way to accommodate our wish list.” They spoke with a number of builders and homeowners before choosing Pinnacle Homes, “Not just for Rodney’s technical building ability, but the fact he is a strong communicator and is frankly just really honest,” Chad said. Susan added, “I think he’s one of the kindest human beings; he has been wonderful to work with in that aspect as well.”

Chad is in commercial development and deals with construction frequently. He said, “I could tell in speaking with Rodney that he had such a strong knowledge base. When you tear off the roof and add extra weight, you have to make sure the structural integrity is there and that you have a good building plan. Rodney was so great at trouble shooting, and technically he’s able to work through the process in a very effective way.”  Chad added, “Rodney did not have an open checkbook, so he had to make our vision work with the current plumbing and electricity.” The original house grew from approximately 3500 heated square feet to twice that under roof. Upstairs it went from two bedrooms and one bath to four bedrooms and four baths. The one-car garage was transformed into a playroom, and a two-and-a-half car garage was added. A home office, new mud room, reconfigured kitchen, and 700 square foot screened porch were included in the renovation. Chad summed up, “Rodney is a true craftsman. He has a good eye for design and he has the ability to build it – that’s very rare to find.”

For further information call (843) 445-7303, email RMPinnacle@gmail.com or visit www.PinnacleHomesofMB.com.

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