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Golden Hammer Award. Most Outstanding Renovation Project (over $200,000)

Finalist for coveted national CHBA’s SAM Award in the Home Renovation Category
(Whole House under $500,000)


Golden Hammer Award. Most outstanding renovation project (Balkwill Residence)


Finalist for coveted national CHBA’s SAM award in the New Home Award
(Custom Homes category. (Single Detached, under 2,500 sq. ft.)

Golden Hammer Award. Most outstanding renovation project (over $200,000)

Golden Hammer Award. Most outstanding renovation project (between $100,000 and $200,000)


Golden Hammer Award. Most outstanding single detached home (between 2,200 and 3,200 sq.ft.)

Golden Hammer Award. Most outstanding renovation project (between $100,000 and $200,000)

Golden Hammer Award. Most outstanding renovation project (under $100,000)


Finalist for coveted national CHBA’s SAM award in the home renovation category


Golden Hammer Award. Most outstanding renovation project (over $200,000)


Golden Hammer Award. Most outstanding renovation project (between $100,000 and $200,000)


WINDSOR STAR - Home Builder is Up for National Award.

February 4th, 2010:

Build better, not bigger is the motto that has helped Amherstburg builder Drew Coulson become a finalist in a national home building award. “Instead of building a 3,500-square-foot house, build a 2,500-square-foot house and design it like your heart’s content,” Coulson said Wednesday. “You want the wow factor.”

Coulson, who owns Coulson Design Build Inc., is a finalist in the Canadian Home Builders’ Association national SAM awards in the custom homes category of single detached homes under 2,500 square feet.

A SAM award — it used to stand for sales and marketing before many other categories were introduced — is like the Oscar of the home building industry, CHBA services national co-ordinator Michael Gough said. “The competition is quite substantial,” Gough said. The house he entered for the national award is the Oxley home of Murray and Ann Wilson.

Ann said they wanted to renovate an old cottage on the lakefront property but every contractor advised them to tear it down. Coulson told them to circle things they liked in magazines. Between them, Coulson designed what he calls a southern-style home with contemporary features.

With about 90 per cent glass and a screened-in porch on the side facing Lake Erie, the 11/2-storey home is built for the lake views.
It has cedar shake siding, stone from Belgium on the porch and a steel roof. It’s an open concept home done in white with a twisting staircase with curved walls in the centre of the house. Ann didn’t want to reveal how much they spent. She said part of the design’s appeal is its simplicity. “It has a clean contemporary look that ties back to the 1920s.”

Coulson, 34, designs and builds custom homes but his business will also build homes from plans the homeowner chooses and do additions and renovations. He advises his customers to push books aside and create a home of their own. He tries to get inside their lifestyle to help build what they like. “The design part of the house is the best part.” Coulson, who moved to Amherstburg when he was nine, had worked in construction and graduated from the St. Clair College architectural program. He isn’t an architect, but worked for architects in Windsor and Detroit on commercial buildings before starting his own company in 2004.

He owns it, and his two brothers Brett and Rob, his friend Rusty Kelly and his father-in-law Dave Smith work with him. He said he likes the chance to be more creative and challenge himself with the custom homes. He said he took a chance starting his own company. Now his business completes 10 to 20 projects a year and has had years with gross sales of $1 million to $2 million.

They have done renovations ranging from $10,000 to $200,000 and built homes that can range from from $150,000 to $750,000. Coulson Design Build Inc. was a finalist for one of the SAM awards in 2007 in the home renovation category and has won a handful of Golden Hammer Awards from the Greater Windsor Home Builders’ Association.

The Canadian Home Builders’ Association receives hundreds of entries for its awards. Twenty-three awards will be presented at the association’s national conference March 6 in Victoria, B.C.

WINDSOR LIFE MAGAZINE - D. Coulson Design Build

September 4th, 2008:

Creating New Homes For Both Hands On And “Turnkey” Customers

PDF LINK:  dcoulsondesignbuild-windsorlife.pdf

AMHERSTBURG ECHO - Local Builder Up for National Award

March 4th, 2008:

Drew Coulson nominated for SAM award
By Kelsey Bergeron

AMHERSTBURG — A local builder is nominated for a national award.

Drew Coulson, of D. Coulson Design Build, has been nominated for the prestigious National SAM Award in the Home Renovation category. He has been doing large custom renovations for about five years, and is enthused about the recent nomination. Coulson stated, “It’s great to see our new, innovative, design builds recognized.”

Information about these awards is sent out to the people in the home building industry, and Coulson saw this as an opportunity to showcase their work. Having won the local Golden Hammer Award on a few occasions, Coulson seized this opportunity as a way to show their original work and submitted for the nomination.

“We tend to design and build outside that box that everyone is so used to”, said Coulson.
The project that got Coulson nominated for the award he personally designed and is in Amherstburg. It is what Coulson calls a “non-traditional design”, and a style that is more popular in Western Canada. This particular renovation took about five months to complete, and was a project that he was able to be creative with.

The National SAM Awards are offered in a variety of categories, and recognize the exceptional projects in home and renovation design. “These finalists are shining examples of how dreams can be achieved”, said Richard Lind, the President of the Canadian Home Builders’ Association (CHBA). The National SAM Awards will be distributed at the CHBA’s 25th National Conference on April 5, in Whistler, British Columbia.

WINDSOR STAR - Amherstburg Builder Nominated for Award

February 28th, 2008:

Dave Hall
Windsor Star

An Amherstburg builder is being recognized by the Canadian Home Builders Association for excellence in new home and renovation design.

Drew Coulson, who has more than a decade of design and building experience, is nominated for the CHBA’s SAM Award for a 1,500-square-foot addition and renovation of a local waterfront property.

“We added some fresh architectural elements to the property and gave it a much more contemporary look,” said Coulson, who operates D. Coulson Design Build. “It’s a waterfront home and the addition reflects that and also that of the owner’s lifestyle.”

Coulson has been specializing in custom homes for five years. He also works on church buildings and office projects and said he’s been largely unaffected by the struggles in the local economy.

“We’ve been fortunate, touch wood, in that our clients have been in a position to follow through with their projects and we’re not being impacted by some of the problems others might have faced,” said Coulson.

As a general contractor, Coulson is also able to call on other trades and businesses run by family members to participate in his projects.

He went to school to study architecture and, while he doesn’t have an architecture degree, he worked with Joe Passa Associates, of Windsor, and another firm in Detroit before opening his own company.

“I just like the challenge of seeing every unique project through to its conclusion,” said Coulson. “They’re all different and in addition to designing something fresh and new, you’re trying to design something which reflects the lifestyle of the owner.”

“And fortunately, our clients respect our input so we really feel we’re making a major contribution to the finished project.”

Others nominated in Coulson’s category include Dreambuilders, Northern Edge Construction and Windemere Custom Homes, all of Toronto, and Zavarella Construction, of Brantford.

The winners in all 22 categories will be announced April 5 at the CHBA national conference in Whistler, B.C.