Bear Creek Builders, owned by Jeff and Kalie Brady, is a premier custom builder that started in 2012 by specializing in unique, architecturally pleasing, fully functional smaller-sized homes with superior energy efficiency. While we still offer new home construction, we recently began focusing on our specialties, which include kitchens & baths, energy efficient remodeling & additions, and alternative mechanical systems (including radiant heat).
We are not your average builder/contractor – we are the owners, designers, and builders, which means we care about every aspect of the home building & renovation process. We focus on one house/project at a time, which allows us to fully invest all of our time and energy into the design and construction. Located in Pittsford, NY, we proudly serve the central New York area.
Our first green home, the “Green House in the Woods“ was built in 2012. With a full finished basement, an open first floor with a kitchen and living room, and a 3/4 loft for sleeping, our first model was just shy of 1,200 square feet. Our 2014 model, the “Crabapple Retreat”, was larger at 1,800 square feet and the standard 3 bedrooms, but offered the same feel and charm of the first green home. Our 2016 model, the “2-story Craftsman“, offered more of an “average American home” feel with the slightly larger and more standard floor plan with attached 2 car garage. The style of this home is more of a contemporary farmhouse.
Lately there has been a growing trend back towards the smaller-sized houses that were quite common decades ago. Both of us grew up in larger houses, yet never felt like it was the space for us. Smaller spaces tend to lend themselves to our busy lifestyle… if we’re not building, we’re probably outside kayaking, hiking, or biking. The point is, we don’t spend much time in our house, so why should it be so large? I must admit, the best thing about living in a small house is feeling more free and relaxed from not having so much “stuff”. It’s also much easier to clean, extremely cozy, and supports a more frugal and responsible lifestyle.
Our energy efficient homes and additions are always designed and built intelligently with specific focus on a passive design and a well-sealed, efficient building envelope. The things we invest the most on with all our homes and/or additions are things necessary for not only energy efficiency, but also excellent quality – a home filled with products that are durable, Earth friendly, efficient, and cost effective. Our intention is for our homes and additions to have fewer environmental impacts, and at the same time, be better for our health and cost less to operate.
We also design and build as much cabinetry and furniture as time allows. We always try and make each piece unique to fit the space, and only use locally sourced hard and soft woods.
Below is a list of what makes our homes unique and eco-friendly.
- True custom homes, from the bench of a craftsman, not an assembly line
- Small footprints that use less materials and energy
- Fluid floor plans that embrace an opened, relaxed feeling and make every inch of space useful
- Unique rustic contemporary styling that is warm and inviting
- Neutral tones enlightened by splashes of bold colors and natural wood accents
- Building and windows oriented for daylighting (reaching at least 75% of home’s interior)
- Natural ventilation (via building orientation, operable windows and fans)
- Minimized trees cleared to increase natural cooling
- FSC certified lumber and trim materials
- Roxul insulation done correctly, especially around electrical boxes and vents (this is where a significant amount of energy is lost)
- Hardie Plank (fiber cement) siding
- Deep roof overhangs
- Energy star, argon filled, low-e windows on all sides of house
- Properly flashed window and door installations
- Locally harvested logs for millwork
- High efficiency (92%) propane-fired radiant heating system (Geothermal system optional – we are certified installers)
- Ceiling Fans (eliminates the need for air conditioning) or Mini-split systems
- Low-flow shower heads, faucets, and toilets
- VOC-free paint throughout
- No carpet (concrete, softwood or hardwood floors throughout)
- Energy Star appliances
- LED lighting throughout
If you are interested in one of our homes, please contact us. We would be more than happy to work with you. Thanks!