For Neil Harvey, of NJ and JB Harvey Building Constructions, being named Residential Builder of the Year, is the pinnacle of his career.
“I’ve won a few awards over the years, but this is the one I’ve been chasing and I’ve done it. It’s like winning a Gold Logie,” said Mr Harvey who works in partnership with wife Jenny in the business.
“To top it off, Dragon was the band on the night and comedian Marty Fields, son of Maurie from Hey Hey It’s Saturday, did a routine.
“It doesn’t get any better than that, a dream night – one of the best I’ve every had.”
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The team were rewarded with victory in the Custom Build over $2million category for a home created on grand scale at Tenambit before going on to claim the overall gong.
“I’m so happy to be able to do this with my son, Peter, and an MBA apprentice, Luke Carter,” Mr Harvey said.
“I did my apprenticeship in 1974. My son has been my right hand man since 1999 – I put him through his apprenticeship. And Luke was an excellent guy – keen to look, learn and listen.”
Mr Harvey had previously enjoyed MBA Awards success in 1995 (best use of timber) and 2000 (custom design homes between $350k-$500k).
“You just don’t know on the night – the judges play a straight bat and don’t give anything away.
“I’ve been there before and know what it’s like to win and lose, but like anything, you have to be in it to win it and this is the one that I’ve always wanted.”
For Mr Harvey, who specialises in the high-end sector of residential building, it’s all about quality and collaboration with the client.
”I’m there on site, working with my son on the tools, pretty much every day all day while ever there’s carpentry work to be done, we do it all ourselves.
“Clients like that, and I’m always available. I’m trying to make their dream come true.
“I’ve got clients who we’ve done three or four jobs with. Money isn’t the issue, it’s the quality of the work.”
Mr Harvey got his building licence in 1981 and said he has always enjoyed building stuff.
“That was what I wanted to be and so this is the icing on the cake,” the laconic “elder statesman” of the team reflected.
“I’m very happy, and to work with my son five days a week – I reckon we’ve only ever had half a dozen arguments over the years.
“It’s great that my son is there thinking about things as well as me so there’s two heads on the job.
“And the MBA apprentice Luke Carter was excellent.
“He was there on time ready to work every day. I would like to acknowledge all my all hard-working sub-contractors and their attention to detail was excellent.”
Contracts have been signed for another grand project which will take upwards of 18 months to complete.
For Mr Harvey and the team at NJ and JB Harvey Building Constructions, it will be business as usual.
But rest assured, they’ll be adhering to the motto that has stood the test of time: Do it the right the first time.