Signature Style

Co-manager and owner of The Kemp Homes Company “Signature Homes” division, Bill Kemp gives us an insight on what it takes to build a beautiful custom home.

Edited by Moe Godat

Portrait Photography by Colin Miller/Strauss Peyton

Project Photography by Aaron Kranz


Keep it Consistent: Regardless of the style home, maintaining some degree of architectural constancy between the interior and exterior is important to me. Interior details like beam ceilings, wood flooring, and fireplace masonry are often used to complement the exterior finishes of a Kemp Signature Home. Gas lanterns are one of my personal favorites and provide a great look to any home and can be used in a variety of home styles.

Creating a Custom Kitchen: I think a harmony of functionality and design plays the ultimate role in a kitchen. However, much of that is subject to our clients' preference, which usually influences the design and appliances that are selected to suit their unique tastes. For me, a top-of-the-line kitchen includes large spaces for entertaining, plentiful cabinet space and performance appliances like a gas range and double oven. Additionally, accessibility and integration to outdoor living spaces also play an important role in the design of the kitchen spaces.

Focus on the Details: Interior details such as millwork, cabinets, light fixtures, appliances, countertops, flooring, etc., are all important and must be chosen collectively and not exclusively to one another. I try to maximize the focal points of the home that attract the most attention like the entry foyer, kitchen, dining room, study and master suite. Millwork appointments such as wainscot paneling, shiplap and beamed ceilings add a lot of appeal.

Expect the Unexpected: Each project has its own unique set of challenges and problems that arise. Building a custom home is not a science, but rather a process. No matter how well a project is planned, there will always be something that comes up unexpectedly. I cannot think of one instance where we did not overcome a challenge presented to us, and I attribute that to the experience of our team and the relationships we have with our subcontractors and trade partners.

Can't Live Without It! My number one must-have in a custom home is a steam shower, followed by a spacious outdoor living area with a fireplace and outdoor kitchen.