We had the good fortune of connecting with Emily Gunlock and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Emily, what role has risk played in your life or career?
I am a big believer in taking risks! I assumed when I went to college that I would get a stable job working for someone else, but what I quickly learned about myself was that I didn’t fit into that box and am naturally an entrepreneur. It’s a huge risk to start your own business because all the money you make is dependent on what you do every day to make that happen. Every project we take on is a huge risk because in this industry, nothing is guaranteed. When I find a lot to build on, I do all the numbers in my head in about 5 minutes before deciding to buy it. A lot of it is experience over the last 15 years but also a big part of it is intuition and gut. We have purchased lots anywhere from $700,000-$1,400,000 and my husband Brad trusts me solely to make the call. It can be nerve-racking because you never know what changes will happen in the world during an 18 month project, but I just try to stay positive, work hard on the project and keep moving forward.
What should our readers know about your business?
We are a small custom home builder in Central Denver. My husband manages all of the construction side of the business and I manage sales, client relationships, land acquisitions and assist with design and architecture. One of the things that sets us a part is that even though we have an amazing project manager, my husband likes to be involved in all the details to ensure it’s done to a high standard of quality so it’s two sets of eyes on everything. Building a quality product and standing by it is very important to us. It seems simple but it takes years to master certain nuances of construction because it is a craft. We are in a unique position after 16 years in the business where we don’t have any investors. This gives us the freedom to spend more money on finishes and details for our spec homes. For example, I never hesitate to go over my budget if I fall in love with certain light fixtures or tile that really feels right for the home and increases that custom level of finish that we stand by for years to come.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Well, my best friend does come to visit often! We always start at our home in Wash Park and walk down to dinner on Gaylord Street. Our new favorite spot in Gaylord Street is Perdida! We then walk around Cherry Creek North and stop in to Garbarini as always, grab lunch at Hillstone and then the next day head to the mountains. We Love going to the mountains! Most often going to our home in Vail and skiing in the winter and hiking and going by the pool in the summer.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
There are so many people to recognize! My husband first and foremost because as my partner in life and business, his incredible even tempered personality is an anchor for us in both our personal life and professional life. He has said to me in the past there are always going to be problems, but all the matters is how you handle them. A big part of our success is just the way Brad is wired to pay attention to every detail. It’s perfect how I can do the sales and work closely with our clients and designer and he can focus on 1/18 of an inch. I would have no product to sell if he didn’t do such an amazing job which seems innate for him.
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