July 2010

RCH CONSTRUCTION: Quality Craftsmanship, Unsurpassed Customer Service & Going Green

Author: Blanche Sullivan | Photographer: Photography by Anne

So what do you after you’ve played college and pro basketball, taught high school math, coached high school basketball and served as an apple orchard manager?
Build homes, naturally.

For many, the transition from the aforementioned careers to home builder may be difficult to grasp, but Hugh Hobus, affable co-owner of RCH Construction with wife, April, seems to have the Midas touch when it comes to excelling in whatever position he assumes—even home building during the currently challenging economic clime.

On Hilton Head Island since 1999, this 51-year-old trim and crown molding aficionado attended and shot hoops as a Bulldog for Gonzaga University (Spokane, Washington) for a few years before going pro ball Down Under and having the first of three children.“I played pro basketball in Melbourne, Australia for about three-and-a-half years and it was great. Heidi (now 26) was actually born there. We saw all of Australia, which was amazing, but April was homesick so we came back to the States.”

Hobus then took on a job as a math teacher and basketball coach at Post Falls High in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. He enjoyed his teaching and coaching experience, but took advantage of an opportunity to return to Washington by accepting a managerial position at an apple orchard in Chelan. For about nine years, Hobus served as the spraying expert for the largest grower (5,500 acres) of Fuji and Granny Smith apples in the county.

So how, then, did Hobus decide to pick up a hammer and begin paving his home construction path?

“April and I have been married for almost 30 years. We’ve shared about 30 years of moving and 14 homes. Working in an orchard, there wasn’t much to do during the wintertime. So April and I would remodel homes with a couple of brothers we knew.”

And how did Hobus’ path lead cross-country to South Carolina’s Lowcountry? Age-related epiphany and, the “family factor.”

Said Hobus, “I had just turned 40, was having a mid-life crisis and we [April and I] were talking about moving. We had decided on the Southeast region and were trying to narrow it down to a specific area. April’s parents had vacationed on Hilton Head Island regularly, so we decided to check it out. I really liked the lay of the land and we fell in love with the community.”

But Hobus didn’t just pack his bags, relocate and establish RCH. He first expanded his knowledge base and garnered significant expertise by getting his hands dirty and blistered.

“I basically came down as a $20-per-hour carpenter and worked with a guy on Daufuskie [Island]. I did everything: building foundations, trim, etc. Next I took a test to get my residential builder license, specializing in trim and crown molding.”

With license in hand and a vision to restore what has lost its luster and create superior dream homes, Hobus and his wife founded RCH Construction. In addition to her pivotal and valued role as RCH co-owner and Secretary / Treasurer, April is also a talented artist who is right at home in the arts-embracing Lowcountry.

“RCH was named after our daughters: Rachelle (22), Candy (20) and Heidi (27).

After all, the money is going to them anyway!” he remarked with a grin.

On a more serious note, RCH has established itself as a premier renovator and innovator when it comes to property rehabilitation and retrofitting and prides itself on exquisitely constructed homes.

“RCH is all about quality, and we do everything we can to exceed our customers’ expectations,” said Hobus. “No job is too small. We do everything, from small window replacement to grand custom homes, and treat each job as if it is our home.”

Not unlike his Gonzaga Bulldog days, Hobus is proud to say that the RCH “roster” comprises an impressive group of highly professional and skilled players with whom he shares a family-like history.

“The RCH team, which is really made up of some of the best, most professional talent in the Lowcountry, has been together for almost nine years, and we are very hands-on. Everything is done in-house. We control the schedules; we control the quality, and we use only the best materials,” said Hobus.

According to Hobus, RCH also consistently employs the same professionals for such home components as flooring, heating and air, etc., and is committed to environmentally friendly design, construction and maintenance.

“When we work with the same people, we can better control quality. Green building design is also important and, for RCH, involves finding the delicate balance between homebuilding and the sustainable environment. We’re leaving a lighter footprint on the environment through conservation of resources, while, at the same time, balancing energy-efficient, cost-effective, low-maintenance products for our construction needs.”

In spite of an economic downturn in our country, RCH has been responsive to customers’ needs and has been thriving.

“Our remodeling business is up—as good as ever—because people are choosing to remodel instead of build right now. They’re saying, ‘let’s put that addition on,’” said Hobus.

He added, “In today’s economy, when many people are remodeling their homes instead of building new, it also makes sense to maintain quality. RCH is all about developing a sanctuary for them to enjoy for a lifetime and then hand down for generations.”

RCH, a member of the Hilton Head Area Home Builders Association, was recognized by the organization in 2009 with two Lighthouse Awards—one for “Best Overall Full Remodel” and one for “Best Exterior.” RCH is also a member of the Hilton Head Area Association of Realtors.

“We had our best year in 2009 and look forward to an even more successful 2010. I believe this because people view their house as their ‘home,’ not an investment. We share that view,” said Hobus.

The Lowcountry abounds with RCH success stories and satisfied customers, but in spite of its expertise, reliability, speed and use of quality materials, Hobus believes that their service is not more expensive.

He said, “We’ll actually save you money, because we save you time. There are no egos at RCH. Everyone is there, on the job site, to help everyone. I’m there too. I’m not sitting at the office. I’m on every home site, hands-on with every project.”

So what does the statuesque homebuilder do for fun when he is not on the job site, or attending one of April’s intriguing art exhibitions?

“I enjoy basketball, golf, tennis and, occasionally, water skiing,” he said. “You have to de-stress somehow. You gotta have balance. My philosophy is mind, body, spirit. Do something every day for your mind, for exercise. Whatever God you serve, believe in that God; do something every day to show thanks. Live a better life.”

Live a better life. Call RCH Construction, or visit them online at rchconco.com, so they can help you develop your own exciting remodeling project or build the custom home of your dreams.

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