By combining a diverse set of skills with 30+ years in the industry, Roger Mills and Geoff Eloge create a team that will transform the custom homebuilding experience.
The path that led to the creation of Mills Eloge Homes began many years ago when Geoff and Roger both attended Davidson College. Roger was pursuing a degree in Classics with a concentration in Architecture, while working 40 hours a week for a national homebuilder to help pay for school expenses - an admirable accomplishment considering Davidson's rigorous academic curriculum. Geoff was pursuing a degree in Fine Arts with a concentration in Painting - an artistic journey that helped him develop a keen eye and a critical mind. Just acquaintances at the time, neither Roger nor Geoff knew their paths would cross again many years after they had graduated.
Roger remained in the Charlotte area and began working with a local custom homebuilder as a superintendent/project manager. Over the next sixteen years, Roger perfected the craft of homebuilding as he progressed from his responsibilities in the field to the company's construction manager. Roger's skilled craftsmanship and care for his clients not only helped his company grow, but also helped him earn his reputation as one of Charlotte's best builders.
Geoff, a native of Charlotte, stayed close to home after graduation. An entrepreneur at heart, he worked with several start-up companies in his early post-graduate years. Like a self taught MBA program, these entrepreneurial ventures helped Geoff develop strong business skills. He put those skills to work when he entered the real estate industry as a broker and developer. Quickly seeing the opportunity in the Charlotte market, Geoff shifted from general brokerage to start his own company developing and renovating residential properties. His early projects were small and very hands-on, but over several years Geoff reached the pinnacle of the marketplace by partnering with contractors to build new luxury homes in some of Charlotte's finest neighborhoods. As a broker and construction manager, Geoff also developed the skills to provide turn-key consulting services for homebuyers looking to build custom homes.
It was at this point that Roger and Geoff's paths crossed again. Geoff entered into a new partnership with the company Roger was working for to enhance their client offerings to include brokerage services, as well as help the company's owners pursue real estate development opportunities. Working in tandem for several years, Geoff and Roger formed a strong team and often considered the possibility of forming a company together.
Those thoughts were put on hold when the market changed in 2008. With opportunities for development and custom homebuilding slowing to a halt, Geoff and Roger's paths split again. While Roger stayed onto help his company survive the slow down, Geoff found an opportunity to join his family's HVAC business - a well known leader in the heating and cooling business for over 70 years. Though it was a departure from Geoff's passion for homebuilding, he quickly realized that his construction experience coupled with new HVAC design skills would only enhance his homebuilding skillset. For the next seven years, Geoff honed his craft and would work with some of Charlotte's finest homebuilders, designing and managing the installation of their home's heating and cooling systems. Working as a subcontractor for these top builders gave Geoff a unique inside perspective on the homebuilding industry. He quickly assessed the practices of these builders and began to evaluate the successes and pitfalls of the custom home building process. Geoff used his business skills and experience to move from sales and project management to become Vice President over all of the company's residential services. Managing a team of over 40 individuals, Geoff helped more than double the residential division's revenues. He also successfully added several new services to the business that included Geothermal Heating and Cooling, Insulation, and Closed Crawlspaces.
During this time, Roger was mastering his craft by building some of Charlotte's finest homes. His interest in making homes more durable and energy efficient, led him to learn about building science and home performance. Roger managed the construction of only the second home in the area to qualify for the prestigious LEED for Homes Platinum designation. Geoff and his HVAC team performed the design and installation for this same project. Roger also built the 1st NAHB Gold Energy Standard home in NC. Both Geoff and Roger independently became certified as a Building Analysts and Envelope Professionals from the Building Performance Institute.
Roger's hard work and skillset helped him grow his team and company to reach new heights after the market began to recover. His successes gave him the confidence to consider going into business for himself. As luck would have it, Geoff was trying to help a family member find a builder for a new home project. Seeing Roger as the obvious first choice, Geoff called to see if he could take on the project. Roger indicated that the timing was good as he was putting the pieces together to start his own business and could use some projects to help get him off the ground. Though not considering a change at that time, Geoff's entrepreneurial spirit kicked in and after due consideration, he proposed the idea of partnership. Interested in the idea of combining their diverse skills and experiences with their common pursuit for an intelligent approach to creating the highest level of quality craftsmanship, Roger agreed.
Roger and Geoff will tell you that the formation of Mills Eloge Homes was meant to be from the early beginnings of their stories. Many things had to happen, both positive and negative, to prepare them to take on this new challenge, but with their diverse skills and experience in the industry, the timing was perfect.
Though Mills Eloge Homes is a new company, the story that led to its start began long ago. This is simply the first of many new chapters.
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