This Q&A with Dusty Johnston was originally published in Edmond Life & Leisure At Home.
EDITOR'S NOTE: Dusty Johnston of Liberty Homes is the inaugural honoree of the Oklahoma State Home Builders Association "Certified Professional Builder" monthly winner. Johnston has been a CPB since the program's inception in 2002. He has been a president of his local homebuilders' association and has served on several local committees. Here are his views on the Certified Builder program.
Q. Why should the homebuyer care about whether their home builder is a Certified Professional Builder or not?
The Certified Professional Builder status allows a home builder to set himself apart from
other builders. Since Oklahoma does not require licensing of home builders, anyone
can call himself or herself a builder. Electricians are licensed; plumbers are licensed,
but not home builders. While licensing is not currently required in the state, consumers
want something that lends credibility and trust to their decision when contracting a
builder. After all, building a home is the largest investment many will make in their lives,
one that they do not take lightly.
Certified Professional Builders guarantee they will build to code, as well as guarantee
their work for at least one year. With last year's legislative passage of the state's
first Uniform Building Code, all builders will need to build to code -- in rural areas or
otherwise. This provides an initial layer of protection. Certification guarantees it.
Q. What is a Certified Professional Builder?
All certified builders carry a workers compensation policy and substantial liability
coverage. Clients can rest assured if damages do occur, the builder has insurance and
responsibility. If a roofer falls and breaks his back, the homeowner could be sued if the
builder doesn't have such coverage
The way we build homes has changed in the last five years, let alone the last 20 or
30. Continuing education classes teach the new, best methods for home building. The
certification requires the builder complete at least nine hours of classes each year.
These classes keep him or her up-to-date on new insurance, safety and ethics rules
Also, Certified Professional Builders offer a client assurance that all building will comply
with local, state and national building codes. Without this guarantee, clients do not know
if they are getting a well-constructed home. This is particularly true in areas where code
compliance is often a gray area with low standards.
Q. Why are you a Certified Professional Builder?
The certification is an upper level of building professional. It gives me a distinction
between my competition, it is a higher ranking and, basically, the certification ensures
higher quality for the home buyer. We all try to achieve to be the best, and this is one
way to get there.
Q. Where does a home buyer find a listing of Certified Professional Builders?
More than 2,500 individuals in the state consider themselves to be home builders, but
more than150 of these individuals are Certified Professional Builders. Their names can
be found on the Oklahoma State Home Builders Association website, along with their
contact information and website, if applicable. Go to www.okhba.org
Q. During the various "Parade of Homes" shows throughout the metro area, how else may I locate Certified Professional Builders?
A Certified Professional Builder logo is utilized on a home builder's marketing materials
and is displayed outside their "Parade" home. All of this recognition lends credibility to
the work of certified builders and shows these builders are taking steps to maintain their
status as one of the elite in the state.