Positively Impacting People’s Lives!

Wonderful article about #TimOBrienHomes in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel!

2013 Parade of Homes Overall Grand Award - The Birchwood http://www.timobrienhomes.com/rend_fp_pages/birchwood.html

Building homes to positively impact people’s lives

Sometimes it’s best to put one foot in front of the other and let life take you where it leads. Tim O’Brien, of Tim O’Brien Homes, was introduced to the building trade at a young age, knowing that it’s a good fit for him. At 15-years-old, O’Brien worked for a commercial plumber. In college, he worked for a commercial general contractor. “When I was in college, I met someone that got me in to residential construction,” he remembered. “After college, I started with the largest builder in the country and have been in the industry ever since.”

What do you enjoy about building?
The building process starts with one idea and transforms into a beautiful finished product. I love working with a team and being involved in the process of bringing an idea to life. I enjoy the connection with the homeowners.

What advice would you give someone looking to build?
If someone wants to build, I suggest narrowing a list down to three builders who are members of an accredited association like the MBA. Building a home involves a long-term relationship, so make sure the builder is your ideal fit. Clients should be comfortable with the building team. Ask, ask and ask again…don’t be afraid to ask many questions until you are comfortable. Also, understand all the costs and specifications. Consider not only today’s cost, but future costs like energy usage and replacement costs.

How has being an MBA member helped your business?
When I started my business, the MBA provided a network of industry professionals for me to seek guidance, develop relationships and provide education opportunities. In fact, the MBA gave Tim O’Brien Homes the opportunity to build the first Wisconsin Trend Home in 2008, showcasing green, energy-efficient products prevalent in homes built in the future (2020). In addition, the MBA provides credibility to the homebuilding industry.

How has technology changed your business?
Technology helps us stay more organized, enhances communication and provides a more efficient process for our homebuyers and vendors.

We continually stay connected to new home trends and building systems to provide the most popular choices for the buyer. In addition, national manufacturers approach Tim O’Brien Homes to be a pilot builder, bringing green and energy-efficient initiatives to the marketplace. Currently, we are testing a new insulation system and sealant package.

Dupont Corian countertops with wireless charging built in. Simply place your enabled device on the counter and charge it!

Dupont Corian countertops with wireless charging built in. Simply place your enabled device on the counter and charge it!

How do you see your business changing over the next 10 years?
I see homes and lot sizes becoming smaller with enough space in the right places, and a focus on how buyers use technology at home. Within the next 10 years, we’ll focus on encouraging the Millenniums to build by communicating the benefits of homeownership. We will see an increasing demand in solar power as costs decrease. All our homes are solar-ready with code piping for future solar additions Again, to buyers, I would say be truly ready.

What advice would you give someone looking for a career in the building industry?
Try a few things within the trades. If you have a skill and passion for something, work hard and success will follow. We are fortunate to partner with Oconomowoc High School’s Building Trades 3 Course to provide students hands-on experience for the past three years. Each year, our trade partners worked side-by-side with 12 students to build a new home. We wish more schools had this type of program to introduce students to the skilled trades.

What is your favorite quote or saying that represents your business philosophy?
“Positively Impacting People’s Lives” is our core purpose and the driving philosophy behind our company’s core values.

What charitable groups are you involved with?
This year, we are donating the funds raised from “Fit for a Cause” to Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin. In addition, we partner with Habitat for Humanity in Waukesha County to build homes, plus our employees participate in the annual Cancer Walk to show generosity.

Tim O’Brien Homes Goes Solar

Each New Home Built Ready for Solar Electric System

As part of its ongoing commitment to green building practices, Tim O’Brien Homes, Inc., a semi-custom, single-family homebuilder with offices in Milwaukee and Madison, WI; announced that every new home built by the company is now solar ready.IMG_7417

Provided in coordination with SunVest Solar, Inc., all new Tim O’Brien Homes will meet code for the future installation of a solar electric system.  According to SunVest, these systems provide a renewable energy solution with both environmental and financial benefits.  The financial advantage of the systems has increased in recent years, as the cost of solar energy has decreased by 68 percent between 2009 and 2014, while electricity rates increased 15 percent over the same period.  Today, a solar electric system from SunVest provides an average annual return on investment of nearly 20 percent.

“We are proud and excited to make it easier and more affordable for homeowners to go solar,” said Tim O’Brien, president of Tim O’Brien Homes.  “Surveys show that 97% of Americans overestimate the cost of installing a solar system and 77% of homeowners would install solar if cost were not a factor.  Having the required infrastructure in each of our new homes makes solar energy an easier decision for homeowners to make.”

To be considered solar ready, new homes are built with the necessary conduit and piping from the roof to the basement installed within the home’s walls.  This allows for faster, cleaner, and less expensive installation when homeowners opt to equip their home with a solar electric system.

SunVest solar electric systems are designed and built to last 30 years with little required maintenance.  The solar panels, which are typically installed on the roof of a home, are tested to handle between 30 and 40 pounds of snow per square foot, 90 miles per hour wind gusts, and one-inch hail stones at 55 miles per hour.

Green BuildingTim O’Brien Homes is committed to energy efficiency, innovative designs, green building practices, and renewable technologies.  Every home built meets the Focus on Energy and the Wisconsin Green Built Home programs, which are third-party tested and certified, ensuring a solid investment and low cost of homeownership.

With model homes available to tour throughout the greater Milwaukee area, all Tim O’Brien Homes feature a 10-year limited warranty that is transferable and backed by insurance.  Focused on delivering an extraordinary building experience, the Tim O’Brien Homes team of industry professionals has provided over 1,000 new homes to satisfied customers.

For more information, contact Tim O’Brien Homes at 262-542-5750 or visit TimOBrienHomes.com.

Meet the Team

Name: Joe VoleskyJoe

Division: (MSN or MKE) MKE

Length at TOH: 4-1/2 years

Title: Construction manager

Favorite part of TOH: The People and their great attitudes.

Favorite Floor Plan & Why: Canterbury, just a good fit for our family.

Favorite part of a home: The Kitchen.

What do you do for fun?: Go up north with the family, play softball.

The best part of waking up is?: Waking up!!! Having a cup of coffee, planning out the day.

Random Fact About Yourself: Brew my own beer.

Parade of Homes

It is time for the MBA Parade of Homes again! This year, Tim O’Brien Homes is featuring a new design called The Monterey in the Victoria Station neighborhood in Pewaukee, Wisconsin.


The Monterey


The Monterey has 2,479 square feet, 2-stories, 4 bedrooms, 2.5 baths, a flex room, and a rear stairwell to the basement and second floor. There are many special features included in the Parade Model to suit all your entertaining and living needs. The Kitchen includes a box tray ceiling, a corner cook-top with stone backdrop, cherry cabinets to ceiling, “snow white” quartz countertops, a large walk-in pantry, and a spacious dinette area. The Great Room includes vaulted ceilings and a direct vent fireplace with stone detail and raised hearth. The Flex Room is highlighted with a box tray ceiling and window seat. The Rear Foyer includes a walk-in closet, lockers, drop zone, pocket office, and private laundry. Throughout the first floor is Asian Walnut Hardwood floors.

The second floor of the Monterey includes all four bedrooms and two full baths. The Master Bedroom Suite includes a tray ceiling, walk-in closet, tiled over-sized shower, and a quartz double bow raised vanity. Two of the secondary bedrooms include walk-in closets. After the Parade, the Monterey will become the  Tim O’Brien Homes Pewaukee Model location!

The MBA Parade of Homes takes place August 9th through September 1st. The homes are open 4:00pm to 8:00pm Monday through Fridays and 11:00am to 5:00pm Saturdays, Sundays, and Labor Day. Tickets are $10.00 for adults at the gate and $8.00 online. Senior and child tickets are $6.00. Make sure to stop by our model home basement for the “Going for the Green” putting competition for a chance to win 2 tickets to the 2015 PGA Tournament at Whistling Straits. See you there!

Keep Pets Cool

With the heat of summer upon us, remember to keep your pets cool! Dogs and cats are more apt to getting heat stroke in the hot summer months than humans. Some signs of heat stroke in pets are excessive panting, glazed eyes, increased heart rate, deep red or purple tongue, drooling, and vomiting. Thankfully, there are many ways to keep your pets cool in the summer. Read below for tips!20140503_153647

  • Provide cool, clean water.
    Staying hydrated on hot summer days is key when preventing heat stroke.
  • Exercise during the cool parts of the day.
    Walk your pet in the morning or evening when the sun is not at it’s hottest, the air is easier to breath, and the ground is not as hot on the pads of their paws.
  • Locate shade.
    If you are outside during the hottest parts of the day with your pet, make sure to find some shady spots for your pet to relax under.2013042295153455
  • Leave behind.
    Leave your pet at home if the day is just too hot, especially if you will be leaving them in a car during errands. Keep pets out of the car and instead, keep them in the comfort of their home.
  • Keep hair long.
    Contrary to popular belief, keeping your pet’s hair long in the summer is beneficial to them. The layers of hair protect the animal from sunburn and overheating. Brushing away loose fur helps, too.


Read more tips on keeping your pets cool in the summer heat at the Humane Society of the United States website!

Meet the Team

Name: Don Esposito 2012-08-25 19.44.24

Division: (MSN or MKE) MSN

Length at TOH: 2-½ years

Title:  MSN Market President

Favorite part of TOH: TOH Team – They are by far the most incredible collection of capable, competent and customer-centric people I have ever been associated with in my 37 year career.

Favorite Floor Plan & Why:  Bayberry – Would work well for how we live our life with a good mix of casual and formal living areas. Secondary bedrooms separate from the Master suite are great for when the sons, wives & grandkids come to visit!

Favorite part of a home:   Kitchen – it is where the wife and I spend a great deal of time – either together or when entertaining.  It should be open, inviting and casual but with a lot of storage space.

What do you do for fun?: My hobby is gourmet cooking – hence the answer above!!  My New York style cheesecake has won awards!

The best part of waking up is?: I look forward to the new challenges of each day.  There is never a dull moment in the building industry!

Random Fact About Yourself:   Back in 1984, I applied to NASA as a mission specialist – figured they needed help building the international space station.  I did not get very far in the interview process due to my poor eyesight and my need for glasses.


Name: Tim O’Brien photo2010

Division: (MSN or MKE) MKE

Length at TOH: 7 years

Title: President

Favorite part of TOH:  The People!  We have a great group of passionate team members and vendor partners that contribute every day to our client experience and the innovations in both our home designs and the products we use.

Favorite Floor Plan & Why:  Birchwood.  I really like the circular flow of the plan on the main level.  Our parade plan included the clearstory option that brought in a tremendous amount of natural light into the space as well as comfortable air circulation.

Favorite part of a home: The Sunroom.  I love this part of the home because of the tremendous amount of natural light though this space as well as the views that can be had from having three of the four walls in the room including windows and a patio door.

What do you do for fun?: In the Summer:  Boating – Sailing and wakeboarding.  In the Winter:  Snow skiing and beaches!

The best part of waking up is?: My beautiful wife next to me, fresh coffee, and a happy dog!

Random Fact About Yourself:  When I was 7 years old, I saw the Wizard of Oz in a theater with my family and some cousins.  The bad witch REALLY scared me…  so when I saw the flying monkeys, I had enough, freaked out and ran out of the theater.  My mom had to come get me but I was not going back in, so I had to sit in the lobby and wait for the movie to finish.

Cook-Out Safety Tips

Happy 4th of July week! What will you be doing to celebrate? Below you will find the three C’s of safety tips when cooking out this weekend.


  • Wash all cooking surfaces before beginning.
  • Wash hands with soap and warm water before and after touching raw foods.
  • Separate raw food and juices from cooked food or cold dishes.
  • Use separate cutting boards for raw foods and vegetables.
  • Wash utensils and cutting boards thoroughly after using with raw foods.


  • Keep the grill at least several feet from your home. Make sure the grill is out of the way of high-traffic areas and ideally on a concrete surface.
  • It is important for food to be fully cooked. Purchasing a food thermometer will assure that all foods are cooked properly.
  • Different meats need to be cooked to different temperatures:
    – Hot Dogs: 165°F
    – Poultry: 165°F
    – Ground Meat: 160°F
    – Pork, Beef, Lamb, Veal: 145°F
    – Fish: 145°F


  • Refrigerate leftovers right away. Discard any food that has been sitting out for too long. Bacteria flourishes in temperatures between 40°F and 140°F.