A Builder Philosophy Unlike Any Other
Harried. Organized. Visionary. Gritty. Classy.
When you first lay eyes on Don Hempel, his presence personifies the new paradigm of home builders. With a tremendously hectic schedule, he remains calm and organized. Floating from homesite to homesite, he can just as easily roll up his sleeves with his trade partners as slip in to eloquent reassurances of home progress with his homeowners. Don Hempel is a Renaissance man.
Laying the foundation.
Born and raised in New Jersey, Don transplanted to Florida after graduating from the University of Miami with a business degree. After successfully managing his own single-family building business, Hempel Homes, he joined his mentor, Francis Issa, as a partner at Issa Homes in 1987. Along with Jeff Marchell, who is responsible for construction management, quality control, and land and commercial development projects, Don and Francis have grown Issa Homes into Central Florida’s luxury residential custom home builder.
Focus on the 2%.
Committed to the philosophy that they will build only as many homes as they can personally walk through, Issa Homes has, since 1998, enjoyed being one of very few companies invited to be master builders in exclusive neighborhoods such as Celebration, Lake Nona Golf and Country Club, and most recently Disney’s Golden Oak Community. During the rigorous Celebration vetting process, Francis was asked how he accounted for his 400 homeowners showing a 98% approval rating, to which he responded,” Not everyone can be happy.” It is that mental focus on providing 100% satisfaction that is the backbone of how Issa Homes designs homes, chooses the highest quality maintenance-free materials, assembles its network of loyal trade partners, and extends their relationship with their homeowners well after closing. Quality begets quality.
As Don and I chatted in the middle of his first Laureate Park custom home, I was able to experience firsthand the craftsmanship and care that Don put into this home. A unique blend of European-style details and an open contemporary flow, the home is clearly designed with comfort, luxury and family in mind. We may not all be able to live in Disney’s Golden Oak, but Don and Jeff had made sure that a lucky Laureate Park neighbor will be able to own that same experience.