Eclipse Development LLC
Building Beyond Boundaries: Eclipse Development’s Visionary Approach to Custom Homes
Discover how Eclipse Development LLC is redefining custom home construction with its unique blend of design excellence, digital innovation, and a forward-thinking expansion strategy.
Eclipse Development LLC, a custom home construction and renovation company serving the Louisiana Northshore and Greater New Orleans Area, isn’t your conventional home construction company. The company’s ethos is built around the concept that a home is more than a place of residence—it’s a sanctuary that offers solace from the hustle and bustle of daily life. It’s where memories are made and cherished, and for many, it represents the most substantial financial investment they will ever undertake.
The company’s commitment to transcending the ordinary ‘contractor grade’ standards is evident in its portfolio of distinctive designs and quality constructions. This dedication has earned Eclipse accolades and a reputation for excellence in the high-end custom home industry in the United States. It continues to thrive in a sector marked by a demand for not just luxury but homes that reflect the individuality and achievements of their owners. Eclipse meets this demand head-on, treating each project as a unique opportunity to bring a client’s vision to life.
The excellence of the company’s work lies in the innovative processes it employs, a theme that becomes evident when listening to Phillip Brodt, the founder and president of the company. He speaks with the quiet confidence of someone who knows his firm is breaking the mold. “We have a strong design eye in a market saturated with many builders who focus only on construction aspects,” he says. Eclipse sets itself apart by its commitment to efficient, digital-first operations. “We’re a paperless operation,” Brodt asserts. This digital efficiency extends from their internal processes to their communication with subcontractors, favoring electronic interactions over printed paper, which, according to him, is limited to issuing checks. However, they are nudging towards total electronic payments.
Brodt’s experience in aviation consulting significantly informs Eclipse’s approach, emphasizing the early adoption of digital processes for efficiency and scalability. He highlights the company’s transparent operational system that enables real-time tracking of financial and project status, a stark improvement over the norm where firms can struggle with information management. Additionally, Brodt underlines the integral role of design in their work, asserting the company’s commitment to guiding clients through every decision, ensuring each project reflects the client’s vision while avoiding common design pitfalls. This approach not only sets Eclipse apart in the market, but also provides that each project is a bespoke creation, aligning perfectly with the homeowner’s desires.
Navigating Economic Headwinds
In an industry that is as susceptible to economic fluctuations as custom home construction, Eclipse demonstrates impressive agility. The recent years have not been without their challenges, as rising interest rates, skilled labor shortages, and soaring material costs have put considerable strain on the sector. Yet, Brodt explains how the company has adapted its business model to remain resilient and responsive in the face of these challenges.
Brodt acknowledges the shifting economic landscape with a nod to the strategies that have allowed Eclipse to thrive. “In response to these challenges, we’ve largely transitioned to a cost-plus-fixed-fee model for our larger, more custom homes,” he explains. This approach balances the risks and potential benefits between Eclipse and its clients, fostering a partnership-like relationship. “Clients understand the risks and the potential benefits with costs,” he notes, and this transparent arrangement has met with little resistance.
Brodt emphasizes meticulous management in handling fixed price contracts and changes, leveraging their digital efficiency to adapt to and factor in inflationary pressures. He notes the local market’s relative insulation from widespread delays, with current challenges narrowed to window and high-end appliance supply. He also observes an advantageous shift in the labor market due to a recent downturn, resulting in greater subcontractor availability. Brodt additionally remarks on a significant trend in client transactions, moving toward more cash-based projects, a strategy that mitigates the impact of fluctuating interest rates. This transition enables Eclipse to continue focusing on delivering high-end custom homes while navigating economic variables with agility.
Crafting Spaces: The Eclipse Development Ethos
The homes built by Eclipse are more than mere structures; they are intricate mosaics of design and functionality reflecting the individuality of their owners. Brodt shares insights into the two distinct categories of homes the company specializes in, each with its unique allure and design philosophy.
Brodt describes the first category with enthusiasm, “We focus on larger homes, but within that, there’s a fascinating trend we’re catering to: New Urbanism.” He pauses to clarify the concept—a movement toward community-oriented living spaces, even in suburban settings. Brodt paints a vivid picture: “These are areas where homes are closer to the street, with small lots and front porches raised a few feet off the ground to encourage interaction with the community.”
These New Urbanism-inspired homes, ranging from 1,800 to 5,000 square feet, are architecturally pleasing, with courtyards, rear-loaded garages hidden from street view, and rich outdoor living spaces. “They’re more compact,” Brodt clarifies, “but they come with exotic features, like small pools, reclaimed beams, high-end appliances, and intricate fireplaces, to name a few.”
Next, he draws attention to a distinct segment of their clientele with a penchant for grandeur: those seeking expansive homes on substantial lots, sometimes surpassing 10,000 square feet of living area, adorned with luxurious finishes, from intricate woodwork and custom cabinetry to imposing stairways and comprehensive outdoor living areas. He elaborates on the growing client demand for lavish outdoor amenities, such as full kitchens, fireplaces, and sophisticated pools with accompanying cabanas.
Diversifying Expertise and Expanding Horizons
The path of Eclipse through the economic landscape of recent years is not just a story of survival but one of notable growth and diversification. The company’s revenue has surged approximately 25% since last year, and the forecast looks promising, with an anticipated increase in the pipeline. Brodt shares his vision for the company’s trajectory and the sectors fueling this ascent.
Brodt reveals a significant revenue uptick since 2019, “We’ve seen a multifold increase from 2019 through today.” His outlook for the future is bright, bolstered by an expansion into areas of personal passion and professional expertise. “With a robust residential sector and an influx of church renovation projects, we’re projecting another 20% growth in the next two years,” he says, showcasing growth and a commitment to the community through restoring spiritual spaces.
The conversation takes a turn towards potential new ventures. Brodt hints at revisiting his roots in the aviation industry, exploring opportunities that link his past with the future of Eclipse. “In addition to our core business, we may very well be back in doing some work in airports,” he shares, underscoring the potential for crossover between his past and present fields of expertise.
Brodt’s journey from aviation to custom home construction was marked by a pivotal decision to exit his equity position in a previous venture, sparking a realization of his true calling in the tangible art of building. This revelation gave birth to Eclipse Development. His tenure in aviation, planning and designing major airport construction programs, laid a robust groundwork for the systems and processes at Eclipse, equipping the firm with the blueprint for scalable expansion.
Personalized Service: The Client-Centric Model
At the heart of Eclipse Development’s philosophy is a personalized approach to client engagement, ensuring every project receives the dedicated attention it deserves. This ethos is mirrored in their employee interactions, fostering a culture where attention to detail and client satisfaction are paramount.
Brodt elaborates on their client approach, emphasizing personalized service. “Every project has a dedicated project manager who interacts with the client almost daily,” he explains. Our managers are the best in the business, and committed to managing all aspects of the project through to completion. Brodt himself steps in when necessary to offer his wealth of experience for more complex decisions or to provide design guidance.
When it comes to the intricacies of design, Brodt is deeply involved, whether working independently or collaborating with interior and exterior designers. “I often contribute directly to the design aspects, but we also have a network of designers we consult with, particularly for fresh perspectives on colors and finer details,” he shares, highlighting his hands-on approach.
The Road Ahead: Eclipse Development’s Vision
The trajectory of Eclipse is shaped not just by the homes it creates but by the innovative strategies it employs and the markets it aims to capture. Brodt outlines the objectives for Eclipse as the company approaches the coming years, marking a period of ambitious growth and creative freedom.
“Our immediate focus is on increasing speculative work,” Brodt discloses, detailing the strategic move towards building high-end, speculative homes—properties crafted for sale on the open market, yet designed with the luxury clientele in mind. “We’re steering towards these projects because we can control the process from design to sale, and there’s a strong market for this kind of high-end housing,” he explains. Speculative construction, particularly in the million-dollar home bracket, is a primary objective due to the continuing housing inventory shortfall and persistent demand.
Along with this, Eclipse has expanded their work on renovating current homes. Meeting a need for clients who are choosing to stay where they are yet want an updated or expanded home, sometimes doubling the original home’s footprint. Complementing their residential work, Brodt shares that they are bolstering their commercial portfolio. “We have a series of church projects lined up, and we’re also focusing more on our commercial endeavors,” he says, indicating a diverse project mix that stabilizes their growth.
Brodt also expresses aspirations to extend the company’s geographic reach. He recounts a near expansion into California, curtailed by the pandemic, “A VC firm selected us to rebuild homes in wildfire-affected areas of Malibu and wine country—a testament to our national recognition.” This ambition remains undiminished as they continue to explore strategies for broader geographic expansion.
The conversation shifts to the recognition Eclipse has received, underscoring its reputation for excellence. “We were honored to be voted Best Builder in New Orleans by Sophisticated Woman magazine,” Brodt proudly states. He also highlights a significant accolade from the pre-pandemic era, “We clinched the best overall in the last major Parade of Homes event prior to Covid with a spec home that showcased our comprehensive design and building capabilities.” This home, featured in their Waterfront Water View Gallery, exemplifies their award-winning standards, echoed in the consistent recognition from Best of Houzz over several years.
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AT A GLANCE
Eclipse Development LLC
What: A premier custom home construction and renovation company
Where: Louisiana Northshore and Greater New Orleans Area
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