Rimrock Elevations – Edmonton, Alberta

January 31, 2024
Rimrock Elevations - Edmonton, Alberta

Rimrock Elevations

Taking custom building to new heights


Constructing relationships that endure, Rimrock Elevations sets its sights skyward for 2024

Building homes that appeal to the heart of its clients is what Rimrock Elevations strives to do with each of its dynamic and expertly constructed homes. Concentrating on a few key home projects a year, the company takes pride in cultivating close relationships with its valued clients and building homes to match their vision.

Rimrock Elevations has built a well-respected leading place in the greater Edmonton, Alberta, Canada local homes market. Owned by the husband-and-wife team of Robby and Tanya Halabi, Rimrock is focused on providing a one-of-a-kind, custom home-building experience for high-end clients searching for their perfect home. No two projects are alike since every new build is customer-driven and focused.

Rimrock works closely, often daily, with clients to tailor a new home to their lifestyle and budget. Projects often take well over a year – or more – to complete because of the thorough and often complex nature of each project. Combining beauty, function, quality, and technology Rimrock does it all, from the initial home design, to planning, budgeting, project managing, and building a unique home customized to specific needs and tastes.

“The foundation of our business is the relationships we foster,” says Robbie Halabi, who began his career in the industry as a real estate entrepreneur before establishing Rimrock with Tanya. He started selling real estate in 2004, eventually becoming a real estate leader at Sotheby’s.

The couple built their first residential home as entrepreneurs in 2006 and haven’t looked back since. Robbie remains a licensed real estate agent today. As he puts it, “Our main goal is to build that relationship with our clients. From there we’ve been able to grow organically.”

Each Rimrock home comes with a 10-year new home warranty to cover structural defects, although even that length of warranty isn’t needed. The quality of the completed home is exceptional because of the time and attention given to each project. Halabi has no desire to be a high-production and high-volume homebuilder.

Halabi considers himself to be more of an advisor than a salesperson or builder when working with clients. He realizes that they lead busy lives, often working in a high-end, high-stress professional field. So, Rimrock does all the legwork on building a new home leaving no stone unturned to ensure efficiency and fit.

The firm is a “360-degree builder,” meaning it can assist clients with lot selection, purchasing, and sale of any existing home. Its professionals streamline the process and provide clients with peace of mind. Says Halabi, “We never focus on money. We do things the right way and (success) follows.”

Creating partnerships with experienced trade professionals

Even though Rimrock takes the worry off the shoulders of its clients, it can’t complete the entire new home construction alone. Therefore, it works with some of the region’s most experienced and talented trade professionals who serve as partners and fellow advisors to any project. The firm has a vast and growing network of the “best of the best” to provide everything from plumbing and electrical to HVAC and framing.

All trade contractors mirror the same level of professionalism that clients get every day with Rimrock. Those trade partners are held to high standards, and many have been with the Halabis since they first started Rimrock 18 years ago. When the firm begins a new homebuilding project, it carefully selects its contractors to match the style desired by clients.

“We value our relationships with long-term subcontractors,” Halabi says. “They are the foundation of our business and our lifeline.”

Rimrock Elevations - Edmonton, Alberta

Overcoming industry strategies because of its strategy

Since Rimrock is not a high-volume builder, the firm didn’t become overleveraged during either the housing crisis of 2008-09 or the COVID pandemic starting in March 2020. The fact that Rimrock only has a small handful of projects ongoing at any given time means that it maintains low risk. All of its homes are pre-sold, with an emphasis on working closely with clients within their budget. As a result, volatile prices of building supplies and global supply chain issues that were common in the last few years have had less of an adverse impact on the business.

The strategic differentiation offered by Rimrock involves keeping clients in the loop weekly, and sometimes daily on the status of their new home construction. There is always full transparency and never any surprises. The focus on custom building helps to alleviate any surprises so that expectations are managed, says Rimrock Construction Manager Mike Fekete.

“We’re very cost-transparent with every client,” Fekete says. “They get to see what we see with every quote and every bill.” Furthermore, Rimrock doesn’t accept building materials pricing at face value. Fekete says they fight for the most affordable cost for every component of the house to ensure the client’s budget is followed. “We’re fighting on behalf of our clients every day,” he says.

Rimrock has always overcome challenges faced by other home builders such as rising interest rates and inflation because of that same focus on a few projects in the high-end market. Halabi says that he and Tanya will invest in any type of technology that will improve customer service, but because of their low volume, there is no need to spend money on expensive CRM systems.

An investment that Rimrock will make is hiring homebuilding experts and project managers who will mirror Halabis’ commitment to customer service. Adding Fekete to the team in 2023 was an example of a value-add investment because he brings extensive industry experience from his own family’s business, Fekete Homes.

Notable projects include the Windermere Custom Home

One of Rimrock’s most notable recent projects is a multimillion-dollar custom home in Edmonton’s Windermere neighborhood. Currently under construction, it took roughly two years to design the home, and is nearly 18 months into the building phase, with completion nearing 2024.

Among the features confirmed by Rimrock of this home are a golf simulation area, a large movie theater, state-of-the-art automation and mechanical components, an elevator, and more. Its windows were custom-engineered for the structure and geographic location, and its main floor was built at a height of 12 feet.

Says Halabi, “The design is unlike anything else seen in Edmonton.”

Rimrock has built several homes in the exclusive Windermere neighborhood in Edmonton, and each home comes with the features that made it unique, Fekete says. As with many of its projects, Rimrock’s clients in the latest Windermere custom home have made changes and added new features to their plan since the design was first finalized.

“Our job is to give advice and provide all available options,” Halabi says. “We provide more options (than the competition) so they can make the right decision for them.”


Rimrock Elevations - Edmonton, Alberta

The future is bright and includes modest expansion

Rimrock is interested in growing its business in 2024. But it will never become a high-volume homebuilder. While it traditionally has been involved in around two projects per year, Halabi is looking for modest growth up to three or four new home projects at most.

“We would like to double our volume,” Halabi says. More importantly, though, he wants to maintain the highest level of quality control within the homebuilding industry. That can be accomplished by working to always improve processes and utilize the latest in technology that increases efficiency and improves customer service. Whatever it takes to look after clients as if they are family, Rimrock is ready and willing to do it.

“We’d rather do less volume with higher quality than (the opposite),” Halabi says.

Finally, 2024 could be an interesting year for another reason.

The city of Edmonton recently passed a new land use bylaw that allows for newly constructed homes and buildings to be taller, with more flexibility for site coverage. Fekete believes this will allow Rimrock to become even more creative and daring with its designs and new home plans. It is the first significant change in the city’s residential land use by-laws since the 1970s.

“This is going to be an exciting year for us, full of opportunities,” Fekete says.

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Rimrock Elevations

What: A custom, luxury home builder in the greater Edmonton area that provides its customers with the highest level of customer service in the industry.

Where: Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

Website: rimrockelevations.ca


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January 2024 cover of Business View Magazine

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