Rebecca Remick has a rare combination of business savvy and people skills. As the owner of Edina custom builder City Homes, she keeps a sharp eye on the growing business, helps clients make wise decisions, and celebrates successes with her team. All the while, she keeps her family — including three active kids — a priority.
Her path to builder has been circuitous but deliberate. After earning degrees from Notre Dame, she managed multiple clinics in Minneapolis healthcare systems. Even so, she says, “I have always been captivated by entrepreneurship and was always looking for an opportunity to start my own business. After having my third child and coming up for air, I decided to give it a go.”
She found that opportunity far from healthcare. During the 2008 recession, lower land and labor costs encouraged her to build her first homes in Minneapolis’s Bryn Mawr neighborhood. City Homes launched in 2009 and now builds 12 to 15 luxury homes a year, all with the custom touches and smart, livable designs that have become the firm’s hallmarks. This master multi-tasker paused a moment to share her favorite things.
Running the Business
Remick loves the personal interaction and relationship building inherent in her business. She takes pride in developing her team’s ideas into solutions that delight homeowners — such as extending indoor living spaces with views to the outdoors, like in this “Minnesota room.”
Making Dreams Come True
“Nothing is more rewarding than seeing clients benefit from our work, giving them what they want and making them happy,” she says. City Homes’ cost-effective expertise delivered this maximum-impact entry, giving the client the foyer of her dreams.
She specializes in exploring creative solutions to building challenges. To whit: a new build on a sliver of Lake Minnetonka land that includes three stories, efficient living spaces, a sport court, and a rooftop deck with peerless water views.
Pushing Clients Just Enough
Remick started urging clients to use more color several years ago. Leaving neutrals behind is now a trend, but it wasn’t when she painted the cabinets in her own lake house kelly green.
Searching Out Efficiencies
She advocates building more simply and efficiently. Instead of expanding a foundation to accommodate additional space, for example, she encourages clients to think about how it could fit “within the box.” This ingenious bunkroom sleeps 12 — perfect for a passel of kids.
Given the cost of land, materials and construction, Remick urges clients to build smarter: “Only build spaces that you’ll actually use. Don’t think of it as downsizing but rather rightsizing!” If you don’t need, say, a home office or a formal dining room, you don’t need to build one. It’s all about making the most of every square foot.
Fitness and Wellness
This longtime runner and exercise devotee likes to stick to a routine, typically working out at Orangetheory every morning. “I definitely need it or you’re not going to like me much by the end of the day,” she jokes.
The Remicks travel often and plan an annual summer adventure. Each member of the family is assigned a highlight to research beforehand so they are prepared upon arrival at their destination, whether that’s Africa, Italy or the Galápagos Islands. (This summer was to be Poland, though it may now be shelved.) A master tip from mom: “We always do half-day tours with a guide; it’s way easier to get your kids to listen to someone else.”