Joe Deckman is the construction manager here at Kendal-Crosslands Communities.  Joe’s been here for over 35 years, starting as a trainee and carpenter, becoming a supervisor and now Construction Manager. During this time, Joe’s seen the inside of just about every apartment and cottage on all four campuses, Kendal at Longwood, Crosslands, Coniston and Cartmel. Each resident brings their own unique style to personalize their home and make it unique.   

Soon after selecting your new home with your sales counselor, you will be scheduled for your renovations meeting. At this meeting you”ll meet with Joe and go room by room in your new home and determine if there are any changes you would like to make.  

Kendal Crosslands Communities does provide standard upgrades as part of the renovation process, such as recessed lighting throughout the home, stackable washers and dryers and most quartz or granite countertops.  There are some additional changes that many new residents request, that can come with an additional charge, such as opening up the kitchen in some of our older floor plans. The process of customization will allow you to select new kitchen cabinets, countertops and fixtures, creating an entirely new space, reflecting your preferences.

Come Prepared

Before meeting with Joe, it’s important to study the floor plan of your new home here at Kendal-Crosslands Communities, and try to visualize  where your furniture will go and how you will live in your new space.  This will help you make sure that things such as cable TV outlets and electrical outlets are located in the best location for day to day functionality. Many people moving in want a home office, so outlet locations are important.  Likewise, if you charge a device near your bed or need a CPAP machine, these are items you should think about.

Everyone is different, but if you have an idea of what you need, it will be much easier for all that work to be done during the construction period. Giving that information to Joe when you do your initial walkthrough of your new home will make his job easier, and will make sure you are happier with the end result as well.

Floor Plans and Closets

Joe remarked he’s seen a lot in his 35 years at Kendal-Crosslands, and he’s seen trends change over time. Some people like things as is, and others want a lot more customization to suit their needs. 

In some select homes, small changes can be made to the floorplan, such as eliminating a wall between the den and living room to open up the room. Some decide they want to add built-in bookshelves for storage, and some have altered built-ins to add desk space. While many things are possible, Joe reminds us with a wink that he is not an HGTV show star- decorating is not his thing, so he is really relying on the new resident to come to the meeting with an idea of what they would like to see.

While many types of renovations are possible, not all these changes are included and customizations have associated costs. For example, some residents have chosen to have custom California Closets added to their space; Joe’s team will work with a specialty contractor to make that happen, but Kendal Crosslands Communities will not install such customizations. The outside contractor will need to do the select renovations and paid directly by the resident to the third party contractor. 


As homes turn over at Kendal at Longwood and Crosslands, we update the HVAC systems to be more energy-efficient. Many homes get a new heat pump with a programmable thermostat or more efficient, smaller electric baseboard systems.  These upgrades help keep utility bills low and increase comfort.  We’re also upgrading recessed lighting and using LEDs to add energy efficiency and adding additional insulation around the fixtures to prevent drafts.

Timing is Everything

Joe and his team have 90 days to complete all of your renovations so you can move in on your scheduled contract date.  We want to work with you to make sure your home is comfortable from the moment you walk through the door. The more you can do your homework in advance to be able to let him know what you’d like, where you plan to place things, as best you can, and any changes you need to make, the more smoothly the process will go.

Joe looks forward to working with you during this process and we are excited about you joining the family of Kendal Crosslands Communities.