WentzDesign: It Takes a Family to Design a Dream Home

WentzDesign: It Takes a Family to Design a Dream Home

In 2004, Mike Wentz stepped away from the corporate architecture sector. Instead, he opened a smaller shop founded on collaboration and client service. WentzDesign was created so a small and nimble team could bring their clients’ visions to life with skillful expertise, creative property solutions and customized planning. 

“We pride ourselves on the fact that we don’t have a specific style,” says Wentz. “We listen well, and we design to our clients’ tastes and needs, so we have a very wide range of styles that we deliver. We work with lots of builders and clients that love the way we can give them a personal response and quick turnaround time on project needs.” 

WentzDesign has a team of five and has enjoyed consistent growth year after year. They’ve made their mark on Cincinnati with visionary projects and meaningful client relationships. It’s a testament to their company philosophy and the potential for a small team to build lasting success by functioning more like a close-knit family than a large-scale corporate firm. Meet the people of WentzDesign, and see how each plays a pivotal role in developing inspired solutions for distinctive Queen City properties.


“I love the fact that we get to design spaces that improve the way people live their lives, but also that we can leave a legacy by the buildings that we create. It’s really cool to drive around town and see the different projects, buildings, and spaces that we’ve created for people,” says Wentz. But he says that perhaps the most enjoyable aspect of his job is working with the team he’s built to establish a dynamic that contributes to their success. “We’re friendly. We’re creative. We’re nimble. We’re a work family.”


No two days are exactly alike for Seger, which makes her role on the WentzDesign team pretty exciting. As the project manager, she works on designs and sees them through from beginning to end. Any given day finds her drawing preliminary plans, working on construction documents, meeting prospective clients for potential projects, or measuring a house on site. She says, “A lot of our clients have been planning these projects for a long time. I think it’s really rewarding to help them realize the dreams that they’ve had, some-times for years. That’s the most fulfilling thing for me.” 


In any office — or any family — you need someone who can do a little bit of everything. Someone who takes care of daily needs, plays a role in projects, and moves fluidly between tasks. That person at WentzDesign is McManis. She handles all the back-end operations that keep the business running, manages the company website and social media, and works on project design. She says, “Working on our team is really fun. I really do feel like we’re a work family. And working with our clients, I enjoy having those relationships and keeping those relationships throughout a project.”


Similar to Seger, a typical day finds Ecklar working on different projects that each have different needs. That could be designing plans for a covered outdoor porch, working on a new build in a suburban community, or planning complete home renovations in up-and-coming neighborhoods. She says it lends itself to a holistic and well-rounded perspective unique to the WentzDesign team dynamic. “Here, we’re a lot more flexible, and we have a lot more freedom in what we do. Right out of college, I got to work on every part of the project, whereas there are a lot more people at a commercial firm. It’s nice that I get to experience a whole project rather than just a single part.” 


Hughes grew up watching her father work as a carpenter. She credits this inspiration for her current study of architecture at the University of Cincinnati. “I’ve always thought it was cool, watching things grow from the ground up when it comes to houses,” she says. WentzDesign regularly works with interns from UC, and Hughes’ internship is part of her co-op experience. It’s not only broadened her perspective on her field of study but it has illuminated the ways the profession is full of creative possibilities.

WentzDesign is located at 7813 Ted Gregory Lane, Suite C, Cincinnati, Ohio 45242. For more information, visit wentzdesign.com or call 513-745-0420.

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