Santa Cruz is an enviable location with warm weather and rich cultural heritage. Residents who want to update their homes without sacrificing the Santa Cruz home style should consider hiring general contractors in order to assure a streamlined construction process.

This article lists the best general contractors in the city of Santa Cruz. In producing this article, our editorial team has shortlisted the best contractors in the area and assessed each based on a set of criteria that measures each firm’s work history, capabilities, and overall quality of work. 

Commons & Burt Builders

1040 River St., Ste. #317, Santa Cruz, CA 95060

Commons & Burt Builders is a general contractor known throughout Santa Cruz for providing high-quality output at an affordable price point. The firm is the brainchild of Owen Commons and Steven Burt. Commons graduated from the University of Montana with a Business Management degree. He learned the construction trade in high school and college. After working and traveling in South America, he returned home to work in metal fabrication, specializing in art and furniture. Steven Burt is the co-principal and the owner of the firm.

The firm has completed major projects all over Santa Cruz and surrounding cities. Commons & Burt has remodelings and additions. The historic remodel of a 6,000 square-foot Craftsman home in Santa Cruz is a highlight of the firm’s high level of work capacity. An in-depth project feature for an architectural magazine is currently being finalized.

Costa Bella Builders

8032 Soquel Dr., Ste. C, Aptos, CA 95003

Costa Bella Builders has been in the service of Greater Monterey Bay Area residents for over three decades. The triad of Jeffrey Thranow, Kate Castelli, and Vittorio Castelli takes charge of the planning, management, and execution of projects. Thranow has over 30 years of hands-on experience in the construction industry, and the Castellis have an equally significant perspective on the trade. The three emphasize the need to establish a culture where artistic innovation can prosper, allowing the firm to be voted Best Contractor in Santa Cruz and runner up for Best Green Business and Best Green Service by Good Times Weekly. 

The firm’s collaborative nature and a strong sense of style give Costa Bella the competitive edge to excel in the field. Costa Bella is knowledgeable in major home styles from Contemporary to Mid-Century and Modern. The Mid-Century home displayed in the photo is a testament to Costa Bella’s sensibilities. The home was originally built in the 1960s entirely in steel, concrete, and aluminum. The firm retained much of the structural integrity of the home while looking at a Scandinavian design for reference; the result is uncanny.

De Mattei Construction

1794 The Alameda, San Jose, CA 95126

De Mattei Construction is a celebrated general contracting company serving the San Francisco Bay Area and Santa Cruz County. The firm has been in business since 1985, and with its many years of experience comes a long list of accomplishments. De Mattei has completed thousands of residential projects and has fostered long-lasting relationships with clients and trade partners. The firm’s trophy case is also loaded with major awards. The long list of accolades won by the company includes the Mercury News Best in Silicon Valley Reader’s Choice Awards along with the 2019 Best New Home Builder and Best Kitchen Remodeler awards. 

For over three decades, Mark De Mattei has kept the values of honesty, integrity, respect, and teamwork at the helm of the company. This has fortified the trust of locals in De Mattei and his team. The firm has a strong track record of Contemporary and Traditional home styles. The featured photo displays a chic Contemporary Beach House with an interesting silhouette and tasteful assortment of natural and manufactured colors. 

Elite Construction Services

225 Ocean View Ave., Santa Cruz, CA 95062

Hailed as the Best Home Remodeling Contractor by Santa Cruz Sentinel Readers Choice Award and Best Contractor by Good Times Magazine, Elite Construction Services is a general contractor adored by locals. Elite was established in 1999 by Eric Lamascus, who sought to provide quality construction services done in a professional manner. Lamascus set a high bar when it comes to construction output.  The firm not only sets up-to-standards but also issues a four-to-ten-year warranty. Lamascus also has a significant number of positive reviews, citing professional conduct and seamless work process. These values secure longstanding relationships with clients and industry partners. 

The Elite Construction portfolio showcases the firm’s proficiency in various home styles from Craftsman homes to Contemporary. The featured project is a Contemporary home with a polished silhouette and a well-designed facade. 

Hansmann Construction

PO Box 2070, Santa Cruz, CA 95063

Since 1979, Hansmann Construction has provided the full range of services in the Santa Cruz County area. The family business is run by the third generation of construction professionals. President and owner Steve Hansmann leverages over 40 years of experience working in the industry to utilize time-tested construction practices in the contemporary construction scene.  His pursuits yielded favorable results for the company, winning the Builder of the Year in 2012 and the 2014 Green Building Award by the City of Santa Cruz. 

Hansmann is experienced in working with various residential project types and home styles. The Westside Beach Bungalow shown in the photo is an example of the firm’s keen eye for detail and masterful project execution. The home has a laid-back ambiance and a unique West Coast beach appeal, accentuated with wooden tones and chic ornamentations.

INvision Design + Build

1771 44th Ave., Capitola, CA 95010 

An up-and-coming general contracting firm operating in the Santa Cruz County area, INvision is an interior design, remodel, and commercial contracting firm in Capitola. INvision is a product of the collective family effort of Arnie Huddin, Amber Cortes, Roberto Cortes, and their team of talented construction professionals. Arnie is a General Contractor who has been in the business for over 40 years. Amber is a Certified Interior Designer trained at the Art Institute in San Francisco, while Roberto is the field supervisor who has 15 years experience. The strong ties of the team ensures excellent communication from start to finish.

The team propels a strong track record of residential and commercial projects. Impressive fixtures such as the Sheraton Kauai Coconut Beach in Kapaa, Hawaii can be found all throughout the firm’s portfolio. The project reflects the luxurious vacation experience that the Hawaiian hotel brings through the thoughtful use of tropical ornamentations and detailings. The expansive space of the Sheraton also testifies to the firm’s strong craftsmanship and work ethic.

Lewis Design-Build-Remodel

#216 Mt Hermon Road #268, Scotts Valley, CA 95066

Lewis Design-Build-Remodel is a trusted construction company offering a comprehensive set of services covering the planning, design, and execution of construction projects. Since 2006, the firm has given residents of Scotts Valley and surrounding communities a client-centric approach and professional conduct. The firm has a step-by-step process that assures that the project will be in line with the client’s vision and expectations. This method has resulted in high-quality residential projects in varying home styles and scales.

The Santa Cruz whole house kitchen remodel in the photo is a renewal of a beloved kitchen space damaged by severe flooding. Lewis not only restored the space but transformed it for the benefit of the homeowners. Black and white tones define the space which channels an elegant atmosphere without trying too hard.

MG Custom Builders

4145 Nova Dr., Santa Cruz, CA 95062

A Santa Cruz-based contractor in business for over 20 years, MG Custom Builders is a general contractor specializing in ground-up construction, custom homes, large- and small-scale remodels, residential additions, and outdoor living spaces. The firm has a straightforward disposition when it comes to construction — optimism. The firm believes that the construction process should be hassle-free and light for the homeowners.  Matt George, company principal and namesake, takes pride in bringing the values of teamwork and detail craftsmanship to the company operations. MG also gives several bidding options to give their clients the most suitable construction. 

The firm’s easygoing processes and attitude make way for top-tier projects such as the whole house remodel at a property in La Selva Beach, California. MG used a gallery-like display in the kitchen area to lighten up the mood. The home also has an open floor layout and smart layout, allowing maximized efficiency. The home has a warm atmosphere perfect for functions and gatherings. 

MS Builders

115 Redwood St., Santa Cruz, CA 95060

Known for a quality-conscious and hands-on approach to construction, MS Builders is a Santa Cruz-based construction company equipped with award-winning experience and a long tenure in the business. Marc Susskind takes charge of the company operations. Under his tutelage, the firm has won awards, including the City of Santa Cruz Green Building Award four separate times. Susskind understands the needs of local residents and the nuances of Santa Cruz living. He takes pride in each work regardless of scale and type, an attitude that directs the MS team to build award-winning projects. 

The firm boasts a portfolio that packs four City of Santa Cruz Green Building Award and an Environmental Design + Construction’s Excellence in Design Award. Among the firm’s award-winning projects is the Meder Street home. The firm has extensively remodeled the space using salvaged materials and an updated style. This project shows how MS combines sustainability and aesthetics in project execution.

Santa Cruz Green Builders

303 Potrero St., Ste. #45-105, Santa Cruz, CA 95060

City of Santa Cruz Green Building Award-winning company Santa Cruz Green Builders has been providing sustainable construction solutions for Santa Cruz residents and businesses since 2008. The firm has a straightforward mission of building green properties. Over the years, the firm has cultivated a reputation for making sustainable construction easily accessible for local homeowners. The firm’s commitment to energy-efficient, lasting, and healthy homes make a strong case for this breed of construction in the modern age. Santa Cruz Green Builders built the first energy-saving “passive” home in its namesake city, setting a high bar for local construction.

Another eco-conscious project by the firm is the home in Maser. As seen in the photo, the home has a luxurious exterior complete with glass and wooden finishings. The overall vibe of the place echoes that of a stylish treehouse — cozy and efficient.

Schultz Construction

815 Almar Ave., Ste. #17, Santa Cruz, CA 95060

Schultz Construction is a third-generation-run construction business offering a full range of construction services all over Santa Cruz and surrounding areas. The firm stands at over 30 years of construction legacy and expertise provided by the Schultz family and a team of talented professionals that are capable of handling a wide variety of construction projects. Bill Schultz, the company’s owner, began his career as a union carpenter. He rose to the ranks as his tenure went along. Today, he steers company operations as the firm navigates the local construction industry. 

The Schultz team is experienced in conventional contracting methods and sustainable construction practices. Among the long list of noteworthy residential projects is the Heeschen, a Bungalow in San Jose, California. The home was built with reclaimed materials, passive solar design, and rainwater catchment.

Seacliff Construction & Design

529 Cathedral Dr., Aptos, CA 95003

Seacliff Construction & Design is a beloved general contractor known for its community-centered operations. Seacliff takes pride in hassle-free construction processes that go from clear budgeting and financing to construction proper and post-construction segments. The firm is also skilled in remodels, additions, new home construction, and aging-in-place modifications. This long list of skillset is credited to company principal and co-founder Lennox Smith who has worked in construction, residential design, engineering, and facilities design for over 25 years. 

The firm has completed over 200 projects over the course of its operations. Projects such as the Beach getaway displayed in the photo show the firm’s capacity and eye for detail. The home has a tasteful combination of neutral colors and design cues that are easy on the eyes. This design perfectly complements the beach by which the home was erected. 

Talmadge Construction

8070 Soquel Dr., Aptos, CA 95003

Named NARI Contractor of the Year three consecutive times from 2007 to 2009, Talmadge Construction is a celebrated home design and remodeling company in service of Santa Cruz County homeowners. The firm has been around for over 30 years, expertly attending to the needs of local residents.  The Talmadge team consists of designers and construction professionals passionate about delivering all sorts of projects from home remodels to new home construction. In any project, the firm gives uncompromising quality and diligence in order to provide the best possible results. 

Talmadge puts a premium on efficiency in financing and construction time. This approach assures that the home will not just be pleasant but also sustainable and budget-friendly. Talmadge has completed noteworthy projects including this whole house remodel of a beach house. The home follows a clean combination of Modern and Traditional elements, allowing an eclectic mix of design aesthetics that give the home a unique appeal. 


  • Jake Gustafson

    Jake has served as Senior Editor at General Contractors and brings a wealth of experience rooted in his passion for building. Holding a degree in Construction Engineering Management from Oregon State University, he actively engaged in industry-related activities, including membership in the Associated General Contractors of America student chapter and participation in the Associated Schools in Construction student competition. Previously, Jake served as a project engineer for a prominent general contractor in Portland, where he played a pivotal role in various aspects of construction projects, from pre-construction to subcontractor management. His expertise extends to working on innovative projects, such as North America's largest CLT commercial building. Expertise: Commercial Construction, Commercial Remodeling, Home Design and Build Key Highlights: Editor at General Contractors, Project Engineer for Portland-based general contractor, Field Engineer for the largest CLT commercial building in North America Education: Oregon State University, Degree in Construction Engineering Management