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Celebrating 40 Years in 2018

Our History

In 1978, Rick Burns, at the age 24, founded PJ Burns Builder. Together with wife Jan and their one employee Earl, Rick designed and constructed his first home; a small, three-bedroom, one bathroom, brick veneer, family home with a single garage in Currimundi (Currimundi was part of Kawana Estates at the time). Rick sold this home the same year, for just under $30,000 (house and land), and it still stands proud today.

Brothers Rick and Steve’s interest in construction is hereditary. Their father Noel Burns, ‘AKA Mr. Kawana’, is renowned around the Sunshine Coast for his involvement in the Kawana Waters development from as early as 1965.

Rick started out as a surveyor with FM Mason and Co. Surveyors, before working for Hodgkins and Laverick Architects and Network Finance Limited. In 1975 he began studying Applied Science (Building) at the Institute of Technology in Sydney, while working for Graeme Evans and Co. Builders, and continued his hands-on knowledge of building.

In 1980, Rick’s brother Steve, who had been working with Kawana Estates, joined the team and with his interest in marketing and finance, the company went from strength to strength. John Harding joined the team in 1991 and is, today, still at his post as Company Secretary. Although not a blood relation, the Burns’ see John as the family you choose.

Construction on the Sunshine Coast in the 1980’s and 1990’s was booming, with young families moving interstate looking for a sea change. The land options were limitless, mortgages were easy to obtain and a new family home was affordable. And the Burns brothers were right there in the middle of it.



PJ Burns History Mudjimba Office


The 2000’s kept Rick and Steve busy as they extended into the Gympie, Hervey Bay, Bundaberg and Brisbane Regions. PJ Burns then took on some larger commercial projects such as ‘Pier One’ in Urangan and the re-construction of the Heritage Listed Childers Backpacker and Memorial.

Since the late 1990’s, all four of Rick’s daughters, Courtney, Amanda, Sarah and Caitlin, have been involved in the business. The eldest three have qualifications in building and construction and are following in their father’s footsteps, fast becoming leaders in the industry.

“Designing and building a home is an art, and a responsibility which we do not take lightly,” says Rick Burns, and this is evident from the moment you step inside a PJ Burns Builder home. PJ Burns are acknowledged for their excellence in building and were presented with their first of many accolades in 1993, for the best Display Home up to $85,000.



PJ Burns History Wide Bay Office


Beside the corporate side of business, PJ Burns also developed a company culture and lifestyle, which remains today. Rick and Steve laugh as they recall the good times; on the jobs, the annual Fraser Island Trips, the ‘team bonding’ trip to Africa, and offering the choice of a ute or Harley Davidson motorcycle to their supervisors. The stories are hilarious, some could be printed, others you’ll have to ask them about.

Rick and Steve are humbled as they look back at their journey and consider how significant the relationships are to the businesses longevity “including the team, suppliers, subcontractors, clients and all who have joined in their adventures over the years.”

The family values and principles that Rick built his company on decades ago have become the foundation for one of Queensland’s most respected homebuilders.



PJ Burns History Sunshine Coast Office 1
PJ Burns History Sunshine Coast Office 2
PJ Burns History Sunshine Coast Office 3


PJ Burns Builder is committed to excellence in custom architecture and design. Combining rigorous design with Construction Management experience - a rare combination that leads to a distinctive design process and end product that outshines their competitors.

Courtney Burns, daughter of Rick Burns and the winner of the 2017 Queensland Master Builder’s Women in Building Award, has stepped into the role as Sales Manager. Courtney maintains the high standard of customer service that PJ Burns Builder has continually delivered for over 40 years.

Rick, Steve and Ricks daughters, Courtney, Amanda and Sarah, together with the PJ Burns Builder team, pride themselves on traditional service principles and offering a product which is simply "The Best Value for Money".

Thier design values are modern and energy efficient, and they continue to provide clients with premier architectural and planning services thanks to their talented designers, creative solutions, and a drive to satisfy the ongoing client needs.

By maintaining the highest customer and interpersonal standards, and ensuring the building process is complete within the promised timeframe, PJ Burns have established a large referral base and a database of loyal clients who build on multiple occasions. PJ Burns are proud to foster a work environment that is positive, professional, cheerful and energetic.

They are so confident of their service and quality, look them up ProductReview.com.au and see what their customers say about them.

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