6 Reasons to Build a Custom Home
When in the market for a new home, there is a general assumption that the best financial option is to buy a preexisting home. It is true that building a custom home can have a relatively higher cost of entry, but when the lifetime costs of the home are broken down, the results can be quite astonishing.
Here are some factors to think about when weighing whether building a new home is the right fit for you.
1. Fully Custom
The obvious first place winner for building a custom home is that the buyer has input in every phase of the building process. This allows the builder to tailor the home specifically to the client’s needs and desires.
While this may at first seem like a cosmetic advantage, there is potential for significant financial savings here.
The chances of finding the exact house you are looking for already built and on the market are very slim. If you are interested in spending any substantial amount of time in the home, you will likely be quickly considering renovations. Renovating is a tricky process. It is all about finding the perfect middle ground between getting exactly what you want out of a room and being able to justify cost; the value it adds to the house must justify the expense. Add to this the time spent finding and matching materials, finding reputable contractors and the time of actual work, these add-ons quickly add up.
2. Exactly what you want… and nothing you don’t
Many potential buyers don’t think about the fact that when buying an existing home, they may (and probably will be) stuck with extra space that they don’t want or need. But more importantly, they will be paying tax on it year after year.
Take into consideration a 6,000 square foot home in Preston Hollow valued at $1.8M (or $300/ft). If that house has a typical 350 sf formal living room that will not be used, it costs the home owner roughly $105,000 at the time of purchase and an additional $2,500 per year in property taxes
This initial and annual added cost to a space that will go unused is one of the most powerful examples of why buying preexisting homes may not be the best bang for the buck.
3. Low Maintenance
Another distinct advantage to building a new home is just that, it is new. All of the materials, building methods, appliances, etc. are brand new and cutting edge.
This is not just for bragging rights, there are some pretty serious advantages here.
When buying an existing house, there is always the looming uncertainty of condition of the foundation, structural integrity, quality of materials originally used, etc. These uncertainties and risks can be bypassed by being involved in the process of selecting quality materials for the structure of the home. Again, this may cost more upfront, but by using these high quality materials from the outset, those initial costs will be dramatically offset by long term maintenance costs.
Another advantage to building is the complete assurance that your home is being built in accordance to the most up to date safety codes.
Additionally, the appliances used will be new and still under warranty. No near-term need to replace refrigerators, ovens, washing and drying machines, or garage doors.
4. Energy Efficiency
Energy standards have changed dramatically even over the past two years. By building a new home, you ensure that your house will be built with consideration and materials that will save you money every month.
It is very difficult to retrofit old homes to be more energy efficient. Even moderately dramatic work frequently yields less than ten percent annually in energy savings. Even these mild amendments to existing homes can cost you well into the thousands of dollars a job, factor in the number of these it would take to see even a 30-40 percent yield on energy savings, and the cost of buying pre-built really adds up.
There is also a Federal Residential Energy Efficiency Tax Credit to offset annual expenses. This credit allows for up to 30% of certain green building materials to be deducted from your taxes.
5. Modern Floor Plans
Home architecture has changed significantly over the past decade. Older floor plans seldom focused on family traffic through the house, leaving many older houses feeling like a collection of rooms rather than a family-oriented space. Segmented living areas and rooms are a thing of the past.
Building your house around “Great Rooms” allows your family’s kitchen, living, and dining spaces to come together in a design that enhances family interaction and contact. These spaces typically have many windows, filling them with natural light, warming and lighting the room during the day.
6. Tax Breaks
Building a home allows you to write off a substantial amount on your taxes. These financial benefits include the ability to deduct interest, points and property taxes paid while the home was being built. Persons building new homes are eligible for the first time homeowner tax deduction (with certain stipulations) up to $6500 dollars. Frank Daum, CEO of Stratford Financial Services notes, “Done right, there can be significant profit in building as well; otherwise spec builders wouldn’t be doing it.”
In the end, there are many variables at play, pros and cons on both sides of the aisle. Just remember, building new not only allows you to create your dream home, but can be done for a remarkably comparable price.
If you would like to hire a professional custom home builder in Oakland Twp MI or surrounding areas, call the top rated Oakland Twp MI custom home builders at Mazza Building & Development Company at (248) 625-3305 today!
Building on a Budget
Mazza Building & Development Company has experience in building custom homes in Oakland Township, Michigan and surrounding areas. If you are thinking about building a custom home, call (248) 625-3305!
When building a custom home, the first question on every home buyer’s mind is “what will it cost?” However, the bottom line is that how much your home costs will be greatly influenced by what exactly you want in your home, how you want your home to look and the types of finishes that you want to have. So where should you spend your money when building a custom home?
While a significant chunk of money goes into the kitchen, it is worth paying extra for amenities. When it comes to certain interior features, many buyers are willing to spend thousands of dollars above the price of the home to have them included. According to a USA today survey done in 2013, 55% of those who bought a home without a granite counter top said they would pay extra for it. Moreover, 69% of survey participants said they would spend more on a new home if it had new kitchen appliances. According to the results of the survey, it is worth it in the long run to spend a little extra for kitchen amenities.
However, for those on a tight budget, it might not be possible to install granite counters. For those that are short on money, it can be a good idea to cut costs on the finishes or trim in the home. Fixtures like faucets can always be replaced later and this can be an area to cut costs when building. When working a budget, it might be necessary to give up some of your wants to fulfill your needs.
The Family Room:
Oversize, don’t undersize, your family room. Families tend to gather and spend time in the family room. If you were to oversize any room, make this room a little larger than you think you need. For those that can’t afford a spacious family room, adding lighting to a family room can make it look larger. Here, it might be a good idea to skip buying hardwood floors and add a little extra square footage in the home.
The Master Bath:
This room is the owner’s retreat, a place to relax and unwind. Upgrading your master bath’s size and finishes will be an important feature and provide a good investment return. For those on a tight budget, bigger bathroom tiles might be an easy way to add some wiggle room into the budget. Larger tiles create a luxury look with less maintenance.
Make sure your rooms are large enough to meet your needs. It’s very expensive to come back later and add twelve or eighteen inches to a room because you’ve just realized it’s to small. If you’re on a limited budget, it’s better to hold of on some of the finishes than cut down the size of your rooms. Finishes can be added later, and the cost may only be slightly higher than if you installed them during the initial construction process.
Working with a builder is an essential part of building a custom home. What you will pay the builder to build your house will be agreed upon between you and the builder and be something that you are both comfortable with and believe is fair. When hiring a builder, you should know exactly what the builder is earning and what is being done to earn that money. With Mazza Building & Development, not only will you enjoy an unique home, but you’ll save time and money. sources: http://www.usatoday.com/, bbbuilders.com
If you are looking for a custom home in Oakland Twp, Michigan, please call Mazza Building & Development Company at (248) 625-3305 to schedule a consultation. We would love to design and build the custom home of your dreams!
Today’s New Homes: Engineered to Perform
Your new home consists of a surprising number of components and systems, each designed to work in concert with each other.
New homes may look similar to their predecessors, but behind the walls is a different story. They’re engineered and optimized for a high level of performance and energy efficiency.
Regardless of architectural style, on the outside a new home doesn’t look much different than its older counterparts. But beneath the surface is a finely tuned piece of machinery — a building that offers unprecedented levels of comfort, durability, indoor air quality and energy efficiency.
There’s no question that new homes are built to last longer and operate more efficiently and less expensively than their older counterparts. To put it another way, new homes are engineered to perform. They’re consistently comfortable with no cold or hot spots; constantly circulate fresh air for a healthy indoor environment; and provide energy for heating, cooling and hot water at monthly rates that won’t bankrupt homeowners. Thanks to the use of engineered lumber, prefabricated components and advanced framing techniques, new homes are sturdier and have a longer shelf life.
As you shop for a new home, you’re going to hear a lot of terminology, including “smart,” “green,” “sustainable,” “energy efficient” and “high performance.” You might see the familiar blue Energy Star label on the circuit-breaker box or the home may be certified under another third-party, green-building program such as LEED, Built Green or EarthCraft.
Older homes tend to have problems such as air leakage, damp insulation and ineffective drainage, which results in high operating costs and an uncomfortable living environment. That’s why there’s such a keen focus on the building envelope — the roof, exterior walls and floor of the house. The building envelope determines how much energy will be needed to maintain a comfortable indoor environment relative to outdoor conditions. In new homes, it’s designed to substantially reduce heating and cooling costs.
Another term often used in conjunction with building envelope is building science: the study of the interaction between occupants, building components/systems and the surrounding environment. Building science focuses on the flow of heat, air and moisture. A home’s systems must all work together to achieve optimum energy performance and comfort.
Top builders such as Pardee Homes in Los Angeles, Calif., view a home as a collection of related systems and build it so that all the components perform well. “The time invested in analyzing building science has paid important dividends, helping us grow and strengthen our program incrementally; master the green building blocks; and incorporate them in a feasible and practical way,” says Joyce Mason, vice president of marketing for Pardee.
More bang for the buck
Thanks to changes in the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) Model Energy Code, new homes are 30 percent more energy efficient than those built just a decade ago. The latest code revisions will go even further and call for better air-sealing techniques to reduce heating and cooling losses; improved efficiency in windows and skylights; increased insulation in ceilings, walls and foundations; less wasted energy from leaky heating and cooling ducts; improved hot-water distribution systems that reduce wasted energy and water in piping; and heightened lighting efficiency.
Three of the most critical components affecting a home’s energy efficiency and comfort are: the heating, ventilation and cooling (HVAC) equipment, ductwork and insulation. Because these components are highly engineered to work together, they must be selected and planned out well in advance of construction.
A best practice is for the builder or HVAC contractor to conduct a comprehensive analysis based on the square footage of the home; the type of insulation; the entry-door materials; the amount of glass; and the orientation of the home to select the right size heating and cooling unit. The size of HVAC equipment is usually expressed in BTUs (British thermal units) or tons. Keep in mind that larger homes may require more than one unit.
Once the house is framed and the mechanical system is roughed in, the HVAC contractor installs the furnace and runs the ductwork. When the home is almost completed, the outdoor condensing unit for the air conditioning is installed.
“The HVAC contractor visits the home at least twice — the first time to set the indoor equipment such as a furnace and lay out the ductwork and the second time to set the outdoor equipment, complete the connections and start the system,” says Steven Ross, business development manager in Dallas, Texas for Ingersoll Rand, the parent company of Trane, Schlage Locks and Nexia Home Intelligence.
The efficiency of an HVAC system is expressed in terms of its SEER (Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio) and AFUE (Annual Fuel Utilization Efficiency) ratings. SEER relates primarily to the air-conditioning system, whereas AFUE is more applicable to furnaces.
“An 80-percent AFUE rating means that for every dollar you spend, you get 80 cents worth of heat,” says Ross. A system with a 95-percent AFUE rating will obviously give you more bang for your buck, though it costs more upfront due to enhancements such as an extra heat exchanger to circulate the hot air longer to increase the efficiency. However, if you live in a cold climate and run the furnace frequently, it usually makes sense to pay for the added efficiency of a higher AFUE rating.
“Typically you’ll see 90 percent or 95 percent furnaces in the north and 80 percent furnaces in the south, although current Energy Star 3.0 and upcoming 4.0 guidelines both require minimums of 95 percent AFUE for North Region states and 90 percent AFUE for south region states,” Ross says. Energy Star program requirements list the states that fall into each region.
The Model Energy Code requires new homes to have HVAC equipment with a minimum 13 SEER rating. In more expensive homes, some builders now include 15 and 16 SEER equipment as a standard feature. Some builders are taking energy efficiency to the next level with net-zero energy homes, which produce as much power as they use due to a combination of technologies such as solar photovoltaic panels, solar thermal collectors and geothermal heating and cooling systems. It may sound like an expensive proposition, but in the last few years the price tag of a net-zero home has decreased considerably.
The technological revolution
Prior to the computer age, architects and designers produced plans and construction drawings by hand. Today they use computer-aided design (CAD) software. CAD programs let the designer switch between two-dimensional and three-dimensional views; zoom in and out; and manipulate, rotate and change the scale of images. CAD software speeds up the design process and results in fewer errors, which translates into a better-designed home.
Home technology has grown in leaps and bounds since the National Association of Home Builders formed the Smart House Limited Partnership in 1984. Smart House L.P., a consortium of building-product manufacturers, no longer exists. But the concept of an intelligent house where a single, unified wiring system (known as structured or integrated wiring) connects the HVAC, security, lighting and entertainment systems has become quite sophisticated. This so-called home automation technology allows homeowners to monitor all of their key systems from a centralized control panel.
Today it’s also possible to monitor a home remotely using a mobile phone or tablet computer — a great convenience for homeowners when they’re out of town or want to keep tabs on a vacation home.
Now that many people no longer have landlines, the most intelligent home is a wireless one. “We’re seeing a lot more builders use wireless systems because they have limitless capabilities,” Ross says. “There’s no need to install structured wiring in advance before the drywall goes in and the builder or home buyer knows what they need and where.”
Wireless automation allows many of a home’s systems to be controlled remotely, from thermostats and window blinds to entry doors and HVAC systems. If you leave the house and forget to reset the thermostat, just pull up an app on your cell phone, tablet or computer and change it. If you’re on vacation in Florida and you get a text message reporting that the temperature in your New England home has dropped 5 degrees below the desired set point, you can have it checked out without cutting your trip short. From any location, you can unlock the front door to let in a service technician to fix the washing machine.
Not your grandfather’s windows
The products and materials that go into new homes have been upgraded and improved, with often dramatic results. Take windows, for example. Over the last 25 years, what used to be panes of glass in a hole in the wall are now crucial elements in the overall energy efficiency of a home. There are so many styles, frames and glass options available that builders can easily zero in on exactly the right window for a home’s energy-performance requirements, price point and style.
Most new homes come standard with dual-pane windows, which have space between two panes of glass that is filled either with air or a gas such as argon or krypton. This provides more insulation than a single-pane window. Energy Star-rated windows have three or more panes for greater energy savings.
To allow airflow between panes and reduce or prevent condensation, good-quality windows have warm-edge spacers made either of fiberglass, vinyl, foam or steel. They also have a low-emissivity, or low-e, coating that blocks out infrared rays from the sun, which can make a home hotter in the summer and fade flooring, carpeting and furniture over time.
Vinyl and fiberglass window frames reduce heat transfer and improve the insulation factor of the home and building envelope.
You may not recognize them as such, but it’s become common for new-home builders to use “fabulous fakes” — products and materials that look like the real thing, but in many cases are less expensive, more durable and easier to maintain. These include fiber-cement siding, polyurethane moldings and stone veneer.
Green certification programs: what they mean to you
Today many builders certify their homes under a third-party national or local green-building program. Green builders don’t always seek certification, but knowing that a new home is certified is one way for a buyer to ensure that it’s energy efficient and will last a long time.
“Buyers looking at new construction are seeking a higher-performing home,” says Pardee Homes’ Joyce Mason. “Green building is integral to that performance and quality.”
Mason points out that a decade ago, green products and practices were just getting started when it came to production homes. “Now manufacturers have stepped up the choices in green products,” she says. “They’re more tuned in to building practices, so today’s products fit more smoothly into building processes and cost less. That makes it easier for builders to offer green homes more affordably.”
In recent years, consumers have become more familiar with LEED, which stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design. The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Research Center certifies homes to the National Green Building Standard, the only residential green-building rating system approved by the American National Standards Institute (ANSI).
Energy Star is arguably the country’s best-known green program. When the U.S Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) started it in 1992, Energy Star was a voluntary labeling program designed to identify and promote energy-efficient products in order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In 1996, the DOE began partnering with the EPA on such product categories as major appliances, lighting and home electronics. The EPA also extended the Energy Star label to cover new homes.
Builders who choose to partner with Energy Star must meet a rigorous set of guidelines that include:
• A high-efficiency HVAC system;
• Building practices and materials that protect the roof, wall and foundation from water damage and that reduce the risk of indoor air quality problems; and
• Comprehensive air sealing, properly installed insulation and high-performance windows.
Energy Star builders are required to work with certified Home Energy Raters, who use the Home Energy Rating System (HERS), a standardized measurement of a home’s energy efficiency. The HERS index ranges from zero to 150. The lower a home’s HERS score, the more energy efficient it is. Home Energy Raters evaluate the builder’s architectural plans to help choose the best combination of energy-efficient features for the home and perform a number of inspections and diagnostic tests during construction. Once its energy efficiency has been verified, the home receives the Energy Star label.
Remember that not every home built by an Energy Star partner is necessarily Energy Star certified – check with your builder to make sure the specific home you want is certified.
Better building practices and materials
Home builders have at their disposal an array of techniques, products and materials that reduce construction time, labor and waste and result in a better-performing house. Four of the most widely used products are:
• Structural insulated panels (SIPs) are made in the factory with an insulating foam core sandwiched between two structural facings, typically oriented strand board (OSB);
• Spray polyurethane foam is used to seal the entire building envelope and prevent air and moisture infiltration;
• Insulating concrete forms (ICFs) are interlocking modular units, similar to Lego bricks, that are dry-stacked and filled with concrete to form the foundation; and
• Engineered lumber is the generic term for a group of products that includes plywood, OSB and hardboard. The products are made by gluing strands or pieces of scrap hardwood or softwood together. Both structural and finish products are made with engineered lumber, from I-beam joists and roof trusses to flooring.
Under the DOE’s Building America program, the NAHB Research Center has done field work with builders across the country and developed recommended building practices to create a tight, efficient building envelope. For example, optimized framing (also called advanced framing or optimum value engineering) allows more space for insulation and minimizes the amount of lumber used to build a house, without compromising its structural integrity.
The Research Center also established the National Housing Quality (NHQ) Awards program in 1993 to recognize management excellence in the home-building industry. Entrants are evaluated in eight categories including leadership, customer satisfaction and construction quality. As the winners will attest, the NHQ Awards program is setting the bar very high for their peers — and that’s a good thing for new-home buyers.
Mazza Building & Development Company provides unique custom homes in Oakland Twp, Michigan and surrounding areas. Call the top rated Oakland Twp, MI custom home builders at (248) 625-3305 to schedule a consultation.
Mazza Building & Development Company helps clients build the custom home of their dreams in Oakland Township MI and surrounding areas. Call (248) 625-3305 for more information about custom homes in Oakland Twp MI.
Top 10 Reasons Home Buyers Prefer New Homes vs. Used
Today’s new homes offer more benefits than ever before. Here’s a quick list of the Top 10 reasons why so many home buyers prefer new homes to used houses:
1) Design Your Dream Home Your Way: Why settle for someone else’s choices when you can select your favorite cabinets, countertops, appliances, carpets and flooring? While you’re at it, you can choose gorgeous bath and kitchen fixtures, lighting and other options that you love. Your new home will reflect your style, not someone else’s taste.
2) Choose a Floor Plan and Room Layout that Meets Your Needs: Want a master bedroom on the first floor? It’s yours. With massive his and her’s walk-in closets? Done! Want high ceilings and a luxurious, resort-style master bath? Perhaps you’d like a sitting room with a fireplace in your owner’s suite or French doors that open to your private patio or the pool? It’s easy, when you build your master suite your way.
3) All New, Under Warranty: A used home likely has tired products that may soon need replacing. Your new home — and the products that comprise it — are brand-new and under warranty. What’s the cost to replace a roof, appliances, countertops or a water heater on a used home? Those components of your new home feature the latest designs and building materials and should offer you years of comfort and enjoyment before needing replacement.
4) Energy and Cost Savings: Today’s new homes are far more energy efficient than homes built just five years ago. Versus homes built ten or 20 years ago, it’s game over, advantage new.Why settle for drafty, energy-wasting single-pane windows in a used home? Many new homes offer double or even triple-pane windows. Special window coatings and inert gases between the layers of glass are often available, saving you even more energy and money in both heating and cooling season.
5) Comfort and Indoor Air Quality: Today’s new homes meet stringent energy standards and codes not in place in the past. They combine high-performance energy efficiency with state-of-the-art ventilation and air filtration. The result is year-round, draft-free comfort and higher indoor air quality.
6) Low Maintenance: New cars today are computer-designed and computer-equipped. That’s why they perform much more reliably than a car that’s 15 or 20 years old. Homes are the same. Today’s new homes have open floor plans and high ceilings that reflect the way we live today. They’re also made of cutting-edge building products that require less care and maintenance. Another plus? The latest building systems and components are designed and engineered to work together.
7) Community Amenities: Many new homes are built in lavish master-planned communities with resort-style community centers, pools and clubhouses. Many new home communities also feature hiking trails, protected open lands and some of the best new schools and shopping near (or even within) your new home community.
8) Advanced Technology and Design: It’s possible to replace all of the single-pane windows in a resale home with today’s high-performance windows. It’s also possible to add insulation to a used home. However, it’s very expensive to replace dated appliances, cabinets and countertops in a used home — and you still won’t have the high ceilings you dream of on the first floor of an older two-story home. All are reasons to build your new home your way, to reflect the way you live today.
9) Safety: State-of-the-art circuit breakers. Electric garage door openers with infrared beams that stop if a tricycle or child is too near. High-efficiency furnaces and air conditioners that use the latest environmentally-friendly coolants. Cabinets, carpets and paints that use fewer volatile organic compounds, so that you and your family can breathe easier.
10) That New Home Feel: A used home was someone else’s dream, not yours. It reflects their choices and family memories. You may learn to love avocado-green appliances (and you may be willing to scrub stained countertops or grease-encrusted ovens and cooktops) but more and more people prefer that never lived-in feel.
After all, when was the last time you went to a department store and selected used clothes? Or visited a car dealer and paid more for a used car than a new car? source: newhomesource.com
Mazza Building & Development Company specializes in custom home building in Oakland Township MI and surrounding areas. Please call (248) 625-3305 for more information today!
If you are looking for a custom home builder in Oakland Twp MI and surrounding areas, please call the Oakland Twp custom home builder experts at Mazza Building and Development Company at (248) 625-3305 today!
What’s Hot in Oakland Twp MI Custom Home Building for 2014?
Pickled green cabinets define this Arts and Crafts style kitchen. The Colden from Brookfield Homes. Near Manassas, VA.
The rebounding new home market has fueled a change in attitudes about what we want from our homes when we build them from the ground up.
After enduring a real estate decline, as the market improves, we value our homes that much more. Most of us are thinking through the details of what we want in our homes with a greater sense of clarity about how we really live in our spaces. Our focus is much less on size and has instead turned toward making the most of every room.
The chef is on display. Kitchens are now designed for a crowd.
If all the hours you spend watching the Food Network have left you feeling like you’re a bourgeoning chef in need of a kitchen fit for one of television’s celebrated chefs, you’re not alone.
The more sumptuous the kitchen we see in that home magazine and the more educated we become about domestic skills – gourmet cooking being a favorite practice to take up – the more we desire the tools to support our developing abilities.
For kitchens, we want to go beyond the gas range and custom storage for all possible ingredients. Admit it. The serious home chef cooks, in part, to be seen cooking. So, a kitchen island with seating for one’s audience – whether the fans are family or guests – is a must. You’ll want top-notch lighting, too, to better see you and your edible creations.
Keep an eye out for trends from annual Idea Homes and Dream Homes from HGTV, Southern
The rise of the supremely outfitted home.
In 2014, we predict a distinct rise in supremely outfitted homes. Anne Robert, a London-based style maven at theoutdoorstylist.com, calls this the “uber trend”.
“A home’s value will be measured on its ability to be as good, if not better, than relevant spaces out in the market,” says Roberts. “Ideally, you want a kitchen good enough for a chef; a gym equipped like your local gym; a bathroom that echoes a spa. You want your home office to be as well connected as you are at work.”
It’s all happening in the home gym.
Take the gym: innovations in home gyms have exploded in the past few years, with svelte new fitness equipment from manufacturers like TechnoGym leading the way.
For those of us who prefer to sweat and strain in private, a home gym is a must. No longer is this reserved for professional athletes and trainers. The well-equipped home gym is within reach for those of us who have a room to dedicate (or even part of a room, thanks to the latest modular fitness equipment).
We no longer have to worry about how our gym equipment will look sharing space in a home office, because sophisticated fitness machines designed specifically for home use are so beautiful that they outshine their commercial counterparts.
The TechnoGym Kinesis Personal Vision is a perfect example of gorgeous modern technology; when not in use, it folds up to disguise itself as a full-length mirror.
Time for a shower? Take it outdoors. In 2014, when you’re done working out, you may clean up indoors in a master bath that features a curbless and stall-less shower, a modern luxury like one you’d find in a European boutique hotel.
Or, if you really want to get out ahead of the trend, you’ll relax in an outdoor spa, like the Sundance Spas Select Series – an eco-friendly line that operates efficiently without forgoing the comfort-inducing features that the company’s hot tubs are known for.
Privacy is key for outdoor spas. Landscape designers have met this need by incorporating hedges, potted plants, seating and foot-friendly surfaces to walk on known as hardscape. None of this is an afterthought; landscapers are fashioning deliberate outdoor rooms that cater to the needs of home spa enthusiasts. Which leads us to…the outdoor shower.
The growing popularity of outdoor bathing is due to adaptations in product and landscape designs that establish privacy. “Our parents and grandparents didn’t think we’d ever see three bathrooms in a single family home,” says Robert. “But that’s expected now, and soon, outdoor bathrooms will be expected, too.”
Robert should know. She’s a regular at design-oriented trade shows that set trends for the international market, as well as for the U.S., so she is uniquely positioned to spot trends in home design as they’re on the ascent. What else does she see happening in our homes next year? Pick up your (smart) phone to find out.
Have your iPhone call my outdoor fireplace.
Now more than ever, gardens are outdoor living spaces. The trend for outdoor space to meet and merge with indoor space is here to stay.
If the intersection of indoors and outdoors is where the action is, it becomes clear that you do need an outdoor fireplace that you can control from your iPhone.
Not techie enough for you? Vondom’s Faz outdoor lounger, coming to market in 2013, features a moveable sun shade and built-in iPod-compatible audio system.
While you’re at it, have your smart phone call my house, too. The infusion of technology we’re seeing outdoors also applies to the whole house.
Now, due to major advancements in home automation technology, you can control your home by voice from anywhere. Just ask Siri, Apple’s automated assistant. She’ll explain the matter for you. Android phones and tablets like the iPad round out the tool kit we can increasingly use to call and control our homes from afar.
We’re lucky. Home automation’s early adopters ferreted out the kinks, and new systems coming to market in 2013 are so easy to use, everyone will want one.
Wondering if you set your alarm when you left home today? Call your security system and tell it to activate. With systems like HAL (Home Automated Living), which works through your PC, you can also enjoy having your emails read aloud and the stock market checked for you.
In 2014, systems like these will become more fluid, allowing for an easy transition that’s inviting to those of us who weren’t early adopters in home automation. The ability of such systems to accurately monitor home energy usage will allow you to focus your conservation efforts based on real data.
Name that tune. And it’s not just your home’s lighting, cooling and security systems you can call and connect with. What’s that song you wanted to hear? Say it out loud, and your digital music center responds on command.
Want to hear Springsteen in the living room while your teenage daughter blasts Taylor Swift in her bedroom? Not a problem – the automated system can handle it. Want to cue up a video in your home’s movie database? Call home. Get the picture?
As you can see, it all starts with a phone call. In our article on home automation (see related articles, below) a top home automation expert notes wryly that we’re all walking around with a $600 remote control in our pocket all day long. It’s called a smart phone. Look for it to be used often and in increasingly novel ways in 2013.
Green is mainstream.
Notice that we’re not calling out eco-friendly building and living as a separate trend?
That’s because green is now a given. Oakland Twp MI Custom Home Builders and homeowners alike have seen the benefits of an environmentally-conscious approach to development and lifestyle, so those improvements can be found as part and parcel to the trends noted in our coverage. source: newhomesource.com
Call the top rated Oakland Twp MI Custom Home Builders at Mazza Building and Development Company today at (248) 625-3305 today!