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The Custom Homebuilding Process: Taking One Step at a Time

Posted by John Graziose on Wed, May 27, 2020 @ 15:05 PM

Building a custom home is not an overnight process. It’s quite different than buying an existing home. It’s also more involved than building a new home that’s identical to all the others around it. So what does the custom homebuilding process look like? There are lots of details, but it is manageable (and exciting) if you approach the process properly—by taking one step at a time.

Start with a Realistic Budget

Determine your budget for your Rochester NY Custom home

One of the first things you should do is establish a realistic budget. What you are willing or able to spend plays a big role in determining what you can build.  Homeowners can get themselves in trouble by not being realistic. If you try to build more than you can really afford, you can end up “house poor.” You may have a fine house, but you may find yourself struggling to keep it. If you spend less than you really should you may save some money, but you probably won’t be happy with the quality, size, or features of your new home.  Remember: Your goal is not to save money (or overspend!), but to get the best home you can at a fair price. And knowing what your budget is can help you make decisions when options to modify your building plans surface. Here's some help in setting a realistic budget for your Rochester-area custom home. Here's some help in setting a realistic budget for your Rochester-area custom home.

 

Select the Perfect Lot

Finding the perfect home site in Rochester NY

Different homeowners want different things from their lot. Some opt for convenience (proximity to schools, work, or regular events). Some are more concerned with views or seclusion. But no matter what drives your choice, you’ll have to select your lot before you get too far down the road with specific design details because the physical characteristics of a lot can determine the structure of the house being built on it. Here's an article that offers help for this critical part of the custom home building process.

 

Find the Best Home Builder

Select a Builder for your Rochester NY Custom Home

Selecting the construction team that will be building your dream home is every bit as important as choosing your lot, your plan, and making your budget. Many homeowners begin by selecting the builder or contractor who then selects the other members of the team. The good news is that a good general contractor knows who the other best players in town are.  Check out this article for tips on what to look for in a custom builder.

 

Determine Your Design

Determine Your Design for your Rochester NY area custom home

Gerber Homes offers an extensive collection of floor plans from which to choose! Options range from estate-sized acreage home sites to smaller single story homes. And each floor plan can be customized to give you the maximum number of options. And if you want something different, you can still enjoy the outstanding quality and craftsmanship of a Gerber Homes—built home that’s based on your own plans! 

 

Understand the Construction Process

Understanding the construction process for your rochester ny custom home

We’re not suggesting that you become an expert in home construction. At the same time, it’s helpful for you to understand what happens in the various stages of construction. There will be times when it doesn’t look like a lot of progress is being made. Despite appearances, there are important activities happening. Click here for a visual look at what happens in key stages of the construction process. It will help you to be more comfortable when it feels like things aren’t moving as quickly as you’d like.

 

Seal the Deal with a Contract

Seal the Deal with a Contract for your custom home in Rochester NY

The final step to take before beginning to build is to secure a written contract signed and dated by both the builder or contractor and the architect or designer (unless the architect’s designer is a sub-contractor of the builder). A new home construction contract should describe the project in detail and should include a list of all the components included in the house. If you make any changes to the project, be sure to amend the contract, so there are no unwanted surprises later.

 

Keep Learning

Continue learning about the custom home process

If you’re looking for more details (and ideas) for building a custom, we invite you to download our free 17-page Custom Home Guide.

 

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Topics: floor plans, Custom homes, Building a New Home, Home Design

When Buying a Rochester-Area Custom Home, It’s not Just What You Pay—It’s What You Get

Posted by John Graziose on Fri, Mar 27, 2020 @ 13:03 PM

When you’re thinking about building a new custom home in Ontario, Perinton, Webster or anywhere else in the Greater Rochester area, it’s easy to focus on the cost of the home. It’s important to have a realistic budget for your home. If you try to take on too much house, you probably won’t qualify for the loan. And even if your do, you may find yourself stretched beyond your comfort level. It’s no fun living in a home if you can’t afford to furnish it or if you’re constantly stressed by the monthly payments.

The real issue, however, isn’t just how much you pay for your home—it’s how much value your home delivers for the money you spend. You may want to check out this post, which talks about getting a fair price for a new Rochester-area home.

One of the big factors to consider when you’re thinking about the cost of a home is the quality of the home. Most new homes look pretty good in the first year or two. But if you’re planning to stay for a few years, you’ll want a home that’s solidly built and will stand up to the use you give it.

That’s one good reason to check out homes your prospective builder built several years ago; you can see how well they are maturing. Do they still look great, or are they starting to show signs of wear and tear? For three generations, our family has been building homes in the eastern Rochester area. You can choose from more than 3,000 existing homes if you want to check out the quality of our products!

As proud as we are of our quality craftsmanship, true value in a home involves more. In addition to quality of construction, you’ll want to think about how the home meets your specific needs. What are some of the things that add value to your home? Here are a few considerations to keep in mind:

Location

Location of your Rochester custom home

Where you live is just as important as the physical structure you live in. The quality of the community you call home is so important. So are schools and proximity to work and activities. We build in a wide range of locations around the Rochester area, including Webster, Canandaigua, Perinton, Ontario, Victor, Sodus, Penfield and numerous other communities in the region.

Design

The Design of your Rochester Custom Home

A comfortable home doesn’t just happen. The design of your home needs to fit your specific lifestyle—with a configuration that matches the way you live and entertain. Take a look at the wide variety of floor plans we offer in a range of sizes and styles (including Colonial homes, first-floor masters, patio homes, ranch homes and Cape homes.

Size

Size of your Rochester area custom home

Some people will say that size doesn’t matter, but when it comes to your home, you’ll want to think twice about that. You may not need a large, two-story home, but when you’re considering building, you’ll want to keep the future in mind. Spending a bit more for extra space now can actually save you a lot of money later if your needs outgrow the home you’re in.

Money does matter when it comes to building your custom home. But the value you get from your home (in terms of overall comfort and quality) is more important than price. And if a lower-priced home doesn’t deliver long-term quality and value, it’s no bargain!

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Topics: floor plans, Custom homes, Rochester NY, Building a New Home, Home Design, Home Building Costs

Kitchen Design Trends for 2020

Posted by John Graziose on Wed, Dec 4, 2019 @ 09:12 AM

Without question, the kitchen is one of the most used rooms in your home. It’s a workspace for creating meals. It’s often a place where you grab a quick meal or a snack. It’s where you entertain family and guests. If you have kids, it’s often where homework and school projects get done. It’s that kind of diverse utility that has shaped the design of kitchens over the years. With that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the major kitchen design trends for 2020.

Distinguishing Between Trends and Fads

Before we get into design specifics, let's distinguish between a trend and a fad. Fads come and go faster than you can say "Avocado-green appliances." Fads can be fun, but they tend to be less. A trend, however, is generally something that develops over time to reflect changing needs. Trends focus more on how you live, and what's important to you to make your home more comfortable and convenient. Trends also tend to stick around longer.

Modern kitchen in Rochester NY

That being said, there are visual trends that are important to note because ignoring them can make the kitchen in your custom home look dated. That’s why some of the trends we’ll highlight will focus a bit more on décor, while others will focus more on utility and functionality.

 

Marvelous Marble

Carrara Marble countertops in kitchen in Rochester NY

Beautiful Carrara marble is finding its way into the kitchen. It’s a bold and elegant look. However, if you’re concerned about staining (from red wine, for instance) you might consider quartz instead.  Engineered quartz is more affordable, less prone to stains, and still looks like natural stone. Here’s an article that talks in more depth about choosing the right countertop material for your custom kitchen.

 

Reclaimed Wood

Rustic kitchen in Rochester NY

There is something warm and welcoming about reclaimed wood. Maybe it’s because the material always seems as if it has a tale to tell that connects us to a simpler time. While this trend has been around for a while, it continues to enjoy growing popularity.

 

Pantries & Larders

Farmhouse kitchen in custom home in Rochester NY

Keeping kitchens organized and uncluttered is a challenge. That's one reason kitchen pantries and larders are so popular today. You can keep large packages of food and seldom-used kitchen devices (mixers, blenders, bread makers) conveniently stored out of sight. Pantries are great if you want walk-in storage space. A larder is a perfect plan if you don't need quite as much space—or if your floor plan won't accommodate it.

 

Combining Colors

Bold cabinets in kitchen in custom home in rochester ny

Once upon a time, homeowners (and designers) wouldn’t dream of using varying colors in the kitchen. Everything had to follow a simple color palette. No longer. We’re seeing more instances of white cabinets being offset by bold colored bases (or go with a bright pastel!). The start contrast is very striking! A variation on this trend is the mixing of metals in the kitchen. Look for an increase in metal fixtures this year.  Don’t be surprised to see nickel used for knobs along with cool brass for the faucet. You may see yet another metal used for light fixtures.

 

Disappearing Appliances

Custom refrigerator in kitchen in custom home in rochester ny

While this trend isn't new, it has picked up steam. Instead of wondering whether stainless steel, black, or transparent black appliances have staying power, more homeowners are simply hiding their appliances—such as refrigerators, dishwashers, and microwaves—behind cabinetry. That leaves you with a kitchen that looks bigger. On top of that, you can choose the appliances that best suit your needs, even if their casings aren't a perfect match!

 

Open Plans

Farmhouse kitchen in Rochester NY

Open concept floor plans aren’t going away anytime soon. In addition to allowing lots of natural light, open floor plans often create even more visual space. You can have a bigger-feeling space without adding square footage. Another benefit is that open plans allow you and your guests to wander easily between spaces—and as the host or hostess, you’ll never be left out of the action when you’re in the kitchen. Open plans, however, do require a bit of planning, because both rooms (your kitchen and your family room) are visible to each other.

 

Dark Floors

Dark wood floors in kitchen in Rochester NY Home

Despite the rumors of their demise, white kitchens remain extremely popular. They are bright and cheerful and feel more open. But what we’re seeing is increasing numbers of homeowners are choosing dark flooring to offset (and show off) those white cabinets.

 

Think Timeless Beauty and Functionality

Luxury kitchen in Rochester NY

These are just a few of the trends we’re hearing about in the homebuilding industry. Keep in mind that fads will come and go. Even trends will evolve and change over time. But as you plan your new custom home, keep timeless beauty, comfort, convenience, and functionality in mind rather than chasing the latest “hot color” scheme. Make your kitchen a place you and your friends and family love to spend time.

 

Schedule a Consultation to Build a Custom Home in the Greater Rochester area

Topics: Custom homes, kitchen design, Building a New Home, Home Design, Custom Home Features

Creating an Incredible Great Room in Your Rochester Custom Home

Posted by John Graziose on Tue, Dec 3, 2019 @ 14:12 PM

One thing that makes a custom home so special is that you can customize (or personalize) features in your home in a way that makes it comfortable and convenient for you. Customizing your home also lets you emphasize design elements that reflect your personal sense of style. Your great room is a place that lends itself well to customization. Let’s look at some ideas for creating an incredible great room in your Rochester custom home.

Looking and Feeling Warm

Fireplace in Custom Home in Rochester NY

Your great room is a room where you relax and feel comfortable. For many of us, this room is all about feeling cozy and relaxed. A fireplace is a great feature for achieving that look and feel. There is something welcoming about a glowing fireplace on a cold and snowy Rochester day. You can choose an elegant fireplace such as the one you see here or opt for a stone fireplace for a more casual or rustic look and feel. You can also choose between a conventional wood-burning fireplace or a natural gas unit that lets you turn the flames on (and off) whenever you want—without the hassle of cleaning out the ashes.

Great room in custom home in Rochester NY

Built-in bookcases are another feature that contributes a warm and welcoming look to your living room. There’s something inviting about shelves of books and special mementos that makes you and your guests feel at home. An advantage to building the cabinets directly into the walls is that you gain extra storage and display space without having to sacrifice floor space. That makes your great room feel more spacious and uncluttered.

 

Fantastic Flooring

The flooring you choose for your great room makes a big impression as well. There’s no denying the warm and comfortable feeling that this wood flooring brings to the rustic family room you see here. Of course, you can also choose a more formal or elegant wood floor, depending on your specific taste. One nice thing about wood flooring is that it’s a great way to tie spaces together (in this case you see how the dining area transitions seamlessly into the family room) while still allowing each space to have its own identity. Should you go with natural wood or an engineered wood floor? Here’s an article that provides a helpful comparison of the two different options.

 

Custom Doors and Windows

Custom doors in great room of custom home in rochester ny

When considering the design and layout of your great room, you’ll want to give some consideration to your doors and windows. There’s been a significant trend over the past few years to deliberately blur the lines between indoor and outdoor living. The photo you see here provides a great example of how folding glass doors (whether open or closed) create this stunning look. The example you see here is a traditional style, but folding doors are available from a variety of manufacturers that will perfectly match your home's style.

 

Custom Elements

Building a custom home also enables you to use custom elements within rooms to tie your design together. Here’s just one example from a custom home we built recently that shows how you can do that. The ceiling trusses pick up the same wood pattern used in the barn door—tying the whole room together. And you’ll notice that the tresses also work as a unifying element to tie the family room to the kitchen. This is a great example of how an open concept floor plan works to create separate spaces that still share common elements to tie them together.

 

More Customization Help

Of course, creating a custom great room is only part of your overall house plan. If you’re looking for additional ideas and information for creating the custom home of your dreams, we invite you to download our free Custom Home Guide eBook. It’s packed with helpful tips for budgeting, selecting a team, finding a home site, choosing a floor plan, and designing your custom home. 

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Topics: Custom homes, Building a New Home, Home Design, Custom Home Features

Designing the Kitchen in Your Rochester Custom Home

Posted by John Graziose on Fri, Sep 13, 2019 @ 09:09 AM

Whether you’re building a new custom home or remodeling the kitchen in your existing Rochester area home, your kitchen is one room that needs special attention. So much happens in your kitchen (food preparation, casual meals, entertaining, and more) that it’s important to get this room right. Achieving the right results, however, is about more than simply installing new kitchen elements. You need a good plan to make sure everything comes together. That's what kitchen design is all about. With that in mind, let's look at designing the kitchen in your Rochester custom home—and cover some essential kitchen design ideas.

 

Balancing Form and Function

Kitchen Made For Entertaining in Your Rochester Custom Home

There are two key elements to creating a modern kitchen that will delight you for years to come. You want to pay attention to both form and function. Homeowners want to create beautiful kitchens that are attractive and inviting—and match their sense of style. But it's equally important to end up with a kitchen that matches your lifestyle. And that means building in the features—and designing the space—that make your kitchen comfortable and convenient for the way you live and entertain.

 

How to Design a Kitchen Layout

Kitchen Layout in Custom Home in Rochester NY

So, how do you go about planning a kitchen that meets your needs? First, think about how you like to use your kitchen. What are the things that can make it convenient and enjoyable for making meals?  If you do a lot of cooking, you might want to consider a design that incorporates double ovens. That enables you to have multiple items (with differing temperatures) cooking at the same time. If you plan to use your kitchen for casual meals, or like making breads/pastries/pastas you may want to build in an over-sized island that allows you more work space (with a built-in sink, or possibly an island cook-top) while still allowing room for family and friends to eat breakfast or a snack on the other side of the island. By the way, if you’d like some additional tips about how to design a great kitchen (and other rooms in your home) for entertaining, check out this helpful article.

 

What About “Extra” Kitchen Features?

Special Features for Your Rochester Kitchen

Once you have your basic design mapped out, you can focus on some other details that can make your kitchen more comfortable, convenient, and even fun. If you’re in the habit of having friends over for coffee, you might want to look at building in a coffee bar to add an element of fun and interest. Many Rochester homeowners love having a separate pantry in the kitchen. This extra space makes storing small appliances and dry goods so much easier—and it helps to keep your kitchen uncluttered. And don’t forget about touchless faucets that make food prep much more convenient.

 

Choosing the Look You Want

Choosing the Look You Want For Your Rochester Kitchen

You have a lot of options when it comes to the visual impact of your Rochester kitchen. You can choose from contemporary, classic, modern, or farmhouse styles. But keep in mind that most kitchens today are part of an open floor plan. That means whatever style and décor you choose for your kitchen will probably be visible from other rooms in the house. That means you’ll want to make sure that the cabinets, countertops, and flooring blend well with what’s in the adjoining rooms.

 

How Much Does it Cost to Remodel a Kitchen?

How Much Does it Cost to Remodel a Kitchen in Rochester NY

Naturally, you’ll want to keep an eye on the budget with your new kitchen. Your builder can walk you through the design and provide you with an accurate estimate so that you’ll know what to expect. If you’re remodeling an existing kitchen, here’s a very helpful post that gives you an idea of what various levels of kitchen remodels cost in the Rochester area—and what the return on that investment will be. We want you to be able to make an informed decision about remodeling before starting. 

 

Next Steps

Prepare to design the kitchen in your Rochester custom home

Whether you’re building a new home or remodeling the kitchen in your current home, gathering good information is essential to achieving the results you want. A great way to get started is to download our free Creating the Ideal Kitchen eBook. It’s packed with helpful information and insights. You can also contact us directly. We know you’ll have lots of questions and our knowledgeable Gerber Homes team will be delighted to guide you through the whole process.

 

Schedule a Consultation to Build a Custom Home in the Greater Rochester area

Topics: Kitchen remodeling, Custom homes, kitchen design, Home Design, Custom Home Features

Why It’s Important to Understand the Custom Home Process When Building Your Rochester-area Custom Home

Posted by John Graziose on Fri, Jul 12, 2019 @ 08:07 AM

Building a custom home is an exciting adventure. At the same time, it’s an undertaking that’s different than anything you’ve done before. Even if you’ve purchased a home before, building a custom house is different. While it’s easy to dive right into the fun stuff (color schemes, finishes, décor, landscaping, etc.) you’ll want to make sure you understand how everything comes together so that you achieve the results you want. That’s why it’s important to understand the custom home building process when building your Rochester-area custom home.

Custom Home in Rochester New York

Before You Start Building

There are a number of things that you need to pay close attention to before your contractor starts excavating or building. Here are some of the key parts of the process.

 

Think About Where You Want to Live

Where you choose to build your home is as important as the design and the floor plan. Your choice of location may be influenced by the schools in the area, the amount of privacy you want, the size of the lot you think is appropriate, the length of your commute—or a host of other factors. Here’s a post that takes a closer look at things you’ll want to think about when considering where to build.

 

Make Sure Your Home Fits Your Lifestyle

As you check out neighborhoods in the Rochester area, you may notice certain homes that are visually appealing to you. You’re likely to come across Colonial-style homes, 1st Floor Master bedroom homes, Cape-style homes, Raised Ranch-style homes, and more. Curb appeal is important, but just because you like the way a home looks from the outside doesn’t mean that home will fit the way you live.

Think beyond the external appeal of the house. What kind of home fits your lifestyle? Do you prefer multi-level living with bedrooms on one level and common rooms on another?  Do you plan to entertain frequently? If so, what style of home lends itself best to the kind of entertaining you enjoy? Are you in a “kid-centric” phase of life, or are you looking for a more “mature, empty-nester” style? The beauty of building a custom home is that it’s definitely not a “one-size-fits-all” proposition. You get to choose what fits your needs best. Here’s a post that explores how to select the kind of home that fits your family’s lifestyle.

Custom Home in Rochester NY

How Much Do You Want to Customize?

A basic floor plan can help you visualize how the space in your home will be laid out and how things will flow from room to room. But you can take a basic floor plan and make modifications so that it better suits your specific tastes and needs. You’ll have to decide exactly how much you want to customize. Will you want things like built-in shelving? What about higher ceilings on the lower level? Do you want specialty materials for flooring or counters? Will you install standard design cabinets, semi-custom, or totally unique cabinets? Keep in mind that the more you customize, the more you’ll spend. It can also increase the timeline for completion.

Custom Home in Rochester NY

Understanding the Steps in the Process

After addressing the issues above, you’ll be ready for the next steps. It’s also helpful for you if you understand the steps in the process. Things happen in a deliberate order. And while some things may happen concurrently, nothing happens overnight. You'll feel more comfortable with the progress is you understand the process. Here's a look at how we work through the custom home building process at Gerber Homes.

  • Meet with Your Sales/Design Consultant: During this one-to-three-hour meeting (at our office or at one of our model homes) we’ll work together to fill out a form that covers all of your selections for the colors and materials for your home. We’ll ask you lots of questions about your expectations, to make sure we’re all on the same page. We’ll actually show you samples of the materials we plan to use so that there are no surprises. You’ll be able to see examples of things such as roofing and siding materials, interior doors, and trim materials.

  • Meet with Suppliers: This is where you’ll have a chance to look at items such as kitchen cabinets, flooring options, plumbing fixtures, and more. We invite you to visit as many of the suppliers as you like—or simply focus on the ones that are most important to you. We always have design consultants on hand to answer your questions and help you make the selections that are right for you.

  • Blueprint Review Meeting: During this meeting, you’ll be able to make sure that the blueprints we've drawn up for your home accurately represent your wishes. I'll meet with you personally in our office to go over these plans. This usually takes about two hours to review the plans and the selections you've made. We'll actually go through a checklist (based on things our clients have told us they'd wished someone had asked them before construction started) to ensure we cover everything that's important to you, including:

    • Where will my basement windows be located?

    • Where will my furnace be located?

    • Which way will the doors in the house open?

    • How wide will the doorways be?

    • What about the positioning of outdoor spigots?

    • Which way will my garage door face?

 

By the way, if you’re more of a visual or auditory learner, click here to see most of this same information in video form.

Custom Home in Rochester New York

Educate Yourself About the Process

The more you know about how things work, the more comfortable you’ll be with the process. We've learned over the years that the better informed our clients are about the custom home building process, the happier they are with the results—and the more they enjoy the experience. That's why we offer some help for figuring out what those next steps. If you'd like to learn more please download our free page custom home guide.

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Topics: Custom homes, Building a New Home, Home Design, Custom Home Features

What’s Your Kitchen Personality? How to Match your Rochester Kitchen to Your Persona

Posted by John Graziose on Sat, Apr 13, 2019 @ 10:04 AM

Kitchen-with-personality

There’s little doubt that the kitchen in your Rochester home has a huge impact on the look and feel of your entire home. It’s why homeowners pay so much attention to the details that go into creating their dream kitchen. That’s true whether you’re building a new home or remodeling your existing Rochester kitchen. Your kitchen, however, should be a reflection of what’s important to you. It should reflect your personality. What’s your kitchen personality? How can you match your Rochester kitchen to your persona?


What’s a Persona?

When I say your kitchen should match your persona, I’m not talking about whether you’re an introvert or an extrovert. I’m talking about having a kitchen that matches the way you live and how you like to use that space. Here are some examples of different kitchen personas. You may not find one that matches you exactly, but the idea is that the kitchen should be designed to suit your specific lifestyle.

  • Cindy the Casual Hostess is all about convenience and making guests feel welcome in her kitchen. She’d rather spend time with her guests than spend time preparing meals and trying out exotic recipes. That’s why her kitchen appliances and design focus on ease of access and ease of use. Her kitchen has lots of space for family and guests to linger while food is being prepared. It’s open to the Family Room so that everybody feels connected. Cindy’s family also eats breakfast in the kitchen area so she might opt for a built-in breakfast bar at the center island or even a breakfast booth right off the kitchen.
  • Gourmet Gina is really into gourmet cooking. It’s not just something she tries occasionally—she’s passionate about it. She reads up on the latest cooking trends and even watches gourmet-cooking shows. She can’t wait to try out the newest recipes. The layout of her kitchen reflects that passion. She designs her kitchen space to enable her to do the kind of intensive cooking she and her family enjoy. It’s all about efficiency and preparation in Gina’s kitchen. For her, the "Kitchen Work Triangle” is extremely important. She still likes to host meals and have friends over, but her guests enjoy their special meals in a space adjoining the kitchen—not in the kitchen itself.
  • Emily the Entertainer is a true social character. Her kitchen is the place where she hosts friends and guest—for a glass of wine or for conversation while she prepares a meal or a snack. That’s why she wants a kitchen that’s spacious and gives guests room to mingle without worrying that they’ll get in the way of the preparation. Entertaining and doing food preparation in the same space means that Emily needs lighting that will enable her to easily complete tasks such as chopping, cutting, washing, and stirring. But then, when the prep work is done, she can switch over to ambient lighting that makes guests feel comfortable.
  • Thoroughly Modern Melissa is a big fan of modern design using clean, sleek lines. Countertop clutter is one of her pet peeves. That means she has a kitchen that allows plenty of storage space to keep things off the counter. If possible, she may even include a separate pantry for food items and seldom-used appliances. Her penchant for modern style also shapes her selection of cabinets, countertops, backsplash, and flooring—and she gravitates toward simple colors with bold accents.
  • Carol the Country Girl is a fan of warm, inviting, country-style décor. She wants her kitchen to be a place where friends enjoy a relaxing a cup of coffee or tea while talking about anything (or nothing). Her kitchen is a relaxing place so she chooses cabinets, counters, sink, furniture, and colors that are warm and comfortable. She does have a preference for natural materials such as reclaimed wood and metals that give her kitchen a comfortable “lived-in” feel.

You can see that some personas tend to be more driven by function (cooking or entertaining style), while others focus a bit more on aesthetics. Knowing what’s most important to you helps you work with your builder or remodeler to help create a kitchen that makes you feel comfortable and at home. If you’re looking for additional help to match your kitchen design to your personality, download our free Creating the Ideal Kitchen eBook. This helpful guide will help you identify the features you’ll want to build into your ideal kitchen.

Photo by Viscious-Speed

 Adapted from the original September 2016 post

Gerber-Homes-Creating-the-Ideal-Kitchen

Topics: kitchen design, Home Design

Which Remodeling Trends Matter Most For Your Rochester Home?

Posted by John Graziose on Wed, Aug 1, 2018 @ 08:08 AM

Which Remodeling Trends Matter Most For Your Rochester Home?Every year industry experts talk about the newest trends in the remodeling industry. You’ll hear about these trends on home improvement sites such as houzz.com or on remodeling shows on television. A lot of what you’ll hear or read tends to focus on interior design: What are the “hot” colors this year? What kinds of backsplash materials are “in?” Which hardware finishes are most popular?  Those are all interesting and important items to consider, but which remodeling trends matter most for your Rochester home?

I’d like to suggest that real remodeling trends—ones that have staying power—focus more on functionality and changes that come about in response to homeowners’ changing lifestyles.  Let’s look at a few of these kinds of remodeling trends in some key areas of your Rochester home.

Kitchen Trends

Kitchens have changed dramatically over the years. They’re no longer simply spaces for food preparation. These days, people use them for entertaining, cooking, casual dining, and even family meetings. While color changes and finishes may constantly change, one trend that seems to have great staying power is the use of kitchen islands as a major feature in kitchens because they lend themselves to multiple uses. Take a look at some of the kitchen projects we’ve worked on recently.

Bathroom Trends

Bathrooms are kind of a big deal in today’s homes. There’s a good reason for that. This is a room you use multiple times a day. It’s where you get ready to meet the challenges of the day and it’s also a place you relax at the end of the day. A couple of trends in bathrooms have been to make them more comfortable and functional. That means dual sinks and more space for getting ready in the morning. And when it comes to comfort, many homeowners have replaced old conventional tubs (and even whirlpools) with elegant soaking tubs and spacious showers that enhance relaxation. Here’s a look at some of the things you’ll want to consider as you plan your bathroom remodel.

Interior Trends

Even though open floor plans have been around for a few years they continue to be a popular trend. It’s a way to bring more natural light into your home and it also gives the inside of your home a more spacious feel. Often homeowners choose to repurpose existing rooms to meet their changing needs for things such as a home office, a guest bedroom, or a multi-purpose family room/entertainment room. You can even finish out your basement or convert your garage into extra living space.

Addition Trends

There are also trends in home additions that are worth noting. There has been an increase in the number of multi-generational households over the past few years. Often that requires adding physical space that can be used as an in-law apartment (which can be used for older parents moving in, or for adult children who are still working on getting started in their own careers).  Click here for some inspirational images of how you can add beautiful—and needed—space to your existing home.

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Topics: Kitchen remodeling, Bathroom remodeling, home remodeling, whole home remodeling, Home Additions, Interior Remodeling, Exterior remodeling, Home Design

Understanding the Cost Difference Between 1, 1 ½, and 2 Story Buildings

Posted by John Graziose on Sun, Sep 24, 2017 @ 20:09 PM

Understanding-the-Cost-Difference-Between-1-1_½-and-2-Story-Buildings.jpgOne choice you’ll face when choosing a floor plan for your new Rochester-area home is how many stories your home will have. You can chose from a wide variety of different floor plans that include one-story, two-story, and one-and-a-half-story homes. In addition to impacting your lifestyle now and potentially inthe future, the number of stories your house has can impact the cost of your home.

The fact of the matter is that it’s not just the number of stories (of floor levels) that impact a home’s cost. The overall size of the home, of course, plays a big role.

For instance, if you build a 2,000 square foot 2-story home and a 2,000 square foot single-story home, the one-level home will almost always be more expensive to construct. But being happy with your home is about more than just square footage—or a slight difference in cost. What you really want is a plan that meets your needs and makes you feel comfortable. The simple fact of the matter is that one-floorplan won't fit the needs of every individual.

These days, we find that many of our clients prefer open floor plans for their common rooms (kitchens, dining areas, family rooms). A ranch-style home in the range of 1,600 to 1,800 generally allows us to build a home that offers everything they want, such as a first-floor master bedroom, and easy access to everything. The cost for that is generally less than it would be for a similarly designed two-story home. That's because the two-story home will generally need to be a bit larger to include the features you want on the main level—and still have rooms upstairs.

So what about the cost for a one-and-a-half-story home? Prospective homeowners are frequently surprised to discover that this is generally the most expensive option. Part of the reason for that is that a one-and-a-half-story home usually has a good-sized first floor and a rather small amount of space in the upstairs. The dimensions of that small second floor prevent us from using standard trusses, and have to build flooring and other structural elements out of what we call “stick frame.” Unfortunately, that’s a more expensive process—and that makes the home cost more.

As I mentioned earlier, being happy with your home depends on more than square footage and cost. A much bigger factor is finding a floor plan that fits your needs (and your budget).

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Topics: floor plans, Custom homes, home remodeling, Home Additions, Building a New Home, second-floor additions, Home Design, first-floor additions

3 Little Mistakes That Can Have a Big Impact on Your Canandaigua Home

Posted by John Graziose on Sun, Jan 15, 2017 @ 05:01 AM

3-Little-Mistakes-That-Can-Have-a-Big-Impact-on-Your-Canandaigua-Home.jpgMost of us know that when you’re looking at an iceberg, what’s below the surface matters more than what you see above the surface. It’s the hidden danger that presents the real problems.  The same principle holds true when you’re planning a new home in Canandaigua. Sometimes little things can have a big impact on your building experience—and on your enjoyment of your new home.

Let’s take a look at three things that may not seem that big at first, but which can have pretty serious ramifications down the road.

  1. Setting an Unrealistic Budget.Setting a budget for your new home may not be the most fun part about building a new home in Canandaigua, but there’s no denying its importance. The thing is, there are actually two ways this small choice can have a big impact. If you plan on more home than you can really afford, it can cause a lot of stress. Some of that can come during the building process when you want to make some relatively minor modifications that would make your home more comfortable. If you’re maxed out to the last dime you won’t be able to make adaptations. Or you may not be able to handle unexpected expenses that come up. On the other hand, if you try to cut corners on a home (when you can realistically afford it) you may get the “bargain” you were after, but you’ll very likely be unhappy with the features of the home. And if you make changes later (to get what you really wanted) it will actually cost you more.
  1. Selecting a Floor Plan That Doesn’t Fit: Make sue the floor plan you choose really fits your lifestyle—and will continue to meet your lifestyle for years to come. As you look at plans (and we have plenty of options from which to choose) take into consideration how you like to entertain. Think about how your family may change in five years or so. And keep in mind that it’s not just the amount of square footage that matters, but how the rooms are configured. If you want a home that offers you the option for main level living down the road, plan ahead for that now.
  1. Settling for the Wrong Builder.Not all floor plans are created the same and not all builders are the same. You want to deal with a builder that has experience, a good reputation, and who has built the kind of home you want. Perhaps the most important thing you want to look for is a builder you can trust. Obviously, you’ll want to see examples of what your prospective builder has done and you’ll want to check references. But trust is built on more than that. In many ways, trust is built by knowing that you have a builder that will listen to you and take your ideas, dreams, and questions to heart. Here’s a helpful post that talks about the importance of finding a builder who will earn your trust by listening to you.

Those three things may not seem monumental when you’re beginning to plan your new Canandaigua home, but ignoring them can have a huge impact on the home you’re planning to live in for years to come.
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Topics: Canandaigua NY, Building a New Home, Home Design