July 1, 2015:

Leigh Spicher

I love my job. That’s no secret. It’s because I work for an amazing company where I’m surrounded by inspiring people. It’s also because I LOVE creating new homes, and I’ll explain why.

But first, a question…

When you think of a new home, what does “new” mean to you? Is it “new to you,” meaning pre-owned, gently-worn or otherwise old and in need of (what many consider cool) renovations? Or is it new-new? A new, custom build with all important design features and finishes completely up to you?

I ask for a couple of reasons; the first being if you choose to buy a pre-owned home, then you won’t get to visit The Studio! The Studio, simply put, rocks! It rocks for all of the obvious reasons that I’ve shared in other posts – it is visionary, inspiring and home to incredible design and beautiful finishes.

There’s more.

Ashton Woods: Aliana, Houston

Visit Aliana, an Ashton Woods Community in Houston, TX

We’ve come a long way since that house built in the ‘60s, ‘70s, ‘80s, ‘90s, or even the first decade of the millennia. If you’re buying a house built before that for the charm or period style, I totally applaud your architectural sensibilities and desire to connect with history. That said, you may find yourself essentially deconstructing the place and building a new home inside the walls. Many of us designers have been there, done that, so I speak from experience here.

No choice is wrong, and at the same time, there are certain things we should expect in homes now. If you aren’t sure about the benefits of new finishes versus old, here are a few:

Materials: In a word: Safety. Ok, a few more words…while our society has become so keenly aware of dangerous emissions, chemicals and many synthetic products, the materials used to build homes are no different. Remember lead paint?  That’s a major no-no today. When you buy a new home from Ashton Woods and the finishes within, you know you are getting materials that are 21st century safe. And by the way, all of our paints at AW are low VOC (that’s low volatile organic compounds).

Eco-friendly: By now, we all know we need to do our part to protect the environment. At The Studio, we work closely with many of our partners to provide products that are either produced using sustainable forestry, made with recycled material or made in the USA, which cuts down on shipping and, therefore, emissions.

Energy-efficient: You like to save money, right? Me too. All of the appliances we offer at The Studio have excellent energy ratings. We also offer home-automation systems that can help you remotely control temperature, lights, and security to help you keep costs down. It’s a bonus that these energy savings also help with that eco-friendly mission too. Ashton Woods: Latham Park, Orlando

Visit Latham Park, an Ashton Woods community in Orlando, FL

Warranty: Who doesn’t want extra assurance the products they purchase will last? If you are buying an old home, with old finishes and appliances, you basically forfeit that assurance. At The Studio, you will find many of our products come with not only extended warranties, but a personalized walkthrough on how to use them.

Finances: A lot of people think they will save by purchasing an old home. I bought an old home once, and I had big plans to remove the carpet and add hardwoods. Know what happened? The HVAC broke the day I moved in and because I’m not I fan of being hot, I bought a new system instead of hardwood. In short, I was temperature cool, but that shag carpet really brought down my cool factor. Old houses may increase big out-of-pocket expenses. When you buy a new home, you can choose finishes you want now, with the convenience of rolling into a low monthly mortgage.  At The Studio, we have the advantage of partnering with some big brands and negotiating better pricing for you. We also include delivery and professional installation, all before you move in. It’s a convenience thing, and you save money.

Technology: My kids only know a world with the internet, and they all have cell phones. They aren’t even teenagers yet. They can’t understand I still like to read books (you know, the paper ones). One of them found my old box of CDs recently and laughed like crazy when I tried to explain how they worked. Technology is changing in a way I struggle to keep up. When you visit The Studio, we’ll team you up with an IT specialist on all things digital that will make your life easier and more entertaining by making your house smarter. Who knew? In an older home, these upgrade conveniences are often more expensive, if possible at all.

In short, call us. Make an appointment to come for a tour of The Studio so we can share with you all of the benefits of buying new.

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