A Place for Pets

A Place for Pets

A Pet Center – here’s the backstory on this design amenity:

Dogs play, get dirty, and aren’t inclined to wipe their feet before heading into the house. “There’s not a shower on the main floor, so I have to carry the dirty dog all the way upstairs to give her a bath.” A guy quipped, “My wife says we really need a dog shower near the garage entry for when our dog rolls around in dead fish, but I think she wants it for me when I come home from hunting or trapping.”

The bottom line, pets are members of our households, too. Planning your new home to better address the realities of pet ownership – from kennels to feeding, washing, and specialized storage – makes the home more livable and enjoyable for everyone!

Costello Pet Center floor planIn the Costello (plan 42139), the pet center is located just inside the rear foyer entry from the garage, providing easy access and not in the direct line of traffic into the house. The rendering above is one configuration; depending on your size and type of pet, you may want a larger or elevated shower, kennel or pet bed area, feeding station, etc. The choice is yours!

Search our plans for Pet Center designs. Or, talk with a plan specialist to make Plan Alterations to a different plan.

See other posts with more Pet Center ideas and information:

Bathroom Storage Solution

Bathroom Storage Solution

Problem: Ladies have told us they would like to have a seat in the owner’s bathroom…that we need more hanging for towels…and that the clothes hamper/laundry basket is always in the way.

Solution: Design Basics’ new Stor-N-More™ presents a cushioned seat with flip-top bench, hidden storage for your laundry basket under the seat, extra towel hanging and linen storage all in the cavity previously shown simply as a linen closet!

Consider how we live: We undress in the bathroom for showering. Where do the dirty clothes go? Where do you hang a towel rack and robe hooks? The size and placement of the Stor-N-More in Design Basics’ Jensen Falls Plan (#29385) could easily have been just a regular linen closet. This new design amenity belongs in your next model (or Parade) home!

Search plans for the Stor-N-More amenity already built in, or let us help you find your perfect plan and incorporate it!

2019 NAHB International Builders’ Show Recap

2019 NAHB International Builders’ Show Recap

This year marked the 75th annual NAHB International Builders’ Show (IBS), which was held in Las Vegas on February 19-21. Design Basics was the only home plan design firm to be recognized as a quarter-century exhibitor, exhibitors who have participated at the trade show for more than 25 years. Design Basics began exhibiting at the IBS in 1987.

Every year, many new innovations and trends are particularly evident at the IBS, which brings together leaders in home construction, materials, and design. “Design Basics has been at the forefront of home design, with an ever-evolving appreciation for buyers’ preferences in the home,” said Kathryn Dick, President. “Many of our most exciting innovations have been inspired specifically by women’s preferences for design solutions that increase a home’s livability and style.”

Here are some highlights from the Design Basics’ booth:

Dual-Owner’s Suites. Our family of “Cedar” home plans, including the Cedar Glenn II (#42229), Cedar Pointe (#42389), and Cedar Terrace (#42419), were the most popular designs. They offer two distinct owner’s suites on the main floor. This is desirable for people with aging parents who live with them, households with grown children who visit from out of town, other relatives moving in, and today’s increasing number of unrelated buyers desiring to share in homeownership. Also, the suites are on opposite sides of the main living area for added privacy; however, when it is time to interact, the open floor plan that extends the dining area makes entertaining easy.

Modern Elevations. Home designs with modern elevations were also in high-demand. While we offer a variety of elevation styles, including modern, our designers can create multiple elevation styles for the same home plan. In fact, many of the “new for 2019 home plans” were introduced as three-elevation plan sets.

Value-Engineered Design. Builders are cognizant of rising labor and material costs coupled with the desire to make housing more affordable for buyers. Design Basics’ value-engineered designs allow builders to achieve a stylish and functional design at the lowest total cost. Each Design Basics’ value‐engineered plan incorporates the desirable qualities of a Woman‐Centric designed home. The powerful combination is a win for everyone – affordable building without compromising on structural integrity or design.

The NAHB IBS is the largest annual light construction show in the world, with more than 1,500 manufacturers and suppliers exhibiting, drawing more than 70,000 attendees in the home building and architecture industry. Make plans to attend 2020 IBS in Las Vegas!

How to Pick the Perfect Paint

How to Pick the Perfect Paint

Eggshell, satin, semi-gloss? What goes where?

Here’s a handy guide for what paint types work best in different areas of the home:

  • Flat: Best for ceilings and low traffic areas; a matte finish is best at concealing imperfections.
  • Eggshell: Best for rooms with moderate traffic; works well for hallways or formal living rooms. Eggshell has a slight sheen and gloss.
  • Satin: Best for moderate to high traffic areas; can usually be wiped clean easily, so it works well for children’s rooms, kitchens, or bathrooms.
  • Semi-Gloss: Has a slightly glossy appearance. Like satin, this is easy to clean so it works well for kitchens and bathrooms
  • High-Gloss: High shine – works well in areas with lots of light and is typically used to highlight interesting architectural elements; also good for painted trim (baseboards, moldings, etc.). Highest durability but lowest ability to conceal an imperfection.

Color Sampling

Photo courtesy of Samplize

Many companies provide swatches or paint samples for you to try out at home. Swatches tend to be too small to really get a real feel for what the color will look like in your space. And, paint samples are not always an exact match with the final product. Plus, taking the time to paint and waiting for it to dry to see the final color is time-consuming. Then, what to do with all the paint samples?

Samplize — A new, innovative peel and stick paint product keeps the process simple and efficient. According to the website, “The samples have the same effect as paint on a wall surface. They provide the kind of accuracy and texture that was only before achieved through purchasing sample paint and doing all the work in-house. Best of all, the samples eliminate environmental waste created by surplus sample paint, which is rarely disposed of in the correct way.” The samples come in 12′ x 12′ repositionable flexible decals, so you can use them on flat surfaces or wrap around corners.

(Product spotlights are for informational purposes.)

Storage: The Overlooked Amenity in Modest-Size New Homes

Storage: The Overlooked Amenity in Modest-Size New Homes

With construction costs approaching all-time highs and buyers facing more volatile mortgage interest rates, new home affordability was a recurring theme at the 2019 NAHB International Builders’ Show. At Design Basics’ booth, homes 40-44 feet wide were the most popular (reflecting higher lot costs), and value-engineered plans with straightforward, cost-effective foundations in demand.

Just as companies’ advertising is typically the first thing to be trimmed to meet budget, storage is often the first area in a home to be cut when designing smaller homes. Home buyers may not recognize lack of storage during an initial model home visit, but according to Realtor Magazine, not having enough storage space leads to buyer’s remorse for 80 percent of home buyers. Buyer remorse is the surest way to shut down referrals, which should account for at least one-third of your new home sales.

Rather than minimizing, or having to apologize for lack of storage, making storage a priority in design renders your homes more marketable. In fact, it’s easy to sell against other builders’ similar-size homes that skimp on storage!  Design Basics’ new Natalie Park (plan #42416) proves that storage need not be sacrificed in modest-sized homes. Whether walking in the front door, or entering from the garage, there are coat closets to greet you. Speaking of the garage, there’s a 7-foot by 6-foot storage area at the back, ideal for a lawn mower and/or a snow blower. At 24-feet deep, there’s also room for shelves in front of the laundry area.

The rear foyer’s drop zone is the perfect repository to keep clutter out of the kitchen. Kitchen storage (and organization) is a priority in any size home, but particularly important in smaller square footages. There’s abundant cabinetry in the kitchen, a corner pantry, and importantly, with no cook top or sink in the island, there’s welcome storage there, too. Storage atop the washer and dryer testifies to the concern for this laundry room essential.

Rather than becoming “wasted space,” a recessed area behind the door into the owner’s bedroom showcases built-in shelves. The walk-in closet is nice-sized, and there’s a hall linen closet for extra sheets, blankets, and towels. Secondary bedroom closets were made as large as possible, and assuring you never run out of storage space in the Natalie Park, there’s over 300 square feet of storage available over the garage!

They may have stone counter tops and high-tech connectivity, but new homes lacking storage, especially smaller square footage homes, can turn buyers’ dreams into nightmares.

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