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.