Tag Archives: Arizona luxury homes

BUILDING A CUSTOM HOME… NEVER TOO EARLY FOR PLANNING AN OUTDOOR FIREPLACE

Fire Pits and Fireplaces Gain Prominence on Patios and in Courtyards of Arizona Custom Homes!

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There has always been a fascination with an outdoor fire while camping or spending time outdoors.  In Arizona, this fascination has been brought home to the backyard.  At Woodridge Custom Builders LLC many of our custom homebuyers want full fireplaces or built-in fire pits incorporated in the landscape of their custom home. Continue reading

ONE STRATEGY FOR CHOOSING A CUSTOM HOME BUILDER

At Woodridge Custom Builders LLC we work with potential custom homebuyers for months, if not longer before breaking ground on a custom home.  We practice open and honest communication and believe in sharing as much information with our customers as possible regarding the homebuilding process.  Outlined below is one of the most frequently asked questions that receive.   

What is the Best Strategy for Choosing a Builder?

If you’re like most custom homebuyers you want experience, competence, service, trust, and open and honest communication.  Look for someone that you can trust.  Synonyms for trust include faith, confidence, and belief.  You want to have faith in your builder, feel confident that he can do the job on time and within budget, and believe he is the right contractor for you.  The relationship we have with our customers is long-term.  We have worked with customers for more than a year before they were ready to build their home. For another year while they worked on their plans, and then during the course of construction.

Whether you have your home site selected or not, or whether you have your house plans completed or not, the construction expert you hire to build your home is one of the most important decisions you will make during your custom home project.  Outlined below are several strategies that you may want to use.

1)      Referrals are one of the best strategies to use for finding your custom home builder, ask for referrals from your house designer if you are working with one, and/or family and friends that may have had a custom home constructed. 

2)      Visit projects that you like, if there is a construction sign on the project, call the builder.  Is the builder easy to reach?  Must you go through a handful of office staff to reach the builder or does he have a direct line?

3)      Interview builders and visit completed homes.  A finished project will reveal as much, if not more than a construction site.  Some people don’t know a good job from a bad one.  A finished home can show you the quality of finished details not just rough construction and how clean a jobsite may be.

4)      Interview builders and ask questions.  Do not ask for an estimate without a full set of house plans.  No reputable builder will give you a bid from a house plan drawn on a napkin or partial plans.  If the builder does, he is not likely the best choice.  We will explain why later in this section. 

At Woodridge Custom Builders LLC we are available for questions, feel free to contact us through our website or information outlined on our About page.

FIVE ACCENT LIGHTING TECHNIQUES FOR CUSTOM KITCHENS

Custom Kitchen Lighting… So Many Options for Accents!

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As a custom home builder we have had the opportunity to install a wide variety of accent lighting in custom kitchens.  Depending on the desires of the customer, home design and home style there are many options for kitchen accent lighting.  The five most popular in our experience at Woodridge Custom Builders LLC has been 1) underneath upper kitchen cabinets, 2) above upper kitchen cabinets, 3) hanging light fixtures above kitchen work areas, 4) underneath lower kitchen cabinets, and 5) jam switches.

1)      Underneath the Upper Kitchen Cabinets:  Often popular in custom kitchens are accent lights hidden underneath the upper kitchen cabinets, these can be hidden by the upper cabinets so that only the light itself is seen reflecting onto the kitchen counter.  Fluorescent or halogen light fixtures are great for this area, with a different glow, tone, and warmth offered by each.  These lights are usually designed to be powered by one or two light switches in the kitchen so that all of the under cabinet lighting is lit with the power of one switch rather than turning each one on individually. Continue reading

THREE POPULAR INTERIOR TRIM STYLES IN ARIZONA CUSTOM HOMES!

Classic White Trim, Stain Grade Trim, or No Trim at All!

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As custom home builders in Arizona, our customers must make a large number of selections during the home construction process.  One such selection includes interior doors, door trim, baseboards, and door hardware. When making these selections there are many choices.  These choices include paint grade doors, or stain grade doors in a variety of woods and door styles.  Door hardware selected usually follows the style of the door and the style of the home whether it is traditional ranch, Spanish Colonial, or Tuscan.  With good selections, each complements the other when all of the features come together. Our customers usually make one of three choices for interior doors and trim; these include white doors and white trim, stain grade doors and trim, or stain grade doors without any trim.

 1)      Traditional White Doors and Trim:  When selecting interior doors, our customers will visit our supplier’s showroom to see first hand the variety of doors and styles to choose from.  Continue reading

FIVE STRATEGIES FOR MINIMIZING WESTERN SUN EXPOSURE IN ARIZONA CUSTOM HOMES

Minimizing the Impact of Arizona’s Intense Sun When Designing and Building a Custom Home

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As Arizona custom home builders, at Woodridge Custom Builders LLC  the position of the house as it relates the sun has always been an important consideration.  In Arizona, north or south exposures have always been the most desirable direction for a house as it sits on a lot.  In some subdivisions, the lots with north or south exposures are offered at a premium to east or west facing lots.  In some well-planned subdivisions, nearly all of the vacant lots have north and south exposures.   There is usually a main vehicular artery in the neighborhood that prohibits this completely, but as many lots as possible are created with north or south exposures.  In other parts of the country this may not be as important as in Arizona.  Outlined below are five common strategies for minimizing western sun exposures in Arizona custom homes. 

1)  At Woodridge Custom Builders LLC, we work with our customers and their architect or home designer with the placement of the house on the lot for the best sun exposure, minimizing the worst sun exposures.  Turning the layout of the house on the plan, perhaps just angling the house slightly can affect how the sun’s rays hit the house and any western exposures.  Continue reading

CUSTOM HOMES… EVER POPULAR SPLIT FLOOR PLANS

Still Strong, The Split Floor plan

Ever strong in Arizona custom homes is the split floor plan.  The split floor plan is not limited to high-end custom homes.  It is a very popular floor plan for homes of any size.  Simply, this floor plan places the master bedroom on one side of the house.  The secondary bedrooms are located on the opposite side of the house.  The family room, kitchen and public rooms of the house are placed between the bedrooms in the center of the house.  This sets the master bedroom apart from the rest of the house helping achieve the master retreat feel.  The floor plan may not work for everyone, but for families with teenagers it works out great.  Loud music or slumber party laughter doesn’t usually travel to the master retreat on the other side of a house.  It is sometimes referred to as the Mother-in-Law floor plan.  This floor plan works with any home style from Santa Barbara, Tuscan, Spanish Colonial to traditional ranch.

The attached floor plan is an example of a split floor plan.  The master retreat is on one side of the house and the secondary bedrooms are on the other side of the house.  The master retreat has a guest bedroom on the same side of the house.  In this plan, the guest bedroom includes two entrances, one from within the house and a private exterior door located under the covered loggia. This floor plan can be modified if the entrance within the house is not desired creating more privacy for the guest quarters as well as the master retreat.

As custom home builders in Arizona, at Woodridge Custom Builders LLC, we stay abreast of changes in floor plans, home styles and various amenities.  We built our first split floor plan in 1990, yet this plan had been popular in Arizona long before that.  This is a floor plan that has staying power and offers a custom home buyer good resale value. 

Split floor plan in a Tuscan Courtyard style custom home

Split floor plan in a Tuscan Courtyard style custom home

BUILDING THE GREEN CUSTOM HOME… SOLAR!

The Eagle Solar Roof

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As custom home builders, Eagle Roofing Products has been one of our suppliers at Woodridge Custom Builders LLC  for years.  Recently, Eagle Roofing has introduced a new roof solar panel.  The Eagle Solar Roof uses highly efficient silicon solar cells.  It is a solar system that powers the home, but also integrates seamlessly with the home’s roof tiles.  Integrating the functionality of a solar powered home with the beauty of its roof tiles is worth checking into.

There are significant benefits to including an Eagle Solar Roof into a custom home including:

  • Quiet and reliable power generation
  • Significant federal and state rebates and tax incentives are available
  • Bank extra power with the local utility
  • Substantially reduces or eliminates monthly energy bills
  • Increases resale value to the property
  • Reduces pollution
  • Provides safe and sustainable energy to the home

During the day the solar panels create energy for the home, at night energy is drawn from the utility grid.  Continue reading

BUILDING AN ARIZONA CUSTOM HOME… CLAY OR CONCRETE ROOF TILES?

One Decision That Can Save Money When Building A Custom Home…  Clay or Concrete Roofing

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At Woodridge Custom Builders LLC, more often than not lately, our custom home buyers are asking us how they can get the most for their money and still get the home of their dreams.  There are so many decisions that a custom home buyer must make beginning with the size of the home and the selected floor plan.  Once the floor plan is completed, selections from toilets, to plumbing fixtures, lighting fixtures to accent lighting, floor coverings, sinks, cabinet wood and style, appliances, custom built-ins, doors and door hardware, counter surfaces, among others must be made.

We are happy assisting our custom home buyers with economical selections that can save thousands of dollars without impacting the quality of their custom home.  Just one example of cost savings can be found when comparing clay roof tiles with concrete roof tiles.  Choosing between clay roof tiles and concrete roof tiles is one often consideration for Arizona custom home buyers.  Continue reading

AN OUTDOOR MISTING SYSTEM INSTALLED IN THE CUSTOM HOME

Create Outdoor Comfort Zones with an In-Home Misting System

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Now available for home use are high-pressure misting systems, or sometimes referred to as misting cooling systems.  These units can be installed on any home completed or under construction.  Our experience has been with the installation of a misting system during the custom home building process.  As custom home builders, our customers at Woodridge Custom Builders LLC  have expressed more interest in misting systems than in the past.  A high-pressure misting cooling system compliments the Arizona outdoor lifestyle by providing a cool mist of pressurized water onto a back yard patio or dining area.  The mist line is installed on the overhang and around the perimeter of a backyard patio or outdoor dining area.  Specially designed mist nozzles evenly distributed throughout the high-pressure mist line produce tiny water droplets.  The tiny water droplets are dispersed in a mist that cools the surrounding air temperature.  This mist keeps an outdoor living space comfortable in the heat of the day.

Installing a high pressure misting system in a custom home can be a tricky task.  At Woodridge Custom Builders LLC, we are cautious with the installation of these misting systems for several reasons.  Continue reading

AWNINGS ON OUR CUSTOM HOMES… THE PERFECT ACCENT!

 

What is the Stereotype for An Outdoor Awning?    Let it go!

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Like us, do you have prejudged views of outdoor awnings?  If someone suggested installing an awning on a custom home one might instantly think of Sun City, Arizona, well known as a city of retirees.  Does one think of those unsightly retractable awnings that might look better on a camper?  Or does one think of a striped metal awning from the 1960’s?   Perhaps awnings should be given a second look.  This is 2009, after all.  At Woodridge Custom Builders LLC, it has been our experience that there is most definitely a place for awnings on a custom home. 

The ‘Old-World’ look of a spear tent awning adds timeless beauty to a custom home.  Traditional awnings can be installed on square windows as well as arched windows.  Awnings can not only enhance a home’s appearance but block direct sunlight from passing into the house and fading carpets, draperies and furnishings.  By minimizing direct sunlight that passes into a house the mechanical ventilation required to cool those rooms is reduced.  Those features sound pretty good to us, less fading of furnishings and the less the air conditioner must run to cool those rooms.  Perhaps awnings should be given a second look after all.  Our custom home buyers visit Phoenix Tent and Awning  when it comes to selecting the perfect awning for their home.  Phoenix Tent and Awning  have demonstrated absolute expertise assisting our customers with awning selection and installation. Continue reading