Tag Archives: custom home

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 POPULAR FLOORING STYLES IN ARIZONA CUSTOM HOMES

Saltillo, Ceramic, and Natural Stone are Only a Few Options!

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At Woodridge Custom Builders LLC, as custom home builders in Arizona our customers want flooring that reflects the architectural style of their home or their own unique style.   Unique to each homeowner’s taste and style, floors vary from saltillo tile, commercial grade ceramic tiles, and natural stone in various patterns. 

Photos below highlight some of the flooring styles selected in homes constructed by Woodridge Custom Builders LLC

  1. Saltillo tile reflects the tastes of custom homebuyers staying true to their Sp 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

ARIZONA CUSTOM HOMES… WOOD BEAMS AS POPULAR ARCHITECTURAL FEATURES

Tuscan, Andalusian, Spanish Colonial… Including Wood Beams Compliments Many Home Styles

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Popular Arizona custom home styles include Tuscan, Andalusian, and Spanish Colonial.  When designing, planning and building a custom home, at Woodridge Custom Builders LLC, it is never our intent to imitate a Tuscan villa as though it were physically moved from Tuscany and relocated in Scottsdale.  It is more a reflection of the Tuscan style incorporating the best of the features into our own Arizona desert lifestyle.  One of the most beautiful architectural features found in these homes are wood beams.  Wood beams are often used inside the house, on the exterior of the house, and on patio ramadas.  Some are actual structural support systems, while others are complementary architectural details. 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

CUSTOM HOMES AND THE OVERSIZED SHOWER!

Multiple Sprays, Larger Spaces, and Frameless Shower Doors

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As Arizona custom home builders, at Woodridge Custom Builders, LLC our luxury home buyers are very attentive when designing and accessorizing shower systems.  Shower areas have become larger and taken a more prominent space in the master bath of our custom homes.  Out, is the narrow shower stall where elbows may hit the wall while showering.  Long gone are the flimsy, opaque, metal-framed bypass doors of a shower/tub combination.  New, are larger shower spaces, frameless shower doors made of heavy glass, multiple sprays, snail showers, shower sitting areas, coated glass, and a wider variety of finishes for the fixtures. 

Luxurious showers now seem to be the new status symbol.  Larger than ever, some are large enough that shower doors are not required.  Others are built in a spiral shape eliminating the need for shower doors, (snail shower).  Eliminating the need for shower doors also eliminates the need to clean all of that glass.  In a new or model home, clear glass showers seem so inviting, but once the homeowner moves in and actually begins using the shower, those once lovely glass walls and doors quickly get covered with soap scum and water marks.  Now there is a coating available for glass shower doors and glass walls.  This coating helps prevent permanent spots, stains and soap scum.  Several brands now offer shower doors protected by this coating. Continue reading

STONE… THE NEWEST ‘OLD’ LOOK IN THE CUSTOM HOME

As an Arizona Custom Home Builder, We See Stone and Stone Veneer Showing Up Everywhere!

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More often than not lately, as a custom home builder, we are incorporating stone to the front of custom homes, around fireplaces, wet bars, swimming pools, and other accent areas of the home.  Stone can fit with almost any architectural styles from modern and contemporary to the Old-World looks of Tuscan and Andalusian. Usually the stone is not authentic stone, but recreated using unique molding methods that capture the finest details of natural stone. These recreated stones offer the authentic and natural beauty of real stone at a fraction of the cost.  There are several advantages to using faux stone or stone veneer, it is lighter weight and allows easy installation over any existing surface without requiring additional support or foundations.

The color choices are phenomenal including light gray, soft creams, golden umbers, and light coffee to deep rich quarry tones.  The varieties of styles are also endless.  The stone can be stacked without the look of grout, or it can be a hybrid of horizontally oriented fieldstones and ledge stones with chiseled edges.  For the popular Tuscany look the stone can be over grouted, meaning the pasty look of the grout covers the stone as well as the joints and gives it the Old World look. 

For the near future it seems stone veneer is here to stay.  The quality and functionality continue to improve with new manufacturing methods and the natural beauty of stone endures.  The stone veneer on the custom homes shown below have been placed in selected locations, particularly on the two pop-outs of the front elevation and the over turret above the entryway.  The second photo is stone on a Tuscan style home and emphasizes how stone added to the rear of a custom home completes the look and complements the outside living area.

CUSTOM HOME LAUNDRY ROOMS… FOR MORE THAN LAUNDRY!

Custom Home Laundry Rooms Complete with Storage and Multiple Washers

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At Woodridge Custom Builders LLC, laundry rooms are often times more than laundry rooms. They become utility rooms, larger than closets, sometimes even containing a closet as in the photo included here.  This laundry room houses two washers and two dryers.  These custom homebuyers preferred having two washers and two dryers in one location.  The family wanted to get their dirty laundry to one room where all of the work could be done.  Other custom home buyers prefer having two separate laundry rooms, perhaps one upstairs and one downstairs, or one in the master closet, it depends on the family and what the specific needs might be.  Continue reading

MASTER CLOSET SYSTEMS… IN THE CUSTOM HOME

No Need For A Dresser or Chest of Drawers with Master Closet Systems

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When planning and designing a custom home, the decision regarding the master closet ultimately surfaces.  At Woodridge Custom Builders LLC, most of our custom homebuyers elect to have the master closet built-out by a professional closet and storage company.  These custom closets create significant more storage than a dresser or chest of drawers, and frees the master bedroom of such furniture pieces.  The space and organization created by a professional closet system is incredible.  The number of styles and combinations are endless, stacked shelves, open shelves, shelves closed by glass doors, shelves closed by cabinet doors are shelf options alone.  Rack styles are also endless; half-rack with shelves above, full-floor length racks, and two half-racks are just a few choices for hanging clothes.  Including a bank of drawers creates additional options, standard drawers is one option, while sock drawers, and jewelry drawers offer specialty options.  Unique storage areas for large hats, handbags, dirty laundry, and even luggage are possible.  Shoes can be hidden or exposed and maximized to hold as many pairs as one desires.

Using a professional closet and storage company can instantly double or triple storage space. Jeane Perantoni is an experienced designer at California Closets (http://www.californiaclosets.com/) and works with our custom home buyers; Jeane excels at creating space yet matching selections to the homeowners’ style.  Initially understanding this benefit helps a custom homebuyer understand that the shell of a master need not be excessively large.  Building-out a closet significantly adds storage space, yet it can add match any interior style as well.  Most closet and storage companies offer multiple materials, fixtures, finishes and amenities that can match or complement a homeowner’s style. The finishes include cherry, alder veneer, white, oak or maple among others.  These units can be installed as full-floor to ceiling or placed at a comfortable height for the homeowner.  Depending on the size of the closet, an island of drawers or shelves is also possible. 

The photos above show the basics of a master closet build-out; in on of the custom homes built by Woodridge Custom Builders LLC, there are combinations of shelves, rack, and drawers.