Homebuilders keep pace with changing lifestyles

The way families live in their homes is changing, and homebuilders are introducing new designs in Williamson County to keep pace.

The Jones Co.’s new Carriage Series design features the company’s “Life Triangle” open layout. Goodall Homes is offering one-level houses designed for aging in place. Pulte Homes has “life-tested” floor plans and Lennar is offering one-level homes and its “Next Gen” house for multiple generations living under one roof.

They still have four walls and a roof, but today’s homes are different from houses built just a few years ago.

From a house to a home

“A family’s home is more than four walls and a roof. It is where kids spend their childhood, holidays are celebrated and traditions are created. We keep this in mind as we develop our home collections and strive to offer the features that make a house a home, not only attractive but more liveable,” said Ken Stricker, CEO of The Jones Co.

“This new Carriage Series is a reflection of that promise to our buyers. We listen to their requests and

The Jones Company's soon-to-be-built Carriage Series will feature a kitchen similiar to this one.
The Jones Company’s soon-to-be-built Carriage Series will feature a kitchen similiar to this one.

follow trends so that we can provide the best homes to fill the changing lifestyle needs of our homebuyers.”

The Carriage Series, the first entirely new design from Jones in five years, is being introduced in Nolensville’s Summerlyn neighborhood, which will open for pre-sales soon. The design features what the company calls its Life Triangle, which connects the kitchen, dining area and the living room, where families spend most of their time.

“That’s how families are living. They want to be together. Someone’s in the kitchen, someone’s doing homework, but they’re all together,” said Jen Lucy, the company’s director of sales.

Reducing clutter

Because families are likely to enter through the side-entry garage, not the front door, the design features a family foyer with a walk-in closet to store books, backpacks and other items that might cause clutter.

Old-style floorplans often have families come in through the laundry room, which Lucy said “doesn’t give you the best view of the home.”

New floor plans include a second bedroom and bath suite on the main level to meet the needs of extended families or children.

Kitchens feature large islands “like you see every time you turn on HGTV,” and homes have covered outdoor living space, said Lucy.

The Jones Co. plans to build 155 homes in Summerlyn. Drees Homes is also building in the subdivision.

In Franklin’s Amelia Park subdivision, Pulte Homes plans to build 150 homes that feature what the company calls its “life-tested” floor plans.

There is “no wasted space that is typically found in older homes,” the company says on its website.

Homes feature detached garages and the “Pulte Planning Center,” which functions as a home office off the main living area. An “everyday entry” — the door that the family uses most often — has a drop zone for books, umbrellas and other items. Porches and balconies provide outdoor living space. The subdivision is off Clovercroft Road, south of the McKay’s Mill subdivision.

In Thompson’s Station’s Brixworth subdivision, Pulte is offering homes with second-floor laundry rooms.

One-levels make comeback

Lennar Homes, one of the country’s largest builders, is offering one-level homes in the Tollgate Village, Bridgemore Village and Brixworth subdivisions in Thompson’s Station. The company also offers its NextGen home for families with more than one generation living in the house.

The design features a separate suite with a private entrance, bedroom, bath, laundry, living room and eat-in kitchenette.

Many homeowners have raised their family in a larger house and are ready to downsize, said Chris O’Neal, vice president of Goodall Homes.

The company is offering “cottage one-levels” in Nolensville’s Bent Creek neighborhood. The company builds several floor plans, including one-level homes, in the Lockwood Glen, Canterbury and Rizer Point subdivisions. Goodall also plans to offer one-level homes in the new Water’s Edge subdivision.

Buyers no longer are purchasing homes with the expectation that they’ll have to move out as they grow older, O’Neal said. Instead, they want a home that will accommodate their needs during all of life’s stages, he said.

Goodall’s one-level homes have zero-step entries and wide interior doorways that can accommodate a baby carriage or a wheelchair. Main-level master bedrooms mean the owners don’t have to give the stairs a second thought — or a first one, said O’Neal.

“That’s what people are gravitating to, aging in place,” he said.

As families change, so are their houses, said the Jones Co.’s Lucy.

“Lifestyle drives home design,” she said. “We do a lot of research into how people are living.”


Source: http://www.tennessean.com/story/news/local/williamson/real-estate/2015/01/07/homebuilders-keep-pace-changing-lifestyles/21125183/

Bill Lewis, For Williamson