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Custom Home or Production Home – Which Is the Better Deal?

images (79)When planning a new home many find themselves faced with the decision of choosing custom homes or what is referred to as a production home. The main difference is that custom homes come from small builders and architects, and production homes come from a high-volume home builder. Which is the best for the buyers depends on a few things.

While both variations are great options, the choice will depend on the amount of advice the buyers would like to make. Either way they'll have a relationship with the builder. Here is the basic difference between the two choices - A production builder will erect multiple homes using preset plans and some customizations like appliances, countertops, flooring and cabinetry. A custom homes builder creates a completely different home that presents buyers with a huge range of design options for the lot that they get. Read on to learn a bit more about each.

Production Builders

For those that feel production builders will be their best bet, they'll have to choose between a local or a national company. Local builders have set communities in a city, while national builders erect up to thousands of homes every year. It's a similar process just on a larger scale. Some of the bonuses of using production builders are:

  • Land and home packages for simplification
  • Many plans to choose from
  • Set styles and designs to browse from
  • Offer a price range for every type of buyer

Production as opposed to custom homes are much cheaper and can be the same size with the same finishes in most cases. They have a systemized approach and buy construction items in bulk, and that saves them money, those savings can be passed on to the buyer.

There's no worry about them being focused on quality, they use solid engineered and carefully designed homes with up-to-date elements that make them highly sought-after on the market. Homes will be energy-efficient and basically pristine. Do not doubt they'll do everything in their power to make the experience fun and stress-free.

Custom Builders

For those that want the adventure of choosing their own land either remote or in an established neighborhood, custom homes may be the perfect option. They'll get to be completely involved in every step of the process from drawing the blueprint to choosing every single element. The process building custom homes is not scripted at all like production builders. It can be built on land that's already owned or what is sought out. Plans are completely drawn from scratch and the buyers work with the architect and builder through the entire process.

While one should expect to pay more with custom homes, if they are strict they can easily stay within a set budget. In the budget it's important to set aside about 10% for surprises, as they are often plenty with custom homes.

The good news is that with custom homes, the choices are truly unlimited. Choose views and floorplans that work with the lifestyle of the new owners perfectly. It's important though, to do all the necessary homework before jumping in the custom homes realm. This will keep one from suffering sticker shock. Many don't realize that there's a lot that goes into planning a home from scratch.

Because the process of building a custom home is so involved, it's no surprise that the future owners will typically spend much more time than they would with a production builder.

Taking all this information on custom homes will have anyone ready to decide if they prefer custom or production style homes. Either way, if the right builder is chosen they'll end up with a high-quality, beautiful home that they will love showing off.


Village Walk in Sarasota, Florida

download (93)As part of the larger development of Palmer Ranch, Village Walk is an open community that is great for families of any age. Available properties include villas, townhouses and stand-alone homes spread across over 500 acres. The residences are great for busy professionals, retirees, empty nesters and snow birds since much of the landscaping and maintenance needs are addressed by the local association. The premises are also kept secure 24 hours a day by gates and security staff.

The homes in the community range from 1,500 square foot villas to houses with over 2500 square feet of floor space. Interested buyers can browse a selection of floor plans to find a layout and size that is perfect for their family. The townhouses come with an attached garage that can house up to two vehicles. Some units also have private pools and fabulous lake and preserve views.

Life in Village Walk on Palmer Ranch radiates with small town charm yet with newer properties. The entire community has pleasant walking trails to get your morning exercise on. A full-service town center provides its residents with their essential and recreational requirements, set against a wonderful lakeside landscape. The Village Walk town center offers two delightful swimming pools. The first pool is a lagoon style suitable for relaxing, chatting with neighbors or playing with the grand kids. The second swimming pool is designed for those looking to do lap and burn some serious calories.

Residents who love tennis will enjoy all six well-lit Har-Tru tennis courts and may even lift some weights in the modern fitness center staffed with personal trainers. Village Walk Homes town center amenities also include a barbershop, salon, post office, gas station, café, salon and a boutique named Village Peddler.

Thanks to the community's close proximity to Sarasota Square Mall, residents at Village Walk can find a staggering number of stores, restaurants and entertainment destinations within ten minutes of their home. You can catch all of the latest movies here at the AMC theatres right nest to the food court. If malls are your thing you are near the new UTC mall at only about 20 minutes away. The biggest entertainment venue is Siesta Key beach which is only about a 10 minute drive from Village Walk. Patrons of the arts can enjoy a serenade at the opera house in downtown Sarasota, while socialites can flutter among a variety of exquisite bars and eateries on the shore.



10 Tips Buyers Should Consider Before Buying a Farmhouse

download (92)For most people, specially those of us living in the cities, it is a dream to own a farmhouse which derives from the longing to escape our fast-paced, busy and crowded city-life. We dream of having a small place to enjoy leisurely weekends, sunbathing in winters and enjoying the cool evening breeze in summers. We seek solace, peace and quality time with ourselves and/or our loved ones and farmhouses match the requirement perfectly.

Points to remember before buying a farmhouse:

    1. Don't believe every word you hear! Remember, every piece of advice cannot be right. Your uncle, a family friend or your brother's friend maybe your well-wishers, but mostly advices are either personal opinions or rumors.


    1. Find a good real estate agent and if possible also consult a local lawyer, one who understands the local property laws thoroughly.


    1. Take time to sniff out issues related to the property. Don't be in a haste while investing in property. Do your research and visit several locations before finalizing on anything.


    1. Decide a budget that you want to spend and also decide the upper limit that you are willing to invest.


    1. Remember to use your head not your heart in the matters of property. Relax and take your time to think over things. Agents often push the buyers to close the deal hastily often scaring that you may lose the deal if you don't act upon it soon, but try not to make uninformed, enforced and rapid decisions.


    1. Neighbours are important. Your neighbours can be an indispensable asset, specially concerning common issues. It's good to have support on your side.


    1. Remember owing a farmhouse means you will have to dedicate a fixed amount towards maintenance every month. You would also require a permanent caretaker to take care of your property as you wouldn't be staying there on a permanent basis.


    1. Decide the purpose of purchasing the farmhouse - is it for investment purpose, for farming, for sports/outdoor activities or just a place to escape every once in a while. Once you are clear about the purpose, you can plan ahead accordingly.


    1. Check that the property should not be falling under the coastal regulation zone and hire an advocate to check all such legalities.


  1. Consider the sources of water on the property for irrigation as well as drinking purposes, specially if you plan on farming. The fertility of the land also plays an important role - accessing soil information is highly important.

To conclude, spend some extra time and money to reach a sensible, profitable and smart decision. Consider all the factors, don't take advice from everyone (remember everyone has their own opinion), discuss the matter with a few close ones and involve professionals. With all the right information and people by your side not only you will be confident, but also in a better position to negotiate!


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West Vancouver Real Estate Boom

images (78)There's no question that West Vancouver real estate is booming - average housing prices exceed $2 million for a typical, detached single-family home. But one question looms, is that "boom" really the sound of the bubble bursting? OK, fair enough - the bubble has certainly not burst quite yet, but there is definitely a lot of debate among Vancouver residents about the stability of such a high-flying real estate market.

New York, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Singapore are all cities that have been subject to this kind of housing market, and in every case the bubble has burst. As housing prices rise at nearly exponential rates, economic growth struggles to maintain pace. Eventually, the residents of these cities were no longer able to afford the home.

Vancouver is a coastal city with limited space for growth. The downtown core is surrounded by water on all sides, and suburbs such as West Vancouver are somewhat isolated from the urban centre because of geography. Limited room for growth means that competition for real estate is fierce. Since 2002, the average detached home price has risen by almost 300%.

Moreover, in West Vancouver (and the entire Metro Vancouver region), focus has turned to wealthy foreign investment. The perceived threat is that immigrants, speculators, and foreign investors are buying up property at exorbitant rates while not actually occupying these residences. Locals have become disillusioned and have started to pressure the local government to implement protections that will prevent prices from escalating further. And there's a solid case to be made for such protections.

Despite strong economic growth that has allowed residents to access the local real estate markets to date, foreign purchases of West Vancouver real estate have helped this market far outpace national averages. Comparing other major markets in Canada with West Vancouver, we see that average prices have risen only around 120% since 2002. More specifically, housing prices in Calgary have risen 133%, in Montreal 124%, and in Toronto 115%.

So what does this mean for West Vancouver, and Vancouver at large? Prepare yourself for the real boom, because this bubble is going to burst. Increased foreign investment means there is a lot of interest in residential properties so prices will continue to rise. However, as fewer people occupy these residences, and access to affordable housing for local Vancouverites stifles, the economy is certain to suffer. Eventually, the ability to buy real estate in West Vancouver will be a dream of foreign investors only. In the end, demand for housing will dwindle, and prices are likely to crash.

Yes, there is a real estate boom in West Vancouver, but that boom is inevitably more likely to be a bubble bursting than an economic windfall!