“Were you raised in a barn?!”

“Were you raised in a barn?!”

This question obviously has carried some negative connotation over the years.  But with the constant design trending towards a simpler, more rustic time, living and raising a family in a barn is now becoming desirable when building a new home Springfield, MO.  From actual barns upgraded to home status to new metal construction to stick-built barn homes, many are opting for a soaring open style that incorporates warmth and primitive simplicity.

Though these homes hearken back to a way of life that’s less than luxurious, forget all your pre-conceived notions about drafty, dark, and dusty structures.  They offer so much opportunity to be high-end, custom homes. Huge beams support high ceilings above grand open living spaces, lit by statement chandeliers. Vast stone fireplaces offer light, warmth, and character – especially when flanked by floor-to-ceiling windows.  Wide-plank flooring adds a simple and elegant touch, with original or engineered hand-hewn marks. And almost nowhere does the growing popularity of Scandinavian and Nordic design fit better than in the barn home. Clean, simple lines and all-natural materials offer the chance to create a space that is all at once minimalistic and incredibly inviting when building a new home Springfield, MO.  

As if those design notes weren’t enough, the options to create your own barn home span just about every possibility.  Some custom home dreamers choose the real thing, opting to put the work into the original and preserve a piece of history.  Others prefer the architecture over the age, and work with their custom builder to create a “barn” that’s brand-new and completely unique.  Within that spectrum is the growing popularity of metal homes; with an industrial but warm feel, the sky is the limit when it comes to imagination and design.  

So if you’re part of the movement that wants to change the perception of those “raised in barns”, you’re not alone!  Work with your custom home builder to create your own warm, inviting space.

Custom Homes with a Small Footprint

Custom Homes with a Small Footprint

Global warming.  Pollution. Carbon emissions.  Concern for our planet is everywhere, and with good reason.  We’ve only got one, and we have the responsibility to take care of it.  Problem is, we still have to live here, and that requires that we make a mark on the earth.  And if you’ve decided to build a new home Springfield, MO, you may be realizing that footprint is a little bigger than you’d like.  Luckily, there are ways to reduce it and make your home as easy on the planet as possible!

Take, for example, inflated steel.  Yes, you read that correctly – this would be sheet metal that has been filled with air, creating ultra-light steel architecture made with pressurized air.  The concept began with a three-legged stool, made by laser-cutting templates out of steel, welding them together, and inflating them from a single point under high pressure.  It’s since moved to occupiable structures, so if ultra-modern and unique is your jam, this interesting concept could be worth exploring.

Slightly less space-inspired are PET building materials.  The need to recycle plastic is obvious, but until now, plastic hasn’t been able to support structural weight.  Thanks to Belgium-based manufacturer Armacell Benelux, plastic is now a viable building option. They offer structural foam panels, thin sheet materials, and insulating foam cores.

Cinder blocks are pretty basic, but even they can take on an environmentally friendly tone as carbon-reduced building materials.  About 33 billion tons of concrete are produced annually, making a huge mark on greenhouse gas emissions. Solidia Technologies, based in New Jersey, produces concrete with a recipe that generates 30% fewer greenhouse gases than the standard recipe.  

Environmental guilt doesn’t have to figure in to building a new home Springfield, MO.  Just make sure you talk to your builder about the best ways to reduce your effect on our one and only planet.

What to do when you choose the WRONG builder.

What to do when you choose the WRONG builder.

Though it’s nothing you particularly want to think about when building a new home Springfield, MO,  those horror stories of abject failure are out there. We certainly hope your journey won’t involve any of them, but both as cautionary tales and sources of dark entertainment, here are just a few.  Enjoy…or should we say beware?

“I knew something was seriously, irreparably wrong,” says the writer of At Home In The Future blog.  Missed deadline after missed deadline and failed inspections were just the beginning for this couple that selected a lesser-known builder after suffering from initial sticker shock. Ultimately, they found themselves in a legal situation that involved fraud, property liens, and bankruptcy on the part of the builder and over a year delay on a finished dream home.  Takeaway: only go with the lowest-priced option when building a new home Springfield, MO if all references check out and examples of finished work are plentiful and of good quality.

“They went over our budget by 40%.  I understand that sometimes things cost more but they never brought these increased prices to us they would just send us bills for the overages.”  This is the story of Hello Fashion’s nightmare.  At times, it seemed like they were only paying for stalled work and empty promises.  Eventually, the job was finished with a THIRD builder.

Takeaway:  if something seems wrong in the beginning, don’t be afraid to address it.  Switching builders in the middle of a project is never easy, but it could save you time and money in the long run.

The lesson here?  Thoroughly research your builder.  Ask other builders and sub-contractors about their experiences with them.  Going a step further and asking outside of the given circle will give you even more peace of mind before signing on the dotted line.  And, it’s important to remember that not every horror story is caused by the builder. Beginning your custom home journey well-informed, with researched and final decisions and a clear method of communication, can help prevent you from being the nightmare client.

Custom Home Trends From Afar – 2019

Custom Home Trends From Afar – 2019

One of the best things about living in a world that is (literally) completely connected is that we have a window into what’s going on around the world.  Design and custom home trends are no exception, and what could be more fun than looking in on what our friends from across various ponds are loving for their homes in 2019 when building a new home Springfield MO?  From plain, muted apricot bathrooms to tiny ecosystems in health-conscious kitchens, our neighbors around the world are sharing their ideas with us here in the States.

To begin, it should be emphasized that design tends to be influenced by what’s going on in the world and people’s reactions to it.  Regardless of country or political affiliation, look for trends that refuse to conform – rebellious, yet completely collaborative. Design ideas from across the board will merge, simply because they can.  

One of those trends we’re loving is two-tone marble when building a new home Springfield MO.  Think black with gold, copper, and creamy tones as an entire kitchen island, backdropped with a white on warm grey vein.  Or maybe the bright, kitschy 80’s vibe is something you remember fondly. Why not pair those color schemes and shapes with rough, concrete texture, which is a style that seems to be taking root in places like Italy.

But the new trends don’t all involve color, texture, and palette.  Some are born of functionality and necessity. The Murphy bed, for example, is enjoying a comeback in new and creative ways.  Moveable walls and built-ins that serve multiple purposes are making small and large spaces alike much easier to use, not to mention just upping the cool factor to a whole new level.  

Regardless of how you define your style, there are so many ways to embrace national and international trends.  Let us help you decide how to incorporate them into your custom home!

The Small Luxury Home

The Small Luxury Home

We often think of luxury on a grand scale – sweeping spaces, huge doors, oversized furniture, and the list goes on.  But as energy costs soar, lifestyles change, and awareness about environmental impact grows, smaller footprints are becoming more attractive when building a new home Springfield, MO.  Large and luxury have almost always gone hand-in-hand, but small spaces can actually mean MORE custom-designed, high-end touches.

It’s no secret that space is coming at a high premium in highly desirable areas like New York and LA.  But even in more sprawling locales, home builders are opting for a much-reduced span. A small home is usually defined as 2,800 square feet or less, and with many luxury homes tipping the scales at 10,000 plus square feet, this is a considerable departure when building a new home Springfield, MO.  But cutting down on square footage can add to the budget for super-luxury touches (hello, full spa bathroom) and lend a cozy, intimate feel to your home.

With the shift in size mindset, new trends are beginning to emerge; gracious floor plans that center around a large great room and building “up” instead of “out” are at the forefront of those trends.  Super high-end amenities suddenly become very manageable, ensuring that your custom home is completely custom – no need for tough decisions on countertops or flooring, giving up that smart technology in the kitchen, or downsizing the outdoor living areas and landscaping when building a new home Springfield, MO.

Whether it’s a primary residence or a vacation home, many people are seeing the huge benefits in building smaller.  Trading size for a myriad of other highly desirable options could be a sensible, no-loss choice. If you’re ready to get started, so are we – get in touch with us today!

Choosing An Architect

Choosing An Architect

The moment you decide to build a custom home may also be the moment you decide you need to spend some quality time finding an architect that will take the visions in your head and turn them into lines on blueprint paper.  You can’t trust this job to just anyone. How do you make the right decision? Here are some questions and ideas to get you started. 

The first question you may have is “do I need an architect?”  The answer is….well, not always. Here at Hawthorne Creek Homes we already have an in-house team.  And if your parcel of land isn’t particularly unique, that team is more than capable of writing plans for your dream home.  BUT…if you happen to have a piece of ground that requires some extra consideration, our trained and experienced architect is a great option for you.  And if you’ve also found a quality builder, there should be no issue with integration.

Assuming you’ve made the decision to involve a qualified architect in your build, you may be wondering how to go about finding a good one.  Like so many highly skilled occupations, the best fit may come from a referral. The people from whom you take advice know you and your dreams best, so ask them if they’ve worked with someone in the past.

If you don’t have luck with referrals, it may be time to research homes you admire.  If there’s an architect associated with the design, there’s a good chance you’d find a good match there.  The current residents (especially if they’re the original owners) would most likely be flattered by your interest.  A knock on the door can’t hurt!

It’s true that an architect is an added expense, and your homebuilder may be more connected to what your dream is going to cost you.  Concept and design are very important to architects, and rightly so; but the costs can add up quickly, not to mention the cost to employ such talent.  Before ground is broken, make sure you’ve done your research.