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Homes By Dickerson’s Custom Designs a Great Resource for Multi-Generational Living!

Homes By Dickerson’s Custom Designs a Great Resource for Multi-Generational Living!

(As published in the September 2018 edition of Builder and Developer Magazine)

Different generations living in the same household is by no means a new concept.  In fact, there is evidence of this tradition throughout history and in some cultures it is the complete norm.  Defined as a home which includes two or more adult generations, multi-generational living allows for grandparents, parents and children to experience life together.  Americans, however, had moved away from this lifestyle for several decades before the economic downturn in the mid-2000’s resulted in returning to the housing trend this country had not seen since the 1940’s.

When the loss of jobs, high unemployment rates, and the housing crisis began in 2007, younger generations were all but forced to move back home with their parents, often bringing spouses and their own children with them.   While these arrangements may have originated from a financial need, it was not long before people realized the additional benefits.  We have all heard the saying “It takes a village…” and how convenient it is when that village is centrally located in your home!  The need for two incomes, the rising cost of childcare, the desire for a better work/life balance-all of these things further supported and encouraged the continuation of multi-generational households.  It may have been years since the downturn ended but this trend does not seem to be changing.   Recent surveys show that almost a quarter of the American population is living in a multigenerational home and that number is only going to continue to climb.

Two years ago, I became part of that statistic when we built our current home and included an in-law suite for my father-in-law.  Circumstances supported that he would live with us a portion of the year allowing him to spend time with his grandchildren, save money on living expenses, and expand his social activity opportunities.   When we made this decision, a variety of questions popped into our minds which included privacy, convenience, and logistics.  It was important that my father-in-law have his own entry to come and go as his schedule dictated and that he have the living spaces needed to best suit his lifestyle; however, there were so many more factors that we did not even think to consider.

As a custom builder, we cater to the needs and wants of our clients.  In fact, that is our passion and our priority: to find our buyers the home of their life.  If that life involves multiple generations then we look for options and features to enhance the comfort and convenience for each family member.

In years past, the largest concern when building a multi-generational home was the issue of stairs.  While stairs are still discussed, families have become more and more aware of lifestyle changes when merging different generations under the same roof.  These conversations have prompted our design team to begin a dynamic list of ideas to consider when we build a multi-generational home, including:

  • Evaluating the home site with consideration to the number of steps and possible ramp locations
  • Determining whether an elevator, if needed, can work within the plan
  • The Location of bedrooms and bathrooms.  At minimum, a first-floor guest suite but two masters (one up and one down) are a plus if space allows.
  • Installing blocking in shower walls to add grab bars later
  • Keeping hallways wide and install at least 2’6” doors to bedrooms and baths wherever possible for wheelchair consideration
  • Allowing for additional space in bathrooms when possible (room for walkers around cabinetry and toilets)
  • Adding medicine cabinets instead of regular mirrors for ease of toiletry access
  • Install large cabinet pantries and large drawers in the kitchen to conveniently access bulkier items such as heavy pots and pans.
  • Utilizing pulls on cabinet doors rather than knobs and lever door handles on all interior doors
  • Researching technology considerations such as Alexa which allows the more mature generations to set medication reminders, listen to audio books, and control lights and thermostats.  This resource also functions as a communication tool as parents and children can check in via camera throughout the day
  • Educating on smart appliances such as Samsung’s Smart Hub refrigerator which has introduced another way for people to keep up with busy schedules by posting information, notes, reminders, and grocery lists on the refrigerator door screen
  • Considering sound dampening options when determining your floor plan
  • Adding Kitchenette or wet bar features (keep in mind that zoning laws must be researched for this option as some municipalities only allow one kitchen in a home)

 

So, whether you are considering a multi-generational living situation for financial, practical or even cultural reasons know that there are plenty of options available to make for a smooth transition and to help ensure comfort and convenience for each generation.

For more information on how you can find “The Home of  Your Life” whether you have multi-generational needs or needs for just your generation, please contact us at 919-917-3132 or info@HomesByDickerson.com

 

Wendell Falls featured in Green Builder Magazine!

Wendell Falls featured in Green Builder Magazine!

As a nationally recognized builder of high-performance homes, Homes By Dickerson is excited to share the most recent accolade of  Wendell Falls featured in Green Builder Magazine!

We could not be more proud to be a partner of the developer, Newland Communities, or of the community itself.  Check out this link which will take you to the publication:
https://www.greenbuildermedia.com/green-builder-magazine-july-august-2018

Not only will you notice on page 33 that Newland Communities won an Honorable Mention as a 2018 Eco-Minded Leader but there is also a 6-page spread (pages 46-51) delving into the green practices and mindset of the builders and community as a whole.  You will not want to miss page 51’s in-depth coverage on the Tesla powerwall and how that is just one of the many resources (not to overshadow solar panels of course!) that can lead you to net zero living!

For more than 10 years, Homes By Dickerson has been a leader in building each and every custom design to the highest green building standards available.  Not only are they Energy Star certified but they are also crafted to the National Green Building Standard and voluntarily built to the NC HERO Code.  It is just one more reason why Homes By Dickerson is the premiere custom builder of The Triangle and Pinehurst areas of North Carolina.

For more information on how you can build “The Home of Your Life” with all of the included high-performance features we offer, please contact Whitney White at 919-917-3132 or Whitney@HomesByDickerson.com

 

 

 

Homes By Dickerson featured in New Homes Source Article on Smart Homes!

Homes By Dickerson featured in New Homes Source Article on Smart Homes!

Smart Tech in New Homes: Builders Embrace a Digital Age

In the age of technology, everybody wants to get their hands on the latest tech. So how are today’s home builders keeping up? By including smart tech in their new homes as soon as they hit the market.

Today, it’s not uncommon to visit a builder and find the following tech in their model homes or sales centers:

  • High performance energy-efficiency systems that work via Wi-Fi,
  • Total home control through a centralized technological hub and
  • Virtual reality tours of homes that haven’t even been built yet.

That’s right, new homes now give you the ability to cut energy costs and control things like your door locks, lighting, thermostats and more with the tap of a finger. Here’s what today’s builders have to say about these smart home features:

Smart Performance

For Raleigh, N.C.-area builder Homes by Dickerson, a smart home is defined not just by its technology, but by its performance as well.

“In our designs, we try to include technology that adds value to the customer,” says Brant Chesson, president at Homes by Dickerson.

Which is why they offer Wi-Fi-enabled HVAC systems that have the capability of sensing the weather outside to control airflow inside the home.

“We build homes that are very tight,” explains Chesson. “Through a Wi-Fi-enabled system, we are able to mechanically control the air that goes in and out of the homes so that on a rainy day, for instance, the thermostat communicates with real-time weather reports to decide not to let the day’s humid air inside the home.”

It’s innovations such as these that led HGTV to choose Homes by Dickerson to build their annual HGTV Smart Home.

“They believe like we do that smart technology is not just audio and visual, but it also depends on the performance of the home,” Chesson says. “We were going to be able to integrate all of these things.”

Homes by Dickerson included some of the following technologies in the HGTV Smart Home:

  • A hidden mirror TV in the master bathroom,
  • A vertical spa system,
  • Remote-controlled skylights,
  • Automatic window shades,
  • Clare Controls mood system and
  • Smart locks and garage door.

Centralized Controls

One of the best things about today’s smart technology is that many can be centralized around one hub, like a smart phone or tablet, for easy control with the tap of a finger.

Homes by Dickerson, for instance, offers such access in their newly built homes through a partnership with the software company Clare Controls. Using their product the Cliq.mini Smart Home Control Hub as a basis for their upgrades, homeowners are able to connect technologies like thermostats, speakers, door locks, garage doors and security cameras to their phones or tablets for easy and secure access.

“As long as your budget allows you to do so, we’re going to help you figure out how to do that,” says Chesson. “If you want us to build a rocket ship in the middle of your home, we’re going to figure out how.”

Welcome to the future!

Drew Knight is the Digital Content Associate for Builders Digital Experience (BDX). You can find him online at LinkedIn.