BUILDER: Pete Stefani
FIRM: King’s Court Builders, Inc.
Performance issues with engineered wood siding and lack of manufacturer support led this custom-home builder to search for a new siding material.
With its collection of siding, trim and soffit in various styles, textures and colors, James Hardie gives builders the diversity they need to accurately capture any design.
Pete Stefani takes pride in having built and closed more than 1,100 homes in Chicago’s western suburbs since 1986. “It means so much to me that we build houses which people call their homes. More than a job, it’s a passion,” explains Stefani. “You really appreciate how the long-term reliability of the products you use will translate into the long-term satisfaction of the families that move in.”
Posted by: KCB_Admin
Not a week goes by that King’s Court Builders isn’t asked the common question, “What is your price per square foot?” While we wish we could offer a quick number to aid new home buyers in their decision making process, a straight forward number would be similar to comparing apples to oranges or possibly a Hyundai to a BMW. Unfortunately, it’s a difficult question to answer and one we try our best to explain. There are many variables that explain why the price per square foot isn’t a reasonable way to compare builders or measure the cost or value of a new home.
First, there is no standard to distinguish what is included with the square feet of a home. Our figures include only finished areas, but never the basement—even if it is finished. Also, we only count actual floor space, not the dimensions of the exterior of the home then multiply it by two. This method provides a more accurate living space number and avoids calculating any areas with two-story ceilings twice. The garage or any exterior surfaces, such as a deck or patio, are also excluded in the measurement. While this is our method of calculation, other builders may do something entirely different. Therefore, comparing the price per square foot can be deceiving and extremely inaccurate. You’re comparing homes, but not the same home—by any means.
Let’s also take into consideration that some designs or floor plans are simply more expensive. For example, a bathroom is usually less square footage (sf) than a bedroom but is more expensive because of the plumbing and fixtures required. Another example is a ranch home, where there is a larger foundation as well as a larger roof, is much more expensive than a two-story home where rooms are stacked on top of each other. For comparison, after deducting the cost of land our Marlowe ranch is $155/sf, while our Camden two-story is $132/sf. That’s a difference of $23/sf for Monarch features. If you look at the difference with Elite features our Marlowe ranch is $197/sf, while our Camden two-story is $167/sf which is a difference of $30/sf.
Speaking of features, what is actually included when you compare the price per square foot…?
In the end, you want to know that you are getting the best home for your hard earned dollars. But, how do you do this? Set a budget, just leave a little flexibility for those “must haves”, then compare the features you want, not the price per square foot. The end result will be a high-quality custom built home within your budget—just the way you want it!
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If you’re in the new home construction process, the consideration for a deck or patio is probably on your mind. You might be wondering which options would be best for you and which will provide the best overall value to your home.
This article helps identify the pros and cons of each and can help you determine which outdoor living space would suite you the best.
Each option will offer a great area to gather with family and friends, grill out or just relax in the warm weather months. Here are some of the differences.
The Appearance Difference
Patios are the outdoor space built directly on the ground. This area might be connected to the house or constructed in a separate area of the yard. The patios can be constructed of various materials depending on the style desired and the budget. These include concrete, brick, stone, tile, pavers or other materials. In most cases, patios do not have rail systems but rather an open look. Today, many patio spaces include fire pits, built in barbecues and even sitting areas.
On the other hand, decks are typically made of wood or vinyl and are usually not placed directly on the ground but rather use a support system to elevate the space. Also, decking systems are usually enclosed by a railing system, possibly a pergola or trellis and offer an overview of the backyard.
As with anything, cost can play a great roll in your patio vs. deck decision. Studies show that the average cost of a midrange composite deck can run around $15,000 or around $10,400 for a wood deck. Decks usually range about $33 per square foot while patios, on the other hand, are about $15 per square foot for brick and around $12 for concrete patio. However, the actual cost will depend on a variety of factors, such as:
Decks or patios offer a good return on investment when it’s time to sell your home. The average RIO for a new deck is about 75% and around 30-60% for a patio.
The decision really comes down to which one best suits your needs for the additional cost. Patios, many times, work well when you’d like to incorporate the landscape or pool into the overall design. And if you’d like a separate place away from the home, patios are more conducive. However, those wanting a grand view of the property would want to consider a deck for its elevation options. Decks also work well for those with drop offs or unleveled backyards.
Whichever your selection, both offer a great ROI and an excellent outdoor entertaining or relaxation space. And, if both are appealing and budget is not a concern, incorporating both options can truly enhance your home value and overall backyard beauty.
Posted By: KCB_Admin
Want to learn what’s trending in new home building designs in 2016? We hope these 7 ideas will help inspire you during your new home buying journey!
Posted by KCB_Admin
One important way to maximize the value of your new home and its energy efficiency is to use spray foam insulation. Spray foam is a far superior insulation material, surpasses building code requirements and provides new homeowners with long-term benefits, including: