New Home Tips, Trends, and Ideas - Raleigh Custom Home Builders

Market Trends: What are Homeowners Giving Up to Stay on Budget?

Posted by Penny Hull on Fri, May 06, 2011 @ 14:05 PM

When budgets get tight, what are homeowners willing to give up first?

Homebuyers are thinking through their purchases before they make a big decision on a new home.  Here are the Top 5 Things Homeowners are Willing to Do Without:


5. Green Products/Design

Don't take this category at face value. The number of new homeowners opting for Green features that focus on energy savings, cost cutting, and environmental impact reduction are actually INCREASING.

In fact, more homeowners than ever are opting for advanced HVAC heating and cooling systems, superior insulation, and approved (often through ENERGY STAR) appliances designed to conserve water and energy.Hardwood Flooring

The green products that are easier for homeowners to give up include bamboo flooring and recycled glass countertops, which are much higher cost per square foot than their popular counterparts: hardwood flooring and granite countertops.


4. Landscaping

Tight budgets have led to a "Do it Yourself" attitude. More homewoners are seeing the benefit in installing all landscaping on their own, after their closing date.



In addition to saving money on labor costs, homeowners take a lot of pride in putting some sweat equity into their new home.




3. Architecture/Design Complexity

Another feature homeowners are considRooflineering more carefully is the complexity of architecture and design. 


This includes opting for a 9/12 rather than 12/12 roof pitch, 2 rather than 5 gables, and standard windows rather than upgraded styles.


2. Finish Details

More and more homeowners are asking themselves, "Do I really need to include crown molding throughout my home, or will it have more emphasis in only one or two rooms?"

Wainscoating Small


Finish details like crown molding, wainscoting, and chair railing can take a back seat during initial home construction, with the intention of adding these special details as weekend projects.




1. Square Footage

The number one item homeowners are willing to cut back on is square footage.

Open floor plans with lots of light and convenient storage solutions are becoming more desirable. 

Homeowners often consider the efficient use of space more important than adding a 5th bedroom or an expanded bonus room.


Read more about new home trends:

Contact Stanton Homes for floor plan ideas, to get a new home cost estimate, or find out more about building a custom home in North Carolina.

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Tags: homes in raleigh nc, building a home, new homes raleigh nc, raleigh new home

How Much Do Septic Systems Cost?

Posted by Penny Hull on Thu, May 05, 2011 @ 15:05 PM

How Much Do Septic Systems Cost? Building a Custom Home in the Raleigh area.

Septic System Cost

Whether you already own a lot, or need help finding the perfection location for your new home, you may be considering the cost of installing a septic system.

Septic systems are extremely common in the Raleigh area. In fact, most lots larger than 1/2 acre will require a septic system. 


Septic System Cost Can Vary 

Septic systems can also be one of the biggest variables in cost for building on your lot, depending on soil conditions, size of system, type of system, county requirements, and more.  

An experienced home builder like Stanton Homes can look at your septic permit and plot map and give you at least a good idea of what the system is going to cost


Typical Septic System Cost in the Raleigh Area

Septic System Cost Raleigh

A typical septic system in the Raleigh area can be anywhere from $3,000 to $15,000, with most conventional or pump systems falling in the middle range. 

Is a septic system more expensive than sewer?  The alternative to a septic system, connection to a city or county sewer system (if available), can be more or less than a typical septic system, depending on the jurisdiction and how close the connection is to the proposed homesite.

Make sure to speak with your builder about the septic system allowance for the unique requirements of your lot and floor plan. The number of bedrooms allowed is determined by a Perk Test.

A special system can run many tens of thousands more - particularly if your lot is rated "No Perk" (i.e. unsuitable for a conventional septic system). 

Make sure your lot is a great choice - talk to your builder about getting a free lot inspection to avoid unexpected costs.


Building a Custom Home is Easier Than You Think

Free Lot Inspection

 Building a new custom home on your lot (or ours) does not have to be complicated or expensive.

Contact Stanton Homes to receive a free building cost estimate and free lot inspection.



Tags: buying a lot, new homes raleigh, building a home, raleigh new home, septic systems, build on your lot

Raleigh Healthiest Housing Market in the Nation | New Homes Raleigh

Posted by Penny Hull on Fri, Mar 04, 2011 @ 10:03 AM

Raleigh NC Named Number One Healthiest Housing Market in the Nation

2011 Housing Market Growth

Raleigh continues to stand out as one of the best places in America to live, work, and retire. This time, housing market growth and lower unemployment rates demonstrate the desirability of the Raleigh area.  

Raleigh-Cary has just been named the number one healthiest housing market in the nation for 2011, according to extensive research by Hanley Wood Market Intelligence. And here's what they have to say:Raleigh Market Trends | Homebuilders Raleigh

  • 2011 Building Permits projected to increase 90% to 9,604
    • Permits already increased 85% to 8,600 in 2010
  • Permit increases are seen in both multifamily and single-family homes
  • Existing home prices rose 4% in 2010
  • Increased jobs in Raleigh lead to a lower unemployment rate, now at 8.4%


Raleigh's reputation for affordability is coupled by educational opportunities within several nationally ranked colleges and universities located in the Raleigh area.

Read more about the Raleigh-Cary housing market here.


Some of the most popular places to live near Raleigh-Cary include Apex, Cary, Fuquay-Varina, Garner, Holly Springs, Knightdale, Morrisville, Raleigh, Rolesville, Wake Forest, and Wendell.

Find out more about city government jobs in Wake County.

See which professional sports attract fans in Raleigh, NC.

Tags: buying a lot, homes in raleigh nc, building a home, new homes raleigh nc, raleigh new homes, new homes in raleigh nc

How Much Does it Cost to Finish a Third Floor or Attic? | NC Homes

Posted by Penny Hull on Fri, Mar 04, 2011 @ 09:03 AM

How Much Does it Cost to Finish a Third Floor or Attic?


How Much Does it Cost to Finish a Third Floor or Attic? | NC Homes

Looking to add low-cost square footage to your new home or make space for a future  hobby area, game room, sports center, or guest retreat? 

Choosing a floor plan with an unfinished third floor or attic may be the answer.

One of the questions you need to ask is, what is the most cost-effective way to finish third floor or attic space?


The cost of finishing a third floor or attic space depends on several factors, including:

How Much Does it Cost to Finish a Third Floor or Attic? | NC Homes

 - Home Size and Price Point

 - Roofline Style and Size

 - Size of the space to be finished

 - Does the floor plan include a staircase?

 - Would you want to add a bathroom?

 - Would you want to add windows or a skylight?


Generally, the minimum cost will be about $50 per square foot.  This will include:

 - Basic lighting

 - Basic electrical outletsHow Much Does it Cost to Finish a Third Floor or Attic? | NC Homes

 - HVAC system (which will require an additional heat pump, AC unit, and duct work - the cost for this is usually about $6,000 alone)

 - Insulation

 - Drywall

 - Paint

 - Basic required trimwork

 - Standard level carpet

It can be less cost effective to finish a smaller space, and the total cost per square foot will vary based on the size of the space being finished. 

If you need to add a staircase from the second to third floor, the price tag can become much higher.

How Much Does it Cost to Finish a Third Floor or Attic? | NC HomesThe expense of the project can also increase if you need to add any kind of windows or skylights. If you don't plan ahead, you will need to remove siding and roofing, reframe the structure, add the window or skylight, and replace the siding and roofing. 

The cost of adding a bathroom will vary depending on the finishes desired as well as what stage of construction the home is in. If requested at planning stage, the plumber, framers, and electricians will be able to complete all work as they are finishing the rest of the home, resulting in some savings.

A third floor can be a great space for a homeowner to finish themselves over time, with some significant labor savings.  Check with your local jurisdiction to see if any permits are required - you'll want to be able to count the area as finished square footage if you should ever want to sell your home.   

Make sure to get a full price quote before taking on what can become a major project.

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Tags: new home trends, homes in raleigh nc, building a home, floor plan modifications, custom floor plans

Fireplace Trends in New Homes: Disappearing Act

Posted by Penny Hull on Tue, Feb 22, 2011 @ 10:02 AM

New Home Trends - Are Fireplaces Disappearing?

Number of New Homes with Fireplaces Hits 23 Year Low

Wondering if fireplaces are going the way of the formal dining room?

The number of new homes that include fireplaces is decreasing.   According to the Census Bureau, the number of new homes built without a fireplace reached 49% in 2009, the highest percentage since 1975. 

NC Custom Home Builders | New Home Fireplace Trends

According to data from the Census Bureau, the number of new homes built without a fireplace in 2009 hit 49%, following a steady trend over the past 15 years.NC Custom Home Builders | New Home Fireplace Trends

The year 1990 saw the most new homes with fireplaces since the Census Bureau started tracking in 1973 - only 34% of new homes built in 1990 did not include a fireplace.  Since then, the number of homes with fireplaces has been on the decline. 

The years 1980-1983 saw another increase in the number of homes without fireplaces, after which the number homes with  fireplaces steadily grew until to their peak in 1990.

NC Custom Home Builders | New Home Fireplace Trends

What could be causing the decline in the number of fireplaces?

Just a few factors that could be impacting the "fireplace decision" could include:

- Cost effectiveness

- Fireplaces no longer used as a heat source

- Entertainment centers as focal points instead of fireplace

- Changing restrictions on woodburning fireplaces

- Low maintanence lifestyle choices

Will your new home include a fireplace? 

As an NC custom home builder, we'll work with you to make the decision that's right for you, and can design a home that includes the features that will make your lifestyle exceptional. 

Want to get started?

Browse Floor Plans

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Tags: fireplace trends, nc custom homes, building a home, certified green home builders, nc custom homebuilders, build on your lot, custom home builder

What is a Custom Home Builder?

Posted by Penny Hull on Mon, Oct 18, 2010 @ 09:10 AM

Custom Homes | What is a custom home builder?

What is a custom home builder, and why is it so important to choose the right one?

What is a Custom Home BuilderIs a custom home builder more expensive?

Having a house built by a custom home builder doesn’t have to mean you’re spending a whole lot more than you’d pay for a subdivision tract home where everybody has the same design and layout – and some of the features aren’t even all that workable for you.

How does a custom home builder work?

A custom home builder should work to build to your budget. With a true custom home builder, you get to choose the design, features, colors, layout…add a pantry, leave out the living room, make sure the closet is huge. 

A custom home builder often offers floorplans from top architects, but also offers design and build services.

What is a Custom Home BuilderA custom home builder offers more freedom

Building your own home gives you the opportunity to decide EVERYTHING, from floor coverings to appliances, lights, and the shape of the kitchen window.

You’ll want to be sure the custom home builder you choose listens to you, understands what you need, and works with you throughout the process.

Choose a custom home builder who understands what you want - and provides the details in writing.

Working through the custom homebuilding process is exciting.  Once everything is determined, you’ll sign a contract that includes budget, conditions, plans and specifications.

Be sure that your custom home builder is a general contractor well versed in the latest building construction and technologies, who can discuss every aspect in terms you understand, and is interested and available to answer all your questions – and offers suggestions that suit your situation.

Stanton Homes, for example, will walk you through the process from choosing a lot, provide site inspections, help you decide on a floor plan and design, outline options such as “green” building other applications that add value and save money, and show you exactly what is happening between the walls as your new home is built.

What is a custom home builder?

A team you can rely on to guide you through every stage of the home building process – and ensure you're excited about starting a new life in the home you've always wanted on your move-in day.  

Other Top Custom Homebuilder Questions:

What Ceiling Height Should I Choose?

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Woodburning or Gas Fireplace? | Custom Homebuilder Questions

Tags: what is a custom home builder, custom homebuilder, building a home, custom homes