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The Latest Trends in Home Design: Insights from Lancia Homes

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Every few years, modern home design trends change. Though some of the changes are subtle, others are more pronounced. As a homeowner, renovator, or buyer, you’ll want to keep up with the latest excitement in homebuilding. That way, you can get inspiration from popular interior design ideas and home layout concepts like the most contemporary house styles in Fort Wayne, IN, that are gaining attention.

Every few years, modern home design trends change. Though some of the changes are subtle, others are more pronounced. As a homeowner, renovator, or buyer, you’ll want to keep up with the latest excitement in homebuilding. That way, you can get inspiration from popular interior design ideas and home layout concepts like the most contemporary house styles in Fort Wayne, IN, that are gaining attention.

What’s happening that’s revitalizing the market? Five major new-home characteristics are becoming increasingly relevant.

  • The Rise of the “Smart Home Homes are doing likewise as society moves deeper into everyday digitization and automation. It’s not unusual for families to have “smart” assistants to do everything from playing music to ordering groceries. Increasingly, homeowners are opting to create home spaces where many of their commonly used devices operate synchronously and efficiently. For instance, a so-called “smart home” may include integrated lights, security systems, and HVAC units. The equipment “communicates” digitally, ensuring everything works together to produce a comfortable, secure environment. Another type of “smart home” attribute is a home that features smart appliances like refrigerators designed to monitor food freshness or showers equipped with voice control.
  • A Continuation of Openness Open-concept floor plans aren’t a new phenomenon in the housing market, but they’re moving into a need-to-have category. Younger home buyers are especially interested in having more openness. Kitchens often get bigger and spill into broader social gathering areas. The open-home trend isn’t limited to kitchens or inside spaces, though. Many families want to create a fluid feel between the interior and exterior areas. They’re using innovative four-season rooms and patio elements to extend their living spaces into their yards to achieve this goal.
  • A Need for Home Offices For many working adults, having a home office is necessary. Home office spaces don’t need to be enormous, but they need to be dedicated. Even a well-arranged small home office can meet at-home workers’ objectives beautifully. In some cases, at least two family members require home office spaces. Consequently, working with a custom builder who can provide this unique option is a good choice. Custom builders can use high-powered software to digitally “move” one or more office spaces throughout a design. This allows homeowners to consider the best location for them to work.
  • Neutrals Giving Way to Splashes of Color Gone are the days of new home decor trends that limited color palettes to neutrals such as brown, tan, black, white, and cream. Homeowners are increasingly adding splashes of brighter colors throughout their homes. Indeed, they’re still turning to neutrals for most of their room, hallway, and other space colors. But they’re using color judiciously to add personality, pop, and distinctiveness to their home spaces. Where is color giving homes a boost? Front doors are trending toward bold hues. Window and door frames are, too. Plus, some homeowners are taking color to the next level by choosing intense roof tile colors. Inside homes around Fort Wayne, IN, deep blues, dark reds, and coral shades appear in kitchens. And bedrooms are moving from traditional cozier tones to lighter pinks, blues, and greens.
  • Stylish Upgrades to Master Closet Spaces The master bedroom closet is having its moment these days. Gone are the days when couples and families were willing to put up with tiny closets. Now, they want full rooms to store clothes, accessories, shoes, and other items. In time, the master closet is slowly morphing into more of a dressing room and lounge area. As such, some homeowners are outfitting their master closets with more than just storage racks and well-considered lighting. They include islands with running water and coffee makers, comfy chairs for resting, and drawers to protect jewelry. It’s the beginning of a fun era for the master closet, leading to closet upgrades in other rooms, such as bathrooms, kids’ bedrooms, and garages.

If you’re trying to freshen up your existing home, you’ll want to keep these five trends in mind. On the other hand, if you’re ready to create a home space built to your exact lifestyle and preferences, give a custom builder a home. At Lancia Homes, we always enjoy helping clients bring their dream homes to life.

Smart Home Features: Enhancing Comfort and Security in Lancia Homes

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As digitization becomes more commonplace, so does the need for smart homes. A smart home uses smart home technology. At its core, this technology is created to make life safer, easier, and more convenient for homeowners, their families, and guests.

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As digitization becomes more commonplace, so does the need for smart homes. A smart home uses smart home technology. At its core, this technology is created to make life safer, easier, and more convenient for homeowners, their families, and guests.

Not all homes have moved to becoming “smarter” yet. If you’re just starting to explore the landscape of smart home technology, remember there’s a lot of ground to cover. Below are some smart home features that are heating the home remodeling, home improvement, and home building industries.

  • Home Automation Systems Have you ever wished that devices could handle more of your daily tasks? Thanks to smart home automation systems, it’s time to stop wishing and start enjoying a new era. These types of systems aim to do your work for you. An excellent example of home automation systems in New Haven, OH, residences is the wireless system. A wireless system uses a home’s WiFi to connect a series of devices, allowing them to share data and information effectively. With a home automation system, you can connect applications like heating, cooling, lighting, and security cameras. After programming your preferred settings, you can sit back and let the system do all the work. It’s more than just efficient: It’s cost-effective, too. Home automation systems that work well can save you money in the long run and pay for themselves over time.
  • Advanced Home Security Features Another trend in smart homes is the inclusion of advanced home security features. They are intended to secure smart homes at a higher level than just the basics. Advanced home security features protect year-round. Essentially, they’re an added shield against everything from intruders to cyber thieves. For instance, advanced smart smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are far more powerful than their traditional battery-powered counterparts. Smart locks are, too. These features and devices help you take more control over the way you secure your home. The smart home tech sector is poised to equip some home security solutions with facial recognition and other advanced attributes.
  • Smart Appliances Can you have a smarter oven? Refrigerator? Toilet? You bet. Appliance manufacturers around the globe are experimenting with ways to bump up the smart capacity in plenty of appliances. Though you might not have considered how smart appliances can benefit your life, you should consider some of the biggest advantages of investing in smart appliance technologies. Say you’re trying to determine if you want an electric or gas oven. Fair enough. Both have their pros and cons. Just remember that whichever type you choose, you can go a step further and add a smart element. Both electric and gas ovens and stovetops can be equipped with voice control. You won’t have to touch anything to cook, which can be appealing if you like the idea of a hands-free experience in the kitchen.
  • Smart Cleaning Systems Remember when the robotic Roomba vacuum first arrived on the scene? It was treated with a combination of curiosity and hesitation. Today, more homeowners see this type of smart technology as a great way to sanitize and tidy their secure smart homes without lifting a finger. Smart cleaning systems aren’t limited to robotic vacuum systems, however. There are smart washers, dryers, and dishwashers as well. Typically, these cleaning units can use predictive and other technologies. For example, a smart washing machine can send you alerts on your phone so you know when your laundry is finished or when the unit requires maintenance.
  • Smart Voice Assistants Lots of families have invested in smart voice assistants. Voice assistants work by understanding oral prompts. Individuals can make a wide range of requests through a voice assistant device, including ordering groceries for immediate delivery. Many people predict that smart voice assistants will become even more essential in a few years. By and large, their language processing is gaining momentum. And with the Internet of Things (IoT) taking off, there’s no telling how integrated smart voice assistants will become within our daily lives.

If you like the idea of incorporating smart home technology into your residential property, give us a call. The team at Lancia Homes is well-versed in the newest smart home devices. We can show you a smarter way to enjoy your dream home.

Maximizing Your Guest Bedroom As An Office Space

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You might not be surprised to hear that one of the biggest trends in home buying is having a home office. With more adults working hybrid or remote jobs, it only makes sense. However, figuring out where to put a home office can take time and effort. One solution is to let your guest bedroom do some double duty.

You might not be surprised to hear that one of the biggest trends in home buying is having a home office. With more adults working hybrid or remote jobs, it only makes sense. However, figuring out where to put a home office can take time and effort. One solution is to let your guest bedroom do some double duty.

Why Guest Bedrooms Make Perfect Offices

A guest bedroom is undeniably the least-used area in most family’s homes. You probably won’t use your guest bedroom regularly unless you host many guests. But if you can transform it into a home office, you’ll get more mileage from the room. Essentially, you’ll treat it as a flex space, essential to many homeowners who like having a versatile home to grow with their needs.

Tips to Create an Integrated Guest Bedroom-Office Room

When designing a room that can be a guest bedroom or office, you aim to optimize the available floor space. A great way to start is by checking out the full lineup of Murphy bed with desk options.

If you’re unfamiliar with the concept of a Murphy Bed, you can get acquainted with it quickly. The Murphy Bed was invented over a century ago to ensure that apartment dwellers didn’t have to dedicate too much room to a big bed. The first Murphy Bed concepts fit into the wall and could be pulled out at night. During the day, they were secretly tucked away, allowing everyone to move around their apartment or home freely.

Today, Murphy Beds follow the same general layout with a few exceptions. It is now possible to purchase a twin Murphy bed with a desk or a queen Murphy Bed with desk combination furniture. When the Murphy bed is pushed upward, it disappears and becomes a pull-out desk.

Some designers have made Murphy bed and desk furnishings so innovative that you’d never know a bed was behind the desk area! Others offer more of a horizontal Murphy bed with a desk in New Haven, OH, that’s still streamlined and professional. Best of all, all types of Murphy bed and desk pieces enable you to hide that you’re working from a guest bedroom. That’s essential, particularly during virtual meetings.

Of course, having a Murphy bed with a desk isn’t the only way to turn your guest bedroom into a place where you can do your job. Some additional suggestions for your flex room include:

  • Incorporate a wall of shelving into the room. Different types of shelves can give instant appeal and storage capabilities. They’ll look classy enough for your desired guest bedroom aesthetics while serving a functional purpose for all your office items.
  • Choose a day bed instead of a Murphy bed. Day beds are good alternatives to Murphy beds in a pinch. A day bed becomes more of a sleeper sofa, providing some “lounge space” as part of your home office.
  • Make use of your guest bedroom closet. Depending on its size, it could be the ideal spot for a stowaway bed or a movable desk. It can also be the right size to hold all your job-related documents in a filing cabinet or versatile storage unit.
  • Consider different types and styles of desks. A guest bedroom isn’t the location for a wide, L-shaped executive desk and credenza. Nevertheless, it can be an excellent spot for a less intrusive type of desk. Explore the world of desks by looking at images online to see which one fits the ambiance of your guest bedroom while still providing a place for you to work comfortably.
  • Avoid skimping on ergonomics. You’ve probably heard throughout the years that you need an ergonomically suitable chair and desk. It’s all true. The good news is that you don’t have to trade looks for ergonomics. Many desk and chair design firms understand their products must be practical and physically attractive. Consequently, it’s not hard to find ones that will match your decor.

More than anything else, try to have fun as you consider how to spruce up your flex space. If you want to talk to a home builder about designing your dream residence, look at our locations page to find the Lancia Homes team nearest you.

Home Maintenance Tips: Keeping Your Home in Top Shape

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Your home isn't just a place where you live. From a practical standpoint, it's one of the most important investments you'll ever make. As such, you should aim to create an all-inclusive home maintenance checklist. Your checklist will guide you as you move from month to month, ensuring you take advantage of all opportunities to keep your home performing its best.

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Your home isn't just a place where you live. From a practical standpoint, it's one of the most important investments you'll ever make. As such, you should aim to create an all-inclusive home maintenance checklist. Your checklist will guide you as you move from month to month, ensuring you take advantage of all opportunities to keep your home performing its best.

What Is the Value of Home Maintenance?

Just like any structure, your residence requires some essential home upkeep. They'll eventually add up if you try to skip routine maintenance tasks. It's much less expensive to pay for regular maintenance than it is to pay for emergency repairs. And emergencies can happen if you keep pushing your home maintenance tasks aside.

What Are Some Tips for Maintaining a House?

Are you a new first-time homeowner or home builder? You may need to familiarize yourself with the types of maintenance and seasonal home care you need to consider. Below are some essential home upkeep must-include responsibilities to add to your home maintenance checklist.

  • Have an expert clean and examine your HVAC equipment at least once a year. Your HVAC unit keeps your home's temperature from becoming too hot or cold. Though most HVAC equipment can last more than a decade, the equipment must be serviced annually. Servicing is necessary to avoid sudden breakdowns. Plus, having a service plan may be required as part of your warranty.
  • Pay attention to your gutters and roof. Leaves, twigs, dirt, and other debris can gather in your gutters and along the roof lines. Twice a year, have someone look at your roof and clean your gutters to ensure you're not experiencing any problems. Though some homeowners like to do these duties themselves, they're only appropriate for some, especially in the case of homes with steep and high roofs.
  • Give your landscaping some seasonal TLC. The landscaping around your home does more than add an element of curb appeal. It can also help provide shade for your roof or even an outdoor living space. However, your landscaping deserves to be tended appropriately. For example, trees, bushes, and shrubs may require regular pruning to avoid becoming eyesores or hazards. If you need help landscaping your yard alone, hire an expert to provide education and assistance.
  • Clean out your garage and basement. You probably take your garage and basement areas for granted, but they also need some care. The garage can quickly become a place of paint splatters and maybe a few unwanted critters. The same holds for the basement, mainly if it's unfinished. Though you don't have to paint your garage floor yearly or thoroughly dust every shelf in your basement, tidy up these important spaces.
  • Take spring cleaning seriously. If you can, seasonally clean your home from top to bottom, including wiping off the interior and exterior of windows and doors. Though cleaning your house might not be what you want to do on a beautiful weekend, it can pay off tremendously. Not only will any cobwebs be gone, but you'll extend the lifespan of furniture, fixtures, and flooring.
  • Install new smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors as needed. Typically, it is advisable for most households to change the batteries in their smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors during the spring and fall seasons. But remember that all your detectors won't last forever. Eventually, you'll need to replace the whole detector unit and not just install a new battery. While at it, check out the expiration date on any fire extinguishers in your home.
  • Pay attention to your pool. Are you one of the many homeowners on your block with a pool? The pool and surrounding area should be maintained according to the type of pool you have. Again, if you "inherited" your pool when you bought your home, always ask a professional how to keep it looking its best.

When you have a home maintenance checklist in the Northwest Allen County school area, you have a document designed to protect your residence for the future. If you're starting on the path to building your dream home, visit a Lancia Homes location to speak with one of our team members.

Customization Options: Personalizing Your New Home

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Nothing is as exciting as personalizing your new home with custom features designed around your preferred lifestyle. However, you may not be current on the latest or hottest home customization ideas and trends. To help you design a home you'll love, consider some emerging features currently being added to custom-built houses in Carroll High School and other neighborhood areas.

Nothing is as exciting as personalizing your new home with custom features designed around your preferred lifestyle. However, you may not be current on the latest or hottest home customization ideas and trends. To help you design a home you'll love, consider some emerging features currently being added to custom-built houses in Carroll High School and other neighborhood areas.

  • Modern Floor Plans It's time to move past dated floor plans and embrace exciting contemporary floor planning. Most modern floor plans include open spaces that morph into one another. This gives families the chance to use spaces for multiple purposes. For instance, wider kitchens with lounge areas can be used for eating, socializing, and working. Most modern floor planning designs have plenty of versatility, enabling you to rearrange your spaces to fit your preferences and needs.
  • Spa and Boutique Hotel Elements Home is the place where you can pamper yourself. But it's hard to feel completely relaxed and comfortable without the right surroundings. That's one of the reasons that home builders are being asked to construct bathrooms and master bedrooms conducive to having spa-like atmospheres and appeal. One example of this home feature would be a multi-room bathroom with a walk-in shower and sauna. Another could be a large master bedroom with a special nook for watching television.
  • Abundant Natural Lighting Increasing the natural light in any home with personalized home features reduces the need for artificial lighting and brings out the natural beauty, decor, and colors of interior spaces. To achieve a stronger sense of natural lighting throughout a new-build custom home, planners often recommend adding floor-to-ceiling windows, bay window systems, and skylights. Walk-out four-season rooms can also elegantly and organically bring more sunshine into a house.
  • Eco-Friendlier, Energy-Efficient Amenities Sustainability is of prime importance to both homeowners and custom home builders. Working together, these groups can uncover ways to ensure that an individualized home design is eco-friendly and appealing. Regarding eco-friendly customization solutions, an often overlooked possibility is adding environmentally friendly insulation throughout a home. The proper, sustainably sourced insulation can keep a home feeling good year-round while also doing good for the planet.
  • Tech-Ready Home Office Areas In the past few years, the world has moved toward more hybrid and remote working arrangements between employers and employees. The result of this shift in working styles can be seen in how homeowners personalize their custom residences. It's common for newer homes to include at least one dedicated home office space tethered to technology.
  • More Emphasis on Landscaping While curb appeal is often mentioned during home buying and selling, it's also important to homeowners. Liking your home's looks can make it feel more like the home of your dreams. Landscaping trends such as the addition of outside living spaces, pools, fountains, small ponds and other waterscapes, low-maintenance plants, and native tree species are transforming homes from ordinary to extraordinary. With innovative landscaping, homeowners can make any property more livable — and sometimes more desirable to future buyers.
  • Creative Closets and Storage Areas Everyone wants to have enough room for all the things they need to store in their homes. Custom closets and other storage spaces always make it easy to have a place for everything, big or small. This includes all the little "stuff" that doesn't need to be on display until the season and situation is right. From walk-in closets attached to master suites to carefully hidden storage areas and pantries peppered throughout a home, creative crannies are making their way into custom-build designs more frequently.

Which of these features will be most appropriate for you and your family? The best way to find out is to speak with the team at Lancia Homes. Our objective is to help clients determine which custom elements are well-suited to their desires so they can enjoy their new homes for the long haul.

Choosing the Perfect Floor Plan: A Guide to Lancia Homes' Options

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When building your dream home, you may find it enlightening to discover the multitude of avenues available for personalizing your experience. The available features, from windows and siding to building size and style, can initially seem overwhelming. However, when you take several steps, choosing the right house design to meet your family's needs is possible. The first is determining which floor plan type suits your lifestyle best.

When building your dream home, you may find it enlightening to discover the multitude of avenues available for personalizing your experience. The available features, from windows and siding to building size and style, can initially seem overwhelming. However, when you take several steps, choosing the right house design to meet your family's needs is possible. The first is determining which floor plan type suits your lifestyle best.

What Is a Home Floor Plan?

A home floor plan is the general way a house is laid out. For instance, some homes are two-story, and others are ranch-style residences. Each type may be preferable depending on what you want.

When working with a builder of custom homes, you'll be introduced to a wide range of home floor plan selection options. Ask yourself key questions to help you narrow your perfect fit to just a few floor plan possibilities.

  • What home style appeals to me? Do you like having your bedrooms on the second story? Would you like most bedrooms upstairs, except a ground-floor master suite? Is a home with a loft something you want to consider? Choosing a style early in your home floor plan selection in Fort Wayne, IN, and all the locations served by Lancia Homes will immediately streamline your experience.
  • How many bedrooms do I need? Even if you find a structure with one of the best home layouts you've ever seen, it won't match your needs if it doesn't have the right number of bedrooms. Be sure to consider not just your bedroom needs of today, though. If you plan to have more children or eventually move aging parents into your home, you might need more bedrooms than you initially thought.
  • What square footage would serve us well? The square footage of a home matters, although not always as much as you think. Depending on how a home is laid out, a home with a larger square footage may feel cozier than a smaller one. Visit a few model homes to determine your ideal square footage range.

Now that you've answered those questions, you can find the best home layouts that match your parameters.

Do Builders Offer Customizable Floor Plans?

It's okay if you think, "I like everything about this home's general floor plan EXCEPT ____." This is to be expected. While all custom-built floor plans are designed to attract as many homebuyers as possible, they aren't necessarily set in stone (or wood, steel, or brick!)

Highly reputable builders will offer customizable floor plans. In other words, you can work with the builder to decide which features or amenities you would like to replace or swap for others.

To illustrate how home floor plan customization works, let's consider the mid-sized Ashley III from Lancia Homes. It's a four-bedroom home with two-and-a-half baths offering more than 2,500 square feet of livable space. Yet, it's far more than meets the eye because it can be personalized.

What types of personalization do Ashley III buyers consider? A popular solution for homeowners needing more storage space is choosing a full basement rather than a partial one. That way, they have room to keep all their treasures. Alternatively, they may want to turn their full basement into a rec room or other space.

More than anything, customizable floor plans in Fort Wayne, IN, enable you to enhance the beauty of your home and make it as comfortable as possible.

 

What Are Some Other Tips to Consider When Selecting a Home Floor Plan?

As you move deeper into the process of pinpointing the right home floor plan (with or without customization), keep several tips in mind:

  • Your budget may play a factor in whether you can have all the customized elements you want. Therefore, create a checklist with all your customization ideas. From that point, you can prioritize which are most important to you.
  • If a home style needs a radical floor plan adjustment, you may look at the wrong home for your family. With many floor plans builders offer, you may be better off switching from one home layout to another. Consider the Autumn Whisper I versus the Autumn Whisper II. Both maintain the same theme, but the Autumn Whisper II has an extra bedroom and more square footage. Consequently, if you're sold on the Autumn Whisper I and want to customize it by adding a bedroom, you probably just need to upgrade to the Autumn Whisper II rather than redo the Autumn Whisper I floor plan.
  • Think about how long you expect to stay in your home. Many families build homes to keep for decades. If that's your circumstance, remember that you want your house to grow with your family. As a result, you'll love your home throughout all your life transitions.

Are you interested in moving forward with a home builder? Lancia Homes' team is ready to help! Check out our locations page to find the best times to meet with one of our experts to start the floor plan selection experience.

What is the Best Material for a Front Door?

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One of the things we may take for granted the most in our homes is the front door. You probably don’t realize how much thought goes into a front door until you must replace it. There is so much to consider. For starters, curb appeal is a big deal. Yes, we would like to ima...

One of the things we may take for granted the most in our homes is the front door. You probably don’t realize how much thought goes into a front door until you must replace it. There is so much to consider. For starters, curb appeal is a big deal. Yes, we would like to imagine that when we land in a home, we’ll be there forever, but that isn’t the case for most people. Not many people may know this: your front door is a big deal regarding curb appeal. 

Getting the most back on your investment is crucial when selling your home, but you must also think of protection while living there. Your front door is the last line of defense between you and whatever weather may come your way. You want to ensure you have something that will keep your home temperate and sealed. 

So, what makes for the best material for a front door? If you’ve been searching for a new front door, this article is for you. We’ll review the best front door materials and what makes them so good!

Get to know the materials

When looking for a new front door, it is important to know the type of front door material you will be working with. Here is a rundown of everything you need to know. 

Fiberglass

Fiberglass doors are great for people who live in climates that may not be so friendly from time to time. Why is this? It’s because fiberglass is durable and doesn’t require much maintenance. Climate changes won’t warp or crack your door; similarly, temperature changes won’t cause your door to expand or contract. 

Also, fiberglass doors come in a wide array of styles. Whether you want something more modern looking or something to give your house that classic traditional look, you’ll be able to find it with a fiberglass door. You can even find fiberglass doors that look exactly like wood!

Simply put, fiberglass offers durability, low maintenance, and many styles. All of these factors make fiberglass truly one of the best exterior door materials.

Steel

Steel doors also offer a great amount of durability and do so at a lower price point than fiberglass. These are great doors for those who live in areas where they regularly get bad weather or for people who are worried about their safety in their homes. 

Regarding aesthetics, steel can shine as well (quite literally!) If you want a modern look, you can easily get that with a steel door. Nothing says modern, like something shiny and metallic. However, those who prefer a more traditional look can also find those options. 

The big plus side of steel is the price point and the durability. The downside is that it might require some extra maintenance. If you fail to properly care for your door, it could rust, diminishing its lifespan. 

Wood

Wood is the most classic of all the choices. As far as wood doors go, they offer the best look out of all three materials listed. So, if you are concerned about curb appeal, wood is the way to go. 

However, there are plenty of drawbacks to wood doors. Those living in harsher climates will find that wood doors do not last as long as fiberglass or steel. They can warp, crack, expand, and contract. The upkeep on wood doors is significant compared to fiberglass and steel. If you choose to go with a high-end model of a wood door, you could wind up spending a good chunk of change. 

So, yes, wood doors are awesome to look at, but with the availability of fiberglass and steel doors that are made to look like wood, it’s hard to recommend something that, in the long run, will cost you more and last for less. 

If you are looking for the best exterior doors for Florida, please contact Lancia Homes today!

7 Reasons to Build an Energy-Efficient Smart House

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An energy-efficient smart house might sound impossibly futuristic and expensive but building an energy-efficient house just requires some knowledge of energy-smart house design and your goals for embracing smart home technology. Are you looking to save money? Save energy? Protect the environment? Simplify managing your energy consumption? Accomplish...

An energy-efficient smart house might sound impossibly futuristic and expensive but building an energy-efficient house just requires some knowledge of energy-smart house design and your goals for embracing smart home technology. Are you looking to save money? Save energy? Protect the environment? Simplify managing your energy consumption? Accomplish all of the above? Then you’re a candidate for learning more about building an energy-efficient smart house in a way that’s customized to fit your and your family’s lifestyle.

Luckily, we’re experts on energy-smart house design and how to build the most energy-efficient house and can guide you every step of the way. The first issue homeowners should understand is the Home Energy Rating Standards Index and what it tells you about your home’s energy efficiency. On the HERS Index, the lower the score, the better the rating and the less energy the home uses for utilities. The average new home has a rating of 100. Existing homes typically have a rating of 130, meaning they use even more energy than new homes. Our median home at Lancia rates a 64. That means that for every $1.30 that homeowners typically pay for utilities, our customers are paying 64 cents. Imagine how that adds up over time.

That’s just one reason so many people are building energy-smart houses. Here are seven of the top reasons why homeowners are building an energy-efficient house with smart technology:

1. Smaller utility bills.

Once a smart home system knows your family’s schedule, energy efficiency and savings can really follow, saving you big bucks on your utility bills. Consider a system that knows when you leave for work and shuts off all lights, audio equipment, ceiling fans, and power strips to conserve power; changes the thermostat on your heater or air conditioner to save energy; and sets back the hot-water heater thermostat — and then restores all these settings before you’re ready to pull back into your driveway. With a smart home system, you can schedule your appliances to operate at down periods when energy generation is plentiful, such as during the day when many people are at work, and automate window blinds, shades, and drapes to harvest sunlight when it’s needed and minimize solar gain in the heat of the summer.
 

2. Helpful tax incentives.

Homeowners can qualify for a residential energy property tax credit for 10% of the cost of certain home energy-efficient improvements including energy-efficient roofs, insulation, windows, doors, and skylights. Energy-efficient heating and air conditioning systems can qualify for credit for alternative energy equipment through Dec. 31, 2021. State and local tax incentives may also apply to your home project.
 

3. Better comfort at home.

You might be wondering how an energy-efficient smart home makes you more comfortable in your abode. One way is that it’ll help you maintain a more consistent temperature throughout the household, making environmental fluctuations a thing of the past. And without outside air seeping in from leaky windows or poor insulation that often occurs in older homes, you won’t be constantly running back and forth to the thermostat. Smart home technology renders the dash to the thermostat obsolete anyway, as it lets you adjust your thermostat plus locks, cameras, lights, appliances, and more through a home automation system managed through your mobile device. 

4. An increase in home value.

Upgrades to a home’s energy efficiency not only save homeowners money in the short term, but they also attract more cash when it’s time to sell. A National Association of Home Builders survey found that the average homebuyer is willing to pay more than $8,700 to save $1,000 annually in their utility bills. An energy smart house is a smart real estate investment, too.

5. A healthier environment.

It stands to reason that energy-efficient homes are also better for the environment, and the research bears that out: Buildings are responsible for about 39% of our total energy consumption, 38% of our carbon dioxide emissions, and more than two-thirds of our total electricity consumption, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. As these statistics suggest, using less energy is highly impactful to our natural environment and health.

6. Easier breathing.

Speaking of health, an energy-efficient smart home can help you breathe more easily. A smart home system can help you monitor your indoor air quality by reporting on pollutants and other air-quality problems in your home in real time. On top of that, it can send you push notifications about unsafe conditions and trigger connected devices such as air purifiers, fans, or dehumidifiers to set about making the air more hospitable. If you suffer from asthma or allergies, these smart home technologies could help you breathe more easily.

7. The fun of designing it.

One element of smart house design that’s often overlooked? The fun of it! We can guide you through finding the best building material for energy-efficient houses, making choices about your smart home appliances, and create the energy-smart house of your dreams.

Are you ready to save up to 70% on your utility costs compared with owning an existing home in northeastern Indiana or northwest Ohio? Call us at Lancia Homes at (260) 489-4433 to set up an appointment and find out more about how we can help you build your dream smart home today!

What Features Does Your Bathroom Need?

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Which room in your home sees the most use? If you guessed the bathroom, you'd be right. It's likely that you and everyone else in your household use the bathrooms several times a day. It's the room where people bathe, brush their teeth, and generally get ready for the day. It can also act as storage for dirty laundry, cleaning products, and personal care products. 

 

When you're working on a custom home plan in Fort Wayne, IN, it's helpful to know what features y...

Which room in your home sees the most use? If you guessed the bathroom, you'd be right. It's likely that you and everyone else in your household use the bathrooms several times a day. It's the room where people bathe, brush their teeth, and generally get ready for the day. It can also act as storage for dirty laundry, cleaning products, and personal care products. 

 

When you're working on a custom home plan in Fort Wayne, IN, it's helpful to know what features you'll need in the bathrooms in the home. Think of who will use each bathroom and how frequently to help you decide what to include.

Shower or Tub?

Should you install a bathtub or just a shower in your bathroom? There are a few things to consider as you make your choice. First is the number of bathrooms in your home. If you have multiple full bathrooms, you can install a tub in one and just a shower in the other. But if your home has just one full bathroom, it makes more sense to install a bathtub, even if you and others in the household only take showers.

 

Having a least one bathtub can prove useful when it's time to resell the home. A future buyer might need a tub to bathe small children or to wash pets. Even if you exclusively take showers, you might find it helpful to have at least one full bathtub installed. You can wash bulky items or delicate laundry in the tub, for instance.

Number of Sinks

If multiple people use the bathroom, it can be helpful to have multiple sinks. For example, a double sink can come in handy if you share the bathroom with a spouse. They can shave, brush their teeth, or apply makeup at one sink while you groom yourself at the other. Having two sinks can help preserve your sanity and your marriage.

 

Double sinks can be a good choice for bathrooms shared by young children, too. Having two sinks in the vanity will cut down on arguments over whose turn it is to use the bathroom. It will also help you get the kids out of the door and on their way to school more quickly on busy mornings.

Storage Space

Your bathroom holds a lot. Built-in storage space makes it easy to keep all of your bathroom necessities close at hand and organized, from towels to cleaning products. Storage options to consider when designing your bathroom include under-sink storage, such as in a vanity, medicine cabinet storage, and closet space. A linen cabinet in the bathroom can conceal extra towels as well as hampers and a stockpile of paper products.

 

Exhaust Fan

 

The bathroom can be a humid, steamy place. To keep mold and mildew growth down, you need somewhere for the moist air in the bathroom to go. An exhaust fan vents the air out of the bathroom, away from your home. Even if it's not the most glamorous feature you'll ever consider, it's a must-have in any bathroom.

Homes offers two standard feature collections, as well as a Lifestyles Collection that, contains plenty of in-demand upgrades. When you build your home with us, you have the option of completely customizing it, meaning you'll get the bathrooms you need and want. Contact us today to learn more.

Maximizing Energy Efficiency in Your Custom Home

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As environmental awareness and sustainability have become of the utmost importance, the energy efficiency requirements of custom built homes have evolved. No longer just a feature, energy efficiency is a fundamental priority in constructing custom homes.

This article explores the significance of energy-efficient home builders, the essence of energy-ef...

As environmental awareness and sustainability have become of the utmost importance, the energy efficiency requirements of custom built homes have evolved. No longer just a feature, energy efficiency is a fundamental priority in constructing custom homes.

This article explores the significance of energy-efficient home builders, the essence of energy-efficient home designs, and the role of energy-efficient home plans in creating custom homes that are comfortable, economical, and environmentally sustainable.

The Vital Role of Energy-Efficient Home Builders

Energy efficiency begins with the builder. When you embark on a custom home project, selecting a builder who prioritizes and understands energy-efficient construction practices is crucial. Here's how energy-efficient home builders make a significant impact:

  • Sustainable Materials: Energy-efficient builders carefully select sustainable building materials, which reduce the environmental footprint and enhance insulation and energy conservation.
  • Superior Insulation: Effective insulation is a cornerstone of energy efficiency. Energy-efficient builders ensure that your home is well-insulated, which minimizes heat loss in the winter and heat gain in the summer, ultimately reducing the energy required for heating and cooling.
  • High-Performance Windows: Energy-efficient homes often feature high-performance windows with double or triple glazing. These windows help maintain consistent indoor temperatures, reducing the need for heating and cooling.
  • Energy-Efficient Appliances: Builders collaborate with manufacturers of energy-efficient appliances to equip custom homes with devices that consume less energy. This includes energy-efficient heating and cooling systems, water heaters, and more.
  • Sustainable Construction Practices: Energy-efficient home builders employ sustainable construction practices that reduce waste and minimize the project's environmental impact. Their focus is on using environmentally responsible methods.

The Essence of Energy-Efficient Home Designs

Energy efficiency is not solely dependent on materials but also on the design of your custom home. Here's how energy-efficient home designs are pivotal in creating living spaces that consume less energy.

  • Optimal Orientation: Your home's energy efficiency can be greatly influenced by its orientation. Designers strongly emphasize optimizing the entry of natural light while reducing direct sunlight exposure, especially during the hottest times of the day.
  • Well-Planned Windows: Proper window placement is critical in energy-efficient home designs. It ensures that natural light can illuminate rooms, reducing the need for artificial lighting during the day.
  • Cross-Ventilation: Thoughtful homes incorporate cross-ventilation strategies that allow cool air to flow through the house, reducing the need for air conditioning in hot weather.
  • Efficient Heating and Cooling: Energy-efficient home designs focus on efficient heating and cooling systems, such as zoning and programmable thermostats, to ensure your home remains comfortable while using energy wisely.
  • Thermal Mass: Incorporating thermal mass materials, such as concrete or stone, helps regulate indoor temperatures by absorbing and releasing heat slowly, contributing to energy savings.

The Role of Energy-Efficient Home Plans

A carefully designed energy-efficient home plan is the blueprint for enhancing your custom home's energy efficiency. Here's how these plans foster a greener and more cost-effective living space, showcasing unique features:

  • Sustainability Features: Energy-efficient home plans often include sustainable features, such as solar panels, rainwater harvesting systems, and passive solar design elements that harness the sun's energy.
  • Proper Sizing: Energy-efficient home plans consider the appropriate size of the home to meet your needs without excess space, which can result in unnecessary energy consumption.
  • Optimized Layout: Energy-efficient home plans include a layout that minimizes hallways and dead spaces, ensuring efficient heating and cooling distribution.
  • Quality Insulation: These plans prioritize using quality insulation materials and methods to reduce heat transfer and enhance overall energy performance.
  • Energy-Efficient Lighting: Incorporating LED lighting, daylighting strategies, and efficient fixtures ensures your custom home minimizes electricity usage.

Energy efficiency has evolved from a secondary consideration to a primary focus in constructing custom built homes. The contribution of energy-efficient home builders, the essence of energy-efficient home designs, and the role of energy-efficient home plans have all been combined to create custom homes that are eco-friendly, cost-effective, and comfortable. The vision of a sustainable and energy-efficient home is now a reality, ensuring a greener and more economical living space for homeowners who want to impact the environment and their budget positively. If you need assistance maximizing the energy efficiency in your home, contact Lancia Homes today.

 

How to Choose the Perfect Location for Your Custom Home

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Building a custom home is an exciting experience that begins with a crucial decision—choosing the right location. The home location you select will influence your lifestyle, convenience, and overall satisfaction with your dream home. In this article, we'll explore the essen...

Building a custom home is an exciting experience that begins with a crucial decision—choosing the right location. The home location you select will influence your lifestyle, convenience, and overall satisfaction with your dream home. In this article, we'll explore the essential considerations for finding the perfect location for your custom home and the role of custom home builders near me, especially if you're in Indiana, in making your vision a reality.

Why Location Matters

The location of your custom home can have a profound impact on your daily life. Here are some reasons why it's crucial to choose the right location:

  • Lifestyle: Your chosen location should align with your lifestyle and preferences. Whether you seek a quiet suburban neighborhood, a bustling urban environment, or a serene rural retreat, the location will define your daily experiences.
  • Convenience: Proximity to schools, workplaces, shopping centers, and recreational areas will affect your daily routine. A well-chosen location can simplify your life and save valuable time.
  • Resale Value: The location of your custom home significantly influences its future resale value. A desirable neighborhood can lead to better property appreciation over time.
  • Safety: This is a priority for any homeowner. Researching the safety record of a neighborhood and its proximity to emergency services is essential.

Choosing a Custom Home Location

  • Define Your Priorities: Begin by identifying your priorities. What aspects of the location are most important to you? Is it proximity to work, good schools, or a peaceful environment?
  • Research Local Areas: Investigate various neighborhoods and areas where you'd like to build your custom home. Assess factors such as crime rates, school districts, and local amenities.
  • Commute Considerations: If commuting is a part of your daily routine, consider the distance to work and the ease of transportation options. Shorter commutes can significantly enhance your quality of life.
  • Visit Potential Locations: Take the time to visit potential locations at different times to get a feel for the neighborhood's atmosphere and traffic patterns.
  • Seek Professional Advice: Consult with custom home builders near me, especially those with experience in your chosen location. They can provide valuable insights into the area's pros and cons.
  • Community Amenities: Consider the amenities and services available in the community. Look for nearby parks, grocery stores, medical facilities, and other conveniences.
  • Future Developments: Investigate any planned or ongoing developments in the area. These projects can impact property values and quality of life.

 

Custom Home Builders in Indiana

Working with custom home builders is a wise choice if you are considering building your custom home in Indiana. These local builders have in-depth knowledge of the area, its regulations, and the nuances of the local real estate market. Here's how they can assist you:

  • Local Expertise: Custom home builders Indiana have a strong understanding of the state's unique features, climate, and building regulations. Their local expertise is invaluable in creating a home that suits your needs and the local environment.
  • Permits and Regulations: Navigating the local permitting and zoning regulations can be complex. Indiana builders are well-versed in these processes and can help you secure the necessary approvals.
  • Trusted Partnerships: Local builders have established relationships with suppliers, contractors, and tradespeople. This can streamline the construction process and lead to cost savings.
  • Knowledge of Land: Indiana custom home builders can help you identify suitable land for your project, guiding you toward locations that best align with your vision.
  • Local Trends: Staying current with local trends and architectural styles is crucial to creating a custom home that fits seamlessly into the community. Local builders understand the preferences of Indiana residents.

Custom Home Builders Near Me

When choosing a location for your custom home, you'll likely want to work with custom home builders near me, primarily if you're focused on building within a specific area or city. Here's how they can assist you in finding the perfect location:

  • Personal Consultation: Local builders can meet with you to discuss your needs and preferences. They can recommend locations that align with your vision.
  • Site Evaluation: Custom home builders near me can conduct on-site evaluations of potential locations to determine their suitability for your project.
  • Local Knowledge: They possess detailed knowledge of local neighborhoods, including property values, school districts, and neighborhood dynamics.
  • Accessibility: Proximity to your builder's office means easy access to consultations, updates, and collaboration throughout construction.

Choosing the impeccable location for your custom home is a pivotal decision shaping your daily life and overall satisfaction with your new residence. Consider your priorities, research local areas, and seek the guidance of custom home builders near you, especially those with expertise in your chosen location. If you plan to build in Indiana, working with custom home builders in Indiana can further enhance your project's success. Remember that the right location is the foundation of your dream home, so take your time and make an informed choice that aligns with your lifestyle and vision. Contact Lancia Homes today to get started.

How Can I Make My Garage Floor Look Nice?

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The garage—once merely a valuable space for parking cars and storing tools—has evolved into a multifunctional area in many homes. It's a place for DIY projects, a home gym, a workshop, and even a recreational space. However, a key element often gets overlooked in t...

The garage—once merely a valuable space for parking cars and storing tools—has evolved into a multifunctional area in many homes. It's a place for DIY projects, a home gym, a workshop, and even a recreational space. However, a key element often gets overlooked in this transformation: the garage floor. If you've ever wondered, "How can I make my garage floor look nice?" this article is for you.

The Custom Garage Flooring Advantage

One of the most effective ways to enhance the aesthetics of your garage floor is through custom garage flooring. Unlike generic concrete floors, custom options provide an array of benefits, including:

  1. Aesthetic Appeal Custom garage flooring allows you to choose from various finishes and designs, transforming your garage into an attractive space.
  2. Durability Custom garage flooring is engineered to withstand the heavy traffic, impacts, and potential chemical spills that garages often endure, ensuring long-lasting beauty.
  3. Versatility Whether you want a sleek, polished look, a colorful and eye-catching design, or something in between, custom garage flooring offers an array of style options to match your vision.
  4. Easy Maintenance Cleaning and maintaining a custom garage floor are simple, making it an brilliant choice for busy homeowners.

Creative Garage Floor Ideas

We have compiled a list of the most creative garage floor ideas to inspire you. Get ready to elevate your garage space to a whole new level!

  1. Epoxy Coatings Epoxy coatings are a popular choice for custom garage flooring. They create a seamless, high-gloss surface that is attractive and easy to clean. Epoxy coatings come in various colors and can be customized to match your garage's decor.
  2. Colorful Flakes For a dynamic and vibrant look, consider adding colored flakes to your epoxy coating. These flakes come in various colors and sizes, allowing you to create a unique, speckled effect on your garage floor 
  3. Polished Concrete Polished concrete is an elegant, minimalist option. It involves grinding the concrete surface to create a smooth, high-gloss finish. It's an excellent choice for those who prefer a modern and sleek garage.
  4. Custom Graphics Consider adding custom graphics or logos to your garage floor if you want to make a statement. Whether it's a vintage car emblem or your favorite sports team's logo, this unique touch can turn your garage into a conversation piece. 
  5. Stenciled Patterns Stenciled patterns are a cost-effective way to add character to your garage floor. They can create the illusion of texture, like brick or stone, without the added expense.

Custom Garage Floor Tile

Custom garage flooring isn't limited to coatings and polished concrete. You can also achieve a fantastic look with custom garage floor tiles. These tiles are designed to be both stylish and practical.

 

  1. Interlocking Tiles Interlocking tiles are easy to install and come in various colors and patterns. They are a versatile choice for a custom garage floor, allowing you to create your unique design.
  2. RaceDeck Tiles RaceDeck tiles are designed with car enthusiasts in mind. They are durable, easy to clean, and come in various styles, including diamond plate and coin patterns.
  3. ModuTile ModuTile offers a wide selection of interlocking garage floor tile, including designs that mimic the look of hardwood, stone, and more. These tiles are functional and can add a slight touch of luxury to your garage.
  4. Peel-and-stick Tiles Peel-and-stick tiles are a budget-friendly option for easy DIY projects. These tiles are available in various colors and patterns and can quickly transform the appearance of your garage floor.

Personalization and Functionality

It's vital to balance personalization with functionality when considering custom garage flooring and garage floor ideas. Your garage serves multiple purposes, and your chosen flooring should align with your lifestyle. For example, a sleek epoxy coating may be perfect for a gym or showroom, while interlocking tiles might be ideal for a workshop

Maintenance and longevity

It's worth noting that while custom garage flooring enhances your garage's appearance, it also contributes to its longevity. Custom options are more resistant to stains, cracks, and abrasion than standard concrete floors. They require minimal maintenance and provide a shield that can extend the life of your garage floor.

Transforming your garage floor from a plain, uninspiring surface to an attractive and functional space is achievable through custom garage flooring and creative garage floor ideas. The choice of custom options allows you to create a lovely garage that suits your lifestyle and needs. Whether you opt for epoxy coatings, colorful flakes, polished concrete, custom tiles, or any other creative design, your garage will become a space you're proud to show off and enjoy for years. So, if you've ever asked, "How can I make my garage floor look nice?" you have the answer. Contact us today if you want to elevate your garage's appearance and functionality with a custom touch.

 

Enhancing Curb Appeal: Landscaping Tips for Custom Homes

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In custom homes, curb appeal is not merely a catchphrase—it's a critical aspect of a home's aesthetic charm and value. It's your home's first impression, a warm welcome to its residents and visitors, and it looks good in photos. Effective curb appeal landscaping is about more than just planting flowers and shrubs; it's an art form that enhances the beauty of your home and reflects your style, harmonizing with your unique exterior...

In custom homes, curb appeal is not merely a catchphrase—it's a critical aspect of a home's aesthetic charm and value. It's your home's first impression, a warm welcome to its residents and visitors, and it looks good in photos. Effective curb appeal landscaping is about more than just planting flowers and shrubs; it's an art form that enhances the beauty of your home and reflects your style, harmonizing with your unique exterior home design.

 

Let's explore how to create a captivating curb appeal, including curb appeal mailbox landscaping and cheap simple front yard landscaping ideas that can make a difference. We will also share some common mistakes to avoid.

The Significance of Curb Appeal Landscaping

Curb appealing landscaping is about creating an exterior that is attractive and inviting. It's enhancing the front yard to ensure your custom home stands out. Here's why it's essential:

  1. First Impressions Count Your curb appeal is the first impression your home conveys. A beautifully designed front yard captures attention, evokes a positive emotional response, and sets the tone for what lies beyond. A warm embrace leaves a lasting impression on guests and passersby.
  2. Boosts Home Value An appealing curb appeal can significantly increase your home's value. Potential buyers are more likely to be drawn to a home that exudes charm and has been well-maintained. Investing in your home's exterior is an investment in its future.
  3. Personal Pride A well-maintained and beautifully landscaped front yard is a source of pride for homeowners. It reflects your style and the care and attention you put into your property. It's a statement of the pride you take in your home.

Creative Front Yard Landscaping Ideas

Enhancing your front yard can be a simple endeavor. There are plenty of cheap simple front yard landscaping ideas that can make a significant impact on your curb appeal. Here are a few suggestions:

  1. Native Plants Incorporate native plants into your landscaping. They are well-suited to your local climate and require less maintenance. Native plants can add color, attract local wildlife, and provide a sense of place in your front yard.
  2. Container Gardens Container gardens are an affordable way to add greenery to your front yard. You can plant flowers, herbs, or small shrubs in containers and place them strategically to create a vibrant display
  3. Mulch A fresh layer of mulch can do wonders for your front yard. It gives a polished and tidy look while helping to retain moisture and prevent weed growth. Choose a mulch that complements your home's color scheme.
  4. Edging Define your garden beds and walkways with edging. You can use materials like stones, bricks, or low-maintenance metal edging to give your landscaping a structured and clean appearance. This small addition can make a big difference.
  5. Seasonal Flowers Plant seasonal flowers to add color and variety to your front yard throughout the year. Different blooms for each season keep your curb appeal fresh and ever-changing.

 

Crafting the Perfect Landscaping Plan

To create stunning curb appeal, a well-thought-out landscaping plan is essential. Here are the critical steps to developing a successful plan for your custom home:

  1. Assess Your Space Start by evaluating your front yard's size, shape, and existing features. Identify areas that need improvement and make a list of your landscaping goals.
  2. Define Your Style Consider your home's architectural style and your taste. Your landscaping should complement your home's design and reflect your unique style.
  3. Set a Budget Determine how much you're willing to invest in your landscaping project. This budget will guide your choices and help you prioritize your goals.
  4. Create a Planting Plan Select a variety of plants, trees, and shrubs that are suitable for your climate and that fit your aesthetic vision. Mix colors, heights, and textures for a visually appealing result.
  5. Maintenance Plan Think about the long-term maintenance of your landscaping. Choose low-maintenance plants and materials to keep your front yard looking great with minimal effort.

Curb appeal landscaping is the art of creating an attractive and inviting exterior. Even minor details, like the mailbox area, can make a harmonious and charming front yard. Plenty of cheap, simple front yard landscaping ideas can enhance curb appeal without breaking the bank. A well-planned landscaping project invests in your home's value and reflects your pride. It creates a warm and lasting impression on all who approach your custom home, setting the stage for a memorable welcome. With the right plan, your custom home's curb appeal can become a work of art, and if you need help, contact us today.

Budgeting for Your Custom Home: Tips for a Successful Project

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Building a custom home is a dream come true for many. It allows you to create a living space perfectly suits your needs and desires. However, the journey from vision to reality requires careful planning and a well-managed budget.

Let's explore the world of custom homes and learn essential tips for effectively budgeting and managing the costs to build a custom home. We'll also introduce you to a home-bu...

Building a custom home is a dream come true for many. It allows you to create a living space perfectly suits your needs and desires. However, the journey from vision to reality requires careful planning and a well-managed budget.

Let's explore the world of custom homes and learn essential tips for effectively budgeting and managing the costs to build a custom home. We'll also introduce you to a home-building budget spreadsheet that can help keep your project on track.

Understanding the Custom Home Build Cost

Building a custom home is a massive undertaking, and understanding custom home build cost is the first step in managing your budget. It can vary widely depending on location, size, design, and the level of customization. Here are some key cost considerations:

  • Location: The geographical location of your custom home can significantly impact the overall cost. Factors such as land prices, labor costs, and local regulations play a role in determining the cost of building in a particular area.
  • Size and Design: The size and complexity of your custom home are significant cost drivers. Larger homes with intricate architectural designs will typically require a higher budget.
  • Materials and Finishes: Your budget will be impacted by the quality of materials and finishes you opt for. Choosing high-end materials, fixtures, and finishes will raise the overall cost of your project.
  • Site Preparation: The condition of the land where your home will be built can influence site preparation costs. A sloping or uneven site may require more extensive work, impacting the budget.
  • Permits and Regulations: Meeting local building codes and obtaining necessary permits can add to the cost of your custom home project.

Tips for Budgeting Your Custom Home

  • Set a Realistic Budget: Consider your financial situation and consult a financial advisor to determine a budget you can comfortably manage.
  • Prioritize Your Needs: Begin by identifying your essential features and amenities. Allocating your budget more efficiently becomes easier when you prioritize your needs ahead of your wants.
  • Research and Get Multiple Quotes: When choosing contractors and suppliers, obtain multiple quotes. This will help you compare costs and select the best options that fit your budget.
  • Plan for Contingencies: Unforeseen expenses can arise during construction. It's wise to allocate a portion of your budget for contingencies to cover unexpected costs.
  • Use a Home Building Budget Spreadsheet: A home building budget spreadsheet can be invaluable in managing your project's finances. It allows you to track expenses, monitor progress, and ensure you stay within your budget.

Managing the Custom Home Build Cost

Effective budget management throughout your custom home project is essential for ensuring its success. Here are some additional tips for managing the custom home build cost:

  • Regularly Review Your Budget: Monitor your budget as the project progresses. This will help you stay on top of expenses and address potential issues early.
  • Communicate with Your Contractor: Maintain open and transparent communication with your contractor. Discuss any budget concerns or plan changes to ensure everyone is on the same page.
  • Seek Cost-Saving Alternatives: Look for cost-saving alternatives without compromising quality. Your builder or architect may have suggestions for more budget-friendly materials or designs.
  • Avoid Scope Creep: Be mindful of scope creep when project requirements expand beyond the original plan. Sticking to your initial vision can prevent unnecessary expenses.

Building a custom home is an exciting journey. It requires careful budgeting and financial management to ensure a successful outcome. Understanding the cost to build a custom home is the foundation of your budget, and utilizing a home-building budget spreadsheet can help you keep track of expenses and make well-educated decisions. You can confidently embark on your custom home project, knowing your dream home is within reach while staying financially responsible. If you need help looking at homes, contact Lancia Homes today.

Craft Room Makeover: Turning Your Spare Room into a Productive and Inspiring Creative Workspace

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A spare room, often an underutilized space, holds untapped potential for becoming a haven of creativity and productivity.

From spare room ideas to spare room decorating ideas, this guide will turn your blank canvas into a thriving creative workspace.

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A spare room, often an underutilized space, holds untapped potential for becoming a haven of creativity and productivity.

From spare room ideas to spare room decorating ideas, this guide will turn your blank canvas into a thriving creative workspace.

Unlocking the Potential of Your Spare Room

It's essential to envision how you want the space to function. Here are some ideas for a spare room that can help you determine the purpose of your creative haven:

  1. Crafting and Sewing Room A dedicated crafting room is perfect if you love sewing, knitting, or creating handmade crafts. It can house your sewing machine and supplies and has ample workspace.
  2. Art Studio An art studio is ideal for painters, sketch artists, and crafters who need a space to let their artistic talents flourish. You can incorporate easels, art supplies, and good lighting for your creative projects.
  3. Home Office and Craft Room If you work from home or need a space for administrative tasks, consider blending your craft room with a home office. This combination allows for a productive workspace while providing room for artistic expression.
  4. Multipurpose Space A multipurpose room can cater to various creative activities, from crafting to DIY projects. You can have designated areas for each type of project or use portable furniture for a flexible workspace.

Spare Room Decorating Ideas

With a clear vision of your craft room's purpose, it's time to embark on the fun part: decorating and designing your creative sanctuary. Here are some spare room decorating ideas to get you started:

 

  1. Color Palette Choose a color pattern that resonates with your creative spirit. Soft pastels, vibrant hues, or earthy tones can set the mood for your craft room. Contemplate painting an accent wall or incorporating vibrant decorations to infuse your space with an energetic atmosphere.
  2. Storage Solutions A well-organized craft room is essential. Invest in shelves, cabinets, and storage bins to keep your supplies neatly arranged. Open shelving can display your materials while also making them easily accessible.
  3. Creative Inspiration Wall Dedicate a wall to your sources of inspiration. Hang your favorite artwork, photographs, and quotes that fuel your creative fire. This wall can serve as a visual muse during your crafting sessions.
  4. Functional Workstations Your craft room should feature functional workstations for your creative endeavors. Have a spacious table for sewing or crafting, a sturdy desk for office tasks, and an easel or workbench for your art projects.
  5. Lighting Good lighting is crucial for a craft room. Natural light is ideal but invest in bright, energy-efficient LED lighting. Task lighting is essential for detailed work, so consider adjustable desk lamps or overhead lights with dimmer switches.
  6. Creative Nooks Create dedicated nooks or corners for specific craft projects. A sewing nook with a sewing machine, a painting corner with an easel, or a jewelry-making area with organized tools can help streamline your creative process. 
  7. Comfortable Seating If your craft room also serves as a home office, ensure you have a comfortable chair for extended work hours. For crafting and sewing, consider ergonomic seating that provides support and comfort.

Ideas For a Productive and Inspiring Craft Room

To create a craft room that inspires creativity and productivity, consider the following ideas:

  1. Personalization Make the room uniquely yours with personalized decor and artwork. Incorporate elements that represent your style and passion.
  2. Inspirational Quotes Display inspirational quotes about your craft or creative pursuits. These can serve as daily reminders of your artistic goals and aspirations.
  3. Organized Chaos While organization is critical, don't be afraid to embrace a bit of "organized chaos." Your creative space should be inviting and reflect your personality, so don't worry if it gets messy during a creative session.
  4. Natural Elements Incorporate natural elements like plants, flowers, and wood furniture. These elements can provide a calming and grounding effect in your craft room.
  5. Interactive Boards Install interactive boards, like a chalkboard or whiteboard, where you can jot down ideas, sketch out designs, or make to-do lists.
  6. Creative Supplies Display If you have an impressive collection of crafting or art supplies, consider displaying them in an aesthetically pleasing way. Organized supplies can double as art in your craft room.

With the right vision and the application of extra room ideas, you can transform your unused space into a personalized and inspiring craft room. Incorporating stylish spare room decorating ideas and creating functional workspaces will allow your creativity to thrive in an environment that reflects your unique style and passions. Your craft room is not just a room; it's a place where your imagination comes to life, ideas are born, and you can nurture your artistic spirit. Contact us today, and let's turn your spare room into the craft room of your dreams.

What Are Some of The Best Modern Home Designs?

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Modern design is one of the most popular options for American home design. This type of home design incorporates soothing colors and natural elements to create comfortable and inviting spaces inside and outside of homes. 

If you appreciate sleek lines, minimalist aesthetics, and cutting-edge technology seamlessly blending with ev...

Modern design is one of the most popular options for American home design. This type of home design incorporates soothing colors and natural elements to create comfortable and inviting spaces inside and outside of homes. 

If you appreciate sleek lines, minimalist aesthetics, and cutting-edge technology seamlessly blending with everyday living, this home style may be the perfect option. Whether planning a renovation or simply seeking inspiration for your dream home, understanding this particular home design style can help you determine if it is the right option.

Standard Features of Modern Home Design

Several standard features are incorporated into modern home design. These include: 

Clean Geometric Lines: Modern home design is well-known for having straightforward methods. The home designs are linear and clean, often incorporating exposed building materials.

Multifunctional Spaces: Living spaces within these homes are designed to have multiple functions. This provides the feeling of saving space and creating an environmental option for each room. 

Eco-Friendly: These homes are often designed with upgrades in mind. Many modern homes are designed for eco-friendly updates. Many have eco-friendly building materials and roofs perfect for solar panels, green roofs, and other environmentally friendly changes.

Post and Beam Structures: Modern architecture is known for having exposed ceiling beams, wood posts, and other modern twists on farmhouse interior designs. Rather than hiding the bones that are behind the walls, modern architecture brings them to the forefront.

Open Concept Floorplans: Given that modern home design focuses on minimalism and multifunctional spaces, it is no surprise that modern designs tend to be more open concept.

All of these features are blended with an array of elements.

What are the Elements of Modern Home Design? 

Modern home designs have several distinct characteristics that set this style apart from the rest. These include:

  • Monochromatic Color Palettes: Modern home design focuses on a monochromatic color palette. We see many designer homes with multiple shades of the same color used throughout. This approach creates a visually appealing and harmonious space with a touch of sophistication. 
  • Clean Line Designs: Clean lines are fundamental to modern home design. They create a sense of simplicity and order that is pleasing to the eye. Clean lines can be seen in a space's architecture, furniture, and even the decorative elements. The architecture and exterior home design often contain clean lines that are characterized by minimal ornamentation and straight edges. In some instances, these homes have large windows and flat roofs. 
  • Minimalism: Minimalism is one of the most common elements in American home design. Keeping the plans simple and functional makes the home visually appealing inside and outside. 
  • Natural Materials: Modern homes often incorporate wood and other raw materials. This can be seen in the home's interior, such as wood flooring and furniture, and the exterior home design, such as wood or stone siding materials.
  • Natural Lighting: Natural light also plays a crucial role in modern home design. Large windows or skylights allow ample natural light to flood into the space during the day, reducing the need for indoor artificial lights and creating an open and airy atmosphere.

Modern home design is about creating a space that reflects simplicity, functionality, and beauty. Incorporating these elements for interior and exterior home design can help you achieve a modern look that promotes serenity and comfort. 

The elements mentioned above are just some critical components in modern home design. By embracing these principles in our own living spaces, our team at Lancia Homes can help you create environments that are not only visually appealing but also promote relaxation and well-being. So, consider incorporating these elements into your plans for a truly modern haven, whether revamping your current home or starting from scratch with new construction. Contact our team to submit a service request to see how we can help you transform your space.

The Difference Between Bay Windows vs. Bow Windows

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If you are in the market for a new window, two top-rated options are available: the bay window and the bow window. Each option provides several benefits that can help you brighten your space. Knowing the difference between bay and bow window options is es...

If you are in the market for a new window, two top-rated options are available: the bay window and the bow window. Each option provides several benefits that can help you brighten your space. Knowing the difference between bay and bow window options is essential to determine which will work best for you.

What are Bay Windows?

Bay windows have three different openings. These include a center-fixed window and two side windows, which can be fixed or vented, that are positioned at a vertical angle. These windows tend to protrude further from home than most other windows, making your interior space feel much more significant. Since bay windows only have three panels, they tend to be less comprehensive than bow windows.

What is Bow Windows? 

Bow windows are like bay windows in that they also protrude from the home and can create a much larger feeling for your interior space. However, bow windows are curved with more fixed or vented window panels. 

Bow Window vs. Bay Window for Home Designs

When selecting the right window for your home, knowing that bay windows are a more contemporary option is essential. This makes them more appropriate for modern homes. The semicircular structure of bowed windows makes them a perfect element for Victorian architecture. 

Although these are the recommended windows for each of these styles of homes, either window will perfectly fit into any space, making it an attractive finish for your home.

Exploring the Pros and Cons of Bay and Bow Windows

There are some advantages and disadvantages to these two types of windows. A key benefit of having a bay window is that it is ideal for adding more space to your room. The extra square footage can not only create a more aesthetically pleasing space but it can also help improve the space's functionality.

Alternatively, bow windows provide a panoramic view of the outdoors due to their curved shape. This ensures that you can maximize the natural lighting that enters your home. This can significantly brighten your living space and create an open, airy atmosphere while reducing your reliability on artificial lighting.

Regarding versatility, bay windows offer far more flexibility in design options. Although these windows have a center-fixed panel, the sides can be customized.

Both windows have some drawbacks as well. When considering the difference in bow window vs. bay window cost, bow windows are far more expensive because they are larger and have more windowpanes. This can also make it more difficult for them to be installed, which can cost more money for a bay window replacement.

Unfortunately, bay windows may require regular maintenance because they have a complex structure. This includes checking for leaks that can develop between each panel.

How to Choose the Right Window for Your Home

When it comes time to choose the right window for your home, there are several things that you should take into consideration. Is your goal to increase your natural lighting in the space? Are you interested in improving ventilation throughout your room? When you determine what the specific need is for your window, it can help to narrow down the available options.

Next, you should consider the design and the style of your home. The windows can add a touch of elegance to your space while creating a more cozy feeling. Bow windows have more curves and tend to appear more graceful. Matching the style of architecture in your home can help determine which one will help you achieve visual harmony.

Get Professional Help Today

If you want to speak with a professional to determine which window option may work best for your space, contact our team at Lancia Homes. Our designers can meet with you and help determine which option works best for your area. Call our team now to make a service request.

Picking the Best Window Frame Colors for Your Home

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Changing your window color doesn’t happen too often, but when it does, it’s a big deal. The color you choose for your window will determine the whole tone of the exterior of your home. Because of this, you want to put much thought into what you hope to achieve by changing your window trim colors. Not only is this important so that you love how your house looks,...

Changing your window color doesn’t happen too often, but when it does, it’s a big deal. The color you choose for your window will determine the whole tone of the exterior of your home. Because of this, you want to put much thought into what you hope to achieve by changing your window trim colors. Not only is this important so that you love how your house looks, but it’s also very important for curb appeal. 

Whether you are changing window frame colors because you are selling your home or just because it’s time for something new, this article will help you think of all the things you need to consider when choosing the right window frame color for your house!

Part of the bigger picture

Consider them part of a larger project when reviewing window trim color ideas. Your window trims must match the vibe of the rest of the house; otherwise, they stick out like a sore thumb. For example, a classic home with earthy tones could probably do without bright, more modern color schemes. 

Our eyes are naturally drawn to windows, so you don’t need to do anything too over the top to draw attention to them. At the same time, you want them to be framed in a way that fits with the theme of the rest of the project but still helps them stand out on their own. 

So, how do you do this?

Start with a plan

A common mistake when overhauling the exterior of your home is to not think of it as a bigger picture. This is why working with an experienced professional is important so you can get the most out of your home exterior. 

For example, if you decided on a window color and ordered it before you even had a plan for the rest of the house, you are suddenly doing the whole project based on window color. This can be limiting and frustrating. By having a plan, you’ll be more confident that you will have a whole exterior—not just your windows—to be proud of. 

Go with a classic

If you are in doubt, you may as well just keep it simple. As common as it is, nothing is boring about white window trim exterior. White goes with just about any theme you could come up with for the exterior of your home. It helps to add a bit of pop to a modern-looking home, or it can help windows blend in on a more traditional home. 

Another thing that is great about white is that there are several different hues that you can choose from. A more modern home would likely want a bright white, while a more traditional one would look better with a muted white. 

Be careful with trends

As popular as white is, black has become one of the more popular exterior window trim paint colors. The thing is, though, black isn’t as universal as white. While white can go with anything, black generally mixes best with white. Does that mean black works well with all bright colors? Not necessarily. A bright blue home, or something wild like a bright pink home, would certainly not look as good with black window trim as white window trim. 

So, when does black work the best?

Black generally works the best on large windows that don’t need much in the way of framing. It also works best with whites and different shades of white. 

Embrace color

There is so much more to choose from than just black and white! For example, if you have a home you would describe as “earthy,” you might want to play around with other earth tones. This could mean different browns or even dark shades of green. 

For unique and/or colorful homes, why not consider something wild like bright pink? Or if you live in a sunny area, a sky blue. If you pick something unique enough, you could be the talk of the neighborhood!

If you need help choosing your window frame color, please contact Lancia Homes today!

Do I Need an Architect to Design My House?

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Building your dream home is an exciting journey filled with endless possibilities and choices. At the heart of this endeavor lies a pivotal decision: Do you need an architect to design your house?

While architects bring expertise, alternative routes exist to achieve your vision. In this article,...

Building your dream home is an exciting journey filled with endless possibilities and choices. At the heart of this endeavor lies a pivotal decision: Do you need an architect to design your house?

While architects bring expertise, alternative routes exist to achieve your vision. In this article, we'll navigate the landscape of architectural design, architectural designer jobs, and the phases involved while exploring other avenues.

Understanding the Role of an Architect

Architects are trained in the art and science of designing and planning buildings, including homes. They have the knowledge and abilities to create attractive, functional, safe structures. An architect's work extends beyond the drawing board; they manage projects, coordinate with contractors, and ensure adherence to building codes.

Architectural Designer Jobs: The Versatility of Skills

Architectural designers, often called architectural drafters, work closely with architects in the design process. They translate the architect's vision into technical drawings and plans. These professionals are adept at using computer-aided design (CAD) software to create detailed blueprints and specifications. While they may not have the same responsibility level as licensed architects, architectural designers are essential team members in bringing architectural projects to life.

Architectural Design Phases

The architectural design process typically comprises several phases, each serving a distinct purpose:

  1. Programming: This initial phase involves defining the project's objectives, requirements, and constraints. Architects and clients collaborate to establish the project's scope, budget, and functional needs.
  2. Schematic Design: In this phase, architects explore various design concepts and create rough sketches or diagrams to illustrate potential solutions. The goal is to develop a clear design direction.
  3. Design Development: Building upon the chosen schematic design, this phase involves refining the plans and developing more detailed drawings. Material selections, structural systems, and mechanical systems are considered.
  4. Construction Documents: Architects create comprehensive construction documents that include detailed drawings and specifications. These documents serve as the blueprint for the contractor to follow during construction.
  5. Bidding and Negotiation: Architects assist clients in selecting a contractor through a competitive bidding process. They also help negotiate contracts and pricing.
  6. Construction Administration: Throughout the construction phase, architects oversee the project to ensure the design is executed according to the plans and specifications. They address any issues that may arise during construction.

Chief Architect Home Designer: A Software Solution

Advancements in technology have revolutionized the field of architectural design. Chief Architect Home Designer is a powerful software tool that allows individuals with little to no architectural background to create detailed home designs. It has an easy-to-use UI, drag-and-drop capability, and a library of pre-designed elements.

While Chief Architect Home Designer is an excellent choice for those seeking to design their homes independently, it's important to note its limitations. The software may lack an architect's expertise and creativity, especially when dealing with complex or unique home designs.

Unique Home Designs: A Collaborative Approach

Collaboration with an architect can be invaluable for homeowners with a vision for truly unique home designs. Architects have the knowledge and experience to turn innovative ideas into reality. They can incorporate unconventional materials, energy-efficient features, and distinctive architectural elements to create a one-of-a-kind home.

Architects also consider their designs' site orientation, environmental impact, and long-term functionality. These considerations can result in a home that stands out visually and enhances your quality of life.

Do I Need an Architect? Weighing Your Options

Ultimately, deciding whether to engage an architect in your home design project hinges on your specific needs and preferences. Here are some factors to consider:

  • Complexity of Design: An architect's expertise is invaluable if your vision involves intricate or unconventional architectural elements.
  • Budget: While architects bring expertise, their services come at a cost. Consider your budget and whether it allows for architectural design fees.
  • Time: Designing a home with software tools like Chief Architect Home Designer may be faster than coordinating with an architect, making it a viable option for those with time constraints.
  • Regulatory Compliance: Architects are well-versed in building codes and regulations. An architect can provide peace of mind if ensuring compliance is a concern.
  • Personal Skills: Your comfort with design software and ability to convey ideas may influence your decision. If you're confident in your design skills, software tools may suffice.

The choice of whether to hire an architect to design your house is a deeply personal one. It hinges on factors such as your budget, the complexity of your design, and your desire for a truly unique home. While architectural designers and software tools offer viable alternatives, architects bring a wealth of expertise to the table, making them a valuable resource for those seeking extraordinary home designs. Ultimately, your chosen path should align with your vision and aspirations for your dream home. If you would like more information on Lancia Homes, contact us today.

Creative Storage Solutions for Small Closets: Maximize Your Space

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Small closets can be challenging, but they don't have to be. With creativity and planning, you can transform even the tiniest closet into a well-organized space that maximizes storage capacity.

Storage Closet with Shelves

Storage closets with shelves...

Small closets can be challenging, but they don't have to be. With creativity and planning, you can transform even the tiniest closet into a well-organized space that maximizes storage capacity.

Storage Closet with Shelves

Storage closets with shelves are a great way to add extra storage to your closet. They can store folded clothes, shoes, accessories, and more. Here are a few tips for using storage closets with shelves effectively:

  • Install floating shelves: Floating shelves are a versatile and stylish storage option. They can be installed at any height, and they can be tailored to the dimensions of your closet.
  • Use shoe shelves: Shoe shelves are an excellent way to organize and keep your shoes off the floor. You can find shoe shelves in various styles and sizes to ensure you find the ideal fit for your needs.
  • Invest in folded clothing shelves: Folded clothing shelves are a great way to store sweaters, jeans, T-shirts, and other folded clothing items. You can install adjustable shelves to accommodate different clothing heights.

Top Shelf Closet Organizer

The top shelf of your closet is often an underutilized space, but it can be a great place to store seasonal items, out-of-season clothing, or other items you don't use daily. Here are a few tips for using a top-shelf closet organizer effectively:

  • Store seasonal items: Use the top shelf to store seasonal items like out-of-season clothes, holiday decorations, or travel bags. Use bins or storage boxes to keep these items neatly contained and labeled for easy identification.
  • Utilize vertical space: Add an extra shelf or two above the top shelf to create additional storage tiers. This approach maximizes vertical space while keeping items easily accessible.
  • Install baskets or bins: Invest in baskets or bins that fit the top shelf. These containers can hold smaller items, accessories, or even extra bedding, making the most of the space.

Closet Hanger Organizer

Hanging organizers are a great way to save space and organize your clothes. Here are a few tips for using a closet hanger organizer effectively:

  • Use multi-tier hangers: Multi-tier hangers feature multiple hanging levels, allowing you to hang several items vertically. They're great for pants, skirts, or accessories like scarves and belts.
  • Invest in hanging shoe organizers: Hanging shoe organizers can store shoes, socks, hosiery, and small accessories on the closet rod.
  • Use a hanger stacker: A hanger stacker is a clever tool that keeps your hangers neatly organized and prevents them from tangling or taking up unnecessary space.

Inspired Closets: Custom Solutions

Sometimes, the best storage solutions for small closets are custom-designed to suit your specific needs. Inspired closets are customized storage systems that make the most of every inch of space. Here are a few inspired closet ideas:

  • Install a built-in closet system: A professional closet designer can help you create a custom built-in closet system that includes shelves, drawers, hanging rods, and even hidden compartments to keep your closet tidy and organized.
  • Consider pull-out accessories: Pull-out racks, pull-down rods, and ironing boards can optimize closet functionality and keep your items easily accessible.
  • Invest in custom shelving units: Custom shelving units can be designed to fit your closet's unique shape and size. They provide designated spaces for different items and can even include built-in lighting for visibility.
  • Create a color-coordinated design: Creating a visually pleasing closet by incorporating a color-coordinated design that matches your style can make your closet feel more spacious and inviting.

Small closets may present storage challenges, but you can maximize your space with creative solutions. Whether you opt for a storage closet with shelves, a top shelf closet organizer, a closet hanger organizer, or custom-inspired closets, there are plenty of ways to optimize your small closet's storage capacity.

Start by assessing your specific needs and preferences, then implement the best solutions. With ingenuity, your small closet can become a well-organized oasis that simplifies your daily routine and enhances your living space.

If you have any questions or would like more information about Lancia Homes, please do not hesitate to contact us. We have model centers and open houses that you can visit, or contact us through our website. We would be delighted to answer any of your questions in finding the ideal home for your requirements.