During a question and answer session at a recent industry conference, a home builder asked Moody’s Analytics chief economist Mark Zandi for his thoughts about the labor
When it comes to constructing a show house, custom builder Gary Striegler can’t say enough about the value of teamwork.
|C & S Custom Homes incorporated the design features and amenities that have made it one of the most sought-after custom builders in the Fayetteville, Ark., area into this 4,700-square-foot spec home built for the local Parade of Homes.|
When it comes to constructing a show house, custom builder Gary Striegler can’t say enough about the value of teamwork. His firm, C & S Custom Homes, was part of the team that built this beautiful, 4,700-square-foot home in Fayetteville, Ark., for the Northwest Arkansas Home Builders Association’s 2001 Parade of Homes.
Striegler describes this project as a group effort on the part of everyone involved, from his longtime subcontractors, to local suppliers providing their newest products, to the three interior design firms he enlisted to decorate the finished house. “All of the vendors recognized that the more they worked together, the more it would benefit everyone,” he says. “The finished product really reflects that attitude of cooperation.”
|Oversize windows, such as this pair flanking the fireplace in the great room, provide the perfect opportunity for builder Gary Striegler to show off his company’s penchant for detailed millwork.|
C & S builds an average of five high-end custom projects annually in and around Fayetteville, but this $600,000, spec-built home marked the maiden venture of Striegler and partner Dan Cobb into show-home territory. Capitalizing on their knowledge of the market, careful planning and ability to assemble a compatible support staff ensured that they came away from the HBA-sponsored event with a quick sale and smiles. “This was one of the most positive construction experiences that we’ve ever been involved in,” says Striegler, who plans to participate in the local Parade of Homes next year.
“We really spent a lot of time touring other Parade of Homes shows in larger markets near ours, including Dallas,” Striegler says. “We wanted to know what other builders were doing. When we saw how much exposure people were getting locally, we were convinced that we wanted to be a part of this.”
|A two-story foyer is a must in all of Striegler’s projects, he says. With a 9-foot ceiling height used throughout the main floor, this foyer creates entry impact.|
Builders and buyers alike can benefit from a Parade of Homes show, Striegler says. “This type of project really provides the builder with an excellent opportunity to showcase his work as well as to make contact with clients who may be interested in building a new home in the future.
“And a show house also gives the public the chance to visualize an actual floor plan and experience how it will ‘live.’ Plus it provides them with a valuable opportunity to meet people who actually know the ins and outs of the construction trade.”
Striegler made sure that many of the participants in his Parade of Homes project, from decorators to vendors, were on site during the weekends when the home was open for tour. “I even encouraged them to display their company literature in the house, as long as it was tastefully done.”
He targeted the Fayetteville area’s growing upscale family market when developing the floor plan for this house. “There were a number of things that we already know work well for us here,” he says.
|The kitchen features commercial-grade appliances and custom maple cabinetry.|
According to Striegler, “must-haves” for a show house in his market include at least four bedrooms plus a flex space that can be converted into an additional bedroom or an in-law suite; a main-floor master suite; a home office; a formal dining room; and a second, informal staircase directly off or near the kitchen or family zone.
Striegler had the option of displaying this house furnished or unfurnished. “We decided that we wanted it to be totally furnished and decorated in order to show it off to its best potential.”
While Striegler enlisted the help of three interior design firms for this project, he selected the color palette himself to maintain continuity throughout the interior.
|Elegant and inviting, the formal dining room stands ready to greet guests in style with its floor-to-ceiling windows, elaborate trim and mood lighting. The red oak floor features a walnut inlay for a sophisticated look that matches the rest of the room’s décor.|
The home, located in the upscale development Doubletree Estates, was completed in June 2001. It was sold immediately after the show.
Builder| C & S Custom Homes, Fayetteville, Ark.
Interior Designers| BP’s Interior Expressions, Farmington, Ark.; Kimberly Harper Interiors, Fayetteville, Ark.; Today’s Office, Springdale, Ark.
Major Products Used| Appliances: General Electric | Cabinetry: Verser | Countertops: marble, travertine | Doors: Coventry, MAI | Fireplaces: Lennox | Flooring: oak | HVAC: Amana | Lighting: Lighting Emporium | Plumbing Fixtures: Price Pfister, Pearl, Springdale, St. Thomas | Windows: Weather Shield.
|A view through the doors of the oversize walk-in shower reveals the full glory of the luxurious master bath. This important retreat space features the same attention to detail that characterizes the rest of the house.|