Home Buying Terminology

dictionaryInvesting in new home construction in Mandarin, FL, can be a daunting enough process on its own without a bunch of complicated terminology getting in the way. Being unfamiliar with some of these terms can make the entire process seem more overwhelming, so we’re here to help explain some common home buying terms to help you understand and jumpstart the process.

Escrow – When an impartial third party holds on to something of value during a transaction. This can help protect both buyers and sellers alike, assuring all parts of the deal are held up on the sellers end and the amount held in escrow forfeited to the seller if the buyer backs out with no reason.

Title – The legal document verifying the ownership of a home.

Down Payment – The initial cash amount paid up front on a home purchase before the rest is financed by a mortgage loan.

Mortgage – A home loan that is offered by banks, credit unions, or other lenders with various rates and varying term durations for repayment.

Amortization – The schedule that is determined to pay off a mortgage over a specified length of time, made in monthly installments.

Appraisal – An assessment given to determine the value of a particular property by a professional.

Learn more about the home buying process and new home construction in Mandarin, FL and the surrounding area at

Cut Heating Costs

There are a lot of things to love about winter: the first snow fall, hot chocolate, and cozying up by the fireplace. One thing that puts a damper on the colder months is an increasingly large heating bill coming in the mail. However, there are ways to help decrease your monthly heating costs while still keeping your house cozy. Here are a few ideas:

Use the sun – When the sun is shining brightly during winter, it may still be chilly outside, but you can use those bright rays to your advantage to help save on heating costs. By keeping shades and curtains open during the day, especially ones on windows that allow a lot of sun in, you allow much-needed heat in through these rays. Additionally, closing them at night will help prevent drafts from cooling your house down more.

Invest in a smart thermostat – These devices can be programmed to automatically turn down the temperature during certain hours when it’s convenient to do so, such as when you’re at work or sleeping. They claim to save about 10-12% on heating costs, so your investment could easily pay for itself in a winter or two.

Another way to keep your heating bill down is to have it designed to keep the cold out with fixtures like energy-efficient windows. For more on design and new home construction in Jacksonville, FL, visit today.

Home and Garden Shows

landscaping houseThe spring and summer are great times to revamp your current living spaces, do some remodeling, or even begin the process of building a new home! In order to create the right living space for you, it’s important to find the right inspirations for your plans for your household, and a great way to do that is by attending home and garden shows! We’ve compiled some information about some great home and garden shows in the area to help you get some ideas for home improvement this season.

Lake Nona Home & Garden Show – May 6th, 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM at Courtyard by Marriot Orlando, Lake Nona, FL

This home and garden exhibit aims to help homeowners discover the latest indoor and outdoor products as well as innovations for the home. Professional interior designers and builders will share tips and knowledge and there will be plenty of DIY information for home kitchen and bath projects.
Tampa Bay’s Largest Home Show – July 14th, 10:00 AM – July 16th, 5:00 PM at Tropicana Field, Saint Petersburg, FL

Presented by the Tampa Bay Times, this show includes great exhibits, seminars, giveaways, and information about the latest trends in home remodeling.  

By attending these events, you may be able to get some useful ideas or tips and tricks for any remodeling you want to do this season. If you’re look into building a new home, and are in need of home builders in Orange Park, FL, contact today.

Home Design Trends 2017

colorful tiled wallIt’s finally 2017, and with a new year comes new trends to track! When it comes to home construction, some trends tend to stick around for a few years and others are simply updated with a new twist. At, we want to keep our customers happy and excited with their new construction homes, so we like to keep an eye out for these popular trends. Below, we’ve outlined some trends you’ll be seeing in homes in 2017.

Islands – Kitchen islands are great additions to any kitchen, but in 2017 they’re getting a twist. If you’re in need of extra counter space in a somewhat monochromatic kitchen, consider a contrasting island. This is 2017’s new way to revamp your current cooking space with something simple that will catch eyes.

Tiled Walls – This trend is making its way into houses in numerous ways. Square and other geometric tiles are being used not just as decorative backsplashes in kitchens but also as entire walls.

Bars – Another new way to enhance a more traditional kitchen is with built-in bars. These can be anything from traditional and mild, to lit-up focal pieces that grab attention. Built-in bars not only allow you to add more counter space and storage but also make party-hosting a breeze.

Learning about these new house trends can help you discover what you want in your perfect home. If you’re looking into new construction homes in St. Augustine, FL or the surrounding area, consider enlisting professionals that can help you get all the features you want. Learn more about new construction homes at or by calling (904) 201-2122.

Flexible Living Spaces

luxury home interiorFinding your dream home can be difficult if you already have an image in your mind of what that home is. If you’re constantly being disappointed by the options you’re seeing, you should consider enlisting the help of Jacksonville, Florida home builders so you can construct your very own dream home instead of having to settle for one that doesn’t feel right. There are a lot of benefits to custom homes that we’ve touched on in the past, and one reason that’s becoming a popular addition in new custom homes is that you can create your home with flexible living spaces.

Flexible living spaces are rooms in which the layout is designed to allow the room to serve a number of different purposes. This because especially beneficial since not every homebuyer is going to want the exactly the same things – one may want an elaborate dining room, another may want the room to serve as an office space. Either way, flexible living spaces are designed to accommodate either purpose to make it easier for the owner. Other common flexible spaces include rooms that can be combined to create in-law suites, music and/or media rooms, craft or hobby rooms, dens, guest rooms, and offices.

If you’re in the market to build a custom home, consider including a flexible living space. They not only make it easier for you to design the perfect home but also often make it easier for additions and modifications in the future. For Jacksonville, Florida home builders you can trust to help make this an easy and enjoyable process, visit or call us at (904)201-2122.

Reasons to Build a Custom Home

When it comes time to build your first home (or your second, third, and so on), there are a lot of decisions you need to make. So many, in fact, that they can occasionally outweigh the excitement you should be feeling about it! Disappoint can also outweigh the excitement if you’re looking at a lot of homes and never feeling that “this is the one” feeling. So, if you’re searching for your dream home, you should consider a custom home for a variety of reasons.

Control over the destination
When you pick the lot you want a custom home
on, you have much more control over where your house is located. And, location can be of large importance when choosing schools for children, proximity to family, and proximity to jobs.
Organized how your prefer
Some people enjoy large, spacious rooms with high ceilings and minimal furniture and others prefer small, cozy spaces they can cuddle up in. Having a preference is great, and being able to control the space you’ll be living in to your preference is even better.
Built around your budget
One of the best reasons to build a custom home is because it makes it easier to adhere to your budget. With custom home builders in Jacksonville, you can maximize what you get out the budget you’ve decided on for the home that’s perfect for you.

So, when it comes time to find your next home, consider custom home builders to get the most out of your experience and your home. For premium custom home builders in Jacksonville that you can trust, contact the professionals at house sunset

Guest Restroom Placement

double sink When it comes to building your own, custom home, there are a lot of things that need to be considered. You have wall colors, flooring, counter tops
, layout planning, windows, and many more details all clouding your brain. It can be easy tooverlook some details with all of this going on, which is why custom home builders in Jacksonville are something you should consider to help you with your building process. One thing that professional custom home builders like our staff as can help you decide is something you may not have considered before: the location of your guest bathroom.

Guest bathrooms are not a necessity, but they are definitely a luxury you should consider. When you have guests over, whether they are family, friends, colleagues, or even clients, they will more than likely have to use the restroom at some point. And, while you’ve definitely tidied up before having company over, there are still reasons you may prefer to have a space for them to go besides your personal restroom. You may be wary of snoopers looking through your cabinets or you may just prefer that your guests aren’t subjected to viewing all of your children’s bath toys lying about – either way, a guest restroom will help.

To start, a guest bathroom is best suited to be on the main floor of the home. It is also best to ensure that the view into the bathroom is a pleasant one if it is attached to a common area like a living or dining room. Common placements for guest washrooms are off of the kitchen and/or near the exit toward the garage.

There are many different options for where to place your guest restroom, and we can help you decide! Contact for custom home builders in Jacksonville you can trust.

The Benefits of Building a New Construction Home

Is your current home too small for you and your growing family? Are you and your spouse empty nesters and your current home is just too big? If you have very specific needs and wants, building your own custom home will be great option for you.

There are so many benefits of having a home custom built for you. Having a home custom-built provides you with the ability to build something that is your very own from the start; you won’t have to worry about making any modifications because the home will be built to your own wants and needs.

The Biggest Perks of Building a Custom Home
Your needs will be met. Imagine being able to live in a home that has all of the features that you desire. The layout, the amount of bedrooms and bathrooms, the design, the amenities — everything you have ever wanted will be in your home.
You pick what you want. Another benefit of having a custom home built is that you will be able to choose the materials that are used. Your home builders in Jacksonville will make sure you get all the custom details you desire.
Increased energy efficiency. Many homes that have already been built are not energy efficient. When you build your home, you can ensure that it will be as efficient as possible.
Choose the location. Yet another perk of having your home built is that you will be able to choose the land you want to live on. When you have your home built, you get to choose where you live.
That new-house scent.  No stained carpets, no horrid paint colors, no tacky wallpaper.

With so many benefits, it really is easy to see why newly constructed homes are such a great option and why you should consider building one.

How to Find the Right Builder for Your New Home

Choosing the right home building firm for your needs is one of the most important decisions you’ll make during your home-buying process. Fortunately, there are some proven ways to speed up the process as you research and select a quality builder.

Specify Your Needs
Some Jacksonville Florida home builders specialize in a certain type of style home or price range. Factors such as building materials, trade contractors and the building process itself can vary widely by type and price.
Consult with Past Home Buyers
Check for references from past home buyers of the firm. Are they satisfied?
Verify the Builder is Licensed
Make sure you’re working with a licensed and insured builder to ensure that you are covered during the building process.
View Their Portfolio
It’s likely you already have a style for your new home in mind. Make sure your builder has a portfolio that includes at least a few examples of the style of home you want. For example, a builder whose portfolio consists entirely of traditional homes may not be the best fit for the contemporary home you’re dreaming of.
Look into Resale Values
Look for builders whose homes tend to hold or maintain their value. You can browse realtor ads that specifically mention the name of a builder for a home for sale that is now 5-7 years old.
Confirm Warranty and Service Plans
You’ll have peace of mind knowing your home and its components are brand-new and under warranty.

Granite or Quartz?

Many people struggle when choosing the material used for their countertops.  What material will look best in my kitchen?  Which one will hold us against heat?  What is trendy right now?  So how do you decide on weather Granite or Quartz is the best choice for your kitchen?  Let’s look into the pros and cons of each material and see what is the best material for you.

the beginning

  • Granite is a very hard stone and 100 percent natural. It’s mined from quarries all around the world, cut down to a manageable size, and then polished to a fine finish.

  • Quartz is slightly different in that it is not 100 percent natural. Instead, countertops are manufactured using 95 percent ground natural quartz and 5 percent polymer resins.


  • Granite comes in many different colors and patterns due to the way its formed.  The styles and uniqueness are almost limitless when dealing with Granite.

  • Quartz over the past few years has exploded in popularity due to the fact that Quartz gives you the look of stone, but also allowing you the ability to the customize the design.


  • Granite is a durable material that is resistant to heat and many other kitchen elements.  However, due to its porous nature there can be some staining if spilled liquids are left sitting and damage can be done if the countertop receives a high impact blow.

  • Quartz is actually harder than granite and thus, more durable.  In fact quartz is nearly indestructible, and because it isn’t porous like Granite, it’s easy to keep the countertop relatively bacteria-free. Quartz can be damaged with excessive heat, so using heating pads is highly recommended.


  • There are many factors to consider when comparing Granite and Quartz.  On the surface it does appear that Quartz is easier to maintain, longer-lasting and easy to customize.  However the cost for Quartz can get pricey depending on the options you choose and the uniqueness of granite remains appealing to many.  Budget and specific needs are things to consider when deciding on with Granite and Quartz, but you really can’t go wrong with either one.