#hilltophouse is complete

#hilltophouse is complete

The #hilltophouse is complete, built by Sauder Builders, Inc,. We were able to photograph the inside (outside photos pending the landscape to spring forth with spring weather). #hilltophouse was designed with a goal of allowing family to gather with connection to the outside at all times. The incredible kitchen developed by Lantz Custom Woodworking serves as an anchor in the main living space with the two-story brick wall on the other side of the open living space giving instant character. The exposed steel beams sit on top of the heavy wood timbers that mimic the exterior porch columns supporting the loft above. The open cable rail system allows for the industrial style to take on a modern twist while the wood floors from Weavers Flooring warm the space that will capture many years of memories.

The primary bedroom and bathroom suite is an oasis for relaxation. The brick is carried into this space giving the space instant charm while the large windows and doors open the space to incredible views. The oversized shower and soaking tub will serve as a wonderful place to unwind and relax.

The second floor features a bunk room, third bedroom, and gaming room along with another bathroom. This incredible home will be the homestead of many generations to gather and celebrate milestones and holidays.

The floating stair blends the industrial and modern style while maintaining the open light style of the living space.

More pictures of the exterior to come as soon as the landscaping come in.

Kicking off a new dream home project

Kicking off a new dream home project

Kicking off a new dream home project has some very special milestones. The first site visit after developing a concept sketch is hugely important to realize a custom home that’s just right for you, and it’s tremendously exciting. You can stand on an open piece of land and say, here is your front door, here are the views from your recliner, you will get a beautiful sunrise while making your morning coffee from here. It is a needed part of the design process for our clients to start to get a feel for their new home, but also to discover any special elements of the site that can enhance the design. It’s hard for most people to visualize a house that is not there yet, but our architects are able to verbally describe what is coming in a way that help clients to feel their design taking shape.

 On this recent visit, a wet day for sure, we were able to get a sense of the slope of the land, talk about driveway location and routing, discuss how to manage the cows on the site, and get a sense of the scale of the home. While we could not see the views due to the cloud cover (we will go back to shoot grades on a slightly dryer day) we could see enough to know that our first sketch worked. We even identified a basement workshop that we didn’t know the slope of the site would allow.

“You can stand on an open piece of land and say, here is your front door, here are the views from your recliner, you will get a beautiful sunrise while making your morning coffee from here.”

Having a trained eye walk the site with you is critical to get the placement of your new home just right. The exact location may move a little throughout the design process or even just before

Architecture Design verses Drafting

Discussing the differences in architecture design verses drafting allow us to share the value an architect brings.

A common question we receive from potential clients is why someone should hire an architect versus a drafting service. We love this question because it gives us the opportunity to share about our training and experience and highlight the value we add to construction projects.

To understand the difference between drafting and architectural design, it is helpful to think about a project as a 3-dimensional complex building system to be approached with a level of expertise that delivers healthy, functional, and sustainable results. Beyond providing construction documents, architects approach a project through a holistic lens that considers building science, budget, flow of space, and aesthetics. As visionaries, architects guide the design process by considering the life clients want to live in a space. We are experts on the entire scope of a construction project and are often involved in all stages from envisioning and planning, design development, construction budgeting, and even observation over construction. 

Charles and Deborah are licensed architect. Caitlin is in the process of gaining her 5 years of experience to be eligible for licensure.

Drafting is the translation of a design to technical drawings. Drafters focus on documentation and the delivery of construction plans. Unlike an architect, drafters are not required to have a specific education background and do not hold a license. All architects are drafters; all drafters are not architects.

Architects lean on their education and years of training to serve as visionaries and provide expert oversight on projects. The journey to becoming a Licensed Architect involves 5-7+ years of higher education, an internship process under a licensed professional, and the successful passing of rigorous licensure examinations. Training covers art, science, math, psychology, sociology, and we infuse this blend of knowledge into each design. Additionally, architects hold a license once they successfully pass a series of exams and therefore hold liability for each of their projects. 

So, should you hire an architect or a drafter for your project? If you want a fully custom design that is uniquely tailored to your vision and is healthy, functional, and efficient, an architect is the best option. If you want to know more about the process and how an architect can support your project, visit our previous posts here, here, and here.

If you already have a design and need to make a few simple changes, a drafter might be an appropriate option. Either way, feel free to reach out and discuss your project. We are happy to answer questions and help you understand the value we bring to a project.

Blue Ridge Mountain Home

The Blue Ridge Mountain Home, which backs up to the parkway, is now framed, and the roof trusses were being installed when we last visited. This single-level home has a detached garage, bonus room over the garage, and an open floor plan, making sure there is plenty of space for our clients to stretch out. Aside from the Blue Ridge Mountain home we have, we have a few other projects in the works, check out our blogs or Facebook to keep an eye out for updates!

The crawl space in this home features a concrete slab to keep the space easy to maintain, dry, and clean. This space will be conditioned and sealed to keep the HVAC systems working efficiently. Sealing a crawl space is an effective way to manage your thermal envelope, keep the critters out, and to control your indoor environmental quality.

The bonus room over the garage adds to the flexibility of the floorplan and captures the additional space needed to make the house just right. As you can see from the photos, the views are breathtaking on top of Afton mountain, and the house is situated perfectly to take advantage of the breathtaking views.

Hillcrest House

The Hillcrest House is moving into the finishing stages, with the siding started, solar PV installed, and drywall being sanded. This infill home has incredible views and multiple options for hanging out inside and out. The rear double deck with a screened porch will offer many opportunities for incredible sunrise views, and the high-efficiency insulation will keep our clients comfortable throughout the year.

This 3 bedroom 2 1/2 bath home sits on a narrow lot and maximizes function with an efficient layout. The rooms all have large windows to invite in natural light, and the efficient heating and cooling system will contribute to low energy bills. 

As Herr and Company finish the project and Green Hill Solar finishes the solar PV installation, we hope to give you another update to show off the beautiful interiors. Get a sneak peek at what the early stages of this gorgeous home looked like!