open floor plan

10 Big Ideas for Builders to Consider in 2013

With the future for the housing market looking bright as we begin a new year, builders must continue to think about the next homebuyer. It may be daunting to take time to step back and think of innovative ways to reach buyers, but here are 10 big ideas to consider in 2013 as you begin to think about your business outlook for the next 12 months.

Big Ideas to Consider in 2013


1. A smart start means a lower cost completion.

Subcontractor mistakes and missed deadlines cost you money and homebuyer satisfaction. Find partners with their own platform for delivering high quality, on-time and complete jobs. Ask about worker training, processes, supply chain and quality standards.

2. Seeing is selling.

It’s not easy for homebuyers to visualize an upgrade – you need to display it in your model home. Take the time to install that CushionClose Hinge and add organizational features inside cabinets to showcase what you offer buyers in a new home.

3. Green is now a mainstream selling feature.

Costs for adding sustainable living features to a home have come down, and the payback is attractive. Today’s homebuyers want to do the right thing, and you should too by going green in your building and in the features you offer, like solar panels and Energy Star appliances.

4. Go with the (open) flow.

Open spaces with fewer hallways maximize usable living space. Not only does it feel bigger – it is.

5. Keep appliances out of view.

With the trend for uniting family and kitchen spaces, long clean lines of wood cabinetry extend the living environment.

6. Build for a family affair.

There’s no denying multi-generational living is on the rise with one third of adult Americans living with another adult generation. Create space for each generation living in the home— a second master bedroom and bath, maybe with a mini kitchen, provides private space.

7. Create a drop zone.

The mud room goes upscale as the stop for keys, briefcases, backpacks, and shoes. Favorite features? Built-in storage (cabinets or cubby holes), benches, a charging station for cell phones.

8. Technology lives here.

Big screen TVs, music systems, video games, computer centers, home
office, home control devices – reinvent the media room. Built-in cabinets keep them close at
hand and out of sight.

9. Get back to nature.

Homebuyers want natural elements like fireplaces that put heart in a home. Don’t waste any opportunity to capitalize on a view or a feature to make a home really stand apart from others.

10. Made in the USA means more than ever.

Renewed interest in our own economy is just the start. Consumers appreciate the craftsmanship and sense of security about safe, quality materials. For a builder, American-made means a shorter, surer supply chain.

Are you considering any of these? What are your big ideas for 2013? Share them and/or your successes from 2012 in the comments below.

Exceptional Properties Magazine Features Timberlake Cabinetry

Exceptional Properties' Cabinetry Takes Center Stage Opening Spread

Exceptional Properties magazine’s Cabinetry Takes Center Stage opening spread.

Trends may come and go, and what’s hot today in interior design may not be around tomorrow, however cabinets are here to stay, and are taking center stage in a big way.

Exceptional Properties July/August 2012 Cover“The surge in contemporary design tendencies among homes with open floors plans, makes the kitchen an even more integral part of the family and great rooms and dining spaces, both formal and casual,” says Perry Campbell, vice president and general manager of Timberlake. Gone are the days that you and your neighbor have the exact same kitchen cabinets – today it’s all about customization and originality in home cabinetry.

This month’s Robb Report’s Exceptional Properties magazine focuses on just that, highlighting the timeless quality, reliability and design Timberlake brings every day to new homes across the country. Their article Cabinetry Takes Center Stage features the value and customization that Timberlake can bring to a new home.

Timberlake collections offer design options for every taste from New Haven® to the sleek slab Lausanne® collection. “We create custom solutions for virtually every room in the house,” Campbell says. “Built-in features are used for home technology centers, office workspaces and libraries. Our cabinetry elements offer architects, builders and homebuyers the ability to create a custom look in their homes.”

More Information

Visit Exceptional Properties to read more about how cabinetry is taking center stage, and how Timberlake is on the leading edge of providing customization that makes a statement in every home.

For more information on Timberlake Cabinetry, including a company fact sheet, official boilerplate and more, please visit the Timberlake Newsroom.

The Ultimate Cook’s Kitchen: Form, Function and Aesthetics

Photo: The New Southern Home 2007 Main Kitchen

The 2007 New Southern Home main kitchen consists of Rushmore Painted Maple Cream Glaze cabinetry, derbyshire seeded glass inserts and antique bronze oak leaf pulls.

Some kitchens are designed for show. Others are designed for serious cooks. At The 2007 New Southern Home, you get the best of both worlds.

Designed for passionate and accomplished cooks, this is a kitchen that is also designed for those who are just as passionate about architecture and design.

Aesthetics, Meet Practicality

Here is where aesthetics meet practicality—and everybody wins. And although this is a large kitchen that flows into the open plan of the home, there are a multitude of design elements that can work just as well in smaller homes.

An integral element in the design of this Timberlake kitchen is efficiency. It is the overriding principle. Whether the homeowner needs to prep, chop, stir, fold, simmer, sauté… or just open up the “take out,” the kitchen needs to have all the right ingredients—appliances, cabinets, countertops, islands, organization and storage solutions.

An Open Floor Plan Takes Effort

Today’s homebuyers prefer airy, open floor plans that make the kitchen a part of a home’s public spaces. And that requires a little extra effort to make sure the open design works with the rest of the décor, especially the adjacent rooms.

Open floor plans present other challenges too, such as how to fit in all the necessary storage and work surfaces, since many home designs have fewer walls and include larger appliances that need to be accommodated. Here are some solutions:

  • Expanded butler pantries
  • Small prep kitchens or a catering kitchen, sometimes with an extra dishwasher to take the pressure off the main kitchen
  • Islands with extra storage and work surfaces, paired with a spare sink
  • Multi-level workstations
  • A walk-in pantry to handle storage overflow
  • Sit-down snack areas at kitchen islands and peninsulas
  • Places to show off collections and personal items integrated into kitchen designs

Design Tips for Large, Open Floor Plans

  1. In an open floor plan, the kitchen should blend with the adjacent rooms. Use complementary finishes, fabrics and surfaces rather than simply matching everything.
  2. If there are two islands, the primary sink should be placed in the island nearest the other major appliances.
  3. Cleaner, simpler lines give today’s kitchens—no matter how big or small—a timeless feel.
  4. Make sure there is ample room between work areas: 42″ is standard, but for universal design applications or two cooks, wider aisles of 48″ are the norm for easier maneuvering.

This article originally appeared in Volume 7, Issue 2 (November 2007) of Portfolio Magazine.
Portfolio Magazine is an award-winning showcase of exciting design ideas and industry insights.