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Create pet-friendly space in your home

Categories: Buying a New Home, Homeowner tips | Posted: February 21, 2018

Pet-Friendly Space

We love our pets and want to return their unconditional love with pet-friendly spaces in the home. If you’re looking for a new home in the Columbia, South Carolina, region, talk to us at McGuinn Homes. We have experience in accommodating special features—including pet-friendly ones—in our floor plans. We’ll build on your lot or you can browse our new home communities We currently offer a selection of move-in ready homes ready right now.

Anyone who has ever shared their life and their home with a pet knows that this companion is really a family member—and deserves to be treated like one. While you probably resist setting a place at the dinner table or opening up the pantry for free exploration by a hungry critter, you can create pet-friendly space in your home (assuming they don’t need to be caged).

Pet Cubbies

Dogs and cats like their privacy when it’s time for one of the many naps that fill their days and nights. The family dog might like your company at night, but often looks for other places for daytime breaks. A dog bed placed out of the way of foot traffic is a good solution.If you want something that fits into your décor, encase the pet bed in a wooden frame or box, maybe adding your pet’s name or a design that complements your décor.

Cubbies are great for smaller dogs and cats. Repurpose a drawer or crate by adding a bed, fluffy blanket, or pillow. Convert the bottom shelf of an end table or nightstand to welcome a little snooze from your furry friend.

Cat Shelves

Cats generally fall into one of two categories: bush dweller or percher. The bush dweller likes to hide under things, while the percher prefers to observe from above. If your feline likes the aerial view, consider installing cat shelves that are deep and sturdy enough to support a leaping, sprawling cat. Windows are a preferred spot, so expanding the sill with a shelf will allow your cat to bask in the sun, give the death stare to birds and squirrels in their view, and possibly stay off your good furniture.

Pet Feeding Station

When house-hunting, a true pet lover instantly identifies where the feeding dishes will be placed. It needs to be easily accessible but out of the way of passersby. Pamper your pet with a feeding station that incorporates the dishes with storage. For large dogs, elevate the dishes so they don’t have to bend as low for their food and water. Cut holes in the top of a nightstand or small chest to hold the dishes and use the bottom drawer to store the food. For smaller animals, pull out the bottom drawer for the dishes and stash the food in the upper drawer. If you’re building a new home, talk to your builder about incorporating the pet feeding station into the floor plan.

Dog Grooming Tub or Shower

Homeowners with dogs are more frequently incorporating a designated grooming area in their new homes. The laundry room is an ideal space for installing a tub or shower with a pull-down faucet. Add tile to the enclosure so the area is more attractive. A nearby or overhead shelf, cabinet or cubby allows for storing the pet shampoo, towels, and other products you’ll need.

Litterbox

Every cat lover struggles with finding the ideal location for the litterbox. You don’t want it in an obvious location and the good news is you’re your cat wants a private spot, too. You can tuck a litterbox under the utility sink in the laundry room or a vanity in the bathroom. You can buy a litterbox enclosure that looks like a piece of furniture, or build one yourself. As long as it’s easy to get to and filled with clean litter, your cat has no preference about the décor or design.

Pet Door

If you have a cat or dog that is allowed outdoors unsupervised, a pet door frees you up from monitoring the entry (and potentially cleaning up an “accident”). A doggie door requires cutting a hold in your existing door, and it’s hinged so the pup or cat can enter or exit from either side. Some doors are designed to blend in with your door, for a subtler look.

Pet Gate

Inside your home, keep the family pet out of the forbidden zones with a gate. There are many decorative designs—from plastic and wood to metal, fabric, and wrought iron—so you can incorporate this boundary without interrupting the flow of your interior design.

Fence

The safest way to protect your pet and your family outdoors is to fence in your yard. Be sure that the fence you choose is tall enough to keep your pets on your side. Picket fences, while attractive, can be dangerous to small children as well as allowing unwanted animals into your yard. Your dog or cat is curious, so any opening in a fence is an invitation to peek or poke through!

Buying a new home in winter: 5 reasons why buying off-season is a great time!

Categories: Buying a New Home | Posted: December 12, 2017

wintertime homebuying

Spring and summer are the most common times of the year to buy or sell a home. Being the “most common”, however, doesn’t mean you can’t or shouldn’t make a move in the winter. In fact, there are some very good reasons for buying a new home in the winter.

Here are 5 reasons why buying off-season is a great time!

#1. Fewer buyers = Less competition

It’s true that many people dismiss the winter as the less desirable time to buy a new home. That just means there are fewer buyers out there competing with you. While the inventory is not as broad as in the warmer months, you still have a good selection. Once you find the home of your dreams, you’re more likely to have your offer accepted when the competition isn’t as heated.

#2. Less competition = Better buying power

Slower buyer traffic gives you another edge. Sellers may be more likely to bend to your bargaining when the supply is higher than the demand. You might negotiate a better price, closing costs, or other terms of the sale that lean in your favor.

#3. Sellers are motivated.

Given the opportunity, sellers will often wait until the warmer months when buyer traffic is more active. If they have chosen to sell their home during the winter, the reason could push them to act quickly, such as relocation, financial problems, or a divorce. Knowing the seller’s circumstance can help you determine how anxious they are to sell quickly.

#4. Winter is a good test of a home’s structural condition.

When the sun is shining on a warm spring or summer day, you can see how your home could be in beautiful weather, but what about when there’s snow on the roof and the driveway is icy? How can you determine if the house is well-insulated when the temperatures don’t put it to the test? By house-hunting in the winter months, you see your potential new home under the toughest conditions.

#5. Interest rates are low.

Mortgage rates have been inching higher, and this trend is expected to continue, along with appreciation in of home values in the housing market. These market conditions indicate that the longer you wait, the more you will pay for your new home.

McGuinn Homes currently has a good selection of quick move-in homes in our new home communities throughout the Columbia, South Carolina area. Discover why the winter can be the best time of year to buy a new home. Contact us to learn more!

How to thrive in the season of giving

Categories: Buying a New Home, Home Buying, Homeowner tips, Hybrid Home | Posted: November 28, 2017

Thanksgiving is done for this year. I hope you have some good memories and didn’t add too much to your waistline with all the feasting.

Now that we’ve had that day to reflect and give thanks, we launch right into the season of giving. Before you forget all the kindness and good thoughts that were shared at the Thanksgiving table, think about what the weeks ahead really mean. You don’t need to wipe out your bank account to pay for lavish gifts, or even moderate gifts to a lengthy list. Slow down and make this year one where giving comes from the heart, not the wallet. Be kind to yourself, as well as others. Do some things for yourself so you don’t become exhausted before the big day arrives and your home is flooded with guests and all the activity that comes with it.

At this point, you’ve survived Black Friday, perhaps supported Small Business Saturday, and found some online deals on CyberMonday. Here are some tips for not just surviving the holidays, but thriving!

Give in a different way.

Today is #GivingTuesday, a global day of giving on the Tuesday after Thanksgiving. #GivingTuesday was created to kick off the charitable season at the end of the year. The organization’s website offers a wide variety of ideas for giving back to a charitable cause. Make a contribution or volunteer your time—or both. You can do it on behalf of someone on your list and let them know how you’ve chosen to “give” this year.

Haiti Children’s Project

At McGuinn Homes, we continue to support Haiti Children Project—Next Generation Program. This charitable organization was started by Wade and Janet McGuinn after they traveled to Haiti on a mission trip in 2003. This group actively raises money to pay for Haitian children’s education, as a means to steer them out of poverty.

Learn more about this great cause: www.haitichildrenproject.org

Give yourself the gift of a home makeover.

Another way to enjoy the season of giving is by sprucing up your home. A little makeover, de-cluttering, and repair can do wonders to your spirit! After all, you’ll be spending a lot of time indoors over the coming winter, so make your space a home sweet home for the holidays and beyond.

While you’re adding festive decorations to your home or maybe moving furniture around to make room for a tree or a gathering, take it a step further. Pick a space and do a room makeover. You can shop from your own home to find furnishings that will refresh this space. Change the window treatments and light fixtures. Add a new area rug. Replace the wall art. Consider this a gift that no one else could give you!

Rethink your giving process.

It can be exhausting—physically, emotionally, and financially—to shop for everyone on your list. Make this the year you shop differently. Ask yourself why you’re buying a gift for someone on your list. Is it kindness, a show of love, or an obligation? Each one has a different shopping purpose. When you can categorize the gifting objective, you can shop for one group at a time.

Consider paring down that list and finding different ways to give.

  • Give an experience, like a gift certificate to try a new hobby or activity. Make it a two-for-one deal so you can go along! Check out Groupon for ideas.
  • Donate to a charity that matters to you, in the name of your gift recipient.
  • Give of yourself. Offer to share your talent, skill, or time. You can offer to give busy parents a night to themselves by watching their kids. Bring someone a fully catered meal you have prepared. Teach someone who is interested in learning your craft. You can create your own redeemable vouchers and wrap them up in a box.

Complete a home maintenance checklist.

Plan some time this season to make sure your home is safe and comfortable. You can avoid repairs later by spending some quality time with your home right now.

  1. Start by having your chimney cleaned and inspected before you use it for the season. Creosote can quickly build up inside your chimney and it’s highly flammable.
  2. Check your doors, windows, and any areas that expose your home to the outdoors. Look for cracks and caulk them to prevent drafts.
  3. Inspect your roof and repair or replace any damaged shingles. The dead of winter is a terrible time to suffer through roof repair!
  4. Have your furnace serviced to ensure it’s working efficiently so you can avoid higher fuel bills than necessary.
  5. Check your home’s insulation (e.g., attic, pipes)

If all the prep you’re doing is prompting you to think that a new home is in your future, McGuinn Homes can help. We build throughout the Columbia, South Carolina region. Contact us to learn about our quick move-in homes, new home communities, and floor plans.

Prepare yourself: 7 tips to reduce Thanksgiving stress

Categories: Buying a New Home | Posted: November 21, 2017

By this point in the year, you’re looking at the calendar and counting the days. The holidays are creeping up, which brings all the stress of preparing for this frenzied time. If you’re hosting the annual Thanksgiving feast, you don’t need to exhaust yourself. Get organized so you can keep all the tasks under control. Here are some tips to reduce Thanksgiving stress so you can enjoy the day.

De-clutter your fridge and freezer.

You’re going to need all the room you can spare. Remove the leftovers that have been pushed to the far reaches of your refrigerator or freezer. Check the expiration dates on items and discard anything that is questionable (like salad dressing, which has a very short shelf life). Do you have a jar of grape jelly with just a few dabs left? Don’t let it take up valuable real estate this time of year.

Write out your menu.

Don’t rely on all those ideas dancing around in your head. It’s too easy to forget a dish, which means you won’t have the ingredients when you’re ready to prepare it. Start your holiday menu planning by making a list of every item, including the beverages, and make a shopping list of the ingredients.

Check your holiday tableware.

Before the clock starts ticking loudly, examine your dishes, silverware, stemware, serving pieces, and linens. Clean, polish, and wash everything. Discard anything that’s damaged so you don’t accidentally place a chipped glass in front of your persnickety relative. Add to your shopping list any pieces that need to be replaced.

Do the math on your turkey time.

Remember that you need 24 hours for every four pounds of bird to safely thaw a frozen turkey in the refrigerator, which is your safest option. If you wait till a day or two before Thanksgiving to pull the bird out of the freezer, you’ll face a very long day of waiting for the main course to be completely roasted.

Prep and cook as much in advance.

If you want to spend more time with your guests on Thanksgiving Day and less time tending to the meal, tackle some of the tasks ahead of time. You can, for example, make your mashed potatoes and stuffing a few days prior to the holiday and then put them in a crockpot to a few hours before serving. Make your casseroles early so you only have to slip them into the oven on Thanksgiving Day. You can even freeze your pies before baking them. Let them bake while you’re sitting down to dinner.

Delegate.

Many guests want to bring something for the holiday feast. Let them! Make a list of who has committed and what they are bringing. Three days before Thanksgiving, contact them to make sure they haven’t forgotten and are still able to bring what they promised.

Get ready for the big takeaway.

You will undoubtedly hand out leftovers as people leave. Stock up on containers for the food so you can aren’t hunting around for boxes and dishes you may never see again while your guests are ready to head out the door.

There will always be stress when you’re preparing for a big event. McGuinn Homes wants to help you enjoy your friends, family, and home during this busy time. And, if you find that your current home is no longer the haven you hoped for, contact us to explore your new home communities in the Columbia area of South Carolina. By this time next year, you could be hosting your holiday gatherings in a brand new home.

A new way to chill: Get outside and enjoy the late fall weather

Categories: Buying a New Home, News & Announcements | Posted: November 16, 2017

When the fall colors start to emerge, people get outside and travel around to enjoy the foliage spectacle. It’s time to pick apples and pumpkins and welcome the brisk air at the end of a long, hot summer. You’re raking leaves (and maybe jumping in the piles) and enjoying your favorite outdoor recreation while the weather permits.

At this point in the year, you’ve probably cleaned up all those leaves, packed away your lawn furniture, and are getting ready for the winter.

Don’t start your winter hibernation yet. There’s still plenty of things to do outdoors in the late fall in the Columbia, South Carolina region.

Fall Activities Available

Head over to the Riverbanks Zoo & Garden any evening to see the “Lights Before Christmas” display, an annual tradition for 25 years. You’ll experience the twinkling of almost a million lights. Warm yourself with hot chocolate and s’mores at the Jingle Bell Bonfire there.

For another light-filled spectacle, take a drive through Saluda Shoals Park to view more than 400 animated light displays during this annual “Holiday Lights on the River”.

Mark your calendar for December 2, 2017, to enjoy the 64th Annual Carolina Carillon Holiday Parade. This year’s theme, “A Superhero’s Holiday” will include floats from all around South Carolina. Of course, the seasonal superhero, Santa Claus, will be part of the parade.

Enjoy the freshest local flavors at the Soda City Main Street market. Every Saturday from 9 a.m.to 1 p.m.—rain or shine—you can browse this farmer’s market for the very best produce, meat, dairy, flowers, and fresh baked items, plus the work of local artisans. Every Thursday, head over to City Roots Farmers Market, for local food, including the organic produce grown right there. You can also pick up their ready-to-cook Market Meals.

Slip on your ice skates at Main Street ICE in Boyd Plaza any day of the week, beginning Thanksgiving Day. Start a holiday tradition with a skating party.

Try a different type of Sunday brunch at the West Columbia Riverwalk’s Brookland Brunch. Vendors and food trucks will be serving up your favorites, including Belgian waffles, mimosas, and gourmet coffee. Then, rent a kayak or canoe to get your exercise after a hearty brunch.

If your appetite leans more toward oysters, barbeque, and beer, then don’t miss the annual River Rat Brewery’s Oyster Roast and BBQ, on Friday, December 8. Feast on fresh, steaming Carolina oysters, smoked pork BBQ, and plenty of side dishes on the patio, plus River Rat’s best brews,

Discover geocaching, a fun type of scavenger hunt that uses GPS coordinates to lead you to hidden caches.

Take a bike ride or hike nature trails. Hit the golf course. Back at home, gather around the fire pit with hot chocolate and all the fixings to make gourmet s’mores.

You’ll have plenty of weeks ahead to stay inside when the temperature drops lower and lower. Right now, enjoy the brisk air, the blue sky, and all the benefits of outdoor fall fun and living in the Columbia area

Now is also a great time to think about a new home!

While you’re out and about, plan a visit to McGuinn Homes to explore our new home communities in the Columbia area of South Carolina. Contact us to include a private tour so you can see how a new home in one of our neighborhoods can make a big difference in your life.

Bring the change of seasons indoors

Categories: Buying a New Home, Homeowner tips | Posted: November 7, 2017

Daylight savings time has ended for this year. Yes, we gained the hour we lost back in March, but in return, the days get shorter, the air grows colder, and here in Columbia, South Carolina, thoughts are turning to heading back inside.

Bringing the Outside, In

That doesn’t mean we have to abandon our enjoyment of the great outdoors. Just bring it inside with you. There are many ways to bring the change of season indoors. Here are just few ideas for using natural elements in your fall and winter décor.

  • Pumpkins and gourds are plentiful. Hollow them out and insert a potted plant, like mums. Use smaller pumpkins and gourds in a mix of colors as a seasonal centerpiece on your Thanksgiving table, or the fireplace hearth or mantle.
  • Gather long, narrow twigs and place them in a tall container. Add a splash of colorful branches, like bittersweet, or even a string of battery-operated mini-lights.
  • If you’ve been lucky enough to have hydrangeas in your garden, gather up the blooms before they wither, and dry them out. You can even retain the color if you dry them correctly. Use your dried hydrangea blossoms as a floral decoration or make a wreath.
  • Collect pinecones and dip them in melted wax that is scented with essential oils (like cinnamon) to make fragrant fire starters to use all winter.
  • Convert a log into natural décor by slicing it into segments of varying heights. Use a wood-boring drill to make a hole and create a set of tree stump candle holders.

Using your Kitchen to Create Fall Scents

  • Were you a bit over-zealous with your apple-picking? Slice and dry them, adding the wonderful fragrances of cinnamon, allspice, and cloves. Make a wreath, add them to a garland, or craft ornaments.
  • Create a simmering potpourri of your favorite fragrances and let them fill your home with seasonal scents. Add fresh pine needles to enjoy that pleasant aroma, too.
  • From spiced cider and soups to savory soups and stews, a slow cooker lets you take it easy in the kitchen while preparing tasty treats.

Harvest Glenn’s Popular Floor Plan

In a home like the Edisto, you can bring these decorating ideas inside to your foyer and throughout the open floor plan, as well as add curb appeal to your covered front porch. But don’t forget to include these fragrant accents to areas like the bedrooms and bathrooms, too.

Find Your Perfect Fall Home

McGuinn Homes wants you to enjoy the months ahead, no matter what the weather brings. When you’re ready to make your move to a new home, consider one of our hybrid homes in the Columbia region that provide you with comfort, style, and energy-efficiency. Contact McGuinn Homes to learn more.

How You Can Afford a New Home

Categories: Buying a New Home | Posted: October 25, 2017

Purchasing your first home is a huge financial decision. Thankfully, there are plenty of options for financing your dream home!

From pre-qualification to available options, we’ve put together your go-to guide for financing with McGuinn – and even highlighted some of our own great buying opportunities.

First Things First: Financing

McGuinn proudly partners with home mortgage experts in order to bring you the best deals and savings on your new home.

Before diving in, the first step is to become pre-qualified. So what does that mean? Essentially, becoming pre-qualified for a home mortgage gives you an idea of how much you can borrow. It’s an estimate that your builder and lender can use to help set your budget for your new home.

By taking care of this step first, it lets your lender research the best loan programs that you can qualify for – as well as the interest rate. Your pre-qualification is based on a few factors, including:

  • Credit score
  • Income
  • Any debts
  • Employment history

Once you’re pre-qualified and have your estimate, our financing specialist provides you multiple loan products to choose from and runs through the details of each choice. After that, you’ll have your loan interview with your new Mortgage Consultant.

McGuinn partners with Ameris Bank. You can explore the full list of different types of mortgages offered by Ameris by clicking here, but here’s a quick rundown:

  • Fixed-rate mortgage – Good for families who plan to live in their house for a long time and like the stability of monthly payments.
  • Adjustable rate mortgage – Good if you think you’ll only be in the home for a short period of time and expect your income to grow.
  • FHA loan – If you have less cash available upfront, this may be an option to consider.
  • VA loan – Available for eligible service members, this loan type offers special benefits for our veterans.
  • USDA loan – If you expect to buy a home in a rural area, this could be the choice for you.
  • First-time homebuyer loan – For those buying their first home, Ameris provides special offers and benefits.

Affordable Community Options from McGuinn

Home exteriorOnce you’re pre-qualified and have settled on your financing, it’s time to pick out the home and location you want!

We offer a variety of amazing communities, as well as an option to build on your own lot if you have a piece of land you’re eyeing. If you’re still looking for land, though, be sure to check out some of the communities we have that are quickly selling out. You don’t want to miss out on these prime locations.

With only seven spots remaining, Glen Eagle is a limited opportunity that’s selling out fast! Served by award-winning Lexington 1 White Knoll schools, this community is only seven minutes from Lexington and offers the market’s lowest prices.

Meanwhile, Phase 1 is close to selling out in Burnside Farms. Located in Columbia, Burnside Farms offers a charming environment combined with a great in-town location. The on-the-go homeowner will appreciate the close proximity to Shaw Air Force Base, USC School of Medicine, and I-77, along with plenty of shopping and entertainment options.

And even though Pleasant Springs is close to selling out, there’s still plenty of move-in ready options to choose from. Give us a call at (803) 917-5583 to schedule a time to tour this gorgeous community in the award-winning Lexington 1 school district, including Pleasant Hill and Lexington High schools.

Additional Options

Home interiorOf course, we also have spectacular deals on our available homes as well – and some new homes that are coming soon.

In Panorama Point, the Cleveland on Lake Murray is priced to sell at $849,900! This Lexington home will not last long, so don’t wait on this unique opportunity to be directly on the lake with boat dock access.

And if you’re a buyer looking for a single-story home in an all-brick community, keep checking back for more updates! We’re opening new homes soon in Lake Carolina at Centennial. We’ll share more updates as they come in, but for now click here to learn more about this up-and-coming location.

Have Questions?

As always, if you have any questions or want to learn more about these opportunities, don’t hesitate to contact us!

Build Anywhere!

Categories: Buying a New Home, Home Buying | Posted: October 18, 2017

BOYL

Ever wonder what the pros and cons are between building on your lot or building in a community? Here, we’ve covered the top reasons to build on your lot – as well as how to navigate the process.

Why On Your Lot?

We proudly offer an On Your Lot program here at McGuinn, but we also build in great communities around West Columbia. So why do we believe offering an on your lot option is important?

  • It removes limits. When you choose your own lot, you aren’t limited to just what we have available or in the communities we’ve chosen. Been dreaming of a piece of land for years? Buy it! Then let us build your dream home right where you want it. Have your home, your way.
  • It can save you money. By choosing your own lot, you’re also able to pick the perfect price since you’ll be bringing your lot to us. We’ll also customize your price based on the lot – different pieces of land have different build requirements, which will be taken into consideration.
  • It gives you options. We like to think of ourselves as your dream home builder – not just an on your lot builder. We’ll help find the perfect home for your lot, instead of limiting you to choices only available in specific communities.

We believe in providing you, the homeowner, with the right mix of quality and style at an amazing price point. Whether you build in a community or on your own land, you’ll receive an interactive building experience and a dream home you can’t wait to show off.

What Do I Get With an On Your Lot Home?

The answer is simple – you get all the amazing features included in a McGuinn home built in a community! Here are just a few of the items you can expect from one of our homes:

  • It’s designed with the environment in mind, including all the energy efficient features you need and leaving out ones that add no benefit to you
  • Significant savings on utility costs
  • Unparalleled customer service
  • Superior selections in our Design Center
  • Innovative home designs to choose from
  • Competitive pricing
  • And more!

What’s the Process?

Involve us in your journey as early as possible! We want to be there for you every step of the way to guide you to your new home. If you’ve just purchased a lot, or if you’re only beginning to consider purchasing one, set up a consultation meeting to talk through your questions with us.

In that meeting, we’ll get your questions answered as well as get a better idea on how we’ll make your dream home come to life. Once you have your home site, we’ll physically visit the site to assess it and figure out the best building options. That way, we’ll be able to walk you through choosing the best floorplan design and get you a price estimate.

After we’ve gotten all the needed information and provided an estimate, we’ll start getting things finalized. By this point, we’ll have the final price of your home settled. You’ll also have the final plan for your home and have made all your selections in our Design Center. We’re getting ready to sign the contract! We’ll also start discussing financing at this point – keep your eyes out for an upcoming blog post with even more details on that part of the process.

But wait – did you think of something else needing to be tweaked in your plan? No problem! Our Pre-Construction Meeting gives us the opportunity to make plan revisions before we obtain building permits. Once we have this meeting, we’ll “build your home on paper” to eliminate any errors. It’s an extra step, but we go above and beyond to make sure you get a better home and a better home buying experience.

And then we start building! Here are just a few key highlights from the building process:

  • Foundation and framing go in and your new home begins to take shape.
  • System rough-ins are set before drywall goes in – this includes things like plumbing, the heating and cooling systems, wiring, and more.
  • Your personal style begins to come to life as we paint the inside, add trims, and add the exterior finish to your home.
  • We all know the difference is in the details, and here’s where they come out to play. Remember all those items you chose in the Design Center? Here’s where we begin installing them! Everything from cabinets to door hardware goes in at this point.
  • Let there be light! With everything in place, we turn it all on. This includes your heating and cooling, lights, gas, and more.

Once the home is built, we don’t stop there. Each McGuinn home goes through a grueling inspection process to make sure it meets our extremely high standards and delivers our Gold Seal Promise:

  • A Quality inspection by a McGinn inspector
  • A Quality inspection by you, the homeowner
  • Complete verification the home is ready

Once we’ve given your new home the seal approval, we’re ready to close on the home. And just like that, you’ve built a home on your own lot with McGuinn Hybrid Homes!

Learn More

Have more questions, or are you ready to start your own On Your Lot journey? Contact us today! You can also download our brochure by clicking here.

Choosing the Right Plan for You

Categories: Buying a New Home, Home Buying | Posted: October 11, 2017

McGuinn Floor Plan

How to Navigate Choosing Your Floor Plan

Building a new home is a huge decision, and it doesn’t just end when you find a builder or sign the contract.

Thankfully, we not only offer plenty of options, but we also help you select the perfect plan for you and your family.

Consider Your Family’s Needs

Arguably the most important reason you’re buying a new home, the wants and needs of your family play a huge role in the kind of home you build. If you have a large family, multiple bathrooms and a spacious living room will be key! Or, if one of you is a budding chef, a gourmet kitchen with beautiful countertops will likely top your must-have list.

Before searching through available home plans, sit down with your family to decide what your ideal home looks like. Not all items will make the cut, but it gives you a better idea of what to look for when scrolling through photos and descriptions!

If there are items you absolutely cannot do without, star them and put them and the very top of your list. That way, you can let your sales representative know. They can make sure the home you choose incorporates these high-priority items.

Confirm Availability and Locations

Many builders limit their plans to certain locations – and of course, prices can vary depending on the city or county you choose to build in.

Quite a few factors play into why a home might be more expensive in one area. For example, the lot itself may cost more, or region-specific regulations could affect how the home is built.

Before you decide on a plan, be sure to ask your builder where the plan can be built! That way, you won’t fall in love with a plan only to find out it won’t quite work with your lot.

At McGuinn, most of our home plans are available on most lots. If you ever have questions, though, just give us a call. We consider the size of the lot and your desired home design in order to get you an amazing price.

Know Your Options

Here, we offer opportunities to customize and personalize your floor plans as needed – letting you design your home and truly make your home, your way. This isn’t the case with all builders, though. Be sure to ask any builder you’re considering about their options for personalization and customization – as well as how much it costs.

With our various level options, you’ll be sure to find the right option for you:

  • Level 1: The Best Value Home, choose a “Your Home, Your Way” plan and choose from a wide selection of available options to personalize.
  • Level 2: One step up, the Value Custom Homes let you personalize any of our stock plans.

Explore Available Floor Plans

Millstreet Floorplan

Now comes the fun part! Most builders have an online gallery of their available floor plans, and our site is no different. Be sure to click through our plans to find one that strikes your fancy.

Below, we’ve curated a list of our team’s personal favorite plans.

Anderson – A two-story design, the Anderson offers three bedrooms and 2 ½ baths with over 1,300 square feet of space with a flexible room layout. The gourmet eat-in kitchen is perfect for prepping meals, while a breakfast bar seamlessly connects the kitchen with the dining room. Part of our Main Street Series, a covered front sitting porch and a back patio make this home perfect for those who enjoy relaxing outside at the end of the day.

Stonebridge Extended – One of our most innovative homes, this plan is stunning! An extension of our Stonebridge plan, the Stonebridge Extended adds four feet throughout the home. Perfectly designed for those looking for space and character, the dining greets you immediately upon entering, before you’re guided to the airy great room and kitchen. Upstairs you’ll find three bedrooms and a spacious owner’s suite.

Woodland – Not into stairs, or want an owner’s suite on the main floor? Then the Woodland could be the plan for you. The nine foot ceilings complement taller windows, while a gourmet breakfast bar and garden tub in the owner’s suite add luxury.

Prescott – If you’re looking for options, the Prescott plan is the perfect place to begin. Offering four or five bedrooms, 3 ½ baths, and a guest suite on the main floor, this home presents itself as the definition of luxury. A loft open to the main floor opens up the plan, while two bedrooms upstairs share a jack-and-jill style bathroom.

Of course, these are just a few of the plans offered at McGuinn! Scroll through the other plans we have available to see which one suits you.

Even if photos are not currently available on a builder’s website, always ask if they have any examples of the home they can show you! They may have a portfolio or recent photos they took of a completed home that the sales representative can walk through with you.

Make Use of the Selections Gallery

Often called a Design Studio or Design Center, the Selections Gallery provides you with all the options available to use in your new home.

No matter what your budget, McGuinn’s Selections Coordinator walks you through your available choices for both exterior and interior selections.

To make the most of your Selections appointment, keep the following in mind:

  • If you have a Pinterest page dedicated to your dream home, keep it handy! Your Selections Coordinator will look at your examples and provide you with advice.
  • If you have fabric samples, paint swatches, pillows, etc., bring them to your appointment. This helps your Coordinator to find the perfect features for your new home.
  • Keep your style and taste in mind – after all, this appointment is about you. Our team provides expert recommendations, but ultimately it’s your home.
Design Center

Need Help?

If you still need help navigating the building process, rest easy! Our team is here to help. Just reach out to us and our team will walk you through everything you need to know.

What’s the Deal with Buying New?

Categories: Buying a New Home, Energy Efficient, Hybrid Home | Posted: October 3, 2017

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New Homes Vs. Resale

As a first time home buyer, it can be tempting to go straight for a resale home. After all, aren’t the prices usually cheaper? And doesn’t that mean it’s better?

The truth is, there’s a lot more that goes into a home than the price tag you see on Zillow – and there are a lot of benefits to buying new, especially for your first house.

No Hidden Surprises

While a resale home price may be initially less expensive than a new build, there are other factors that could drive that cost up over time – and make it the more expensive choice in the end.

Number one, you won’t always know the history of the home. A house may look good in your first walk-through, but you never know when you might discover the pipes are corroding. Meanwhile, a new home is built from the ground up so you know exactly what you’re getting.

Lower Utility Costs

Depending on when the resale home was built, it likely won’t have the best and most efficient appliances. A new construction home, on the other hand, will have been built with your utilities and the environment in mind.

On average, energy efficient or hybrid homes save homeowners over $100 each month in home maintenance costs. Considering that the typical family lives in their home for 7-8 years, that’s over $9,000 dollars that could go towards vacations, cars, or college!

Hybrid homes also keep your family healthier. With higher quality products, the indoor air in your home carries less dust, pollen, bugs, and humidity. Damaging sunlight stops at the enhanced windows, while durability increases with comprehensive water protection.

Each builder addresses energy efficiency and hybrid living differently – be sure to talk with your representative before signing and make sure you know the options and features available. To see the full scope of a McGuinn hybrid home, click here.

Choices, Choices, Choices

If you’re purchasing a resale home, you’re stuck with whatever decisions the previous buyer and builder made. And depending on what state the home is in, you may be looking at an extensive (and expensive) DIY process to get the home to where you want it.

With a new home, you choose the plan, the location, even the features included in your home! Your first home is truly built just for you. And with a custom home, you have even more flexibility. Depending on the builder, you can choose a pre-designed plan, customize a stock plan, or even bring your own plan and work with the team to design it from the ground up.

If the builder offers build on your lot options, your personalization opportunities just keep on growing. Now you don’t even have to limit yourself to a specific neighborhood – simply pick your own perfect lot, whether it’s one with plenty of acreage or a city lot with quick access to the hustle and bustle of the metro.

Newer Appliances Mean Less Maintenance

An older home also means older appliances. When buying resale, you’re at the mercy of the previous homeowner. If they haven’t kept up on their maintenance, you could be in for a long cleanup process or stuck with the bill of purchasing a whole new set.

A new home, on the other hand, ensures you have brand new appliances. Not only does this mean they’ll be cleaner (no old grime left in the microwave!), but you’ll also rest easy knowing they won’t quit on you out of nowhere.

Take Comfort in Warranties

Perhaps one of the biggest benefits of buying new as a first time home buyer, the new home warranty gives you much-needed peace of mind. Builder warranties often last for a year after the home is built, and cover items like the mechanical, electrical, and structural aspects of your new house.

Ask your builder about their warranty program and the customer service they provide, as each builder has their own process. At McGuinn, we provide you an individual new home warranty program that’s fully explained to you during your homeowner orientation meeting. By making sure you understand everything about your new home, we ensure your satisfaction and a happy home for you and your family.

Financing Options

We can’t talk about buying a new home vs. resale if we don’t address the cost issue. For first time home buyers, there are actually quite a few opportunities available to get you the best savings.

By connecting with a home mortgage expert, you can find the home loan that’s just right for you. A mortgage expert links you with savings you might not have known about before.

Many builders also offer a financing program or have a preferred lender they recommend. Ask your builder about their financing options, and make sure to get pre-qualified if you haven’t already!

At McGuinn, we go the extra mile and offer our first time home buyers the opportunity to attend a mortgage seminar. Completely free, this seminar covers different mortgage options, first time home buyer programs, and more.

If you’re unsure about the financing process, this is the perfect chance to find out more! Keep checking back for our next seminar, or please feel free to contact us.

The Takeaway

Buying your first home is one of the biggest financial decisions you can make, so be sure to consider all of your options. New homes can be surprisingly affordable, especially when you consider all the benefits that come with buying a new home vs. resale.

Keep in mind that the benefits to buying new also apply to available or quick move-in homes builders sell, not just their floor plans! Builders will often build inventory homes to sell, which include all the great benefits like energy efficiency, new appliances, and more. If this seems like a better fit for you, be sure to contact your builder and ask about available homes they have nearing completion.

And if you have any questions about the home building process or how to start looking, just give our team a call!