Parade of Homes

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Parade of Homes

Make Yourself at Home

Pat St. Germain
September 14

Parade of Homes

Fall Parade of Homes has something for everyone

The 2016 Fall Parade of Homes officially opens at noon today and runs through Sunday, Oct. 2. This year, the Manitoba Home Builders’ Association (MHBA) is proud to present 134 new homes on display for everyone to enjoy. Once again, we are proud to present the largest and best parade of homes in Canada.

Each show home has staff ready to share with you the unique and special features of that home. Ask about the builders, suppliers and materials during your visit. After all, MHBA new home builders pride themselves on building the best new homes in Canada. Each visitor is sure to come away with new ideas and concepts to incorporate into their new home.

This year, 38 different builders are featuring the finest new homes in 39 separate neighbourhoods. Single-family detached homes, townhouses and condominiums are on display. Whether you are interested in a bungalow or a two-storey home, it’s all here. In addition to Winnipeg, there will be show homes located in 10 other cities and towns, expanding and serving a larger audience. Quality, choice and affordability are all key components for each new home.

The Fall Parade of Homes has something for everyone. If you’re looking for that first, new home, this is your opportunity to see the widest variety at one time. If you’re considering selling your existing home for more space, less space, more yard, less yard, newer amenities and a different design, everything that you could possibly be looking for is featured at the Fall Parade of Homes. If you’re thinking of making some changes in your existing home, nowhere else will you see so many new and dynamic building styles and techniques as the Fall Parade of Homes. If you just want to see the best of the best and envision your dream home, this is the place to do it. Your new home dream starts with the Fall Parade of Homes.

If you missed the Parade magazine in your Winnipeg Free Press home delivery, it is available online at www.homebuilders.mb.ca or www.winnipegfreepress.com. You can also pick up a copy at any Steinbach Credit Union. Come early and come often to the Fall Parade of Homes.

Mike Moore is president of the Manitoba Home Builders’ Association

Parade of Homes

show home hours:

Monday through Thursday from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Saturday and Sunday from noon to 6 p.m.

Show homes are closed on Fridays except by prior appointment.

Mike Moore
September 10

Parade of Homes

Last day for Spring Parade of Homes

The formal portion of the 2016 Spring Parade of Homes ends today at 6 p.m., but, there’s no need to worry — most of the show homes that have been part of the Parade will remain open for viewing. The weather has been outstanding this year, and large crowds have seen what these 123 new homes offer. This year’s entrants were an amazing collection of design, style, quality, craftsmanship and choice.

The Fall and Spring Parade of Homes are two showcase events hosted by the Manitoba Home Builders Association to demonstrate the best the new home building industry has to offer. Whether you’re in the market for a new home, considering a change or just looking for ideas for your current home, nowhere else is there such a collection of concepts.

What many people may not know is these show homes are open year round for viewing. The hours may be slightly different than during the Parade, but the sales representatives in the new homes are still available to help you with your search for the perfect home. So, if you need to take another look at a couple of homes before making your decision, they are ready to welcome you.

If you recall visiting a neighbourhood or series of homes that especially interested you, but you have lost your Parade magazine, don’t worry — all the pertinent information is still available at the Manitoba Home Builders’ Association website, www.homebuilders.mb.ca. The entire Fall Parade magazine will remain online right up until next year’s Spring Parade.

You can also access the magazine via the Winnipeg Free Press website at www.winnipegfreepress.com. There may also still be some physical copies remaining at your nearby Steinbach Credit Union.

Today is also your last chance to cast your votes for the homes you think should win in the awards competition. Simply visit the show home, text the number and rank the homes.

Thank you to all of the many partners who worked together to create a fantastic Spring Parade of Homes. This event gets better every year with the best new homes in all of Canada being showcased at one time. Remember, show homes stay open beyond the Parade dates, so there is plenty of opportunity to re-visit what just might be your new home.

Mike Moore is president of the Manitoba Home Builders’ Association

By Mike Moore
March 26

Parade of Homes

Still plenty of time to check out great selection of show homes

The unusually balmy weather of the past two weeks has been bringing interested visitors by the thousands to the Spring Parade of Homes. On the second weekend, sales agents were reporting lineups outside the door in anticipation of visiting homes. The absolutely fantastic weather throughout the rest of the week ensured attendance stayed strong. It certainly looks like this year’s Parade will be one of the largest ever.

Sales representatives showing the 120 new homes have been bombarded with a flurry of questions in the first two weeks. Financial items are front and centre. Interested buyers are particularly interested in the low mortgage rates available. Some show homes display samples of mortgage calculations, while some promote banks and credit unions able to assist buyers. All have a calculator handy.

Given most people visit a variety of new homes in the Parade, it is inevitable comparison shopping and the addition of different features arise. For instance, sales representatives have been asked the cost of changing flooring to something seen elsewhere. Kitchen counter tops and cabinets also stimulate discussions for changes. Bathrooms are always popular design topics.

Manitobans are more energy conscious than any other province. This is particularly true of those considering moving from their older home to a brand-new home. Technology improves every year and, although Manitoba new homes have been the most energy efficient in Canada for a number of years, they still continue to get better.

Two popular innovations for this year’s Parade are the passport and voting. The weekday passport encourages you to visit 10 different show homes from Monday through Friday for an opportunity to win a luxury seven-night river cruise through France.

Spring Parade attendees can determine the prize winners in every category this year. Upon visiting each show home, simply text the number on display and you can rate each home in five different categories on a one to five scale. Your ranking will determine who takes home gold.

As was said in this column last week, if you don’t know, don’t be afraid to ask. The show home representatives have a wealth of information — if they don’t immediately know the answer, they can find out and get back to you.

Remember, the 2016 Spring Parade of Homes continues through Saturday, March 26. Show homes are open Monday through Thursday from 3 to 8 p.m. and Saturday and Sunday from noon to 6 p.m.

Mike Moore is president of the Manitoba Home Builders’ Association

By Mike Moore
March 19

Parade of Homes

Make your Spring Parade of Homes more enjoyable

The first week of the Spring Parade of Homes has concluded and the fabulous weather has resulted in large crowds visiting the new show homes. Each year, we print a primer for Parade attendees; just a couple of tips to maximize your enjoyment. For the benefit of Parade veteran and rookie attendees, the Manitoba Home Builders Association offers the following suggestions for a successful Parade:

Wear Comfortable Slip-on Shoes

There are 122 fantastic new homes available to visit. Although you likely won’t get to all of them, you will find yourself trying to get to as many as possible. Many of the neighbourhoods have multiple homes being shown and so you will probably park in one location and walk to all of the homes. The developers have been doing their best to clear snow in order to maximize good parking. Upon entering each new home, you must take off your street shoes before touring. Therefore, be sure to wear a comfortable walking shoe that easily slips on and off. I keep a pair of loafers and even some duck boots in my car during the three weeks of Parade. It will make your visit that much more enjoyable and function comes before fashion when you have to take your shoes off anyway.

Map a Strategy

If you have a particular destination site, make sure you look for additional homes along the way to visit. Many of the subdivisions are in close proximity to each other and it’s easy to get to a number of them in one tour.

Don’t Forget the One-Offs

Although there is tremendous variety in those subdivisions with multiple homes, make sure to visit those areas with a single listing. There are entire new neighbourhoods to discover and builders with unique designs.

Talk to the Agents

The sales agents know their show homes. Ask them about anything — unique features, energy savings, specific materials and what makes this particular home special. These individuals are a wealth of knowledge, and if they don’t have the answer, they will find out and get back to you in short order.

Remember Your Passport

This year, there’s an added bonus for those visiting Monday through Thursday. Inside your Parade magazine, you will find a passport card. Simply get it stamped by 10 different builders in their show homes and enter to win one of four fabulous prizes.

Select your Favourites

This year, you get to decide who wins the various new home awards. Bring your phone, text onto the Parade site and rate each home you visit. This year, you are the judge.

Have Fun

The Parade is an enjoyable three weeks where you can see the latest and greatest in new homes. Enjoy the 2016 Spring Parade of Homes.

 

Mike Moore is president of the Manitoba Home Builders’ Association

By Mike Moore
March 12

Parade of Homes

HOME sweet HOME

Not all show homes feel like home. Yet that’s the precise feedback Ventura Custom Homes sales representative Chris Dare has been receiving about 144 Cherrywood Rd. — a.k.a. the Aspenridge B Visitable — during the Spring Parade of Homes.

"Pretty much everyone who’s viewed the home has said it feels like you’re walking into a real home rather than a show home," said Dare, adding the Aspenridge is a brand-new design. "I think there are two reasons for that. The home isn’t overdone, so it just feels like you’re walking into a normal home. Its open-concept floor plan also gives it a nice, spacious feel the moment you walk in, so you feel comfortable right away."

That comfort starts on the home’s main floor, where a supremely sensible floor plan makes the most of the available space. For starters, the foyer — which is approximately seven feet wide — is a generous space that makes it easy for visitors to doff their coats and shoes without tripping all over each other. And because the foyer essentially opens on to the great room (and there’s plenty of transition space in front of it) — a one-third wall neatly divides it from the adjacent living room — there’s a palpable sense of space. "I love the open-concept great room," said Dare. "There’s always lots of room to move, and there’s space for everyone, whether you’re at home with family, or are entertaining."

Thanks to nine-foot ceilings and lots of glass — the family room features a huge, recessed picture window on its rear wall, the back door has a large glass centre pane and there’s an oversized piano window on the wall opposite (and above, for privacy) the dining area — flow from space to space is effortless, and natural light abounds.

Meanwhile, two other design features combine to create a great room that’s equal parts function and fashion. "Each area is well-proportioned — the family room, dining area and kitchen are all just the right size, so, again, you never feel like space is lacking," he said. "There’s plenty of room to hang out or entertain in the family room, the dining area can easily hold a table for six or more, and the island kitchen (with compact, functional six-foot by three-foot island with eating nook for two) is perfect for creating meals or as a serving area."

Finishes

Finishes are also impressive. High-end (taupe) laminate plank floors run through the foyer, great room and rear of the home (more about its neat design shortly), while textured cappuccino cabinets, a bronze-hued glass tile backsplash and smart brown/bronze laminate countertops combine to create a rich, warm look that meshes beautifully with the flooring.

The kitchen then transitions into another hallway to its rear — a hallway loaded with all kinds of function, said Dare. "This home has been drawing a lot of interest from multi-generational families because it features a bedroom and visitable main bath next to a huge landing off its back door," he said. "It’s tucked away neatly behind the kitchen, which gives it a nice private feel, making it perfect for parents or in-laws, as it’s right next to the door that leads down to the basement."

Head downstairs, and you find a well-laid-out lower level that offers a surprising amount of livable space. "Its layout allows for a huge storage/mechanical area, a fifth bedroom, four-piece bath and rec room with media and games areas. Ventura’s design team has done a really good job with this home – every level offers exceptional livability."

That inherent livability is also on full display on the Aspenridge’s topmost level, which can be accessed in seamless fashion via a four-foot-wide staircase. A brief hallway connects the three bedrooms and main bath without taking up too much valuable space, while a laundry room situated in a double closet next to the stairs is unobtrusive, yet highly functional.

Both secondary bedrooms are quite large with oversized windows, one with a walk-in closet, the other with a huge quad closet. The main bath is more spacious than most with a one-piece vinyl tub/shower combo with deep soaker tub; the master suite is large, light-filled and luxurious. "At 14.5 square feet by 15 square feet, it’s a big space (with huge picture window) that features a huge (11.6-foot by six-foot) walk-in closet, and generous ensuite with five-foot shower, cappuccino Olon vanity and taupe countertop," said Dare. "It’s a beautiful, functional space."

Whether a young family or multi-generational family chooses the home, they’ll be getting the same thing, added Dare. "The Aspenridge offers families just a ton of value. If you finish the basement, you can get a five-bedroom, four-bathroom home that provides you with just over 2,600 square feet of total living space with detached 20-foot by 22-foot garage for just under $425,000 — in a central area that’s beautiful, walkable and close to all kinds of amenities," he said. "It’s a great, well-thought-out design on every level."

lewys@mts.net

Builder: Ventura Custom Homes

 

Address: 144 Cherrywood Road, Bridgwater Trails

Model: The Aspenridge B Visitable

Style: Two-storey

Size: 1,882 sq. ft.

Bedrooms: 4

Bathrooms: 3

Price: $396,500 (Show home; includes lot, detached garage and GST)

Contact: Chris Dare, Quest Residential Real Estate, 204-295-2207

By Todd Lewys
March 12

Parade of Homes

Living large

When it comes to homes, square footage can be deceptive. That’s because a larger home — due to an inefficient floor plan — can feel significantly less spacious than a smaller home that features a layout that maximizes every square foot of available space. In other words, while size matters, it must be well-used.

A new design from Hilton Homes is a great example of how a "smaller" home can be offer big livability. While the Trinity — a 1,744 square foot, two-storey design — falls just over 250 sq. ft. short of the magical 2,000 sq. ft. mark, it’s exceptionally livable.

"This home is actually designed to fit on lots as narrow as 36 feet wide," said Spencer Curtis of Hilton Homes. "The lot here (at 117 Larry Vickar Drive in Devonshire Village) is a bit wider. Still, our goal with the Trinity was to show that you could design a mid-sized home to be extremely efficient — and very stylish to boot."

The Trinity’s ultra-functional design starts the moment you set foot in the front entry. The foyer is plenty big — there’s even space for a bench to sit down and take your shoes off at – and a hallway to the right contains a two-piece bath and a large mudroom that provides access to the attached — and oversized — double attached garage.

Those practical features are matched by several subtle elements of style, said Curtis. "We put luxury vinyl tile in the foyer to give it a luxurious feel, and also put tempered glass cut-outs in the stairwell’s walls to open the stairwell up to the foyer. It’s a feature that not only looks great, but serves a practical purpose."

The Trinity’s great room is an open-concept design. Thanks to a host of thoughtful design features, it feels as spacious as a great room you might find in a 2,000 sq. ft. home. "We really worked hard to make the great room as efficient as possible," he said. "First of all, the ceiling (painted, not stippled) is nine feet high. Then, we basically put windows along the whole back wall. There’s a huge picture window in the family room, and triple garden doors next to the dining area."

A 31/2-foot by six-foot dark grey quartz island in the kitchen — which features an eating nook for two — is big enough to be functional, yet small enough so that it doesn’t hinder movement in and around the kitchen; the cantilevered triple patio doors open up ample space for an informal dining room that seats six to 10; and the family room possesses the space and pizazz required to entertain in style. "The kitchen has lots of room to move and features a beautiful combination of white and dark thermofoil cabinets, light and dark quartz countertops, taupe glass tile backsplash and corner pantry," Curtis said. "The dining area is just the perfect size, and the family room is absolutely huge. Its ribbon fireplace — set in a (striated) taupe tile feature wall and luxury (oak) vinyl plank flooring (which runs through the entire great room) add style, texture and warmth."

A quick jaunt up the angled, stylish staircase — a huge window over a landing mid-way up lets in tons of natural light — takes you to the upper level, which matches the main level’s efficient layout. Hallway space is minimal, a design feature that allowed extra space to be allocated in each space: the master suite, two secondary bedrooms, main bath and laundry room. "We’re really pleased with how the second floor turned out," he said. "The master suite (positioned off by itself to the left of the stairs) is very generous with a large picture window, big walk-in closet and ensuite with five-foot shower and huge (thermofoil) vanity. Both secondary bedrooms are big with walk-in closets and oversized windows, and the master suite is huge with a nice deep (standard) soaker tub to relax in."

He added that the laundry room was no afterthought. "It’s huge with a built-in (wire) linen niche and even has a big window so you won’t feel like you’re in a dungeon when doing your laundry."

With another 552 sq. ft. of livable space downstairs in a lower level surrounded by four oversized windows that let in all kinds of welcome daylight, the Trinity’s total square footage comes in at over 2,300 all told — plenty of room for an active young family. "You can put in a rec room, fourth bedroom and bathroom and still have lots of storage room left over," said Curtis. "I think that the Trinity proves that a smaller home can be designed so it can handle real, day-to-day life with style and efficiency — without having all the stuff you need to live life stuck in your face. A home doesn’t have to be huge to be efficient, and stylish."

The Trinity is affordable, too. While the show home is priced at $456,769, a more basic version can be purchased for around $400,000. "We can work with you to mix and match the options you want in the home," he said. "Even with basic finishes, you get plenty of style — and the same efficient layout."

lewys@mts.net

Builder: Hilton Homes

 

Address: 117 Larry Vickar Drive, Devonshire Village

Model: The Trinity

Style: Two-storey

Size: 1,744 sq. ft.

Bedrooms: 3

Bathrooms: 2 1/2

Price: $456,769 (Show home; includes upgraded finishes, appliances, window coverings, lot & GST)

Contact: Jaqueline LaCroix, Quest Residential Realty, 204-292-9118

By Todd Lewys
March 5

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