5 Tips to Tailoring Your Floor Plan for Your Lifestyle

One of the biggest investments in your lifetime is your home!  It is the place that you go to wind down, relax, entertain, cook, and raise your family and work. The best thing about building a custom home is that you won’t have to force your family’s lifestyle into a floor plan!

In a day in age of outsourcing, Joseph Douglas Homes offers two experienced in-house CAD designers that work directly with you, our customer, on every single project. Because of our commitment to finding you the best design for your home, we can easily tailor an existing floor plan or create a one-of-a-kind custom plan for you. We always work hard to help you design the home that fits your family’s needs. No matter if your family is downsizing or expanding, we work with you to build the home that is the best for you all while staying within your budget. 

Even though we make working with Joseph Douglas Homes as easy and straightforward as possible, you are bound to need ideas at times! For some tips and thoughts about picking your perfect floor plan, look at these 5 tips to choosing the right floor plan for your home below:

  1. Choose a plan based on your design style

Are you traditional and prefer a closed off floor plan or do you have a modern style where an open floor plan would fit better? Some families prefer everyone to gather in one spot and others work better when there are separate rooms to meet in. Think of things like your furnishings and imagine how you will decorate your home!

  1. Pick what size of home will be the best for your family

The size of your home should be one of your first thoughts. Every family doesn’t need a huge home and every family won’t feel comfortable in a small one bedroom. Choosing a floor plan should begin with how large of a home you want and how that will fit into your lifestyle. Think about how many bedrooms you will need for kids and how many bathrooms are enough for your lifestyles.

  1. Know your budget before choosing a floor plan

Let’s face it; there is always the side of us that wants to go bigger and better than we ever imagined. Before getting your heart set on one type of floor plan – know what the costs are associated with the layout.

  1. Understand the pros and cons of your floor plan

There isn’t ever going to be a perfect floor plan. There will always be some kind of pros and cons. You and your family will need to decide what are your priorities are and what can you learn to live without.  Make sure to weigh the pros and cons when looking for the perfect floor plan.

  1. Ask us for help

While you may know what you want in your future home, we can always help you consider a different point of view. Factors such as energy savings/costs, building times, and maintenance experience are factors that a professional can give their guidance on. Best of all, we can semi-customize your floor plan to fit your lifestyle.

Tour Joseph Douglas Homes Carlisle Model at the 2017 MBA Parade of Homes

Beginning in mid-August, potential buyers can experience 22 brand new homes constructed by some of Southeastern Wisconsin’s select home builders of the Metropolitan Builders Association.

MBA Parade of Homes CarlisleDiscover the latest in decorating trends, cutting-edge technology, sustainable building techniques, and the best in exterior, interior, and landscape design. Interact with some of the Greater Milwaukee Area’s top builders; ask questions and gather ideas regarding remodeling your current home, buying a new home, or building your dream home.

Each Parade Subdivision will feature several builders and their best designs. For example, in Menomonee Falls, Joseph Douglas Homes is showcasing The Carlisle as their 2017 Parade of Homes Model. Starting with their most popular floor plan with a first-floor master bedroom, and then adding a personality of its own, the architects at Joseph Douglas have created a top-of-the-line residence. The Carlisle is a “must see” on this tour and is considered to be the “little sister” of their very popular Newberry and Somerset models.

The Carlisle’s two-story foyer creates an impressive grand entrance, and a wall of windows fills the family room with tons of natural light. A chef’s kitchen is nearby, hosting a great prep island, a walk-in pantry, and a spacious casual dining area. Nearby is a “flex” room which can be used for a formal dining area, an office, or a study. Toward the back of the house is a laundry area with a separate mud room complete with lockers and a big storage closet – perfect for muddy shoes, school books, and sports equipment. A powder room is right near the garage entrance.

Along with the luxurious first-floor master suite – which includes a private screen porch and a bath with spacious tile shower, and a walk-in closet – The Carlisle also has three additional bedrooms, a full bath, and a loft on the second floor. This home is perfect for a growing, active family. Be sure to put this house at the top of your list of homes to tour.

The Parade of Homes began in the 1940s and showcased the best subdivisions and must-see model homes in southeastern Wisconsin built by the area’s most experienced builders.

Tickets for the 2017 MBA Parade of Homes will be available online, at several advance ticket locations, and at Parade entrances. You will be allowed into each subdivision only one time. The Parade of Homes opens on Saturday, August 12th and runs through Monday, September 4th.







Don’t suffer the pain of high energy bills in your next home

Do you cringe each month when your utility bill arrives in the mail? If high energy costs are getting you down, don’t blame your electronic devices. Heating and cooling are the largest energy expense for most homes, reports the U.S. Department of Energy.

If you dream of building a new, custom home, you must make some fundamental decisions about how the home will be built in order to avoid thousands of dollars in wasted energy costs each year.

When you picture your dream home under construction, you likely think of hundreds of wall studs (the skeleton of a building) creating the frame of your home, as that is how many U.S. homes are built — from tract homes to custom-built mansions. So-called “stick framing” has been the standard practice in home building since the 1800s. Yet, this method is notoriously difficult and expensive to make energy efficient, leading to high heating and cooling bills.

More custom home builders have discovered an advanced method of building that can help reduce a home’s heating and cooling energy consumption up to 60 percent compared to stick framing. The system is structural insulated panels (SIPs), which can be used to form walls, roofs and floors in big sections (24 ft. each) that install quickly and easily. SIPs panels are made when structural wood sheathing is laminated to a rigid foam core for superior strength and insulation. Compared to traditional two-by-four stud walls, SIPs have thicker and more continuous insulation for exceptional insulating power, and have far fewer gaps where heated indoor air can leak out.

Making a home airtight is the most critical thing you can do for high energy efficiency.  In one custom home Strong built for the O’Meara family in the snowy foothills of the Wasatch Mountains, the large SIP panels leave few spaces for gaps and help super-insulate the home. This high efficiency allowed the home to supply 90 percent of its heating and cooling needs through passive solar energy.

Likewise, when it came time to design her own home, Montana architect Becki D. Miller, AIA, used SIPs to help create a structure that she estimates is about 30 times more airtight than a conventional home. In addition to being energy efficient, Miller notes that SIPs help simplify and speed construction. “In one step, you can have the walls up and they’re insulated and sheathed,” says Miller. “With SIPs, we had the walls up in only two days.”

“While SIPs are an advanced building method, they’re not new,” says James Hodgson, general manager of Premier SIPs, a manufacturer based near Tacoma, Washington. “SIP homes have been built in the U.S. since the 1960s, but with new interest in energy-efficient construction, more people are asking for SIPs.” Hodgson notes that manufacturers continue to innovate with SIPs, including new types of insulating cores. His company’s Platinum SIPs, for example, use a new type of insulation that increases the panels’ insulating power by more than 20 percent.

Joseph Douglas Homes: Your Go-to Builder

When looking for the right home builder, you may hear many unfamiliar words and phrases. The confusion will often complicate your search. To simplify your journey, we will guide you through the process. Think of us as your as your go-to builder and your resource along the way!

Let’s start by examining the different types of home builders.

Custom Home Builder

A custom home is created exactly how the buyer wants it to be. Custom homes are one-of-a-kind, and unlike any other home in your neighborhood. If you want a palace, then you will get a palace! Custom homes are built on land the buyer owns. The builder and architect work closely with the customer to design and construct a home with every possible feature to meet the client’s needs. Custom homes are often built with the highest quality while offering the most customization. Changes can be made throughout the building process.

Production Home Builder

Production home builders design and construct many homes. The homes are built in developments, and on land the builder owns. Many production home builders build more than 100 homes each year. Many different types of homes are available, including single-family, condominiums and townhouses.

Production builders use standard plans. However, they also offer a variety of floor plans to choose from, various options and elevations. There will likely be multiple homes in the neighborhood that look similar to each other.

A range of features including flooring, appliances, cabinets, countertops and trim are also offered. These options may or may not increase the base home price, but they enable the buyer to pick items that they desire. However, the builder may or may not offer a selection of options that conform exactly to what the customer wants.

Semi-Custom Home Builder

Semi-custom home builders build their homes using existing models and previously used blueprints. In most cases, the buyer can adjust the plans to personalize the home to fit their specific wants and needs before construction. When construction begins, there is less flexibility to make changes.

The home can be built on land that the builder or the buyer owns. Semi-custom homes are usually offered at a very affordable price, giving them an excellent blend of value and personalization. The entire project is often completed very quickly compared to a full custom home.

So What Kind of Home Builder is Joseph Douglas Homes?

We are like the Swiss-army knife of home building; you cannot place us under one label. With over 20 years of experience and countless accolades and awards, we offer semi-custom homes and full custom homes. We have many customizable portfolio homes, but if you come to us and want us to build a castle for you, then say no more!

You might want to take advantage of a semi-custom home’s affordability and rapid construction process.

Maybe you want that jaw-dropping custom home, built with every top-grade element needed to create your masterpiece.

You have the power to choose whichever selection best aligns with your dream. Home buyers utilize our unique, in-house design capabilities to personalize one of our portfolio homes or design a custom home exactly tailored to homeowner specifications. Our advanced, three-dimensional software allows you to see your new home from any angle, inside and out, before it’s built. This in-house custom home design service is offered to all our customers at no additional cost.

So basically, you still get the perks of paying less on a faster time-frame compared to building a 100% custom home, but you benefit from having a much higher level of flexibility when it comes to the design. We have better pricing options than most custom home builders with our All Inclusive-pricing and our Guaranteed Pricing.