Published at Wednesday, April 03rd, 2019 - 06:00:23 AM. Home Decoration. By Adal Meier.
Model homes and condos are a different breed. Custom homebuilders and developers are showing how much more important this niche has become by creating the illusion that a pet lives on the premises of their show homes. Toll Brothers, a custom builder of both single- and multifamily housing based in Horsham, Penn., stages swank models with plush pet beds and fancy dog showers that feature designer tiles. ICI Homes designed a “pet condo” under a stairway, a place that typically represents dead space, in one of their model houses. The area measures 4 by 4 feet, has a large opening with a gate, and room for a bed, bowls, light, and electric outlet. “The outlet can be used to plug in one of the newer self-cleaning litter boxes,” suggests sales assistant Sabrina Bosarge. Staging expert Kristie Barnett, founder of Expert Psychological Training in Nashville, Tenn., says builders arent risking much with these add-ons because they can easily be reimagined when needed—a shower can be used to rinse off small childrens feet or water plants, and a space under the stairs can become a play area or storage space.
Get an estimate so buyers can weigh the expense. Garage prices vary according to the size, style, materials, foundation required, storage options, types of doors, and who does the work—an architect, design-build firm, or contractor. A “typical” 20-by-20-foot, two-car, detached garage with vinyl siding and shingle roof usually ranges between $20,000 and $38,000, says Uday Khedkar, president of Danleys Garages in Northbrook, Ill. Popular improvements such as panelized wall and ceiling systems and snap-together floor tiles could add close to $10,000, says Skip Barrett, head of GarageTek in Plainview, N.Y. But prices can go much higher, even approaching median home prices. Chicago architect Allan J. Grant is currently designing a three-car, 30-by-20-foot freestanding garage with cedar shake siding, a concrete slab floor, heating, electrical outlets, and special doors on a North Shore suburban lot to match an Arts & Crafts style home. The contractors estimate came in at $250,000, Grant says. “We were all surprised,” he says.
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