Two Things You Don’t Know About New Home Construction

As a custom home builder, we have worked with countless customers on new home construction projects. There is always an excitement in the air as the customer finally gets a home that is customized and made to suit the individual or family. Yet there are two decisions that these folks are frequently not prepared to make. Do you know what they are?

Do You Want this Lot or the One Down the Street?

Selecting the right location for your new home is more important than you think. There is more to this choice than selecting the right ZIP code, neighborhood and closeness to amenities. For example, one lot will cause your home’s bedrooms to face the rising sun. If you are early risers, this is not a problem. Another lot’s setup on the same street causes the sunrise to send the first rays of light through your kitchen window. If you are a breakfast aficionado but like to sleep in occasionally, this is a great idea. In another scenario, your bedroom windows may face the street or the neighbor’s deck. Which would you prefer?

Custom Millwork, Paint Colors and Closets – oh My!

New home construction makes it possible to build a home that fulfills all of your needs and plenty of your wants. Sometimes, customers are astonished at the sheer volume of choices they get to make. This is a far cry from selecting one of three model home floor plans. Spend some time discussing such things as closet space – sizes and layouts – and millwork as well as paint schemes with your family. These are the types of decisions that you do not want to have to make by yourself and on the spot.

Working with the Right Professionals Matters

The professionals at J. Schmidt Homes understand that building your dream home calls for decisions that you may not be prepared to make right then and there. For this reason, our custom home builder walks you through the project at your pace. Enjoy the confidence of seeing your dream home take shape, one decision at a time. With an in-house realtor service, lot selection becomes a snap. We show you how your dream home will fit on the lots that you have your eye on. Once you have all the facts, making decisions is actually fun! Contact us today to start on your journey to a customized home.

Realtor Service Experts Find the Ideal Location for Your Custom Home

Working with your custom home builder, you have put together a property plan that incorporates all the must-haves of your dream home. The proposed structure will have the bedrooms needed to give everyone space. It will feature the creature comforts your family enjoys. In addition, it gives you the visual aesthetics you crave. Finding the ideal location for your custom home is now up to your realtor service experts.

Location Does Matter

You already know the adage that it is all about “location, location, location.” While you may have been willing to make some compromises when buying your last home, you are not willing to do so when you have a custom home built. In addition to finding a place for your home that is budget friendly, consider also the school district, the distance to shopping venues and the recreational options that the neighborhood supports.

Looking Beyond the Stats

A seasoned expert helps you to see the neighborhood through the eyes of a resident. Learn more about it than the stats sheet offers. Perhaps you are retired, an empty nester or are starting out with a young family. Building your home in a community with like-minded neighbors and those who are at similar stages in life adds to the overall enjoyment you will experience in this setting.

Positioning Your Home

It sounds odd, but remember that you want to have gorgeous views from your windows. When purchasing the piece of land where you will build, have your expert help you with the positioning of the structure. If the views are at odds with the setup of the home or the streets, even the most idyllic parcel will not work well unless you are willing to compromise. It takes an industry insider to combine your preferred floor plan with a site that supports its setup as well as the neighborhood amenities you desire.

At J. Schmidt Homes’ Realtor Services, we understand not just the custom building aspect of your project, but we also specialize in finding you the right location where to erect the structure. Contact us today to discuss your home building needs with our friendly experts.

New Home Construction: Is an Open Floor Plan Right for You?

Are you in the process of working with a designer on your new home construction? If so, then certainly this can be an exciting process, but what you’ve also probably noticed by this point is that there are so many decisions to be made. When it comes to your main living spaces, your designer probably wants to know whether you’d like an open or closed floor plan. While open floor plans are extremely popular in new builds today, it’s a good idea to weigh the potential pros and cons before you decide what’s best for your needs.

Pro: More Conducive to Entertaining

Perhaps the biggest advantage of an open floor plan is that it’s more conducive to entertaining; when you have people over, people in the kitchen can easily communicate with people in the living room and vice versa. Furthermore, with an open floor plan, the space doesn’t feel disjointed like a closed floor plan often does.

Con: Less Privacy and More Noise

Of course, fewer walls in an open space also means less privacy and more noise, especially when you’re not entertaining guests. Because there are fewer walls in an open space, sounds will have a greater capacity to travel and echo. If you’re the type of person who values your privacy/peace and quiet, then you may want to think twice before opting for an open floor plan home.

Pro: Better Sight Lines Throughout Home

Many parents of small children enjoy open floor plans because they give moms and dads the ability to keep an eye on their children more easily. For example, mom or dad may be in the kitchen preparing dinner, but can still have sight lines to the children playing in the living room or dining area. The same simply cannot be said of a closed floor plan.

Con: More Challenging to Decorate

Finally, open floor plans can be slightly more challenging to decorate. Because an open floor plan consists of separate living spaces that blend together, finding a way to incorporate a seamless design from one space to the next proves difficult for some homeowners. It may be necessary to bring in an interior design specialist to help make the right decisions in this regard.

Still not sure if an open floor plan is right for you? Have further questions about your new home design? We invite you to contact us today for the professional assistance you’re looking for.

Tips for Choosing the Finishing Touches with New Construction

When you buy a new construction home, your first considerations involve the architectural style, layout and size of the home. For many people buying new construction in Greater Cincinnati or Northern Kentucky, the new home building process culminates with the interior finishes selection. The finishing touches are often a powerful design statement that either overpowers the architectural style or enhances your vision for the home. According to an article by, design details let you express your personality. One of the special bonuses of buying a new construction home is the fact that you can control everything from the flooring in the guest bathroom to the size of the kitchen cabinet pulls. Orchestrating the details is less daunting with the help of an experienced home builder such as J. Schmidt Homes. By following a few tips, you will select the best finishing touches for your custom home.

Collecting ideas

After choosing a particular architectural style, begin collecting ideas, color samples and photographs of your favorite design features. Some of the choices you can make when building a custom home include the doors, appliances, trim, flooring, molding, countertops, cabinets, lighting and plumbing figures. Some homebuyers pull out fabric swatches for drapes to make sure the style doesn’t clash with other interior finishes. Although you don’t have to select furniture until after closing, some people like to buy the furniture for their new home to use as staging props for their current home that’s listed for sale.

Setting a budget

Talk to your homebuilder about the budget for interior design finishes. Your builder is able to get you a better deal on cabinetry, floors and other interior selections because of buying power and contacts. A new construction builder provides you with the help you need so you aren’t spending thousands of dollars on a private designer.

Staying on trend

It is important to buy kitchen backsplash materials and choose colors that are on-trend but not trendy. Trendy design features go out of style in one to two years, while someone on trend typically lasts at least a decade. For example, the modern look of stainless steel continues to shine as a home selling point even after decades of popularity.

The best advice for new homebuyers is to keep it fun when planning for a new construction home. By sticking to classic details, you preserve your home’s value. At J. Schmidt Homes, we take pride being a custom home builder who helps clients in the Northern Kentucky and Greater Cincinnati area. For more information on design detail ideas for your custom home, please contact us.

Interviewing Custom Home Builders? Ask About Custom Millwork!

If you are thinking of building your dream home from scratch, you are in good company. Plenty of folks are looking for a custom home builder to make their dreams of the ideal family home become a reality. Yet before you sign on the dotted line with the first professional who sends a flyer to your address, ask about custom millwork.

Why Millwork?

It seems like such a small thing. After all, molding and paneling is something that you pick up at the big box home improvement store. Rarely does a homeowner consider the impact of bed molding or crown molding on the overall look and feel of a home. Yet it is the serious custom home builder who realizes that paying attention to these details makes a huge difference in the overall satisfaction you experience with your new home after moving in.

Is Molding Really a Big Deal?

Did you know that shelf edge molding is something your home builder can put over the built-in book shelf edges that you commissioned for the family room? Customize the look to help set the tone for the room. Do you favor a minimalist approach? Perhaps you like a more ornate appearance that goes with your ranch-style décor. This very same shelf edge molding is also used to affix your screen to the screen door. When your porch opens up to the family room, using this same customized millwork is an excellent method of providing visual continuity of the look and putting your personality into another aspect of the structure.

Why work with a builder who does not worry too much about the custom millwork? When you decide that it is time to see your home dream become a reality, work with someone who considers the details of the job. At J. Schmidt Homes, we handle all the custom aspects of your home construction. From the size of the home to its location and budget (and the millwork), our professionals work hard to transform your dream into a reality. Contact us today for more information and to get started on your design.


Residential Remodeling Ideas to Sell Your Starter Home and Buy New

Some people love watching home improvement shows about people who fall back in love with their home after a residential remodeling job. While some people decide to love their home, others realize their home is worth so much more after home improvements that they can afford a step-up home. By working with a custom home builder who also handles residential remodeling, you can enjoy a seamless experience fixing up your starter home to sell and planning for a new home. The first step is to figure out the best resale value remodels for your home in Greater Cincinnati or Northern Kentucky. According to a recent article by, people who remodel their home to sell need to stay focused on limited home improvement dollars.

  • Updating a kitchen

If you have an old, outdated kitchen, you can increase the value of your home. Prioritize according to the return on the investment as opposed to your design tastes since your goal is to sell. An article by HGTV says people spend the most money in the kitchen and baths. Experts suggest sticking with traditional wood cabinets, stone countertops and sleek appliances.

  • Adding square footage

Another good place to spend your remodeling dollars is on more living space. HGTV suggest adding new living room space, but other wise moves include a second master bedroom suite with adjoining bathroom addition and walk-in closet. With the multi-generational household trend, you can add living space for large families to appeal to buyers with aging parents or adult children. Even if you don’t add a new master bedroom, consider remodeling the one you already have.

Other important ways to spend your remodeling dollars include replacing old showers and tubs with modern glass or stylish ceramic tiles and changing out toilet bowls, sinks, vanities and lighting fixtures. According to, don’t waste your renovation dollars on kids’ spaces that are often too personalized. Pools and wine rooms are great if you plan to stay put, but not if your intention is to sell.

At J. Schmidt Homes, we can help you figure out the best way to remodel your existing home in Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky as well as plan a custom dream home that’s perfect for your family. For more information on our residential remodeling services, please contact us.

New Construction: How to Plan for a Bathroom Sanctuary

IMG_1485While kitchens get the most attention, it’s the bathroom that you and your guests will appreciate most once you move into your new construction home. Bathroom trends are always changing, but some things remain constant. When choosing what you want in a custom home, always allocate a guest bathroom that is convenient to visitors in the home. A growing trend is to have dual master suites in a custom home, which provides the owner with a luxurious bathroom as well as one for another member of the household. According to a recent article by, bathrooms provide a sanctuary. Experts say some of the features that stand out to people looking at new homes include double sinks, solid surface countertops and showers with decorative tile.

  • Relaxing in a garden tub

Although a growing number of homeowners are opting out of the garden or jetted tubs, it’s wise to have at least one bathroom in the home with a garden tub because of resale value. If you decide to leave the tub out of some bathrooms, consider an over-sized shower with trendy glass mosaic tile and upgraded shower heads.

  • Choosing a non-slip flooring

Years ago, some homeowners chose carpeting in the bathroom. Design experts say carpet in a bathroom in a major turnoff for most people. At the same time, it’s good to have non-slip surfaces in the bathroom that could cushion a fall as you age. When planning your bathrooms in a new construction home, think about whether an older person will be using the space. If so, opt for non-slip flooring and universal design features such as grab bars in the shower.

  • Going high-tech

Touch-free toilets are especially appealing for guest bathrooms. Talk to your builder about including at least one bathroom on the main floor near the entryway of the home and main entertaining areas. Although not all the bathroom trends this year revolve around technology, The National Kitchen & Bath Association reports that people are gravitating to clean and white contemporary design, floating vanities, heated floors, open shelving and trough sinks.

At J. Schmidt Homes, we can help you build a dream home that includes on-trend bathrooms. Whether you want to remodel the bathrooms in your existing home or live in a new construction house in Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky, talk to us about the latest in bathroom designs. For more information about new home plans for your family, please contact us.

Points to Consider When Insuring A Green Home Built by Your Custom Home Builder

The rise in green living has caused quite a few industries to scramble to catch up. This includes the insurance industry, one of the slowest industries to embrace new technologies and ideas. The insurance industry is about risk. It’s about embracing that which prevents it from paying out for an accident. When the Affordable Care Act was enacted, the insurance industry gazed in wonder at a new system about which it had no information whatsoever. Premiums were frightful the first years of the Act, because there was nothing to which to compare them. Now the system has evened out somewhat with premiums settling to a more workable level.

The beginning of green building practices is another subject about which the insurance industry had little information. Some years later, there is basis for comparison, which means premiums and policies have been adjusted. For example, homeowners wishing to live in green structures may take out a policy insuring existing green things like Energy Star appliances, energy efficient windows and doors as well as energy and water saving innovations. Another policy may be taken out by homeowners wishing to replace their present domicile with a green home from a custom home builder if anything happens to them. These policies will be a little expensive, but somewhat less than replacing a monstrous carbon footprint structure.

Going Green

Homeowners ready to remodel their Lebanon or Cincinnati structures think about going green. In addition to energy saving windows and doors as well as Energy Star appliances, there is siding to consider. The sticks with which the house was built might not be green, but homeowners can always work around that. For example, siding the house in fiber cement is a green practice that will net the homeowner years of attractive siding with little to no upkeep. Fiber cement is made of sand, cement and often recycled wood fibers. It is water-resistant, fire-resistant, weather-resistant and termite-resistant. It can be devised to look like wood, stucco or vinyl siding in any color or stain the homeowner finds attractive. It’s a little more expensive than other types of siding, but it lasts darn near forever. It’s great insulation, too.

Other Green Building Practices

Another remodel project that thrills insurance companies is green roofing. When they don’t have to pay out on hurricane or tornado damages, they love it. Modern green roofing materials include recycled steel or aluminum in 75 percent of the roof. This is great for saving energy as well as making the roof just about impregnable. Here, fire resistance is another facet of green building about which insurance companies are concerned.

More Fire-Resistant Information

Homes are often breeding grounds for bacteria and germs that cause respiratory troubles in susceptible family members. Asthma and allergy symptoms appear when the HVAC unit needs to be replaced. This is also a fire hazard, because older units are not energy efficient and often cause house fires. Homeowners’ power bills will decrease with the installation of an energy efficient HVAC unit in addition to lower insurance premiums. The family will be healthier and the house won’t catch on fire.

LEED Certified Homes

Green homes following Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design or LEEDS guidelines often receive discounts on homeowners insurance. Some innovations in green building are not covered by every insurance company, although most are seeing the light. States differ in their certifications, so homeowners seeking LEED certification should check with Ohio building codes offices. Insurance companies embracing green building practices include AIG, Travelers Insurance, Nationwide and State Farm, to name a few. In fact, homeowners driving hybrid cars could get a bundle price on their insurance products.

Now that homeowners and those wishing to build a green home know a little about insuring them, it’s time to locate a green-savvy custom builder. J. Schmidt Homes has you covered. Buyers will have every choice and every chance to consider costs in green materials as they build a green, energy efficient custom home that will be the envy of all who see it. 

Hot Trends in Flooring for Your New Construction Home or Remodel

flooringWhether you hire an experienced builder for a luxurious new construction home or to update your existing home, flooring defines your home’s aesthetic. Many new construction homes in the Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky areas have hard and soft surfaces throughout. When renovating or building, choose colors that blend and complement the interior design. According to a recent piece by, the styles for flooring choices are always changing. As a homeowner, you can embrace or discard the latest flooring trends for new construction depending if you have pets, children or aging relatives living in the home who need non-slip flooring.

  • Dark hardwood flooring

Dark flooring isn’t the right choice if you have light-colored pets, but it’s extremely hot to choose ebony stains. Experts point out other downsides of the darker colors is that they show scratches. Another option is gray hardwood now that interior designers call gray the “new neutral.” If you want a lighter color, choose white washed floors that remind you of a country home.

  • Wide plank flooring

A rustic interior design appeals to many people living in Ohio or Kentucky. Wide plank flooring makes a space feel more modern as well as rustic. When customizing your new construction home, ask about increasing the width of your wood planks by just a few inches.

  • Earth-friendly flooring

One of the most common “green” flooring choices is bamboo because it’s one of the fastest growing hardwoods. Many lines of bamboo mimic the look of other hardwoods. Other earth-friendly choices include reclaimed wood from antique floors and old beams.

  • New twists on the old

If you want to impress your guests with stunning floors, consider large format tiles in sizes such as 12″ X 24″ and 36″ X 36″. Another new twist on an old favorite is a cork floor in new colors. Luxury vinyl also comes in new patters and colors. If you want carpet for the bedrooms, get as creative with the colors and fibers as you want.

At J. Schmidt Homes, we help you choose all of the design elements for your custom home in the Greater Cincinnati area and Northern Kentucky. Let us know what kind of look you hope to achieve and we’ll help you elevate your lifestyle. For more ideas about new construction flooring and features, please contact us.

Real Estate Trends: Building a Multi-Generational Custom Home

Even though the Great Recession is just a memory, one real estate trend that hasn’t faded away is the multi-generational household. Instead of hunting for a home with an in-law suite or partially finished basement, consider a custom home builder in the Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky areas. A new home builder will create a space that perfectly accommodates two, three or four generations living together. According to a report by Huffington Post, there are 57 million people in the U.S. living in multi-generational households. Before getting started with the process of building a new construction home, work out a few of the details with relatives.

  • Hammering out the financing

The first matter of business is to agree on a budget. Sometimes it’s the eldest member of the extended family that takes out a mortgage or pays cash for a home. In other cases, the other relatives co-sign on a mortgage and share the down payment and closing costs. Keep in mind, lenders evaluate the credit score and credit history of everyone on the mortgage. You may also want to consult with a lawyer about who to put on the title for estate planning purposes.

  • Making the home elder-friendly

According to Huffington Post, a growing trend in real estate is for senior citizens to age in place instead of going into nursing homes. Building an elder-friendly new construction home is critical with some of the considerations including wide hallways, levers on doors instead of knobs that are difficult to grab, non-slip flooring and accessible bathrooms. Unless you intend to add a stair lift, create a space for the oldest members of the household on the main floor.

  • Creating privacy and separation

A custom builder who builds on your lot in Ohio and Kentucky will likely recommend a finished basement for accommodating different generations. Boomerang children or young adults who are trying to save up money or pay off college loans often enjoy the privacy of having an entire finished basement to themselves. Your builder can include separate entrances as well as a 3-car garage.

At J. Schmidt Homes, we understand the needs of multi-generational households to have unique space carved out just for them. We can build you the perfect home on your lot in the Greater Cincinnati area and Northern Kentucky areas. For more information about our different elevation, floor plans and finished basement plans, please contact us.