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Floor Plans: What’s the Right Choice for You?

So you’ve made the decision to move forward with your plans to buy a custom home. Now you’re faced with the question, “What floor plan do I choose?” This is one of the biggest decisions you’ll have to make, so here are some important factors to consider so you can make the best choice for your home.

1. Determine Your Price Range

Sometimes, it’s easy to get swept up in the excitement of buying and planning for your new home. How much will your budget allow you to spend? Know what your price range is, and stick to it as well as you can. Whether you’ve got a certain layout in mind or you’re wanting to work with your home builder to create a completely custom design, always be aware of pricing. Our team can guide you through this process, showing you how we can meet your needs within your budget.

kitchen vanity with dual sinks

2. Remember Who’s Living There

One of the first things you should do is consider the size of your family. What will you all feel comfortable in, and what would be functional for everyone? You don’t want to feel cramped in your own home, but you also don’t want to pay for too much unused space. How many rooms you’ll need for family members? How often do you host out-of-town family and friends? And how many bathrooms would be appropriate for yourselves or for guests? Having it all mapped out keeps you in control of your home journey.

3. Modifications are Possible

Don’t forget, while you’re checking out hundreds of floor plans, you can customize your home as much you want. Your home will be designed entirely by you – your wants and needs are top priority, so if you have any special requests, you can always make them known. We can guide you, but ultimately you’re building your dream house! Here are some helpful hints about modifications.

4. Consider Square Footage and Style

Do you have a specific size and style in mind already? Square footage is just another way you can use to customize your floor plan. And if you’ve always had a preference for a certain style of home, you can sync these two details to create your dream home. This is the beauty of crafting your own space!

example floor plans being shown to a young woman

5. Go With Your Gut

Have you had a specific floor plan in mind? Maybe one stuck out to you and you haven’t forgotten it, even after all your searches. Chances are, this is leading you in the right direction. Above all, you want to be happy and settled in your new home, so if something feels right, don’t dismiss it. If you’re concerned about pricing, don’t hesitate to discuss it with your builder. Learn more about modular home costs.

young woman looking at floor plan options in a kitchen

6. Seek Guidance from a Professional

Your custom home builder is, of course, the best option for guidance! Write down any questions that might pop into your head through the process and address each point the next time you meet with them. Talking with a professional can ease some your worries, and you’ll walk away feeling excited about your new home!

Have questions about the perfect floor plan for you and your family? Contact Carolina Custom Homes of Burlington, and we’ll help you find the right choice!

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What is a Sealed Crawl Space?

At Carolina Custom Homes of Burlington, we build all of our custom modular homes with a sealed crawl space to provide better protection and air quality. Unlike vented crawl spaces, a sealed crawl space offers a number of benefits to your house and your family. But what is a sealed crawl space and how can it benefit your home?

What is a Sealed Crawl Space?

Traditionally, crawl spaces beneath a house are vented to allow air to pass beneath the house freely. Unfortunately, if you live in a humid area your crawl space might not be able to keep moisture out, which can lead to problems. Common issues associated with a vented crawl space are mold, mildew, wood rot, and poor air quality. Even worse, open crawl spaces can provide a home to pests and local wildlife.

A closed or “sealed” crawl space has no wall vents, meaning air cannot pass into the crawl space from outside your home. The ground in a sealed crawl space is covered with a moisture barrier which is sealed against the foundation walls. All gaps are sealed to create an air- and watertight sealed space. A sloped exterior grading around the foundation pulls water away from the house.

If you live in an area with a lot of moisture in the air such as the Southeastern United States, your home is at greater risk of developing mold and mildew. Having a sealed crawl space will prevent the buildup of moisture which can lead to mold and provides a number of additional benefits to your home.

young family under a blanket

The Benefits of a Sealed Crawl Space

  • Improved air quality, making it a great option for anyone with allergies or respiratory issues.
  • Saves you up to 18% on your heating and cooling costs each year.
  • The moisture-free crawl space reduces the chance of mold and mildew.
  • Moisture control also helps to reduce the chance of buckling underneath hardwood floors and protects your subfloors.
  • Keeps your floors warmer in the winter and cooler in the summer.
  • The dry air prevents frozen pipes in the winter.
  • The sealed area help to deter termites, pests, and wildlife from entering your home.

Having a sealed crawl space offers numerous benefits to you, your family, and your home, and can even save you money on your energy bills. When you build a home with Carolina Custom Homes of Burlington, your custom modular home will come with a sealed crawl space built standard.

Not sure if you can afford to build a custom home with a sealed crawl space? Download our free guide below!

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Snow Day! How to Prevent Frozen Pipes and Other Winter Weather Preparation Tips

Anyone who’s lived in North Carolina for long enough knows that anything is possible when it comes to the weather, from 70-degree days to frozen pipes. Winter weather preparation isn’t always at the top of our list, especially when some of us are enjoying springtime temperatures in mid-December! But those nice balmy days could turn into ice and snow faster than you think.

If snowy weather is in the forecast, don’t just run to the store for bread and milk! Make sure you’re prepared for anything with our winter weather preparation tips. Following them will save you from costly repairs and keep you warm and cozy all winter long!

Be Prepared

Don’t risk waiting until the last minute to get what you need. Be prepared by stocking up on supplies you’ll need to stay warm and safe in and around your house.

  • Keep road salt and a snow shovel on hand so you can clear your driveway and sidewalks on cold, icy mornings.
  • Frozen locks are possible, especially on your car. Keep some de-icer on hand so you can open your locks in freezing weather.
  • In case the power goes out, keep batteries, a flashlight, candles, and matches on hand. If you have a generator, make sure you have enough fuel to keep it running.
Man removing snow with a shovel

Protect Your Home Inside and Out

Extreme winter weather can wreak havoc on your home. Before heavy snows, ice storms, and hard freezes, take some time to prepare your house. Trim any branches that might fall on your house or car, and clean out your gutters to allow snow and ice to melt and move away from your roof easily.

If the weather forecast is calling for extremely low temperatures 15℉ and below, your home may be at risk of frozen pipes. When pipes freeze, the water in the pipes turns to ice and expands, which can cause the pipe to crack and burst. Once that frozen water thaws the cracks remain, which means leaks, flooding, and water damage in your house.

Prevent frozen pipes by taking these steps:

  • Insulate your pipes using pipe insulation kits found at your local hardware store. These kits are inexpensive but can save you thousands in repairs.
  • Leave your indoor faucets dripping slightly overnight. Keeping water moving in your pipes can help to prevent freezing.
  • If you have outdoor water faucets, turn off the water source and turn all of your faucets to the “on” position. This will drain out any remaining water in your outdoor pipes and allow water to escape before it freezes.
  • In case a pipe does burst, learn where your water shut-off valves are located ahead of time.
frozen stone with an open water pipe

By following these winter preparation tips, you and your family will be able to enjoy that winter weather while staying warm and cozy indoors! Click here to learn more about winterizing your home so you can save money on your energy bills all season.  

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DIY Christmas Decoration Ideas

With our busy lives, there’s a lot on our minds, and it can be hard to get into the holiday spirit. If you’ve been craving some Christmas cheer in your home but can’t seem to find the time or budget to go all-out, here are some quick, easy, and low-budget Christmas decoration ideas for your home!

DIY Christmas Decoration Ideas

Make a bow wreath

Do you always find yourself with tons of leftover bows after Christmas? Using them for next year’s gifts is always an option, but you can also use them to make a fun and easy DIY Christmas wreath. Get a floral wreath form from your local craft store, then attach those holiday bows all around it using thumb tacks or a hot glue gun. Unlike traditional fir wreaths, this one won’t make a mess and can be used again and again!

Red and gold bows

Candy cane placeholders

Are you hosting Christmas dinner this year? Give everyone a sweet treat by turning candy canes into cute card holders for name tags. Using tape and ribbon, tie three candy canes together (short side down) to make a small easel. Add a name card or use them to label food if you’re serving dinner buffet-style. Festive and delicious!

Wrap gifts early

What’s more festive than a Christmas tree with a few wrapped gifts underneath waiting to be opened on Christmas day? Get the chore of wrapping your gifts out of the way early, and those wrapped gifts can serve as decorations all month long!

Christmas decoration ideas

Bring the outdoors in

Take a nature hike and collect pinecones, mistletoe, ivy, and fir tree branches to decorate your home. Arrange decorative centerpieces using candles or decorate your stair railing using festive ribbon and string lights. When buying your Christmas tree, ask the seller to save some of the trimmed branches and use them as a wreath or for other decorations.

Put your Christmas cards on display

Are you expecting a handful of beautiful Christmas cards from friends and family this year? Turn them into a beautiful display on your mantle or side table. Arrange them with some fir tree cuttings or let them hang from a string of Christmas tree lights.

Hang paper snowflakes

Remember making paper snowflakes when you were in school? Get some squares of white paper and a pair of scissors and get creative! It’s always fun to see what sort of design you can get with random cuts into a folded triangle. Once you’ve made your paper blizzard, hang them in front of a window or against a wall using string or fishing line. This DIY Christmas decoration is also a great family activity!

Paper snowflakes

Stay warm and cozy this winter! Click here to learn how to winterize your home and save money on your energy bills!

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Can I Afford to Build a House? 5 Questions to Ask Yourself

Whether you’re a first-time home buyer who wants to get the most out of your purchase, or a homeowner looking for the perfect new home for your family, building a house is a great option. Many people assume that building a house is more expensive than buying, but that isn’t actually the case. The cost of building a house is comparable to buying, but you’ll get much more for your money.

Building a house is more affordable than you think! When calculating how much house you can afford to build, ask yourself these five questions:

How much down payment can I provide?

The cost of building a house will largely depend on your down payment. Before you talk to your bank, decide on the amount you can afford. The higher your down payment, the lower your monthly mortgage fees will be.

What’s my monthly budget?

Your bank or lender will pre-qualify you for a home loan based on your income, your credit, your down payment, and other factors for you and your spouse. The amount may be higher than you expect, but remember that what you qualify for might not necessarily be what you can afford!

How much will it cost to buy land?

Land purchase is a unique cost of building a house. Be sure to factor the cost of your property into your overall budget. To learn more about buying land, click here to check out our free land buying guide and checklist!

What upgrades can I afford?

Are you hoping for a house with wall-to-wall hardwood floors or maybe an updated spa-like master bathroom? Your builder will work with you to make adjustments and upgrades to your house plan. Keep in mind that the cost of upgrades can add up quickly. It’s a good idea to sit down and make a “must have” and a “want” list so you can prioritize the most important upgrades.

Will I have other costs?

Permits, taxes, utility connections, homeowner’s association fees, and other costs can bite into your monthly budget. Be sure to research your property before you buy to learn about costs associated with the land. Your builder will be able to tell you what permits and other fees need to be taken care of before you build

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Home Upgrades that are Worth the Money

When you’re building a house, the cost of upgrades add up quickly. It can be difficult to prioritize–should you opt for hardwood floors, or would it be better to add on a third bedroom? Some home upgrades are better to add before your home is built, while others can wait until your budget allows.

Adding home upgrades to your building plan might not seem like something you can afford, but consider this: a $10,000 addition to a 30-year mortgage is only about $30-40 more on your monthly payment. 

Many of these home upgrades are also cheaper to add to a house during construction and can become much more expensive once the home is already built.

Structural Changes

Room additions, roof pitch, and other changes to your home’s structure are best made during the construction process. These changes are much more difficult to do once a home has been built and will be more expensive.

Exterior Upgrades

Your home’s exterior is the first thing people will see, so make sure you’re getting exactly what you want. Siding, paint, and even shutters can be expensive and time consuming renovations. Get your house’s exterior style right the first time.

Energy Efficient Upgrades

It’s much easier (and cheaper) to have an energy efficient home if you choose to upgrade your building plan rather than wait to renovate later. Energy efficient windows, siding, and insulation are all much more affordable if your costs don’t include tear-down of existing features.

modular home being built

Kitchen Upgrades

An upgraded kitchen can drastically boost the value of your home, but renovating a kitchen is time consuming and expenses can add up quickly. If you’re thinking about where to put some extra money from your budget, the kitchen is one of the best places to start.

kitchen with stainless steel appliances

Other Upgrades to Consider

  • Adding a fireplace, whether it’s gas or wood-burning
  • Extra outlets
  • Wiring for cable, internet, and surround sound
  • HVAC upgrades such as central air conditioning
  • Tankless water heaters
  • Extra closet space
  • Adding a deck, porch, or garage
newly installed wooden deck

Building your dream home is more affordable than you think. Contact the modular home builders at Carolina Custom Homes of Burlington or browse our floorplans to get started building a home in North Carolina!

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The Importance of Choosing the Right Modular Home Builder

Building a modular home isn’t something we do very often in our lives, which is why choosing the right modular home builder is so important. A home is probably one of the largest investments you’ll make, so you want to choose a builder who is experienced, knowledgeable, and truly has your best interests in mind.

With so many home builders out there, how do you choose the right one for you?

5 Questions to ask yourself before choosing a modular home builder:

  1. Are they experienced modular home builders?

    Some home builders may offer modular homes as a side option, even if the builder specializes in other types of building. A company that builds modular homes exclusively will be more experienced in building high quality modular homes which are structurally sound and build to last.

  2. Are they being upfront about the costs of building a modular home?

    Building a modular home can save you money when compared to the costs of a traditional “stick built” home. Because a modular home is built in a controlled environment and can be built and assembled in a shorter amount of time, your modular home builder should be able to give you a more exact cost estimate. If your builder can’t provide you with a comprehensive quote, it’s better to move on to someone who can.

  3. Do you feel like they have your wants and needs in mind?

    You’re building your dream home, but does your builder see it that way? Look for a builder who will take the time to make sure you’re happy and confident about every decision, and discuss the best options to fit your budget and your needs.

  4. Have they explained all your options?

    When you talk to your builder, do you feel informed about your decisions or are you just being presented with the cheapest options available?

    Are they making suggestions based on your wants and needs or do you feel like they’re trying to rush you through the process so they can get paid?

    Find someone who will work with you to help you understand the best options when it comes to building your modular home.

  5. What’s the quality of their work really like?

    Anyone can claim to build quality modular homes, but waiting to find out for yourself could be risky. Make sure you’re choosing the right builder by doing your homework first. Check online reviews on Google and social media to see what people are really saying. Contact the builder and find out if you can take a tour of any model homes.

How to Choose the Right Custom Home Builder eBook

MAKE THE RIGHT CHOICE

Building a modular home is a big investment. You’ll know you’ve chosen the right modular home builder when you’re ready to move into your new custom modular home! To learn more about what a quality modular home builder has to offer, download our guide on what to expect when choosing a modular home builder.

Click Here to Get Your Copy!

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Is There a Downside to Modular Homes?

Once seen as a cheap, low-cost alternative when building a house, modular homes have come a long way over the years. Today, they’re known for being an affordable, high quality option for home buyers looking for the best value and full customization options. But is there a downside to modular homes? Not at all!

There are many myths about modular homes that stem from their confusion with prefab houses, but the truth is that modular homes offer the same quality and customization offered by a traditional “stick built” home and are often safer and more affordable.

What is a Modular Home?

Rather than a traditional stick built home, which is built from the ground up on site, custom modular homes are manufactured offsite in a climate-controlled environment and transported to your plot of land for assembly. Modular homes are completed in less time than traditional homes and produce less post-construction waste.

What are the upsides to going modular?

If you’ve been thinking about building your next house, choosing a modular home is a great option! They offer a number of money-saving advantages over stick-built homes without the need to sacrifice your ability to get exactly what you want out of your new home.

They’re affordable.

The controlled factory manufacturing process allows manufacturers to purchase materials in bulk rather than as-needed, which allows for greater savings and no chance of unexpected material costs. Modular homes also tend to be more energy efficient over stick-built homes, which will save you money on your monthly energy bills.

They’re fully customizable.

Modular homes are available in hundreds of unique floor plans, and you can customize them with your choice of finishes, siding, colors, and more. Whether you’re looking for a house with a basement, sunroom, front porch, or a deck…whatever you’re looking for in a home, it’s possible with a modular builder!

They’re built to last.

Modular homes are shown to stand up to hurricane-force winds and earthquake conditions. Because modular homes go through multiple inspection processes during and after manufacturing and assembly, you’ll know for sure your house will be a place to call home for decades to come.

If you’re ready to build your dream home in North Carolina, browse our custom floor plans or contact us to learn more about how you can get exactly what you want in your new home!

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Modular Home Customization Options You Didn’t Know Were Possible

One of the biggest advantages of building vs. buying a new home is the ability to fully customize your home to get exactly what you want. You might think that building a modular home means having limited choices, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. When building a modular home, customization options are available at every step, starting with the floor plan and ending with the colors, finishes, and add-ons!

modular home exterior

Modular Home Customization Options

Floor Plan

When you buy a house, it can be a struggle to adjust to a floor plan that doesn’t exactly fit your needs. Why go through that when you can start with a customized floor plan created just for you? Browse for the perfect floor plan for your modular home or talk to your modular home builder about customizing one to fit your needs.

Ceiling Height

Add a touch of elegance to any room with high ceilings. Tall ceilings are a great way to add the illusion of space in a small room and can keep your home cool in the summer. With a modular home, you can customize the height of your ceiling to fit your style. Taller members of your family will thank you!

Appliances

Do you prefer black or stainless steel appliances? Matte finish? Whatever your preference, the choice is yours when you decide to build a custom home! Pick the appliances with the style and features you need to make your house work for you.

Custom kitchen with upgrades

Flooring

With allergies becoming a major concern these days, carpeted homes aren’t always on the top of someone’s list, and replacing old carpet can be a costly and time consuming chore. Get your home built right the first time by customizing your flooring choices. Hardwood, laminate, and even sustainable bamboo flooring are all popular choices.

Countertops

Have you been dreaming of a kitchen with beautiful high-end granite countertops? Rather than spending time updating your old, outdated countertops, start with a home that has everything you need. With a custom modular home, you can have everything you want right away.

Other Add-Ons to Consider:

These add-ons might not be necessary for you and your family right away, but they can add to your home’s resale value, enhance your curb appeal, and offer your household room to grow as you continue to enjoy your new dream home!

  • Garage
  • Basement
  • Sunroom
  • Finished attic space
  • Landscaping

Are modular homes affordable?

Building a customized home is more affordable than you think! Click here to read about the true costs of building a modular home.

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10 Halloween Decoration Ideas for Your House

It’s time to get into the Halloween spirit! Welcome this year’s trick-or-treaters and spook your neighbors with these fun and easy DIY Halloween decoration ideas. Whether you’re looking for a quick DIY project, or something that lets you get really creative, this list has something for everyone (and every budget)!

DIY Halloween Decoration Ideas

Flying Ghosts

What You’ll Need: Balloons, cheesecloth or gauze, fishing wire, black sharpie

Decorate balloons with spooky ghost faces, then cover them in white gauze or cheesecloth and hang them from your front porch or a tree branch. For an extra spooky effect, slip some glow sticks into the balloons before you blow them up!

Ghost Home Halloween Decorations

Raven Feather Wreath

What You’ll Need: Wreath form, black feather boa
Wrap or attach black feathers to a wreath form for a quick and easy door decoration that’s perfect for Halloween!

 

Spider Web Wreath

What You’ll Need: Wreath form, fake cobwebs, plastic spiders
People will think twice before ringing your doorbell! Wrap the cobwebs around the wreath form (the messier, the better!) and finish with a scattering of spiders.

 

Window Silhouettes

What You’ll Need: Cardboard or construction paper, scissors
Time to get creative! Cut out spooky cats, ghosts, skeletons, and pumpkin shapes and tape them to the inside of your windows. At night, light up your house and step outside to see the silhouettes come to life!

 

Plywood Tombstones

What You’ll Need: Plywood, saw, paint
Cut a simple tombstone design (or several) out of plywood and paint it gray. Use black paint to add funny epitaphs (try “Rest in Pieces,” or “I told you I was sick!”), or paint one for each member of the family!

Cat Home Halloween Decorations

Glowing Eyes

What You’ll Need: Paper towel rolls, scissors, glow sticks

Cut eye-holes into the sides of a few cardboard paper towel rolls, then add a glow stick and hide them in your bushes. The creepy glowing eyes are sure to spook some neighbors!

Pumpkin Flower Planters

What You’ll Need: Pumpkin, pumpkin carving tools, your favorite flowers!
Keep your front porch festive and colorful with this simple decoration that can last through Halloween and into November! Hollow out a pumpkin and fill it with a pot of your favorite fall flowers. We suggest mums or pansies, which love the chilly weather!

 

Jack-O-Lantern Scarecrow

What You’ll Need: Jack-O-Lantern, old clothes, straw, chair
Stuff some old clothes with straw and arrange them in a chair on your front porch. Top off with a Jack-O-Lantern head and a hat. Trick-or-treaters will especially love it if Ol’ Jack is holding a bowl of candy!

Crows Home Halloween Decorations

Stage a Murder

What You’ll Need: Branches, fake crows, string

Fun fact: Did you know a group of crows is called a murder? Tie some fake crows to a large tree branch, or pick a fallen branch and prop it up on your front porch for an eerie entryway.

Wheelbarrow Skeleton

What You’ll Need: Wheelbarrow, fallen leaves, fake skeleton pieces
Need something to do with all those leaves you raked up this morning? Pile them into a wheelbarrow and add a scattering of skeleton parts for a fun “grave digger” effect. Don’t forget the shovel!

Skulls Home Halloween Decorations

Now that the outside of your house is ready for Halloween, it’s time to decorate indoors! Check out our Fall Decor Ideas on the blog!

4 Things to Consider: A Guide to Buying Land eBook

Hoping to have a new home to decorate for the upcoming new year?

Learn how you can buy land and build your dream home in our FREE guide!

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What to expect when you meet with Carolina Custom Homes.

First: Tell us when you’d like to come see us.

Then: Chat with us about your unique needs and vision. We’d recommend considering the following so we can cover a lot of ground in our meeting and better serve you.

  • How did you hear about us?
  • How much space and how many bedrooms and bathrooms would be ideal?
  • Would you prefer a one-story home or multi-story home?
  • Do you already have land and if so what’s it like and where is it located
  • Budget! How much are you looking to spend? Will you be financing your home or paying cash?

The rest is really just showing them the model homes and finding out what is important to them in their new home.

Finally: Walk through some of our most popular floor plans. We swap these out occasionally, so keep an eye out for anything new you’d like to see. Keep in mind while your wandering that any of our floor plans can be customized to better fit your lifestyle.

Not Ready To Meet?

During the tour of our homes, you will see a wide variety of features that are available to you for your custom project. Of course, any home you build with us, can be completely customized with an open concept floor plan, 9′ ceilings, granite countertops, hardwood flooring, atrium doors, transom windows, etc.

Touring Our Floor Plans