Author: Highlight Homes

Things are Looking Up: Pop-the-Top Renovations

Things are Looking Up: Pop-the-Top Renovations

We’re sure you’ve heard the phrase: “We’ve got nowhere to go but up!” That concept certainly rings true with homeowners who own structures that don’t allow for expansion beyond their home’s existing footprint. To grow the current size of their home, there truly is no other option but to go UP. Therein lies the inspiration behind a growing trend in pop-the-top-renovations, which – in the simplest terms – involve the removal of the roof on a one- or two-story home and the incorporation of an additional floor.

Three Great Reasons to Consider a Pop-the-Top Renovation:

  1. Add Square Footage to Your Existing Home: Are the kids getting too old to share a bedroom? Tired of hearing family members fight over who gets to take the next shower? Not enough room to comfortably entertain guests? Just imagine what adding an extra floor could do! You could add a couple of bedrooms with dedicated bathrooms, flanking a large central media room where everyone can gather together to watch movies or play video games. If the master bedroom is on the first floor, moving the kids to an upper floor may provide you with the privacy you didn’t know you were missing. Giving everyone a dedicated space and more room to spread out can do wonders for family harmony.
  2. Reimagine Your Home’s Interior: Not only can a pop-the-top renovation add some much-needed square footage to a home, but it can also provide an opportunity for the complete reimagining of your home’s interior layout. In certain areas of Metro Atlanta that are experiencing a resurgence in popularity – such as Chamblee, Brookhaven and Decatur, just to name a few – there are more than their fair share of mid-century ranch-style homes. What was a popular layout in the 1950s and 1960s may not work as well for modern families. You can turn cramped spaces on the main level into an open concept design, convert a galley kitchen into a gourmet showplace with large kitchen island, combine two existing bedrooms for a sprawling master on main and so much more!
  3. Transform Your Home’s Exterior: With the addition of an entirely new floor to your home, it goes without saying that the look of your home’s exterior is going to change. Take advantage of this opportunity and change the façade to something that not only appeals to you, but that will add major curb appeal when and if you ever decide to sell. Add elements of a craftsman home, infuse some European components, jump on the farmhouse craze or take it in a more traditional direction – just to name a few. The possibilities are virtually endless – giving you a rare chance to completely transform the home you know into something that you LOVE!

A pop-the-top renovation is next level remodeling and involves many structural engineering elements. It must first be determined that your home is a good candidate for a pop-the-top renovation. It must have a solid foundation and strong “bones” upon which to build an entirely new level. If new load-bearing walls must be incorporated for additional support, it’s vital that you’re working with a renovation company that specializes in both structural engineering and architecture. Atlanta’s premier custom home builder and award-winning renovation company – Highlight Homes – is proud to offer both of these specialties in our extensive list of services.

We’ve seen a number of pop-the-top renovations from concept to completion – always with stunning results. We welcome the opportunity to add your home to our list of gorgeous pop-the-top renovations. If your existing home is located in Metro Atlanta and you’d like to schedule a no-obligation consultation with one of our team members to determine whether or not a pop-the-top renovation is a viable option for you, please contact us at 678-874-9234 or info@highlighthomesga.com. To learn more about Highlight Homes and view our gallery of custom homes and luxury renovations, visit www.highlighthomesga.com.

 

 

Homeowners Showing Serious Inclinations Towards Renovations

Homeowners Showing Serious Inclinations Towards Renovations

“I LOVE MOVING” …said no one ever. While the excitement that comes with making a new house your own and the enjoyment of that “new house smell” are both powerful forces, there is a growing trend in home ownership that points in a very different direction. More and more homeowners in the U.S. are making the choice to simply stay put in their current homes and RENOVATE. As a matter of fact, according to the most recent Zillow® Housing Aspirations Report, a whopping 76% of homeowners would rather spend their money on a home renovation than as a down payment on a new home. Those statistics jump to 86% for homeowners who are 55+ and to 91% for retirees.

But why stay put when there could be a bright and shiny new home in your future? In addition to a clear dislike of the hassle of moving, the 2018 Zillow Group Report on Consumer Housing Trends indicates that 83% of homeowners surveyed simply love their current home. Furthermore, 63% have no plans of selling in the near future. For those who DO plan to move at some point, a well-planned and beautifully executed renovation is a terrific way to make their home more enjoyable in the present and more attractive to buyers in the future.

As far as the need for renovations go, the 2018 Zillow Group Report on Consumer Housing Trends also indicates that – with the average homeowner spending 16 years in their home – 60% believe their homes are in need of some updates. After all, styles change – as often do the taste levels of owners as they mature over the course of more than a decade and a half. As a matter of fact, 16% believe major renovations are in order and 4% feel a complete overhaul is needed. Of those homeowners who opt to renovate, 17 percent spend between $5,000 and $10,000; 11 percent spend between $10,000 and $20,000; and 8 percent spend $20,000 or more.

With the vast majority of homeowners paying cash for their home renovations – to the tune of 45% – return on investment is a very important factor. Remodeling Magazine’s annual Cost vs. Value report outlines which home renovations will yield the best returns in 2019. Included among them are garage door replacement (recoup 97.5% of cost), manufactured stone veneer (recoup 94.9% of cost), minor kitchen remodel of about $22K (recoup 80.5% of cost), wood deck addition and siding replacement come in neck and neck (recoup 75.6% of cost), entry door replacement (recoup 74.9% of cost), window replacement (recoup 73.4% of cost), roofing replacement (recoup 68.2% of cost) and minor bathroom remodel of about $20K (recoup 67.2% of cost). Also on the list for recouping between 50-67% of the cost on average are major kitchen remodel, bathroom addition, major bathroom remodel, backyard patio and master suite addition.

In addition to being one of Atlanta’s premier custom home builders, Highlight Homes has a rich history of designing and realizing stunning luxury renovations. And with our solid background in architecture and structural engineering, we could virtually reimagine the layout of your home to fit your vision. If you’re among the 76% of homeowners who would opt for a home renovation above a down payment on a new home, we welcome the chance to talk to you! To schedule a no-obligation consultation, contact us at 678-874-9234 or info@highlighthomesga.com. You can also elect to complete our convenient online contact form. To view our work and learn more about our other capabilities, we encourage you to visit www.highlighthomes.com.

Sources: Zillow Media Room – Press Release “Americans Would Rather Renovate than Buy a New Home
2018 Zillow Group Report on Consumer Housing Trends
Remodeling Magazine's annual Cost vs. Value report

Unifying the Interior and Exterior of Your Home

Unifying the Interior and Exterior of Your Home

“Nature is not a place to visit. It is Home.” ~ Gary Snyder

With Spring just around the corner, the promise of the return of green leaves to the trees and flowers to flower beds fuels the desire to get outside and play. No matter the time of year, there is a growing trend among homeowners and home buyers to infuse elements in their homes that create an undeniable connectivity between the great indoors and the Great Outdoors. Premier Atlanta builder and renovation company, Highlight Homes, is pleased to present a list of ways you can do just that in the design of your custom-built home or the renovation of your current home.

“Time to Spare” Room

Why merely add a new room to your home or integrate a flex space to the design of your custom home when you COULD create a space that’s all about relaxation, reflection and reverence of the space beyond the walls of your home. From a screened porch that allows for three-season enjoyment to a sunroom that provides a space to enjoy the outdoors all year round. This is a space where you can drink your morning coffee while watching the birds play in the birdbath or enjoy a nightcap while counting the stars.

Windows of Opportunity

Windows aren’t merely intended to let the light shine into your home or be opened to let the fresh air in. They can be reimagined as veritable works of art where the world beyond your windows serves as the palette. If you have a private backyard that serves as a particularly pleasing backdrop, you can open the frame a bit by creating a wall of windows – blurring the line between where the inside ends and the outside begins.

Feathering Your Nest

Another way to bring the outdoors in is to infuse elements of the natural world throughout your interior design. Use lots of interesting houseplants throughout at a variety of levels. Incorporate wood in your flooring, timber beams, accent walls and interesting furniture pieces. Include stone in your countertops and fireplace surround. Then enhance the sense of nature by adding wall art, throw pillows, rugs and décor that fit your color and design themes, but are inspired by the natural world. These might include birds, butterflies, dragonflies, horses, flowers, the ocean and so much more. Choose something personal to you as your central theme so it has real staying power and holds meaning.

Outside Looking In

Of course, the BEST way to extend your living spaces outdoors is to ADD an outdoor living space that could very well become your favorite “room” of the home. This might include a covered patio or deck with an outdoor hearth, pool with a cabana, outdoor kitchen with inviting seating, an old-fashioned playhouse with swing set, and so much more! Just imagine creating a space where you feel comfortable telling the kids to go outside and play, but “be home by dark” (‘cause they’re already home)! The memories you can make together in this space are virtually limitless, so whatever you create, make sure it’s the right fit for your family.

Highlight Homes welcomes the chance to help you incorporate one or all of these outdoor-focused enhancements in your new custom home or luxury renovation. To learn more about Highlight Homes and our signature design-build method, please visit www.highlighthomesga.com. Once you’re ready to get started, contact us at 678-874-9234 or info@highlighthomesga.com.

19 Design and Construction Trends for 2019

19 Design and Construction Trends for 2019

It’s a new year full of new possibilities! As one of Atlanta’s premier custom homebuilders and renovation firms, Highlight Homes places an emphasis on staying on top of the latest design and construction trends – and occasionally setting a few trends of our own! With 2019 now underway, we take pride in “highlighting” the top 19 Design and Construction Trends for the new year…

  1. Green Construction – As a company that places a HUGE focus on environmental-friendliness (and always has), we’re particularly happy about this trend. From smart homes to a focus on energy efficiency in appliances, windows, doors and more, we don’t see this trend going anywhere but UP!
  2. Waste Reduction – Going hand-in-hand with Highlight Homes’ focus on Green Construction, we – and now many of our friends within the industry – are placing a greater emphasis on waste reduction by streamlining processes and recycling. It’s good for everyone involved – the builder, the client AND the planet.
  3. Project Management Solutions – Highlight Homes is pleased to partner with Co-Construct, a secure, easy-to-use online service that allows our clients to make selection decisions, approve change orders, reply to messages, check progress information, review project files, and more. Communication is key to a smooth project!
  4. Sunrooms and Outdoor Living Spaces – Homebuyers and home owners are showing an ever-increasing desire to infuse a connectivity with the outdoors in their homes through exterior living spaces and the addition of sunrooms.
  5. Open Kitchens – Creating a sense of “dinner theatre,” more and more kitchens are opening up to the family room. Not only does it emphasize the home’s spaciousness and seamless flow of the floor plan, but it also encourages interactions between the inhabitants of those two often occupied living spaces.
  6. Home Office – With the growing popularity of remote workers/telecommuters, the concept of a home office or study is seeing a resurgence. Just imagine closing the office for the day and only commuting a few steps before spending the rest of the evening with your family as opposed to an hour or more on the interstate each day.
  7. “Pop the Top” Renovations – This is one of our personal favorites, when a ranch home is converted to a two-story by simply removing the existing roof and creating an entirely new level – virtually transforming the look and layout of the home to fit the needs of the family who lives there (or will live there).
  8. Two-Tone Cabinets in the Kitchen – Designers are becoming increasingly more daring in their color schemes – often selecting a different color for the island than what is featured on the walls. There is also a trend towards using one color ABOVE and another color BELOW the counter.
  9. Multi-Purpose Kitchen Islands – From storage and seating to meal prep and service, there are a number of very good functions for this mainstay of the modern kitchen. Don’t merely settle for a permanent fixture with a countertop – consider all of the great ways you could use that space. Love wine? Consider adding a wine cooler underneath next to a wine rack. Enjoy catching up on the day’s events while preparing a meal? Extend the countertop out so there’s plenty of space for seating underneath so family members and guests can pull up a stool while you work your magic.
  10. Focus on Minimalism – Clean lines rule the day in 2019, along with uncluttered spaces and smart use of space. Get rid of what you don’t need or stow it away out of sight for a simple yet sophisticated look.
  11. Accessories that Make a Statement – However, when you DO add an accessory or two to a space, make it count. It should be eye-catching – like an accent colored end table or a bold piece of artwork.
  12. Eye-catching Lighting – More than merely serving a purpose, your light fixtures are another way to really make a statement and draw the eye. Great lighting that adds to the appeal of a room is a smart investment.
  13. Open Shelving in the Bathroom and Kitchen – With a movement towards minimalism, there’s a growing trend towards open shelving among the cabinets found in bathrooms and kitchens. Be careful to keep these shelves uncluttered for a more appealing appearance.
  14. Eclectic Blends – More and more designers are enjoying a “no rules” leaning towards the concept of interior design. We’re seeing a lot of eclectic blending of styles including BoHo, Modern, Industrial, Farmhouse Chic, Traditional, Rustic, European-influences and more.
  15. Mixed Metals – Just as décor is seeing a blend of different styles, there is also a growing trend towards the mixing of different metals. Rather than merely seeing nickel door knobs, drawer pulls and faucets throughout the home, we’re starting to see a blend of gold, copper, bronze, silver, brass and industrial-inspired metals like matte black steel and more burnished metals.
  16. Tasteful Textures – In order to keep a minimalistic look from being boring, many designers are adding texture in upholstery, rugs, accents and even walls.
  17. It’s All in Black and White – Shades of white on walls and trim juxtaposed against bold black kitchen cabinets are witnessing a rising popularity. Not only do these two colors work well together, they also invite POPS of color in artwork, accessories and accent pieces. Jewel tones are increasingly popular and work beautifully against both black and white.
  18. Comfort Cavalcade – It’s all too easy for a minimalistic look to seem uninviting. That’s why there’s an emphasis on including comfy, cozy and inviting furniture for your living spaces. It’s entirely possible to provide seating that looks refined but also communicates “relaxation.” Don’t merely purchase furniture for its visual appeal, give it a test run and try to imagine spending long binge-watching sessions there.
  19. Pantone Color of the Year: Living Coral – Pantone – THE authority on color for the fashion and décor industries – has announced its color of the year for 2019. Drum roll, please…. It’s Living Coral (Pantone 16-1546). The company describes it as “An animating and life-affirming coral hue with a golden undertone that energizes and enlivens with a softer edge.” It’s a great addition as an accent color in accessories for the home and plays beautifully against white walls, as well as greys, greens, blues and other warm pastels.

Highlight Homes welcomes the opportunity to help you incorporate one or more of the trends listed above in your next renovation project or custom home. We invite the opportunity to start a discussion with you and can be reached at 678-873-9234, info@highlighthomesga.com or via our convenient online contact form.  To learn more about us and take a peek inside past Highlight Homes’ projects, please visit us at www.highlighthomesga.com.  HAPPY NEW YEAR!

What Makes a Great Room Great?

What Makes a Great Room Great?

There is no better time than the holiday season to really explore all of the elements that make a Great Room truly GREAT. Also known in many circles as the “Family Room”, it’s a room of the home where countless everyday moments happen AND where major milestones are marked. As the backdrop to all of these special occasions, special care should be given to the design and realization of this living space that sees an awful lot of living. Whether creating this space as part of a major renovation of your current home or placing an emphasis on this space in the design of your new custom home, Highlight Homes has some opinions on the matter of taking a Great Room to the Greatest Room you’ll ever know (and love!)…

The Hearth of the Home:  From the materials used to create the surround to the mantle itself, the fireplace in your Great Room should be a focal point – a veritable work of art. It should reflect your personality and sense of style, as well as complement the rest of your home. From stacked stone with a rough-hewn timber mantle to a marble surround with intricate woodwork, you can go as casual or as formal as you wish to set the tone for the rest of the room.

Raise the Roof: One component many builders use to make a Great Room feel GRAND is an open second story – opening the space up immeasurably. At Christmastime, just imagine how TALL your Christmas tree could be! If a two-story Great Room isn’t in the cards, there may still be a way to raise the ceilings to 10 feet for more of a sense of spaciousness.

The World Outside: Windows are an important element of your Great Room. If you have a particularly beautiful and PRIVATE backyard, a wall of windows may serve to make the room seem more expansive – connecting it to the world outside. If that is not the case, the addition of just a few windows to let the light shine in might be a better way to go – helping to keep the focus inside the room itself.

All the Trimmings: Woodwork can serve as the frame to the Great Room of your dreams. For a more rustic, cozy feel, you might elect to go with timber rafters. For a more traditional, formal feel, you might incorporate a coffered ceiling, crown molding and built-in bookcases.

Go with the Flow: If you always dreamed of having one of those enormous overstuffed sectionals where you and the entire family can lounge around eating popcorn and watching a Christmas movie marathon, it’s important to communicate this to your builder. The layout of the room should be designed in such a way to accommodate your vision – from the placement of the sectional to the location of the TV.

The Ground Beneath Your Feet: Choice of flooring can serve to enhance this space, as well. If you elect to go with hardwoods or tile, you’ll want to invest in throw rugs to soften the space and make it more inviting. The addition of carpet will make it more welcoming to bare feet, but be aware that spills in this popular space are a very real possibility – making the investment in stain-resistant carpet a wise one.

A Little Light on the Subject: Lighting is an oft overlooked design element that – when wielded properly – can result in a stunning transformation of any space. If your Great Room doesn’t get a lot of natural light, you’ll want to pay attention to the placement of your lighting. For a truly dramatic effect, invest in one showstopper fixture in the center of the room.

Color Me Happy: The choice of paint colors in this space can serve to open up the space further AND set the mood. You might want to keep it neutral and let your décor do the talking, or you may want to choose a paint and trim color that will enhance the ambiance. Gray is all the rage in home design. You might elect to paint the walls a pale gray and the trim a slightly darker gray. Gray exudes a sense of balance, formality and sophistication. Other emotions/sensations tied to color include: beige = calm, white = clean, black = edgy, brown = earthy and rustic, pink = innocent, red = passionate, yellow = happy, green = natural, blue = serene and inviting.

The team at Atlanta-based Highlight Homes welcomes the opportunity to help you transform the look of your current family room, add a Great Room onto your existing home or design a custom home on your behalf that includes the Great Room of your dreams. Getting started is easy! Simply call us at 678-873-9234 or email us at info@highlighthomesga.com to schedule your no obligation consultation. You can also elect to complete our convenient online contact form.

From all of us here at Highlight Homes, we wish you and yours a very Happy Holiday Season and all the very best in the New Year!

Dinner Theater: Spotlight on the Dining Room

Dinner Theater: Spotlight on the Dining Room

What better time to shine the spotlight on the subject of the dining room than the holidays? It’s a time when many of us flex our entertaining muscle and put the flow between our kitchen and dining room to the test. One of the MANY benefits of building a custom home or undergoing a luxury home renovation is that YOU get to call the shots where the design of your layout is concerned – often based on a blend of your wants, needs and tastes. Highlight Homes – a custom home builder and master renovator – has compiled the following list of considerations when designing the dining room of your dreams…

Occasions Take Shape: If you like to host a large group for the holidays or more intimate affairs any time of the year, the shape of your dining room is a major factor. A larger, rectangular room to accommodate a long dining room table with room enough for up to 10 to 12 guests may be on one end of the spectrum while a square space to accommodate a round table for up to 6 to 8 guests is on the other. This is your stage, so decide what shape and size works best for you and your family.

Table Setting: The dining room will serve as the backdrop to a treasure trove of occasions – from gatherings with neighbors to memorable family events to countless holiday celebrations. The décor of your dining room will set the tone. Your woodwork and lighting choices can add a sense of comfort or air of elegance. A stately chandelier and coffered ceiling paired with traditional chair rail, wainscoting and crown molding serve to make the room feel more formal while shiplap walls and industrial or farmhouse-themed lighting may make the space seem more casual and inviting.

Go with the Flow: You could have the most beautiful dining room in the world, but the MEAL and the company who shares it will always be central to any occasion.  Just as you would in any successful restaurant, to aid in making each meal a success, you want a seamless flow between your kitchen and the dining space. If entertaining is one of your favorite pastimes, you’ll want to place a major emphasis on flow with your architect or designer when creating your custom home or undergoing a renovation. You might want to consider the incorporation of a butler’s pantry between the kitchen and dining room to shorten the length of travel when refreshing drinks during the meal or for guests who demand seconds.

Location, Location, Location: The placement of your dining room within the home is also key. If you crave privacy, you may want to place it towards the rear of the home, overlooking your private backyard. This placement will also prove most helpful if you are a grill master and need to have easy access to your outdoor living space.  If you want to advertise to your neighbors what an AWESOME entertainer you are, you may want to place your dining room towards the front of the home – with a large picture or bay window to frame the scene inside.

Whether an element of your custom home design or part of your luxury renovation, Highlight Homes welcomes the chance to help you realize the dining room you’ve always dreamed of having. Getting started is easy! Simply call us at 678-873-9234 or email us at info@highlighthomesga.com to schedule your no obligation consultation. You can also elect to complete our convenient online contact form.

From all of us here at Highlight Homes, we wish you and yours a very Happy Thanksgiving and a wonderful holiday season!

To Renovate or Not to Renovate – That’s Not the Only Question

To Renovate or Not to Renovate – That’s Not the Only Question

To Renovate or Not to Renovate?  It’s a question countless homeowners have asked themselves over the years. Another question they ask themselves… WHICH space(s) should I renovate? In terms of older homes, all of the living spaces can begin to seem really outdated right around the same time. So, depending on your motivation to renovate – such as an upcoming move or a desire to add more space for a growing family – there are ways to determine the best renovations to pursue to fit your family’s needs and budget.

 

In May 2018, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) released figures for Improvements to Owner-Occupied Homes 2018 estimates by state – also known as renovations. In the state of Georgia alone, out of 2,370,584 owner-occupied homes, more than 680K were estimated to undergo improvements. That’s more than a quarter of all owner-occupied homes in the Peach State. The average cost was estimated to be $8,007/improvement. The total amount spent on renovations in the state of Georgia for 2018 was estimated to be 5,456,000,000. So, what do all of these numbers mean…? It means that home renovations are still a very viable way to increase the value and personal enjoyment of one’s home.

 

If renovating for personal enjoyment, you must weigh your options, determine a budget and decide the best changes to incorporate to fit the collective needs, tastes and personality of your family. If renovating to prep a home for resale, it’s wise to select those updates based on return-on-investment. According to the 2018 Remodeling Cost vs. Value Report for Atlanta, Georgia (www.costvsvalue.com), the top five performing projects with regard to costs recouped are:

  1. Garage Door Replacement – Cost recouped 110%
  2. Manufactured Stone Veneer – Cost recouped 109.8%
  3. Minor Kitchen Remodel (average job cost $21,230) – Cost recouped 91.6%
  4. Wood Deck Addition – Cost recouped 87.7%
  5. Siding Replacement – Cost recouped 87.2 %

Following closely behind are Upscale Grand Entrance, Composite Deck Addition, Universal Design Bathroom, Vinyl Window Replacement, Roofing Replacement, Wood Window Replacement, Bathroom Remodel (midrange), Major Kitchen Remodel (upscale), Entry Door Replacement, Master Suite Addition, Bathroom Addition (upscale), Bathroom Addition (midrange) and Bathroom Remodel (upscale) – all offering anywhere from 63.1% to 80% cost recouped.

 

Another question many homeowners ask themselves is WHO should I get to help me with my home renovation project. Whether seeking the best return-on-investment from a real estate standpoint or selecting more “fun” remodeling investments – such as the incorporation of a sprawling home theater with connecting game room, outdoor living space with swimming pool and fireplace, in-law suite with kitchen above a detached garage, finished basement with a full bar and additional bedroom(s) and so much more – Highlight Homes welcomes the chance to help you make it happen. To schedule a no obligation consultation regarding your upcoming remodeling project, contact us at 678-874-9234 or info@highlighthomesga.com. You can also elect to complete our convenient online contact form. To view our work and learn more about our other capabilities (we are one of Atlanta’s premier custom home builders!), we encourage you to visit www.highlighthomes.com.

 

Sources: NAHB – Improvements to Owner-Occupied Homes 2018 estimates by state

Remodeling Cost vs. Value Report 2018 © 2018 Hanley Wood Media Inc. Complete data from the Remodeling 2018 Cost vs. Value Report can be downloaded free at www.costvsvalue.com.

Make Self-Improvement the Foundation of Your Home Design

Make Self-Improvement the Foundation of Your Home Design

September marks Self-Improvement Month, but that doesn’t mean you only have one month to evolve into a better version of the person you are today. Instead, take the time remaining in this month to make a list of the areas of your life where you would like to improve and start taking those first all-important steps towards the new you. At Highlight Homes, we specialize in custom homes and luxury renovations that are designed around our clients’ personal tastes, interests, wants and needs. If self-improvement is a personal goal for you, here are a number of ways that you can build or renovate your home to fit that goal…

Work Towards Wellness

According to CooleFitness.com, 15% of Americans hold gym memberships – that’s about $2.6 billion spent on fitness at the gym each year! And let’s not forget the hassle of getting dressed for the gym, driving there, leaving your valuables in a locker, waiting for your favorite equipment, driving home and showering before the rest of your day can begin. For adults aged 18-64, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends 2 hours and 30 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity (i.e., brisk walking) OR an hour and 15 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity (i.e., jogging) every week and muscle-strengthening activities on 2 or more days a week that work all major muscle groups (legs, hips, back, abdomen, chest, shoulders, and arms). If you have a dedicated gym in your home – complete with inspiring views of the outdoors and energizing natural lights through a wall of windows, staying fit becomes a great deal easier… and more cost-effective!  Highlight Homes can incorporate a fitness space into a renovation of your existing home (by reimagining an existing room, creating a room addition or finishing your basement) or can make it an important element of your custom home design.

Find Time for Me-Time

Ask any mother of small children and she’ll tell you, the bathroom is often her place of solitude… but it’s never guaranteed. Still, it’s important for each member of the household to have a space that is dedicated to their own “me-time.” For kids, that’s often their bedrooms, but for adults who share a bedroom – you may want to have another space that’s ALL (mostly) yours. If you have that, you’re more likely to FIND TIME for that all-important me-time. If you’re an avid reader, a library with French doors or even a book nook with cozy seating may be all you need. There’s also the possibility of including a man cave inside and a “she shed” outside for the privacy we all crave to help us clear our heads and improve our moods.

Spend More Time with Family

Parents who travel for visit may crave more time with their family. The creation of spaces intended for family gatherings are essential to inspiring that together time that helps us stay connected. A home theater for the family who loves to watch movies together, a game room for board game buffs or an outdoor living space centered around a swimming pool and open-air kitchen for the family who loves the Great Outdoors are just a few ways you can go. The possibilities are truly endless and can be customized to fit your family’s collective interests.

Set Your Sights on Being the Host and Hostess with the Mostest

If it’s always been your dream to host dinner parties to die for or tailgate-themed gatherings for football season, your home design should reflect that fact. From an expansive island in the kitchen where you can set out the appetizers and a dining room where the real magic happens to a sprawling outdoor living space with bar, comfy seating, hearth and HUGE flat screen TV, if you hope to become a better host/hostess, there are any number of ways you can make your home work to your advantage. An open concept layout in the main living areas is a MUST so your home never feels cramped, even with 20 guests at any one gathering. For overnight guests, you want to make sure your guest rooms and guest bathrooms are luxurious and welcoming. Highlight Homes can help you have the home your friends, family, co-workers and neighbors would LOVE to visit – no matter the occasion!

Get in Touch with Nature

If you love the Great Outdoors and hope to work towards self-improvement through that passion, there are a number of ways that Highlight Homes can help you do just that. A sunroom or screened in porch can serve as an extension of your home, offering exquisite views even when the weather is anything but warm and sunny. Some imaginative landscape planning and a gardening shed are other wonderful ways to pursue your love of the outdoors. And – of course – dedicated outdoor living spaces are a must, whether dining al fresco, enjoying a cocktail under the stars or telling stories in the glow of your outdoor fire pit.

If you are seeking ways to pursue self-improvement through your home design, Highlight Homes would love to help you! To learn more about Highlight Homes and our process of building a custom home or pursuing a luxury renovation, please visit www.highlighthomesga.com. Once you’re ready to get started, contact us at 678-874-9234 or info@highlighthomesga.com.

Midtown’s Atlantic Station – Making History

Midtown’s Atlantic Station – Making History

Foodies, Fashionistas and Fun-seekers throughout Metro Atlanta are likely very familiar with Atlantic Station, its treasure trove of shops and restaurants, and its jam-packed year-round calendar of events. However, they may not know about where this 138-acre Midtown destination came from… or where it’s going. With a history dating back to 1901, the site where Atlantic Station now stands was once home to the Atlanta Hoop Company – manufacturer of cotton bale ties and barrel hoops. The company evolved to become the Atlantic Steel Mill, and by 1952, it employed more than 2000 Atlantans – producing fencing, nails, rivets and more. After the mill closed in the 1990’s, a new vision began to emerge for the site. The vision was for a sprawling mixed-use development unlike any other, boasting LEED certified office towers, a variety of housing and entertainment options, and a wide array of stores and restaurants – poised within a walkable neighborhood. By the time Atlantic Station debuted in 2005, it was the largest urban Brownfield redevelopment at that time and – because of its size – it was given its own zip code: 30363.

Showcasing 500,000 SF of restaurant and retail space, 2 million SF of class A office space, 3000 residential units, a boutique hotel, a gym and movie theater surrounding Central Park where a variety of signature events are hosted, this new addition to Atlanta’s Midtown landscape quickly grew in popularity. Of course, the great news is… it continues to evolve in exciting new directions. By the end of 2020, Atlantic Station will soon boast two new office buildings, a new AMLI residential complex, three new hotels, several new shops and restaurants, and a newly reimagined Central Park. The mixed-use development’s tagline “We’ve Got It All!” will never be truer.

Award-winning Atlanta custom home builder, Highlight Homes is making a little history of our own. While we have had a presence in nearby Brookhaven and Buckhead over the years, we are now proud to become a part of the Midtown Atlanta landscape, too. Just a mile away from the bustling streets of Atlantic Station, we are building a stunning luxury duplex project.  Starting at $750,000, each home will showcase more than 2600 square feet of living space to include 3 bedrooms and 3.5 bathrooms. The 2-car garage will prove quite a commodity in this area of town, although – given the high walkability factor of the neighborhood – the cars may spend a lot of time parked INSIDE the garage. Each home will also boast an unfinished basement, representing 1100 square feet of potential for future growth. Other features of these homes that beg to be mentioned include three covered porches (one for each level), mudroom off the garage, upstairs laundry for the ultimate in convenience, charming fireplace in the living room, custom cabinets with granite countertops and Jenn-Air appliances in the gourmet kitchen, hardwoods throughout and all of the surprising and distinctive touches for which Highlight Homes is so well-known. What is just as exciting as its proximity to Atlantic Station is the duplex’s convenience to I-75, I-85, the beautiful campus at Georgia Tech, and many of Atlanta’s top employers and Fortune 500 companies.

If you’d like to be added to the interest list for one of the homes in Highlight Homes’ new duplex project, please contact Melanie Pourhassan with Keller Williams First Atlanta at MelanieHP@kw.com or 404-531-5708. To learn more about Highlight Homes, we invite you to visit us at www.highlighthomesga.com.

Photo Credits: By PEDS (Flickr: Atlantic Station) [CC BY 2.0  (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Three Ways to Celebrate National Family Fun Month with Highlight Homes

Three Ways to Celebrate National Family Fun Month with Highlight Homes

It’s true what they say… the family that plays together, stays together! In our everyday busy lives, it’s important to reserve some time to blow off steam and enjoy some good old-fashioned fun with the ones that we love. While we may make the time, we may not always have the dedicated space to enjoy family time beyond sharing a meal in the dining room or watching TV together in the family room. In the spirit of National Family Fun Month, Highlight Homes suggests three ways to CREATE the space where your family can make lasting memories and share countless good times together.

Let’s Take this Party Outside: Create a Family-Focused Outdoor Living Space – When you don’t have room for a family fun space INDOORS, you may have plenty of room to create a dedicated space OUTDOORS. Outdoor Living Space renovations continue to rein supreme in increasing your home’s curb appeal for prospective future homebuyers, but – more importantly – it can also increase the amount of time spent outside enjoying time with your family if designed properly. Is your family active? You may want to place an emphasis on recreation with the addition of a pool, playset, basketball court and/or trampoline. Does your family enjoy playing games? Landscaping surrounding a multi-purpose field for badminton, volleyball, cornhole and more is sure to see a lot of action. Do you have budding environmentalists in your family? A raised garden for planting their own fruits and veggies might make a great addition. Does food have a cohesive effect for your family? An outdoor kitchen and dining room where meals can be made and shared together might be ideal. And for when it’s time to wind down, a cozy seating area surrounding an outdoor hearth for roasting marshmallows and swapping stories will make this space one of your family’s favorite “rooms” of the house. Add a weather proof flat screen for football watching, tail-gating themed fun in the fall! The return on investment on the addition of a simple wood deck can be as high as 82.8%.

Room to Spread Out: Enhance Your Home’s Interior with a Room Addition – With a solid background in architecture and engineering, the team at Highlight Homes can assess your current layout and determine ways in which the flow can be improved. We can also create a seamless room addition that looks as though it was part of the original home design. A room addition can serve as a blank backdrop to become whatever you want it to be – depending on your family’s shared interests. From a craft or rec room to a home theater or game space, the possibilities are virtually endless. No room to increase your home’s footprint? Highlight Homes can “raise the roof”… literally. We can add a half or full floor above your existing home for a bonus room, additional bedroom, full bathroom and more. The addition of a new master suite and bathroom up there could pay off considerably when it comes time to sell – to the tune of a 55%+ return on investment.

Down to Earth: Finally Finish That Basement to Fit Your Family’s Fun Time – Another often overlooked option is to finish that basement that has served as a cobweb-infested storage space for far too long. It’s AMAZING what a little drywall, paint and carpet can do, but with the design talents of the Highlight Homes team on your side, you may find yourself wondering how your family ever lived without a finished basement in the past. This is another space that can serve as a blank backdrop to become anything you want it to be, and given the fact that it encompasses an entirely new floor of your home – it can serve a wide variety of purposes: playroom, media space, exercise room, party space for entertaining, sleepover headquarters – the list goes on and on! The return on investment for a finished basement is about 69%.

Highlight Homes can visit your home to determine which of the three options above might prove the best decision for expanding your home’s family FUN factor. To set an no-obligation consultation with a member of our team, call 678-873-9234, email us at info@highlighthomesga.com or fill out our convenient online contact form.  If you’d like to view our gallery for a peek inside past Highlight Homes’ projects, visit us at www.highlighthomesga.com.

Source: https://www.remodeling.hw.net/cost-vs-value/2018/