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Dec 30

Best Technologies for Your Home in 2016

Home Technology with Macbook and charger

With the New Year comes a new take on life and home. What better way to embrace 2016 than with a few innovative gadgets for your home that are sure to make your life easier and your neighbors a little jealous. Here are the newest home technologies for 2016:

  • Apple TV (from $149): Apple’s newly revamped home entertainment center is the perfect gadget for those looking to finally cut the cord from their cable company. Updates to the set-top box include Siri voice command and access to Apple’s App Store, where you can download apps and personalize your entertainment experience. The one downfall is that Amazon Prime is not accessible through Apple TV.
  • Nest Thermostat ($249): The home thermostat to replace all home thermostats, Nest is easy to install and connects seamlessly to your home’s Wi-Fi, giving you complete control of your home’s temperature from the palm of your hand. Nest will learn your preferences and create a customized schedule to save energy. You can even access the thermostat when you’re out of the house to conserve energy or to ensure your home is at the right temperature for your arrival.
  • Oculus Rift ($350): This virtual reality headset has made headlines as the best personal virtual reality device set to hit the market in early 2016. It has single handedly changed the gaming industry and many new competitors are beginning to pop up.
  • Microsoft Surface Book (from $1,499): Is it a laptop or tablet, or both? This breakthrough PC has taken computing to a whole new level with a crazy-powerful processor and a super lightweight body. It can be used as a standard laptop or as a tablet on the go with an innovative design that mergers the two technologies and de-cluttering your home.
  • Sharp 8K TV ($130,000): No, that price is not a typo. At a hefty asking price, this high-resolution television offers 7,680 x 4,320 pixels, which is 64 times the resolution of a standard 1080p HDTV and four times the resolution of its 4K predecessors. But there’s one major caveat: hardly anyone is producing 8K content to watch. Few are producing 4K either, for that matter.

Whether you desire to be on the cutting edge or you fancy yourself as a second-generation technology buff, you can’t go wrong with these ground breaking gadgets that look great in any Trumark home.

Dec 23

5 Real Estate Trends To Watch In 2016

Timber Rec House

If you’re considering purchasing a home in the New Year, now is the time to familiarize yourself with the top trends that will have an impact on the real estate market in 2016.

If only we were able to predict that in 2015 home prices would rise and new credit programs would assist many first-time buyers in affording homes, there’s a chance we might have made different decisions.  Luckily, sites like Realtor.com and the U.S. News & World Report have released information on the latest trends that can help in your future home-buying decision. Take a look at some of the trends to keep in mind as we enter the New Year:

  • The West Coast Dominates – According to The Home Buying Institute, cities like San Jose, San Francisco and Los Angeles in California top the list of markets that future home buyers take the most interest in. Their report shows that online listings in the state are seen 1.8 to 3.6 times more per listing than other states. The only major competition comes from Denver, CO and Dallas, TX.
  • Increase in Suburban Properties – However, it will not be the major cities that will win over home buyers, it’s the suburban markets. While cities like San Francisco and Los Angeles will remain strong points of interest for home buyers, smaller communities surrounding these cities and locations, such as Vallejo or Yuba City, may win at actually attracting home buyers.
  • More Suburban Amenities – Along with the increase in suburban living comes the desire for more amenity-rich features in suburban homes. As home buyers are priced out of bigger cities, they still want the same amenities and features they could get from a new condominium or apartment building. Easy access to commercial establishments, grocery stores and nightlife are also on suburban home buyers’ wish lists.
  • Increase in Older First-Time Buyers – Millennials have been slower than other generations at buying their first homes, and in 2016 this will still hold true. However, next year, expect to see older millennials begin to purchase new homes for their growing families. In fact, millennials and those 34 years old and younger make up 32 perfect of the overall generational home-buying trends from the National Association of Realtors.
  • Increase in Trade-ups Among Millennials – Those millennials who already own homes will also begin trading up in 2016, moving from condominiums and starter homes to larger houses with more space for growing their family. It is worth noting that the increasing demand brought on by this generation may also cause a shortage in available housing inventory as others look to trade up as well.

By arming yourself with the latest market trends, you have the ability to make a better-informed decision when it comes to taking such a large life step.  If you’re looking to buy a home that lives up to these trends, visit us at Trumark Homes and learn more about our great SL70, Pace and Timber communities.

Dec 16

Make Your Holiday Guests Feel Right at Home

Sleeping on the couch

Hosting guests in your home for the holidays can be a very enjoyable experience, but it undoubtedly comes with the added stress of making sure they feel at home. For those who have a guest bedroom and only a couple of visitors, the task of ensuring your home is well-prepared can be as quick and easy as putting fresh sheets on the bed and handing them the remote to the TV.

However, for the home with a limited number of extra rooms (if any at all) and that will see a larger number of guests, creating a comfortable, pleasant space can be a bit more difficult. Luckily, there are a few tips you can follow to keep everyone happy:

  • High-Quality Air Mattress – The basic necessity for any home that will be seeing guests is an air mattress. Couches can provide some semblance of a real bed, but purchasing a high-quality air mattress can make all the difference in how cranky your guests will be when they awake each morning. We suggest going for the well-reviewed SoundAsleep Dream Series or the InstaBed Raised Mattress.
  • Options, Options, Options – When planning a guest’s stay, it’s always important to provide them with options. Instead of giving them that dinky blanket and pillow from the basement, give your guest a choice (yes, even those plush pillows on your bed are fair game). This applies not only to bedding but also to choices in food, bathroom toiletries and activity schedules.
  • Make Space – Making space for guest can be difficult even when you have a large house, but clearing out just one closet can create a place for guests to store their things instead of on your living room floor. If you’re hard-pressed for a place to put things while clearing space, try thinking outside-of-the-box. Chances are you have plenty of room in your car trunk or under a bed or two.
  • Wi-Fi Access – A small detail that makes a big difference is your Wi-Fi network and password. Living in the 21st Century means that just about everyone has a smartphone, tablet, laptop or some combination of the three. So, when guests arrive, they’ll immediately be looking for a way to get connected, and having your Wi-Fi information in an easy to find place and in an easy to read format is a must. Putting this in a place where everyone can find it doesn’t just make your guest feel comfortable; it saves you the headache of sharing it with each arriving guest.
  • Neighborhood Tour – More than likely, your guests are traveling from out of town and they are not familiar with their new surroundings.. Take your visitors on a neighborhood tour, preferably during the day, so they can become acquainted with the area. This will also allow them to go out and explore on their own during down time if they chose.

Another key rule to keep in mind is the golden one. Treat your guests exactly how you’d expected to be treated and then go a little above and beyond those standards. Just remember, a relaxed space makes for a relaxed holiday, and we could all go for that.

Dec 04

GlobeSt.: CRE’s Greatest Hindrance: Political Factors

Regulations, NIMBY-ism and other challenges to development have a greater impact on housing growth than the economy does, Richard Douglass, president of the Southern California division ofTrumark Homes, tells GlobeSt.com. The real estate veteran was recently tapped by Trumark as the first person in this role at the firm, overseeing all operations of the division. Prior to joining Trumark, Douglass led Southern California operations as division president for Ryland Homes and has also served as Southern California division president for Centex Homes. We spoke exclusively with Douglass about his new role and challenges and opportunities in the Southern California housing industry.

Dec 02

5 Design Trends To Refresh Your Space For Winter

Throw Pillow

Tis the season for shopping, but don’t leave your home off of the list! As the holidays quickly approach, now is the time to make sure the interior of your home is just the way you want it before welcoming friends and family. This can already be a stressful time of year, but livening up your home doesn’t have to be. Transform your home into a cozy winter enclave by following the quick tips below:

 

  • Greys and Blues – The neutral of the season is grey, but that doesn’t mean things have to be boring and bland. Make your living space really stand out with strategic pops of midnight blue, offering a nice complement to the subtle greys everywhere else. From silvered curtains and frost-colored paint to indigo pillows and ink blue rugs, the combinations are endless.
  • Cozy Knits – The huge, chunky, knitted scarf you have is no longer just a fashion accessory. Knits have found their way into the home, with a host of pillows, throws and even ottomans donning the cable-knit design. Keep things in the neutral grey zone or spice things up a bit with creams and reds.
  • Plush Throws – You can’t get too far into a discussion on winter interiors without bringing up throws. A staple of the winter season, throws can offer just the right amount of comfort and warmth, and with full, plush throws like the ones from Alicia Adams Alpaca you won’t even need a down comforter to fall asleep at night.
  • Metallic Bronze – Bronzes, and at times golds, have quickly become a mainstay during the winter months, especially as the holidays near. Metallic bronzes can be found across a range of holiday decorations, lamps and dinnerware, but your best bet is to stick to small bronze details.
  • Natural Lights – Whether you see snow or not during the winter months, bright, natural light that pours in through windows is the best lighting for you winter designs. If the room doesn’t receive a lot of natural light, consider mirrors and light bulbs that are a soft white or warm white

These trends offer small, practical and gratifying design changes during the winter months that can make a big impact. The sooner you start, the better prepared you will be for impressing those holiday guests. If you don’t know where to start, check out a few of our Pace, Timber and SL70 community snapshots for some inspiration!