Outside Living!

Screened Porch

 

 

Feeling inspired by warm weather to make the most of your outdoor space?  We’re feeling inspired too!  Here are some ideas to help you create the backyard get-away you’ve always wanted.

Screened Porch  A great space to entertain friends and family where you won’t have to battle uninvited flying guests, is a screened porch.  It’s also wonderful because you don’t need to bring the party inside if the weather gets rainy.  You can enjoy the outdoors in almost any season from the protection of your covered screened in porch!  Add a ceiling fan, lights, and furniture – you’ve got your own oasis to enjoy with other or for quiet relaxation.

Start Planting  If you have summer-blooming shrubs, trees or flowers, it’s time to grab your gardening gloves and start pruning.  Clearing away any dead areas will help prevent disease and allow new growth and blossoms.  If you want to spruce up your back yard, flowering annuals are a beautiful way to do it.  A trip to your local home improvement store or nursery will provide you with plants, soil, and everything you need to get started!

Home Garden  A home garden is beautiful and healthy.  You can grow tomatoes, and herbs in pots on your deck or patio without undertaking an entire garden plot.  Or, you can create easy raised garden beds with the help of your local home improvement store.  Take a look at this handy calendar for a list of what to plant when for a summer garden.

No matter what your vision is for your perfect backyard get-away, we can help you create it with our deck, and porch options for your new Lockridge home.

Lockridge is a group on-your-own-land new home builders in Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Georgia. (see all our Model Home Centers).  We offer a full service website that allows you to choose floor plans, get complete price quotes, get prequalified for a mortgage, and more.  For more information visit our website, Facebook Page or email us.

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Tax Benefits To Building Your New Home

Tax Return

 

If you’re on the fence trying to decide whether or not to get started building your new Lockridge home, consider this amazing tax deduction article written by Ashley Steel from NewHome Source!  She is a staff writer/editor for NewHome Source, a website where you can search for and get information on new homes. You can find her on Google+

“One of the great benefits of homeownership is the tax deductions that come with it. But what, if anything, distinguishes a newly built home from a resale home when it comes time to file your taxes?

While both forms of homeownership offer great benefits, there are some additional types of tax benefits of owning a newly built home that shoppers can attain. Let’s take a closer look:

Construction Loan

Some newly built homebuyers take out what is known as a construction loan, or, a loan that originates to cover the costs associated with the construction of a home, that later converts into a buyer’s permanent home mortgage when construction is complete.

With these types of loans, “you can deduct the interest you pay during the first 24 months of the loan,” says Jayson Mullins, CEO at Top Tax Defenders, a tax resolution firm in Houston, Texas.

It’s important to note however, that this type of deduction doesn’t apply in all circumstances. For instance, the home in question must be your primary or secondary residence to qualify. “Furthermore, the deduction applies only to the first $1 million in total loan proceeds, including interest,” says Mullins. “This limit is reduced to $500,000 if you are married and filing separately.”

Mortgage Deductions

While not unique to newly built homes, mortgage deductions are a significant part of helping you get a return on your taxes. Mortgage deductions occur across the following categories:

Mortgage Interest

The IRS allows taxpayers to deduct both their mortgage interest up to $1 million ($500,000, if married and filing separately).

Mortgage Points

A mortgage point is prepaid interest equal to 1 percent of the value of a mortgage. Mortgage points can only be purchased at the time of loan origination.

These points are tax deductible in the year they are paid, but only if they meet the following home mortgage points criteria from the IRS.

Mortgage Insurance Premiums

For tax purposes, qualified mortgage insurance premiums are considered mortgage interest and, therefore, deducted within the $1 million limit.

Energy Efficiency

“An energy credit is available called the Residential Energy Efficient Property Credit,” says Mullins. Certain energy saving features — or improvements in the case of a resale home — allow homeowners to save as much as 30 percent of the cost of installation.

“Taxpayers should know that not all high-efficiency products qualify as a tax credit,” says Mullins. Products only qualify if they come with a manufacturer’s tax credit certification statement, usually found in the product packaging or on the manufacturer’s website.

The advantage when it comes to newly built homes is that they already come outfitted with the latest in green technology, which gives you a greater chance of earning the Residential Energy Efficient Property Credit without having to do much.

Property Taxes

The IRS allows taxpayer to deduct their property taxes as well. Depending on the state, resale homes typically have lower property taxes, says Mullins.

However, newly built homeowners can deduct property taxes they incur while their new home is being built. “The taxes are based on the property assessed value,” say Mullins. “In order for taxpayers to qualify for this deduction, it has to be paid within the same tax year.”

While most types of tax benefits apply to both new and resale homes, there is a higher likelihood of securing these benefits in a newly built home. Construction loans and property taxes allow homebuyers to reap the benefits of tax returns before even moving in, while the increased energy efficiency of new homes is likely to yield credit as well.”

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Have A Safe Sparkly Halloween

Glitter Pumpkins

Get creative when you decorate your house this Halloween!  You don’t need master carving skills to create beautifully spooky (or just beautiful) pumpkins this year.  With these tips, you also won’t need to worry about lighting candles inside your decorations.

Plain school glue and some black glitter are all you need to give pumpkins a new and chic Halloween look.  Pick an easy pattern, try a monogram or create the spookiest spider web.

First clean and dry your pumpkin.  Choose a Halloween-themed design or graphic and scale it to fit on your pumpkin.  Print the design on standard printer paper.  Cut excess paper around the image to make it more manageable and tape it to your pumpkin where you want the design to go.  Gently trace the outline of the design with a sharp pencil or pen to make an outline on the skin of your pumpkin.  Check under the paper that’s taped to your pumpkin to make sure the outline tracing is successful.

Simple graphics like the silhouette of a cat, spider or monogram initial is best for this project.

Remove the paper and look at the outline – if you’re satisfied – apply glue inside the outline of your graphic.  Example  –  if you traced the outline of a spider – put glue inside the traced lines to fill in the spider.

Use a spoon to sprinkle black (or other colored) glitter over the wet glue.  Tip the pumpkin to get excess glitter off.  Reapply the glitter until the entire glued area is coated.

Wait until it’s dry – and you’ve got a sparkly and safe Halloween decoration!

.Lockridge is an on-your-own-land new home builder in Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Georgia. (see all our Model Home Centers).  We offer a full service website that allows you to choose floor plans, get complete price quotes, get prequalified for a mortgage, and more.  For more information visit our website or email us.

 

Your Perfect Spot

TN Fair

 

You don’t have to choose between the perfect neighborhood and your perfect home.  Lockridge Homes can help you get the perfect fit.  If you don’t already own property, it starts with finding a lot and buying land.

Looking For Land

Find properties in the area where you’re most interested in living, then get as much information on each property as possible.  That means using resources, or a Realtor, to find which properties are available and if there are zoning requirements, deed restrictions or other issues that might affect purchasing the land.

If this is your first time buying land our Representatives can help point you in the right direction.  Lockridge may also have lots available where you want to live. Other resources include:

  • Online Real Estate Sites –  www.realtor.com   www.zillow.com   let you search for land only, by price, size and location.
  • Plat Directories – Check your local Chamber of Commerce or county auditor’s website for community plat directories.
  • County Courthouse – they can answer land ownership questions, tell you who owns each parcel of land and let you know about local laws.
  • Visit the Community – if you want to live in a planned community instead of a more private property go to a community event or visit a dog park in the neighborhood you like.  The homeowners are a great resource and will tell you what they like and don’t like about living there.

Pick Your Location

Choosing your right location is a process. Maybe you already know you want conveniences close by and space for your kids to play, but there are other factors you may want to consider.

  • Prioritize – Do you dream of have a gas station, grocery store and restaurants close by? You might not get all of them within a few minutes’ drive, so look at your preferences and prioritize them. If proximity to the grocery store is your number-one priority, start your search around that. When you write down your “must haves” you can narrow your search.
  • Your Children – School districts are also a top priority when you have children. Land located in a good school district may be more expensive, but it will raise and retain the value of your new home. Visit greatschools.org to find out how local schools are rated. Their ratings are based on test scores and not the students’ experience at the school, so be sure to read the parent and student reviews on the website too.

The Nitty-Gritty

When you’ve found the property you love, here are some tips that will help you with the purchase and site work costs.

  • Property must be surveyed by a registered surveyor, and a plat on file with your County.
  • Contact your County office for septic or public utility information.
  • Make sure there aren’t any deed restrictions or liens on the property
  • Find out if the property is in a flood zone

Lockridge wants to build you the home of your dreams, in your perfect spot.  In some of our areas Lockridge can build on your land or ours.  Ask a local Lockridge Representative for more information or Ask Helen our online representative.

.Lockridge is an on-your-own-land new home builder in Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Georgia. (see all our Model Home Centers).  We offer a full service website that allows you to choose floor plans, get complete price quotes, get prequalified for a mortgage, and more.  For more information visit our website or email us.

Going Green Makes Cents

meadowGoing green doesn’t mean lots of green spending.  There are simple and effective ways to be environmentally smart without spending a fortune and you’ll see a big return on your investment!

New homes are by nature more energy-efficient than older homes but to boost your green-ness, start with the little things.  We recommend starting with your light bulbs.

Swap incandescent light bulbs for Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs (CFL)  This can be a 10 minute task depending on how many family members you can recruit to help out!  CFL bulbs are an easy way to conserve energy and save money over the long-term.  While CFL bulbs initially cost more than regular incandescent bulbs, they only use 25% of the energy a regular incandescent bulb uses to deliver the same amount of light.  That’s an energy-saving of 75%!  Plus, CPF bulbs can last 10 times longer and emit less heat.  When you see lower electric bills, be inspired to make other energy-efficient changes!

Low-Flow Shower Heads  have really evolved over the last 5 years.  The older versions cut down on water flow but also reduced water pressure, which meant rinsing shampoo took a lot longer than normal.  Now, you can save water while showering with plenty of water pressure!  Low-flow shower heads can cut down water used for bathing by 50 – 70%!  You’ll save on your water bill and conserve natural resources.  These new version shower heads are easy to install, available at local home improvement stores and start under $20.  Look for WaterSense Certified products.

Programmable Thermostat can return more to your home than you might realize.  If you don’t already have one, installation is relatively easy, economical and immediately beneficial.  These thermostats can be set and adjusted to your schedule, cutting out wasted energy and lowering your utility bill.  They help homeowners save lots of money every year and can help lessen the amount of greenhouse gas emitted into the atmosphere by cutting down on HVAC usage.

Properly Sealed Homes (like a new Lockridge home) can save you a fortune.  Older homes develop gaps and cracks over time near windows or doors that need to be sealed to keep warm or cooled air inside.  Sealing these spaces from both the interior and exterior with caulk or foam filler can quickly make a difference in your heating or cooling bill.

These are some small and relatively easy things you can do to save money and the environment, and a new Lockridge home is more energy-efficient by design.

Want to know more, or have questions about building a new Lockridge home?  You can Ask Helen our online liaison, contact your local Model Home or like us on Facebook

Lockridge is an on-your-own-land new home builder in Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Georgia. (see all our Model Home Centers). We offer a full service website that allows you to choose floor plans, get complete price quotes, get prequalified for a mortgage, and more. For more information visit our website or email us.

 

 

New Dreams, New Ideas, Your New Lockridge Home

Wellsboro

 

More and more customers are discovering how affordable building a new home can be! At all Lockridge Home Locations our team members are working with customers to select floor plans, choose interior and exterior details, and create their perfect home.

While our Model Homes are open so you can see all the possibilities for your own new home, Lockridge also gives you the tools to find your floor plan, pick your options and fit it all into your budget – at your convenience!  Our website and your personal Lockridge Account is open 24 hours a day so you never have to wait to find, price, and customize your new home.

This summer visit a model home:

  • Tour a complete new Lockridge home
  • Touch and feel our quality stick-built construction
  • Talk to our experts about building your own new Lockridge home

We’ll also host Open House events this summer.  That means more chances for you to ask questions, meet the team, and experience everything you might have in your new home.

Want to know more, or have questions about building a new Lockridge home?  You can Ask Helen our online liaison, contact your local Model Home or like us on Facebook

Lockridge is an on-your-own-land new home builder in Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Georgia. (see all our Model Home Centers). We offer a full service website that allows you to choose floor plans, get complete price quotes, get prequalified for a mortgage, and more. For more information visit our website or email us.

 

Choosing Your Upgrades

dreaming of a home

Building a new home comes with lots of options and upgrades, but that’s one of the good things about building a Lockridge home!

When I think of building a new home, the first thing that comes to mind is a big, stainless steel, double glass door, commercial-style refrigerator that could hold enough supplies for three holiday dinners! You’ve got your own vision.  Maybe it’s a really amazing family room with vaulted ceilings and a stone fireplace, or perhaps it’s a master bedroom sanctuary, completely isolated from the bustle of the rest of the house.

What’s great about building your own home is your ultimate vision can be almost limitless, but your budget probably isn’t.

Here are some tips on spending wisely on your upgrades and options:

Kitchen Cabinets   Your kitchen is where you and your family spend lots of time.  It’s where you build memories and you’ll want it to be functional, durable, and a space you really enjoy. Upgrading from the standard cabinets gives you better construction and longer lasting finishes. You’ll also have more styles and colors to choose from.  Spend a little extra for the extra-tall upper cabinets and you’ll get more storage space, which is always a bonus!

Upgrade Flooring   The higher the grade of carpet, the better it will stand up to traffic and maintain its good condition. You’ll also have a wider choice of styles and colors. Upgrading your carpet pad is a great idea too!  Standard pads provide minimal cushioning, while better pads increase the life of your carpet and provide more cushioning.

Wood flooring is a great choice. It adds warmth, goes with any décor, and cuts down on household allergens. Install it where everyone can appreciate it — living room, great room, and your kitchen. Oak flooring is a wonderful option that will always look good and tends to cost less than more exotic woods.

Ceiling Fans   Ceiling Fans are a smart, low-cost upgrade that add energy-saving comfort. They’ll help keep your home cool so you don’t have to use your air conditioning as much.  Each ceiling fan can save you as much as $165 in energy costs over the life of the fan. They’re great in bedrooms and family rooms, anywhere you want to put them.

The Upgrade You Want  You’re building your new home from the ground up, so what upgrade would make your new home really yours?  Now that’s a great investment!

Lockridge is an on-your-own-land new home builder in Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Georgia. (see all our Model Home Centers). We offer a full service website that allows you to choose floor plans, get complete price quotes, get prequalified for a mortgage, and more. For more information visit our website or email us.