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Your Energy Efficient Home Builder in Houston

Thursday, December 05, 2013

Lancaster Homes Can Help You Make a Smart Investment

Lancaster Homes, an energy efficient home builder in Houston, Texas, can build your new home to be significantly more energy efficient than homes built to minimum code standards. If you want your new home to earn the ENERGY STAR® label, we can build it to meet the strict requirements set by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and go through the process for certification. Visit www.energystar.gov for more information about the ENERGY STAR program.

An ENERGY STAR builder partner since 2010, Lancaster Homes takes pride in building energy efficient and ENERGY STAR qualified new homes. These durable homes include features that save homeowners money, offer more comfortable indoor living, and help sustain the environment.

Benefits of an ENERGY STAR Home

Meeting the qualifications for the ENERGY STAR label is not easy. (Read about how new homes earn the ENERGY STAR.) It requires a lot of documentation, plus onsite diagnostic testing and inspections by a certified Home Energy Rater. But the benefits of an energy efficient / ENERGY STAR certified home make the extra effort and cost worthwhile.

An Energy Efficient Home Saves You Money

ENERGY STAR certified homes offer about a 20-30 percent savings on energy bills annually. During Houston’s hot summers, that 20-30 percent or so could be a significant cost-saving. You may also qualify for a Federal tax credit on your new energy efficient home purchase. Plus, ENERGY STAR certified homes are more durable, so you could save thousands of dollars in maintenance costs. If you decide to sell your home, the ENERGY STAR label is a good selling point.

Energy Efficient Homes Perform Better

In addition to the added durability and cost-savings, an ENERGY STAR certified home offers improved indoor air quality by reducing the amount of dust, pollen and other allergens in your home. Consistent temperatures across and between rooms provide a more comfortable indoor environment year-round.

Get Preferred Financing on an ENERGY STAR HOME

When buying an energy efficient home, your options for financing increase. You could be eligible for an Energy Efficient Mortgage (EEM), making it easier for you to qualify for a higher loan amount. If you are a veteran purchasing an ENERGY STAR certified home, you may qualify for a Texas Veterans Land Board (VLB) Home Loan. Talk to your energy efficient home builder or financial lender about special financing options.

Energy Efficient Homes Help Protect our Environment

In addition to all of the benefits you receive in the purchase of an energy efficient home, you also help protect our environment. Energy efficient homes help reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. You are doing your part to help reduce air pollution and save natural resources.

Buying a home is a major investment. Make it a smart investment by choosing to add energy efficient features to your new home and/or build it to meet the ENERGY STAR label.

Want to know more? Contact Lancaster Homes, your energy efficient home builder in Houston.

Upscale New Homes Re-zoned from Stevens to Oak Forest Elementary

Friday, August 02, 2013
Candle Light Place, a Lancaster Homes development in Oak Forest, will be completely zoned to Oak Forest Elementary School. The 22 new homes are advertised between $700,000-$900,000.
Half of the development already attends the school, but the undeveloped lots had been zoned to Stevens Elementary. Candle Light Place is about 1.1 miles to each school.

 

Oak Forest, Garden Oaks among Houston’s Hottest Neighborhoods

Tuesday, June 04, 2013

If you recently moved into Candlelight Place, you already know the Oak Forest - Garden Oaks area is one of Houston’s hottest neighborhoods. Now everyone else can hear about it, too.

Houstonia Magazine polled dozens of real estate professionals to determine the best places to live in Houston. The result was a guide to the city’s 25 Hottest Neighborhoods.

The new guide includes Houston’s 20 hottest neighborhoods and five up and coming ones. The Oak Forest - Garden Oaks area holds the Number 2 spot among the best places to live, with The Woodlands in number one.

http://www.houstoniamag.com/best-of-the-city/articles/25-hottest-neighborhoods-2013/

What makes the Oak Forest - Garden Oaks area so hot?

According to the guide, residents, who consider themselves “honorary Inner-Loopers,” appreciate the “Heights chic” of this northwest Houston area. Ranch houses and plantation-style mini-mansions on large lots with mature oak, magnolia and pine trees attract families to the wealthy Garden Oaks community. The Oak Forest area, known as the “Urban Woods of Houston” and considered by many to be the new West University or a “baby Bellaire,” is also an urban paradise and a bit more affordable.

The popular Oak Forest community just north of the 610 Loop is the third largest group of subdivisions in Harris County, and still growing. According to the guide, Oak Forest is attracting many creative types moving from the Heights and Montrose area after starting families. The highly-regarded Oak Forest Elementary School with Vanguard Magnet Program is also a draw.

The Rising Star in Population; Why Many Are Moving to Texas

Wednesday, May 08, 2013

Texas has always held a mysterious beauty about it, rooted in the gallant history of the cowboys and belles and lifted by the unrivaled modern prosperity of today. BBC News recently noted that five of the 10 fastest-growing U.S. cities of this late year were in Texas. New York, for obvious reasons, remains the leader in growth but Texas cities like Houston race hotly behind the big apple gaining more and more people each year.

"Houston added 34,625 residents between July 1, 2011, and July 1, 2012, bringing the city's population to 2.16 million, making that the second-largest numeric increase for a city in the U.S," the U.S. Census Bureau said May 23.

Last April, the Census Bureau ranked the Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land metropolitan statistical area and Harris County among the fastest-growing MSAs and counties. Houston is, without a doubt, growing more and more but why? Here are Lancaster Homes' five points for an increase in the Lone Star State and, in particular, Houston:

1. Low Taxes: Texas has "no state income tax," suspects New York–based blogger A.S. at THE ECONOMIST. "High-earning New Yorkers and Californians can take home between 9 percent and 11 percent more of their income" just by moving there. All in all, the trend "does not bode well for high-tax states with nasty fiscal problems." Texas is the place to be to earn money and keep money.

2. Housing Costs: Land is plentiful and cheap. It is "one of the remarkable economic stories of the last decade," says Economist blogger R.A.. During the economic downturn of 2008, Texas and Houston, in particular, were considerable less affected then other states. As the national average of home sales plummeted like a rock, Texas homes remained almost untouched by the downturn and have remained relatively constant in price and availability.

3. Jobs: "The unconventional oil and gas boom has helped turn Texas into an economic juggernaut, particularly world energy capital Houston," Joel Kotkin, professor of urban development at Chapman University in Orange, Calif., told the BBC. Houston area employers created 65,100 jobs from July 2010 to July 2011 - a 2.6 percent year-over-year increase. Job growth also has been strong in tech and business services, bringing people searching for jobs in the droves.

4. Southern Hospitality: It’s a real thing! People in the south, particularly Texas, uphold a creed of conduct and manners that most would consider too formal and an over-all waste of time. We’re not saying it's the only reason people are flocking to Houston but it certainly is a factor!

5. Family-Friendly: Texas' "Good-value housing" draws families, with some cities, like Houston, having an above-average number of children. Houston also has some of the best schools in the country, both private and public, attracting families from all over. In large metropolises, like Houston, here is guaranteed to be something fun and interesting to do for everyone in your family.

The lid is out about Texas and the true oasis that the Lone Star State is! Lancaster Homes, Houston's premier home builders, serves the great city proud by offering up the best Houston homes from the location, to the floor-plans, construction and amenities, every detail in a Lancaster Home forms part of an overall lifestyle design. As Houston home builders, the Lancaster Homes legacy is one of building history with a touch of that famous southern hospitality. With all these new arrivals into the Lone Star State and the great city of Houston, Lancaster is here to offer up a luxurious affordable Houston home that you will be proud to call your own! Contact us today to build you perfect Houston home!

Top Six Home Trends for 2013 - Be a Step Ahead of the Curve

Tuesday, January 08, 2013

2013 is the year to build new homes, but with a new home comes all these decisions ranging from what type of wood to use in the kitchen right down to the finish on the doorknobs. A little overwhelming, right? Don’t cry over your color swatches just yet because the ever dedicated agents at Lancaster Homes, Houston’s premier home builders, have the top six home trends for 2013 that can help your newly built home be as modern and comfortable as possible! Here are some tips according to Realtor Magazine:

Smarter, Less Costly Automated Controls:

The modern family is running at ninety miles an hour and, thankfully, technology has caught up with our bustling families. 2013 brings with it a smarter, more affordable home system that can control and monitor everything from security to the air temperature through a single device. Investing in these high-tech home systems “can eliminate multiple controls and make it easy for home owners to manage things around their home, even when they aren’t there,” says Jim Carroll, a founder of Savant Systems in Cape Cod, Mass., which designs and develops integrated automation solutions. Lancaster builders will work one on one with you to understand and install these advanced systems to ensure that your home is a step ahead of the curve as well as being more secure and productive.

Outdoor Living Rooms and Screened Porches:

Back in the 90’s, porch decks housed a lone bench you got from a swap meet that never saw much action thanks to the consistent 100 degree weather outside. Lone crackled painted benches are a thing of the past thanks to the new trend of the deluxe decks, or “outdoor living rooms”, that have caught on like wild fire. Magazines like Southern Living rave about the importance and functionality of these tricked out outdoor spaces. These new spaces aren’t your grandmother’s rocking-chair porch; they have better furnishings, fire pits, curtains, and even televisions and audio systems. “Some spaces are designed as courtyards for greater privacy, yet with high-efficiency glass windows and doors to make them energy-smart and seamless with indoor rooms,” says Lowder of Mercer Home. Whether it is at CandleLight Place or you own Houston lot, Lancaster can offer a great outdoor environment as well as a great sense of community to enjoy these great spaces with! Visit our communities to come one step closer to having the outdoor living room of your dreams as well as the friendly atmosphere that will allow you to fully enjoy it! 

Outdoor Kitchens and Vegetable Gardens:

Considering we don’t get much time to take breaks from our modern hectic lifestyles, we have all begun to appreciate and yearn for the simple pleasures in life that will allow us to bond and grow, and what better way to bond with someone then over a slice of homemade pizza or a locally fermented glass of wine. Along with their luxurious outdoor living rooms, home builders are constructing superior outdoor kitchens and gardens with an emphasis on convenience and staying “green”. Homebuilders are going as simple as a grill and as elaborate as a built-in cook’s station with sink, storage, beer tap, pizza oven, refrigerator, and countertops. Many new home builders continue on to plant vegetable gardens with raised beds, so you don’t have to bend down much, and plastic eco-friendly greenhouses covering them, so the animals don’t get in. These personal gardens allow for a unique touch that home builders should defiantly keep in mind.

Lighter Looks:

Whether you are moving to the city or simply opt for the minimal, homes are getting smaller. Reduced spaces call for scaled-back pieces that can serve multiple purposes along with better lighting and mirrored effects that can give the illusion of a bigger space. Small spaces can easily appear overwhelming so the thing to do is look light. Look light in the sense that everything has a place either hidden or organized so as to fool the eye into thinking there is much more available space then there actually is. Lancaster Homes is known for their great attention to windows and natural lighting that will have your new home looking like it has as much space as Minute Maid Park! Lancaster agents can also guide you to furniture stores and designers that specialize in the “lighter” look, which will get you three steps ahead on creating your personal airy and vibrant home.

Get Green:

If anything has changed over the past four decades that Lancaster has been building homes, it has been the push to go “green”. The advance in materials and products that are eco-friendly in the past several years alone, particularly when it comes to choosing paints, adhesives, countertops, and flooring, has allowed new home builders to create a totally self-sufficient and ecological home. Large paint companies such as Benjamin Moore, Glidden, Kelly Moore, and Sherwin Williams offer zero-VOC or odor-free paints, according to an article at Healthy House Institute by Linda Mason Hunter, author of The Healthy Home: An Attic to Basement Guide to Toxin-Free Living. Lancaster homes is devoted to this movement as much as you are and, as a premier home builder in Houston, we will go to extra measure to ensure that your home is cool and efficient , protecting you from the Houston elements all the while saving you some serious cash!

Handcrafted Elements:

Because more people are building their own homes, the need for hand-crafted and unique details has sky-rocketed. After all, what’s the point in building your own home when you can’t brag about the personalized distinctive elements that set your home apart? There is nothing wrong with a home that comes with some bragging rights!

Stylish Kitchens and Bathrooms:

Stylish kitchens and bathrooms have obviously never gone out of style and remain at the top of many home owners’ “must haves” lists. Home builders in 2013 lean towards a subtle blend of the traditional and contemporary elements that make for a homey but modern atmosphere that can be used for years. Lancaster builders specialize in both kitchen and bathroom construction with completely on trend designs that will have your family and friends marveling over them for years to come. Come look at our photo gallery and see for yourself our stylish kitchens and bathrooms that could all be yours!

2013 comes with a great amount of trends for home builders and, whether you incorporate all of them or none at all, Lancaster Homes will be there with you every step of the way assisting you with your new home in Houston. Contact us today to let Lancaster Homes be your guide to construct a trendy home ready for the great year of 2013!

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