Category Archives: Technology

Home for Sale

Tips for the New Home Buyer

tips-for-buying-a-mobile-homeIf you’re looking to purchase a manufactured home, whether it’s new or previously owned, in a community or on private land, there are a few things that people with experience want you to know.

Do your research. When a make, model or design is suggested, find out about the competitors. This holds true, too, for associated services, like financing, transport or setup.

For a previously lived in home, check the roof, water heater and furnace – these are expensive components to replace, and you should know that there is significant life left in them at the time you’re looking to purchase.

Think about drywall versus wall board. Step heavily on high-traffic areas to ensure the floor is solid. Check windows for leaks. Check skirting for holes and moisture underneath the home. None of this is very pleasurable, but all of it is necessary.

Being your own advocate is important.

Maralee Dougherty, of Leesburg, Fla., recently lost her husband and moved to a new home in a new community. She moved to a resident-owned community, so she could own the land beneath the home, and to a home that was a bit smaller in size. Beyond the expanded amenities in the new community, Hawthorne at Leesburg, Dougherty said the home “showed very well”, and that an inspector and friendly contractor helped assure her of the value.

The exterior of a new Champion home

“It’s very open,” Dougherty said of the new home. “The living and dining rooms are one big L-shape. A lot of the more expensive stuff has been replaced, including roof, windows and siding. There also was new laminate floors. Everything the previous owners had done, they seem to have bought the best.”

It’s always best that you watch for problems, or have someone you can trust do it for you.

David Murphy, of Las Vegas, Nev., said he prefers to live in an all-ages community as opposed to a senior park, and that he’s mindful of staying above flood level to help protect his investment.

“I like new-from-the factory,” Murphy said. “It is vital that the roof is sealed and taken care of. The home would be no good if it leaks on the beams… then the heat and AC need to be working well, with plumbing up to date and electrical up to date.”

On the more pleasurable side, every home shopper has a unique interest in amenities.

Pick your package

Bruce Thelen is director of sales and development for Champion Homes, one of the largest

The interior of this Champion home shows the design of the kitchen area has been a central focus for the maker.

makers in the market. He has detailed what Champion and its product designers have implemented in the way of customer demand.

“Our consumers want to see the features and color pallets and design elements that they see on HGTV, and that they see in higher price stick built homes,” Thelen said.  “We spend a lot of time figuring out features and colors that go into our homes while maintaining the price points everyone is accustomed to in our industry.”

Pink remains a popular color in Florida. Darker tones play well in the Midwest and Great Lakes, while much of the rest of the country is going to lighter brown-beige and off-white tones.

“We try to offer the consumer as much choice as possible,” Thelen said. “There are two ways we do that. One is in the actual design of the house. We create a ‘family of homes’, focusing on the living area, kitchen and bath. We perfect those as much as we can, and then build the remainder of the house around it in multiple dimensions.

The dining and main living area in a new Champion home.

“Maybe it goes from a three- to four-bedroom, or turns a 56-foot house into a 60-foot house,” he said. “We can offer the consumer this variation, along with three different bathroom designs and maybe certain cabinets, varying roof pitch or an optional dormer.”

Champion customers want to see built-in components – architectural designs that look somewhat like free-standing residential furniture. For instance, a kitchen island that uses table legs on one side rather than a full cabinet, or a fixed computer desk, or storage cubes in an entry “mud” room.

Customers want deep, stainless steel farmer sinks, “rainfall” showerheads, wide ceramic showers with no tub, and bright-open layouts.

And overall home design, inside and out.

“A cleaner and streamline look,” Thelen said. “We’ve really followed that trend. It varies somewhat by region, but it’s been more distinct in recent years.”

High Tech Home Shopping

Clayton Launches Home Previewer® Augmented Reality Mobile App

National homebuilder introduces new app with enhanced interactive functionality for homebuyers

MARYVILLE, Tenn. (July 10, 2017) — New home shoppers can now use augmented reality to visualize what their potential new home may look like on their land before they break ground thanks to the release of an innovative new app.  Clayton, a Berkshire Hathaway company and one of America’s largest homebuilders, announces the release of Home Previewer®, an iPhone® compatible app that allows shoppers to envision what a home may look like in 3D on their future home site.  The free app is available for download from the App Store®.

Clayton today launched its augmented reality home viewer.

Experience the interactive Multichannel News Release here: https://www.multivu.com/players/English/8011651-clayton-launches-home-previewer-mobile-app/

“We’re pleased to be one of the first builders to introduce augmented reality to the digital home buying journey,” said Kevin Clayton, CEO of Clayton Homes. “Our homes now offer custom designs, innovative features and energy efficient upgrades. We are committed to being a leader in innovation for the home building community and will continue to develop the kind of technology that will support our customers throughout the experience.”

The Home Previewer® app, created by Boulder, Colorado ad agency Made, lets users digitally anchor a home model from a list of model choices to the future home location using augmented reality to make it appear as if it is actually there. Once the virtual home is anchored, the user can walk up to and around the 3D rendered image to view it from different angles on its future site. Users also have the capability to take pictures of the house in its physical setting and share them with friends and family.

Clayton intends to introduce a wide variety of digital tools that will be released in the upcoming year.  These tools aim to aid customers as they visit local home centers and tour homes on location with their mobile devices on hand, while making the home shopping experience fun, personal and informative. Home Previewer™ is the first mobile app of its kind in the manufactured home building industry. This is Clayton’s second mobile app offered to date, following the 2015 release of MyMobi Home Finder®, an application that shows prospective homebuyers the location and pricing of homes for sale so they can select which homes they would like to visit in person.

“We believe everyone should be able to have a beautiful, affordable slice of the world to call their own,” said Clayton.  “We see interactive digital tools like this Home Previewer® app as one way to deliver on extraordinary experiences for our customers every day.  We want our homebuyers to feel confident about the smart choice they’re making.”