Westmark Construction Blog

Wednesday, February 17, 2021 - 10:31

Common Myths about Home Remodeling

Myth 1: Remodeling will always increase resale value

While some remodeling projects can increase the value of your home, some do more than others. It is a common myth that all upgrades or home remodel costs will be recouped.  In reality, there are multiple factors that go into determining if projects will result in increased value. While weighing resale value can certainly be a factor when considering remodeling, it’s much more important to look at function and design that fits your needs and lifestyle. If you are considering a remodeling project, invest in quality materials while putting your needs and preferences first. 

Myth 2: Projects take longer than expected 

If you hire the right contractors, projects don’t need to always go past their projected timeline. Renovations and remodels take lots of planning and research. When working with professionals like Westmark Construction, discuss both your allocations for budget and timeline. They will do inspections and walkthroughs of your space to determine materials, budget distribution, and estimate how long the job will take. Because of experience, professionals know what problems and timeline hiccups to anticipate. That’s not to say surprises never happen, but reputable contractors will always keep you informed and be able to adjust accordingly to keep delays to a minimum. 

Myth 3: Go with the lowest bid

While it can be tempting to cut down on your budget expectations, bid pricing should not be the only determining factor when choosing a contractor for your project. If it seems too good to be true, it probably is. If one bid is much lower than others you receive it 

shouldn’t be a sign to choose them, but a red flag. Extremely low bids often point to future problems where contractors are cutting corners along the way, leading to future problems, sub-par work and even delays. Do your research and seek out recommendations from others who have recently used contractors you’re looking to work with. 

Myth 4: It’s cheaper to do it yourself 

While DIY has seemed to just gain popularity in recent years, its not always a cost saving measure to do projects yourself. When it comes to your home and large projects, trust the experts. Structural issues, electrical and plumbing are not things to mess with without the right experience. Often, any cost savings you might see from doing it yourself often disappear as the project goes on, takes longer and mistakes have to be fixed. Save your self time, money and a lot of headaches and work with an experienced contractor from the beginning. 

There are many common myths floating around about building a home or remodeling your current one. Do your due diligence and find accurate information before starting a project. Our team is here to help at every step, making the process easy and even enjoyable!

Wednesday, February 17, 2021 - 10:24

Open floorplans are super popular, but are they for you?

Open floor plans are very popular and have been for a while, but it’s important to consider your lifestyle and style choices when considering an open floorplan. By definition, an open floorplan in a home refers to two or more common spaces that have been combined to larger spaces by eliminating walls or partitions. Here are five things to think about when deciding on a floorplan for your new construction home. 

What rooms would you think about combining? 

While deciding on the perfect floor plan, there are many options to consider when looking at exactly what rooms you want to combine as part of an open layout. While some modern homes seem to have no walls at all outside the bedrooms and bathrooms, there are different degrees to which you can open up a space. Is your kitchen often cluttered or hard to keep up on? Maybe that space will be more closed off and your flow lies between living and dining. Or, is your kitchen the center of your home when you entertain family and friends? Keep your dining room its own space and open up the kitchen to the living space. There are tons of options! 

Who makes up your family? 

Families with young children or grandchildren often benefit from an open floorplan. Sitelines with young children running around are important. If the adults are busy in the kitchen, it can be a great comfort to be able to see children playing in the other room without them being at your feet in the kitchen. 

How do you like to entertain? 

When entertaining, do you order food, or do you spend a lot of time prepping in the kitchen? If you’re playing both host and chef on a regular basis, it’s probably important to you to be involved in the action when you’re entertaining! However, if you prefer to keep the mess of food prep behind the scenes, maybe an open kitchen layout isn’t for you. 

Consider the costs 

Generally speaking, constructing a larger, open space can be more costly during the building process than a more divided layout. Another thing to consider is the potential for higher heating and cooling costs. Great rooms and large open spaces can result in higher energy costs, but our construction team works hard to keep homes efficient, keeping this in mind throughout each decision in the building process. 

Privacy and sound control 

Do you work from home? Enjoy peaceful time in the kitchen without hearing the TV in the next room? Open floorplans are great for many things, but keeping noise to a minimum and privacy to a maximum are not often strong suits. Again, consider your wants, needs, and lifestyle when determining what floorplan will work best for your household. 

Our team is here every step of the way to work through these decisions with you! Trust our team with your dream home construction. Contact us by phone at (828) 743-4124 or by Email or  info@westmarkconstructioncompany.com

Tuesday, December 8, 2020 - 16:36

Looking at Lots: Pros and cons of signing a builder before buying

A dream home tucked away in the mountains? Sign us up! Once you decide to start making this dream a reality, it is easy to begin looking at lots right away, but don’t jump the gun; there are many things to consider when it comes to building in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Here are the top pros and cons of signing a builder before signing on the dotted line.

Up-front costs

If you purchase a lot before bringing on a builder, you will typically incur much higher up-front costs as you are dealing directly with the landowner and agency. Some builders and partners, especially if they are well-known in the area, can not only assist in this process to make your life easier but can sometimes even negotiate a lower price for you or have a process in place to help spread out major payments.

Savings

We are not only talking about money. When you bring on a builder, we will help you save time and unnecessary stress as well. This is our area of expertise; it is what we do. Building a home is a major investment and comes with a slew of decisions to make. It can be nice to have someone in your corner when it is crunch time.

Your dream lot may turn into a nightmare

Building is an extremely complex process, especially in the mountains of North Carolina. While you may have found your golden view, prime location, and are already picking out coffee table books, your builder might be running into much larger issues if you purchased your lot before signing your builder. These issues will not only delay your project, but will probably cost you more cash too.

Budget. Budget. Budget.

Many of the future homeowners we work with have a budget in mind – as is common – and while they might have a ballpark in mind, we as the builder typically will have a better idea of what the overall cost of the project will be, especially when it comes to materials. Oftentimes people will have a lot budget and a build budget. However, it is more beneficial to look at the budget of the whole project and then break things down from there. Allocate a portion for the lot, the build, materials, appliances, fixtures, and so on. However, always work with a range and allow a 10% bubble in either direction. No matter how well you plan, there can be things that pop up during the build.

Breaking ground on our mountaintop dream home should be an exciting experience. Involve your builder before you buy so that you can keep your eye on the big picture and we will take care of the details.

Tuesday, May 19, 2020 - 15:13

Spring Brings Renewed Life to the Mountain

It’s spring in the mountains and renewed life is abundant all around The Divide at Bald Rock. The leaves are beginning to fill the trees, the Flame Azaleas are in full bloom, and mountain wildlife are beginning to roam about. With so much activity at The Divide, it is only appropriate for Westmark Construction Company to begin construction of Panther Ridge at The Divide!

This 4-bedroom, 4.5 bath, 4,488 square foot home is a gem in the making! Southwesterly views of Chimneytop, Rock, Whiteside, and many other mountains are a remarkable sight every day. Situated on lot 41 of The Divide and at an elevation of 4,300’, Panther Ridge features include a main level master suite, large open floor plan and a spacious Carolina room with an outdoor fireplace. 

Adventure awaits you and your family in the beautiful mountains of western North Carolina and it begins with homeownership at The Divide. You will have access to the community amenities of The Divide and Bald Rock communities including hiking/equestrian trails into Panthertown National Forest, an on-site equestrian center at Bald Rock, open-air pavilion, and the many resort amenities of Sapphire Valley Resort.

Construction of this modern mountain retreat is running ahead of schedule, but there is still time to customize some of the selections to your style! We would love to talk to you about the possibility of making this property your home. Give us a call now at (828) 743-4124 or email us at info@westmarkconstructioncompany.com. We look forward to working with you!

Tuesday, April 7, 2020 - 10:43

Down to the Details

At Westmark Construction, we are not satisfied until you are. Westmark Construction works with our clients’ architects and engineers to provide your dream home. From the foundation to the top of the roofline, Westmark Construction provides the personal attention you need during the construction process to insure the highest quality construction for your home.

Our expertise for creating unique, one-of-a-kind homes with an emphasis on the high-end, second-home recreational market has allowed us the opportunity to hone in on specific skills associated with the industry. We place a strong emphasis on customer communication, ensuring that you approve of and are satisfied with our work and decisions every step of the way.

When building a home from the ground up, there’s certainly not a lack of details that need to be addressed. However, we take care of the larger details; things in our wheelhouse like building materials, the HVAC system, foundation, and sourcing. This leaves all the fun things for you!

In our experience, the clients we’ve worked with most enjoy working on the layout of their home. They get to envision living their lives in the home we’re hand-making for them. Some picture a large entertaining space for large gatherings and family time. Others want an intimate breakfast nook where they’re able to enjoy coffee and look out over the scenic landscapes just outside their window. Whether you want a large, leather-studded study where you can work from home or a light and airy, guest-friendly kitchen, we can make your dream home a reality.

Once the larger/structural decisions are made, clients are then able to dial it down to the smaller details. Things like paint color, backsplashes, wood finishes, and appliances all come into play as we wind down construction. This doesn’t mean they’re any less valuable, though. If anything, we value these most as they bring life to the project, putting all the pieces together. And, we’re here every step of the way! With over 20 years of expertise behind us, we’re able to help guide your decisions to have the longest-lasting impact for you and your home.

Have some thoughts and ideas already in the works? Start sharing them with the Westmark Construction team now by calling (828) 743-4124.

Tuesday, February 4, 2020 - 12:45

Conservation during Construction

Over 60% of the state of North Carolina is covered in forests. This translates to just about fourteen billion trees, and when we embark on a construction project, our teams are cognizant of how each plot of land interfaces with the larger forest ecosystem.

We know that we have construction plans to carry out and that there are certain things that have to be leveled, cleared, and prepped, but we don’t rush. We use careful consideration when choosing if and what to remove from a site. Our mission is to create the mountaintop oasis of your dreams that works with the natural landscape, not against it.

From the moss on the forest floor to the very tops of the trees, we take it all into consideration. Before removing a tree, for example, we look at the effects that it will have on the larger native environment. From the oxygen it provides the atmosphere to the shade it casts on the forest floor, each and every tree is carefully considered when we’re working on a site. We strive to make as small of a footprint as possible. We even take soil conservation into consideration. We look to see what sort of impact removing the tree and corresponding root system will have on the face of that mountain.  With all these factors acknowledged and defined, only then do we make a decision.

Conservation in the world of construction is two-fold, though: What you take out or away but also what you put in. We ensure that any sort of chemicals or materials that are present on a job site are carefully monitored to ensure the mark we leave on the land surrounding the home is minimal. Our machines don’t run longer than absolutely necessary and we try to avoid using unsustainable products when possible.

The architectural work itself is also designed to be complimentary to the landscape; we don’t want our projects to stick out, but instead blend with the native world around them. This is why you’ll see that our teams utilize natural wood accents and a neutral color palate to create a cohesive look.

Our teams continue to be blown away by the natural beauty that this region has to offer. We believe that it is not our right but our duty to preserve as much of it as we can while catering to meet the needs of our clients. Start the conversation about your mountaintop home today by calling (828) 743-4124.

Monday, January 6, 2020 - 10:24

Making Your Dream Home YOURS

We might be a little biased, but we have the pleasure of working in one of the most beautiful regions of the world. We count ourselves among the lucky ones to be able to spend our days making dreams come true among the mountaintops in North Carolina. Your home could be next!

The team at Westmark Construction of North Carolina has extensive experience in the Cashiers and Sapphire area. Due to the mountainous terrain, there are few companies with our level of experience and expertise when crafting custom homes among the mountains.

We partner with The Divide at Bald Rock to help future residents of the Blue Ridge Mountains create their dream home. These properties sit atop the mountains, measuring 4,500 feet in elevation; the ideal location to secure cool mountain breezes and the coveted privacy that’s so critical to a mountaintop sanctuary. Working with a team of designers and architects, we bring the blueprints to life.

Our signature is quality craftsmanship and attention to the smallest of details. Our homes feature spacious layouts and breezy walkways; luxurious living spaces and grandiose outdoor living spaces. We specialize in woodwork and bringing the integrity of the scenic outdoor area in, creating a classic and timeless look. If you envision the perfect cozy cabin among the trees, we take that image and exceed every expectation: warmer wood tones, stately stone work, and lavish living rooms work together to create your dream home atop the Blue Ridge Mountains. Schedule a consultation today by calling toll free at 800-338-8302.

Wednesday, September 4, 2019 - 14:29

Caring for the Wood Features of Your Home

What sets Westmark Construction of North Carolina apart from the rest is our ability to capture the natural beauty of the North Carolina mountains and utilize this as inspiration when constructing beautiful, mountaintop homes.

Our goal is to bring the look and feel of the local landscape into the home to give a full, immersive effect. In doing so, we use a lot of natural wood features to accent the surrounding wooded areas that compliment so many of the properties we work on. While yes, the use of hardwood floors contributes to this effect, we also incorporate various styles of wood paneling, cabinets, and accents throughout the home. Once completed, our homes are radiant beauties, overflowing with wood details, full of sleekness and shine. Keep them this way with the following tips on how to keep your hardwood working hard for years to come.

1.       Find the right fit for your floor. The floors we install in our homes are only of the highest-grade hardwood. This quality, therefore, must also be matched with a certain level of care. Laminated or polyurethaned floors require little to no maintenance outside general cleaning, but your genuine hardwood floors do require a fresh wax every 12-18 months to ensure maximum durability and shine. Once you’re moved in and settled, be sure to set a schedule for having this done.

2.       Stay ahead of the game with wood treatments and moisturizers. Outside professional waxing, research and try out an appropriate wood moisturizers or general treatment or care products to keep all of the wood in your home supple. Especially if your home is empty for a portion of the year, the wood features might be especially susceptible to drying and cracking.

3.       Use the right weekly cleaning products. Whether you’re doing it yourself or hiring a cleaning crew, make sure to use cleaning products that are specially formulated for the specific types of wood that are in your home. Check out some of the best reviewed cleaners for your wood floors here.

4.       However you choose to move forward with a care plan for your wood, make sure that whatever product or treatment you’re using is made specifically for the types of wood you have in your home. Unsure of the materials? Reach out to the Westmark Construction team with any questions by emailing us here.

Take a look around your home. Have you ever really noticed how many wood features are present? Keep in mind that these care tips can be used for furniture and other wooden details to ensure the longevity of these stunning, natural elements.

 

Monday, August 12, 2019 - 15:40

Warm Wood Features

Westmark Construction of North Carolina is one of the leading builders in the Cashiers and Sapphire regions. We pride ourselves on the quality of construction we present to not only our clients but to the region we have the privilege of working in. This region, rich with natural history and living beauty is something we utilize when creating custom home designs.

Our luxury cabins bring the beauty of the outdoors inside for the future homeowners to enjoy. We often incorporate a strategic use of exposed wood beaming, hardwood flooring, and other timber details that operate with both functionality and visual appeal.

In a recent project, the main staircase featured a plentiful amount and a wide variety of lumber materials that were each carefully chosen with a specific purpose in mind. The treads of the staircase, for instance, were fashioned from yellow pine wood. Southern yellow pine wood is renowned for being strong, durable, and its ability to stand the test of time. Whether natural or treated (we use a combination of both depending on need and usage), the soft, light color of the grain instantly warms a space. This touch also adds an element of uniqueness while acting as a strong support for the structure. Southern yellow pine is one of the densest pine woods available. In addition to these many traits, Southern yellow pine also has a long history as one of America’s first renewable resources and can be found growing wild throughout the Southern parts of the United States.

With yellow pine underfoot, the attention on the staircase turns to the ornately carved banisters and handrails. The warmth and straight grain of the Eastern white pine was chosen to showcase the high-quality craftsmanship that went into its construction and compliment both the yellow pine treads and the ponderosa pine that was used for flooring throughout this particular home.

While pine wood is often lumped together as a single type of lumber, there are actually many different varieties that can then, in turn, be used for a wide variety of construction projects. The Westmark Construction team is well-versed in the traits of each of these type and analyzes everything from hardness and density to grain and color. Can you see yourself living in a mountaintop luxury cabin surrounded by the natural woods of the region?

Friday, June 28, 2019 - 10:11

Modern Touches, Timeless Feel

Many seek a mountaintop lifestyle for the seclusion factor, getting away from the hectic day-to-day and reconnecting with yourself and with the world around you. The natural beauty of North Carolina often makes its way into the designs of the homes we construct, not without, though, the modern touch our clients often crave.

For example, many of the homes we’ve created feature a modern, wide-open floorplan allowing the residents to create their own specified spaces using furniture and other pieces of décor. Woven throughout this large space, though, is often the earthy wood textures that mimic the forest outside and rough cut brick or stonework to give the space the best of both worlds.

Another nod to modern trends comes in the form of our staircase and fireplace designs. Modern and sleek are the size and shape of our transcending staircases. Their components feature regional lumber and rich, woodsy colors. Similarly, fireplaces inherently have a natural component in play featuring the open flame and stonework. We’ve incorporated gas starts to aid in convenience and give them the modern touch.

If you look at our homes as a whole, at the larger picture, you’ll see the perfect balance of the rustic and the modern, right where they need to be too. Our kitchen designs lend themselves to the elegant dinner party while our living spaces are perfect for kicking back after a long days hike. In every square foot, you’ll see the thoroughly thought-out process of our design team. The use of rich wood textures and finishes is something we believe will never go out of style, bringing in the natural beauty of the surrounding outdoor areas.

You chose the mountaintop lifestyle and our team at Westmark Construction believe there should be an overarching atmosphere of this natural beauty within your custom home while maintaining the air of modern convenience. View our portfolio here to see for yourself how these two worlds can be brought seamlessly together.

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