If you already own a home, condo or townhome and are considering selling and buying something newer, bigger, better for whatever reason, this move-up buyer guide is for you.
How do you know if you are a move-up buyer?
Are you relocating and looking to find a home with features you didn’t get in your first home?
Do you have a growing family and need more room, a larger yard, a better location?
Are you tired of making constant repairs on your existing home and want to buy a new home with new systems and appliances?
If you answered yes to any of the above questions, you would be considered a move-up buyer. These are just a few of the reasons people decide to buy a new home, so whatever the reason, check out this move-up buyer guide and use it as a roadmap for a smooth transition to your next home.
Which comes first, buying or selling?
If you can afford to buy a new home before selling your current home, that is usually the best approach. You won’t have much leverage when buying a new home if the sale is contingent on the sale of your current home. One determining factor in making that decision would be how quickly homes are selling in your neighborhood. If they are only staying on the market for a few days or weeks, you could be confident in buying you next home first. However, if you live in an area where homes are taking 60-90 days or more to sell, you may need to consider selling first or finding a service such as Zillow Offers to buy your current home. With Zillow Offers, you don’t have to do repairs or painting of your home to sell it. You can even pick the closing and move-out date to fit into your schedule.
We’re obsessed with Trader Joe’s (OK, but who isn’t?). For years the rumor that Chattanooga was going to get a Trader Joe’s seemed like just a wish. But now we can partake in the delicious offerings of this wildly popular grocery store.
While the folks of the grocery chain release an annual list of customer-favorite items, we decided to compile a list of. items folks can’t live without. Of course, Everything Bagel Seasoning made the list, but there are plenty of items (and even a beauty product) that might convince you to give them a try on your next grocery shopping trip.
1. Soy Chorizo – This veggie chorizo makes it easy to skip the meat. Sauté it with onions, potatoes (or sweet potatoes), and black beans as a vegan dinner base for tacos or burrito bowls.
2. Hatch Chile Mac and Cheese – If you’re working from home right now, hearty options like this elevated frozen macaroni and cheese help you actually take a delicious lunch break.
3. Everything But The Bagel Sesame Seasoning Blend – This little jar of seasoning has quite the fan club these days, and we’re definitely a part of that club. Sprinkle it on egg whites to spice up a healthy breakfast or use it to make a savory at-home avocado toast.
4. Happy Trekking Trail Mix – The amazing selection of nuts and dried fruits include some of Trader Joe’s best finds. Perfect for on-the-go or at the office.
5. Gluten-Free Brioche Bread – When you have to follow a gluten-free diet Trader Joe’s brioche is a delight. The slices are pretty petite, but they’re the right amount of density to make a perfect grilled cheese.
6. Burrata Cheese – If you’ve had the pleasure of enjoying burrata cheese, you’ll know it’s often quite pricey. Thankfully the price point at Trader Joe’s allows Chihak to always grab a container at Trader Joe’s without spending so much.
7. Gluten-Free Pumpkin Baked Goods – When fall weather arrives it’s all about the pumpkin treats.
8. Speculoos Cookie Butter – It tastes like gingerbread but in a creamy, spreadable form. Enjoy a spoonful with some apple slices for a sweet afternoon pick-me-up.
9. Unexpected Cheddar Cheese – It’s technically a sharp cheddar, it has the tangy, nutty flavor of a way pricier aged Parmesan. It features those delicious crystalline bits that give the cheese a subtle crunch, and its creamy, crumbly texture is perfect for melting. It tastes fancy enough for a special-occasion charcuterie board, but at less than $5 a block, it’s affordable enough for everyday snacking, too.
10. Traditional Tunisian Harissa – Like your dishes with heat? Look no further than this rich chili paste. Marinate salmon with the spicy seasoning for the easiest weeknight dinner or pairing it with vegetables for a side dish with a kick.
11. Smoked Apple Chardonnay Chicken Sausage – For an affordable protein option that’s super tasty, cut them in slices and add veggies for a super easy sheet pan dinner.
12. Rosemary Marcona Almonds – When you need a quick and healthy snack, reach for a handful of almonds. Just the right mix of salt, crunch, and herb flavor.
13. Purple Moon California Merlot – There’s no doubting the quality wine section is one of the best things at Trader Joe’s. The Purple Moon California Merlo is not only a delicious casual sipper, but you can also score a bottle for just $6.
14. Shea Butter and Coconut Oil Hair Mask – If the dry winter air left your locks a little lackluster, this is an excellent affordable hair mask option.
15. Vegan Tzatziki – The vegan tzatziki from Trader Joe’s tastes exactly like regular tzatziki. It’s perfect on a salad or as a dip—I seriously cannot say enough good things about it.
16. Caramelized Onion Dip – It has a light and fluffy whipped texture that pairs perfectly with a kettle-cooked or ridged potato chip.
17. Just Dried Mango – A go-to snack. It’s literally just dried mango with no additives or added sugar—the perfect sweet treat.
18. Mini Hold the Cone Ice Cream Cones – When you’re in the mood for a little treat, these are the perfect size to satisfy your craving without overdoing it. They come in tasty flavors like chocolate and coffee bean.
19. Pub Cheese Sharp Cheddar – Not that we recommend you doing it, but you could 100% eat the whole tub of pub cheese dip in one sitting. It is perfect for an easy snack and is always a crowd-pleaser when you’re too lazy to actually make appetizers.
20. Vegan Kale Pesto – Put this pesto on everything, actually everything: eggs, wraps, chicken, you name it.
21. Chili Onion Crunch – This condiment can turn any boring dish into a meal bursting with flavor and is the perfect mixture of savory, salty, and smoky.22. Cauliflower Crust Cheese Pizza – This crust uses a combo of cauliflower, mozzarella cheese, potato flour, chickpea flour, and brown rice flour to turn the easiest dinner go-to into a more plant-based-friendly option. Even if you’re not gluten-free, sneak this in to get extra nutrients in your meals.23. Gone Bananas – This frozen dark chocolate and banana treat is so worth the hype. It’s perfect for times when you want ice cream but also want to be slightly healthier.
24. Japanese Fried Rice – This is the best fried rice ever, even above restaurant and takeout options. Top it with a fried egg and a drizzle of sriracha, and it’s heavenly.
25. Hash Brown Patties – They’re like McDonald’s hash browns but better and with less grease.
26. Buffalo Chicken Dip – An easy lunch and snack to keep in the fridge, and it doesn’t leave you feeling heavy or gross, just happy and full 🙂
27. Steamed Pork & Ginger Soup Dumplings – So easy to prepare and are perfect for fulfilling those midday cravings.
28. Cauliflower Gnocchi – Even if vegetables are not your favorite, with a protein and some pasta sauce, it completes a perfectly healthy—and delicious—dinner.
29. Oven-Baked Cheese Bites with Summer Black Truffle – There are a few different flavors of dried cheese bites at TJ’s, but the truffle option stands far ahead of the rest. Not only are they extremely delicious and flavorful, but they’re also a low-carb snack option for when you just want something light.
30. Riced Cauliflower Stir Fry – Great to have in the freezer for nights when you are either too busy or not in the mood to make a full-on dinner. A favorite way to eat this is as a base with some protein on top. Simply rip open the bag, warm it up in a pan, throw it in a bowl, and enjoy. It’s truly a fool-proof meal.
So – what are your go-to, can’t live without, Trader Joe’s favorites?
Locals Only Gift and Goods – Keeping it Local
We here at Core Homes like to “keep it local” by partnering with as many Chattanooga based area business as possible. We all know that the area is jam-packed with fun, innovative, and unique companies offering products with that world renown “Nooga vibe.
If you haven’t already been in the very popular Locals Only boutique, you surely have noticed its bright blue facade with Dolly herself wishing you joy from the window at the corner of Market and Frazier in the North Shore.
Locals Only proprietors, Danielle and Eric Landrum, tell their story: “We love Chattanooga! It’s a special community filled with inspiring people and businesses. Work pulled us away from Chattanooga for a few years and we came back with an explosion of ideas and ingenuity. Chattanooga is filled with local entrepreneurs with fabulous products! We decided to put together these gifts using only local products to showcase all that Chattanooga has to offer and to support local business. We hope you enjoy giving and receiving these gifts as much as we enjoy finding great local products and putting them together! ”
The bright and happy store has an incredible array of offerings: clothing, treats, sauces, stickers, candles, wall art – the list goes on and on. One of their most popular items is a hand selected gift box to fit any occasion. In fact, Core Homes gives all our home buyers a special Core Home curated gift box as a gift on their closing day.
To bring things full circle, not only does Eric Landrum run the store, he is also a Realtor and Core’s resident expert and agent for our Lake Breeze and Hawks Landing communities! A true Renaissance Man! If you would like to talk to Eric about a new home call him at 423-541-2676. If you want very cool and hip Chattanooga treasures, shop Locals Only online at: https://localsonlygiftsandgoods.com or at their brick and mortar store at 10 Frazier Avenue on the North Shore.
Keeping it Local!
How much does it cost to build a house?
Or – A Home Builder’s Most Challenging Question
How much does it cost to build a house? Followed quickly by, “How much per square foot does this home cost to build?
A good home builder winces when a prospective home buyer inevitably asks this question. Not because they don’t want to be transparent or try to hide anything with their client, it’s just not a good way to look at the cost of building a new home. Confused? Let us explain.
Could we give you a per square foot cost? Of course, we could. But that cost would be for a bare bone home, floating in the air. Cool idea, but Core Homes does not – at this point – build homes that float. Even if we did, it would have to float above something, and that something would have a cost involved. But we digress.
Here is a great analogy: Let’s say your daughter is getting married. Your neighbor’s daughter is also getting married. Both young ladies want their weddings to be held at the elegant Edwin Hotel downtown. Both weddings will have approximately 100 guests attend.
Your daughter has 6 attendants, wants a wedding room full of fresh flowers, a sit-down dinner at the reception with a live band, and a dove release as she and her new husband leave in a horse-drawn carriage.
See where we’re going with this?
Your neighbor’s daughter has 3 attendants, wants fresh flowers at the altar, will have a delicious buffet reception with a popular DJ. She and her new husband will leave the hotel in his shoe polish and balloon decorated car with guests holding sparklers.
Both ladies will have beautiful weddings at The Edwin Hotel. But did both events cost the same per guest? No, obviously.
So, what are the variables that go into the cost to build a new house?
So many variables go into determining the cost of a home, any home for sale, but more specifically, new construction homes.
First of all, the area the home will be built in is the first variable to consider. What are similar homes selling for? What is the current average home value of a home in the neighborhood you are considering building your new home? Is this neighborhood a highly sought-after community? Does it have nice amenities, good schools, a good HOA? Location, Location, Location is not just a cliché!
Secondly, the actual homesite your home will be built on, is it nice and flat? Will the builder need to grade a great deal to make it buildable? Will there need to be a retaining wall built? Does the slope necessitate a basement or crawl space?
Is it a premium site within the community? Is it on the water, or does it have a great view of the mountains?
All these things will put a site premium on a piece of land.
Consider that two identical homes built on different sites, even within the same community, on the same road, could vary a good deal in price because of site conditions.
Now we come to your lovely new home. You’ve picked the perfect home plan – you love it. Of course, you want it to reflect your unique tastes and lifestyle.
Will this be a forever home? You will want to consider widening doorways and having zero entry showers. Everyone needs a home office or “Zoom room” these days. Adding glass, double french doors to the plan’s formal dining room to add privacy will be an added cost. Perhaps a boomerang child or an elderly parent will be living with you so you need a closet added to a study downstairs. Or you just fell in love with quartz countertops instead of granite. The list goes on. Rarely do home buyers make no upgraded selections or structural changes to existing floor plans. Getting your new home perfect for you, comes with some costs.
But does every home buyer pick the same changes or upgrades? No, of course not. And that is why, along with the other above-mentioned situations, will always factor into the total cost of building a home.
And that is why it is nearly impossible for a reputable home builder to quote a square foot cost upfront.
So, where does that leave a home buyer when considering building a new home?
First – and most importantly – talk to your mortgage lender partner first. If you don’t have one you do business with already and trust, ask builders. We work with many lenders, local and otherwise. We can give you some options to shop.
Once you know what loan amount you are pre-approved for, you can start looking at areas you want to be in and which builders are building in that area. Know your timeframe. When do you want or need to be in your new home? There are many variables that go into build time. Some variables a builder has no control over, like 3 months of rain and below-freezing temper atures. Sounds extreme, but it happens. The current supply chain shortage is another example. Who knew it would ever take 6 months lead time to get garage doors? Know your timeframe but realize you’ll probably need to have at least some flexibility.
Also, take time to make a list of your “must-haves” versus your “would likes”. Sitting down with a designer in a Design Center can be a little overwhelming. Thereare a lot of choices, a lot of beautiful choices. You’ll want EVERYTHING! Know what you’re willing to spend money on, and what you aren’t willing to increase your budget over. But don’t panic. Communicate with your Realtor, builder, and designer and we’ll help stay within your comfort zone. We’re here to make building your new home a great experience.
To Wrap Up – What does it cost to build a house?
If a builder gives you a square footage cost to build one of their homes, be wary. It will always be a bare-bones cost. If a builder sells with square footage cost, they see their homes as simply a commodity – a product. Price is the only thing they can compete on with other builders.
That is not how Core Homes views their homes. We create living spaces. The foundation and heart of your life.
Talk to our people. Visit our Design Center. Look around our website and social media pages. Get to know us and how we do business. You’ll find we want to build your home with you. We will work with you to create a home that you absolutely love and is within your investment comfort zone.
We believe in Home & Life – Well Lived!
What’s Trending in New Homes for 2022
So, you’re taking the leap to build your new home, congrats! Here is what’s Trending in New Homes for 2022.
It can be overwhelming to start from scratch when designing your new home build. We have some great ideas to help you get started. If you are looking for fresh, new ideas for your new home project in 2022 we have some ideas for you:
Curvy Construction Elements- Curves designed for entryways, exterior archways, and windows add interest to any area.
Colorful Kitchens- Kitchen trends are leaning toward colorful kitchens – especially in shades of blue and green. Mixed materials like colorful cabinetry, black accents and appliances, and patterned tile flooring are replacing monochrome palettes.
Kitchen Islands- These are the centerpieces of the modern-day home, this is where everyone gravitates to for nearly every part of the day. Adding function and look is idea for planning out your kitchen island.
Seamless Indoor-Outdoor Living Space- From TVs, fireplaces, living rooms to kitchens, indoor-outdoor living spaces have become an extension of the home to fit people’s lifestyles.
Uncluttered Décor- Minimalistic design (with a less-is-more aesthetic) can be combined with natural looking décor to get the uncluttered look that soothes and de-stresses.
Unique Home Offices- trending in new homes for 2022 now more than ever! If you work from home or have a home office space consider a separate workspace. A dedicated space allows you to work comfortably with little distractions in your home, especially during Zoom calls!
There’s no time like now to start planning and coming up with ideas for your next home.We have a nationally recognized designer, Tony Thompson, who will meet with you to help you design your new home!Learn more about our current home plans, available homes, or look through our gallery of images for inspiration. Feel free to call 423-643-2676 to talk with one of our New Home Consultants for the very latest information.We look forward to hearing from you!
Why 2022 is the Year to Buy New
The 2022 Choose Chattanooga Relocation Guide just hit shelves last week. You don’t have to be a Realtor or a home builder to know that the Scenic City has become a mecca for folks escaping the high costs of living, cold-weather, or impossible traffic. The pandemic has changed how people live in their homes – and a lot have found their current homes can’t provide the flexibility and livability home life now demands. This blog, published on a fellow home builders site, emphasizes why building now is the best option to get the most function, enjoyment, and return on investment in a new home. Give it a read.
this post was originally published on dreamfindershomes.com If you’ve been on the fence about buying a new construction home, there are plenty of good reasons to finalize your decision sooner rather than later. The main motivating factor should be that home prices are not expected to decrease any time soon; they are, in fact, projected to increase for the foreseeable future. Interest rates are also still low compared to pre-pandemic rates, though these, too, will begin to rise (as they have already).
Prices and Rates Expected to Climb
Going into the new year, there is certainly less volatility in the real estate market than we saw in 2020 and 2021. Then, prices were increasing at breakneck speed as demand shot up. All we heard were stories about bidding wars, waved inspections, and even waved appraisals as buyers brought cash to the closing table. Now, as demand cools, home prices are, too. But if you think they’ll start decreasing anytime soon, you may want to re-evaluate.
Zillow predicts home prices will rise 14.3% in the next year, and much of that has to do with the cost of building products and supplies. Lumber, while much more available than it was a year ago, continues to cost well above what it did pre-pandemic, and those costs continue to creep up. The same is true for just about every component of a home — from flooring to HVAC systems to paint. As with housing in general, the demand is just too high as manufacturers struggle to keep up, and prices reflect that.
Demand for new houses isn’t letting up anytime soon. The U.S. currently has under built housing by at least 5.5 million homes. Even as the pace of building picks back up, it will take five or six more years before supply and demand level out, continuing to buoy the price of homes.
Still-low interest rates are also a great reason to buy a new home now. Even with higher home prices, today’s low rates help to keep monthly mortgage payments reasonable for home buyers. And if you have a certain budget that you must stick to, the ability to afford a larger home is an added perk of low interest rates. But they won’t stay low forever, and are predicted to rise substantially in 2022.
Now is the RIGHT Time to Build
If you’ve been in “wait and see” mode for the last few years, you’ve probably looked extensively at floor plans and chosen one or two that would be perfect for you and your family. And chances are you’ve identified exactly where you would build your new home. Now is the RIGHT time to start the process, while the communities you like still have availability and the interest rates are still low.
Connect with us to learn all about new home financing, our proven process, and how you can start building your dream home today.
Home Buyers Want to Reconnect with the Outdoors
The pandemic is moving into its third year. Whether we want to admit it, or not, it has changed our lives – how we live and probably how we will continue to live. “Normal” will never be what it was pre-2019.But that’s not necessarily a bad thing. Millions of folks have discovered they can work from home and aren’t tied to a geographical area defined where their job is located. Rarely used guest rooms and formal dining rooms are being transformed into home offices and “Zoom rooms”.
“Fresh Air is Intoxicating”
Another effect of spending more time at home almost 24/7, folks crave being outside even more than we ever have before. Last year The Washington Postnoted that “any outdoor space is more highly prized than ever”. The outdoor fever is just as rampant here at home in Tennessee. The Tennessean, in their August 2021 issue reported that waterfront properties are spending less than 24 hours on the market.
Bringing the Outdoors into our Homes
Core Homes attended the Southeast Builders Conference in Orlando this past summer. One seminar entirely focused on the demand for home plans that effortlessly and beautifully reconnect home buyers to the outdoors – inside and outside of their home. This ranges from a bank of windows that bathe the main living area with natural sunlight to a wall of retractable glass doors that open to expand the living area into the outdoor kitchen and fireplace on the covered deck. Wow!
Covered and screened decks, outdoor fireplaces, fire pits, multiple outdoor living spaces spanning the entire rear of the home – all of these are moving up on the list of home buyers’ “must-have” items.
Core Homes Signature Communities
While all of Core Homes‘s communities feature larger-than-usual homesites and popular amenities, Core’s Signature Communities are designed and planned to take maximum advantage of the natural surroundings. 5-acre wooded tracts, some on the waterfront, will be offered at the Wind River community in Harrison starting this summer. Planned amenities include boat slips, pool and cabana, fire pit pavilion, green space park, and walking trails.
Our River Breeze community in Soddy Daisy has river bluff home sites available. The coastal-style vibe includes a community dock with boat slips, a sundeck, and gas lanterns for every home. Imagine walking this neighborhood at sunset!
Spending more time at home at work and at play is the new normal. Core Homes is designing their communities and homes to bring the outdoors into homes, naturally.
More Communities for Core in 2022
Core Homes is excited to announce we are expanding into more new communities in Harrison, Apison, and Ooltewah confirming our commitment to the area we call home by providing buyers with great new homes that reflect home buyers desire for elevated and lifestyle-centric spaces Plans are still being finalized, but we expect to begin building in two new communities and two new phases in existing communities which will represent our largest expansion effort to date.
Economic growth = more new homes and more new communities in Hamilton County
We love it here. Chattanooga and the surrounding areas are experiencing the kind of growth that will positively affect our community for generations. NoogaToday reports that 12 companies in Chattanooga + the surrounding area rank among the fastest-growing private companies in the nation, according to the 2021 Inc. 5000 list. More recently, Chattanooga was featured in Garden & Gun magazine. The writer called us the “Emerald City for outdoor adventure”. It’s easy to see why we are proud to be “Chattanooga’s Home Builder”.
New Communities – Harrison and Ooltewah, TN
Two new communities are on the drawing board for Core’s home buyers. In the Summer of 2022, Wind River will join River Breeze as a Core Signature Community. Located off Birchwood Pike in Harrison, TN, Wind River will offer 5-acre tracts – some on a bluff overlooking the Tennessee River.
One-acre plus home sites will also be available. Each home will include a boat slip on private community docks. A pool and cabana, fire pit pavilion, walking trails, and a park green space are planned as well. Elevated living at its finest! Keep checking HomeLifebyCore.com for updates on this community.
Still in the planning stages, Core plans on offering condo homes in Ooltewah. More information will be coming later in the year on this project.
New Phases Now Selling
Hawks Landing Phase III in Apison is proving to be very popular! We are already 50% sold out. What an incredible community! A pool and clubhouse, playground, and walking trail, not to mention great schools make Hawks Landing much sought after with our home buyers. Six Designer Selected homes are underway and available. Many still have an option to make some interior selections.
The Lake Breeze community in Harrison has just opened Phase III for sales. Several Designer Selected homes are planned and several home sites with incredible views are available for semi-custom builds.The community has a pool and green space, plus a boat ramp is available less than a mile away.
Core Homes is growing right along with the Chattanooga area. It’s a wonderful time to live in the Scenic City and to call it home.