From Florida to Ashville

From Florida to Ashville

From Florida to Asheville! For most of the year, David and Bonnie Gold call sun-soaked southern Florida home. Two of their grown children live close by, and each of them has a one-year-old child. While the newly-minted grandparents love being with family and enjoy beachfront living, they can’t resist the tranquil and beautiful allure of life in the Blue Ridge Mountains. The Golds built a vacation townhouse in the charming and close-knit Southcliff development, not far from Asheville. “You couldn’t ask for a better community,” Bonnie insists. “We have made so many wonderful, caring friends who we cherish there. They even come and stay with us in Florida from time to time to get away from the cold.” When they found that their townhome no longer suited their needs, the Golds hired Living Stone Design+Build to build them a new home just up the road. The couple had several reasons for choosing Living Stone. “We visited a Living Stone house in our neighborhood Parade of Homes,” recalls Bonnie. “We found it to be fresher and cleaner than other homes we had seen. It was a little less traditional, and the rooms weren’t as boxy and small. That appealed to us, because we wanted something cleaner and more open. “A friend of mine had hired Living Stone to build her home, and she highly recommended them. We were so impressed with her experience, and so confident in her recommendation, that we didn’t even interview anyone else.” “We didn’t even interview architects,” adds David. “Sean recommended our architect, and we liked what he came up with. There was no need to look anywhere else.” The Golds were not new to homebuilding, and they had a good idea of the kind of experience they were looking for. “We’ve actually built several homes, in Asheville and in South Florida,” notes Bonnie. “We know building can sometimes be a horrible experience. “It was really important to me to hire good people, who we could work well with, communicate well with, and be comfortable with. I was very happy to find that we all hit it off immediately. There have been no problems with communication, and I have felt comfortable with the process from the beginning.” “The big thing for me is that they have integrity,” says David. “Sean was the past president of the North Carolina Homebuilders Association. That gives you an idea of how well-respected he is. He’s fair-minded and up-front about pricing, and he uses use the top subcontractors. We really loved our foreman, Frank. Everyone on the Living Stone team is very professional. Beyond all that, they’re just extraordinarily nice people.” While the Golds liked their townhouse, their new home is much better suit their current lifestyle. “Now that we have grandchildren and many more family members and friends who come to visit us, we need a few more bedrooms. The townhouse only had one bedroom on the main floor, so all the guests had to stay upstairs. When my parents, who are in their 90s, came to visit, we had to give them our room, and we had to sleep in a room upstairs. “The new house is actually not that much larger than the townhouse - about 3300 square feet - but the layout is much more functional,” Bonnie affirms. “There are two bedrooms on the main floor, and three bedrooms upstairs. There’s plenty of space for guests to stay here comfortably.” “I love the openness of the floor plan,” reflects David. “The living room, dining room and kitchen are all one big room. There is a lot of deck space, which is something I really wanted.” One of the most charming spaces in the home was an unexpected bonus. “There was a crawlspace that had to be made into a full-size room,” recounts Bonnie. “They made it into a playroom. Our grandchildren only come up here to visit occasionally. But many of our friends have children and grandchildren who will absolutely love playing there when they visit.” Living several states away from the construction site certainly had its challenges, but the Golds still felt at ease. “Laura and her design team at I.D. Ology were really an enormous help,” says Bonnie. “We’re so far away. We came up often, but it was still difficult to make selections. They went out of their way to send us pictures and guide us through each decision.” The time, money, and effort the Golds put into the build has proved well worth it. “Florida will always be home to us, but we love Asheville, and we adore our community,” says Bonnie. “And now we have the perfect home. Life really couldn’t be better."

Best Home Renovations Company – South East USA & BUILD Excellence Award Sustainable Design/Build 2017

As only one of a few accredited master builders in North Carolina, Living Stone Construction is the perfect home renovations contractor with their pledge to energy star, being a certified green professional, and aging-in-place specialist. We spoke to Sean Sullivan, President of Living Stone, to find out more. Established in 1995, Living Stone draws on over 22 years’ experience in the design + build market to ensure they offer clients innovative services that meet their individual needs, as Sean explains. “Here at Living Stone we offer clients a vital service, drawing on our experience in the design/ build space to create unique homes, as well as renovations. Over the years we have gained a strong reputation for excellence in the full home renovation space, and we work closely with clients to turn the property they have purchased into a home they can cherish. “By partnering with architects, we utilize our design/ build knowledge to ensure that, right from the beginning, we understand the difference between what we call the ‘program’ (what the customer wants from their project) and their budget. From then on, we work with the client throughout the project, keeping them informed and supporting them. Our staff are specially chosen to compliment both the team and the clients we work with, so that by the time we hand over the keys to their new home, our customers are truly a member of the Living Stone family.” Based in the heart of the Black Mountain, North Carolina, the company is able to take advantage of the many opportunities that this stunning location presents. As many of the available land is remote some clients tend not to build new homes, but instead purchase older ones nearer to the local town and renovate them, which is one of Living Stone’s specialities. In his concluding comments, Sean outlines how his firm will be utilizing this glorious natural space in its upcoming projects. “Looking ahead we have a number of exciting projects on the horizon, including an authentic craftsman property overlooking the Seven Sister’s mountains, which we are building to include a watch tower to showcase the full splendor of this gorgeous view. We are also working on a contemporary project in Asheville, where we are creating an infinity pool on a slope which will overlook the entire city. These projects offer our firm many great opportunities for further growth which we look forward to taking advantage of moving forward.” Contact Details Company: Living Stone Construction Contact: Molly Sullivan-Reeves Contact Email: Address: 706 NC Highway 9, Black Mountain, NC 28711, USA Phone: 001828.669.4343 Website:

This House Smells -The Dangers and Opportunities that IAQ Present in Homebuilding

“This house smells…different than the rest. Actually, it doesn’t really have a smell?!” said Mrs. Lee as she walked into the Parade of Homes entry I was manning last year. Mrs. Lee, like many other visitors in years past, noticed what most builders are missing across the country, the fact that IAQ is important.

I had the privilege, two years ago, of sitting in a research lab think tank with seven other top builders from across the nation. The question was posed to us “What is the greatest concern that you have about the homes that you are building today”? Each builder at the table said that they were concerned about building homes so tight that they might be poisoning the people that move into them. When they got to me, I was dumbfounded by their answers and had to ask my own question, “Are you using a rater”?

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Local Asheville Builder Named by NAHB as Certified Green Professional of the Year

January 10, 2017

The National Association of Home Builders last night honored 12 individuals who have excelled in teaching NAHB education courses and for their professionalism as NAHB educational designation holders as the Educators and Designees of the Year. The awards were given during the 2017 International Builders‘ Show® held this week in Orlando, Fla.

“These home building industry professionals definitely ‘walk the walk,’” said 2016 NAHB Education Chair William L. Shaw, Jr., GMR, CGR, GMB, CAPS and CGP, a Houston remodeler and NAHB instructor. “These leaders don’t just talk about the importance of education. They also work to stay current and even ahead of industry trends so they can set an example for the home builders, remodelers and other industry professionals who make up our great Federation.”

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Project Wins National Green Building Award

Black Mountain, NC, Living Stone Design + Build project, “Rhodo Reno”, is the overall winner for the Best Renovation in the 2017 National Green Building Awards by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB).

“The NAHB Green Awards represent the best of the best in green building practices and advocacy efforts, and this year’s group of winners is particularly impressive,” said NAHB Chairman Rick Judson, a home builder from Charlotte, N.C. “The demand for green building is growing exponentially, and these honorees are a great example of what can be accomplished in terms of sustainable and energy-efficient building practices.”

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