Local Builder Honored with National Design Award – Living Stone Design + Build

Contact: Molly Sullivan-Reeves

Local Builder Honored with National Design Award

Asheville, NC January –A local builder has won a gold award for the One-of-a-Kind Custom Home (2501-3500hsf) category in the 2016 Best in American Living™ Awards (BALA) by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB).

The Watkins residence (Swannanoa NC) was a collaborative team effort designed by Vinyet Architecture and built by Living Stone Design + Build. The interiors were designed by ID.ology Interiors & Design. The landscaping was created and installed by Gardens for Living.

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Asheville Achievers – Laura Sullivan ID.ology Interior Design

Laura Sullivan is a woman in a man’s world. It started as a child, when she’d accompany her father to job sites, getting her hands dirty throwing materials in the dumpsters in his investment properties. It continued during school, when she combined her passion for art with her experience in real estate to earn a degree in interior design (and a minor in art). Upon graduation from college, Sullivan invested further in that traditionally masculine world, as she received both her real estate broker’s license and her contractors license. 

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NAHB Honors 5 Young Professionals

NAHB has honored five home builders around the country as the 2016 Young Professionals of the Year. The awards were given Monday evening, January 9th in Orlando, Florida, during the NAHB International Builders’ Show. “David Belman, Robert Fallone, Eugene Graf, Sean Sullivan and John Williams are the future of our great industry,” said NAHB Chairman Ed Brady. “I’m honored to recognize their significant achievements and know they all have many years ahead in which they will continue to shine.” The NAHB Young Professionals Award is designed to acknowledge each of five regional winners’ hard work and successes, performance and dedication, and outstanding potential as they begin to serve as leaders in the home building industry. It is awarded to industry professionals under the age of 45. David Belman is president of Belman Homes in Waukesha, Wisconsin. A member of the Metro Builders Association of Greater Milwaukee, Belman has been elected the 2017president of the Wisconsin Builders Association. His company has won numerous design awards for its Parade of Home entries, was the first builder in the state to make smart home technology a standard feature in all homes and is active in the Make a Wish Foundation, Operation Finally Home and other charitable efforts. Robert Fallone is president of Fallone Group LLC in Somerville, New Jersey and has been named the builder of the year by both his local and state home building associations. He started a Young Professionals group for the Metropolitan Builders & Contractors of New Jersey, and for the state he chaired a task force to create a health benefits trust, enabling New Jersey Builders Association members to obtain health insurance at more competitive rates. Eugene Graf IV is the owner of E.G. Construction in Bozeman, Montana and active in the Southwest Montana Building Industry Association. He has been recognized as builder of the year by his local association, the Montana Building Industry Association and by Montana State University’s construction management program. In 2016, Graf served as chairman of the NAHB national political action committee. Sean Sullivan is president of Living Stone Construction in Black Mountain, North Carolina and his company has been honored with national design awards and for innovation in green building. As president of the Asheville Home Builders Association he oversaw a 30% increase in membership. Sullivan is also past president of the North Carolina builders’ political action committee. John Williams is vice president of construction services for K. Hovnanian Homes’ Houston, Texas division and will lead the Greater Houston Builders Association in 2018. At K. Hovnanian, Williams created an innovative training program for new construction managers that enabled the company to quickly bring new hires up to speed. He is also active in building codes advocacy work to keep homes safe and affordable. Meet the 15 finalists for the award. For additional information about NAHB Young Professionals, contact Sahrah Zarei at 800-368-5242 x8431.

Living Stone Wins Green Design + Build Firm for North Carolina

Living Stone Construction's most recent project has been the renovation of a 110-year-old farmhouse, which perfectly demonstrates the principles behind the Living Stone Difference. We have brought this home into the modern century and tripled its size, whilst retaining as much of the original house as possible. This was very important to our clients, and we made sure that they were included throughout the entire design process. We really managed to infuse the old with the new on this project, by updating older elements of the house but managing to keep the appearance like that of a 1900s farm house. As the wife's family were part Swiss, she was keen to add elements that reflected this into the build; we were happy to accommodate this, and have even included an exterior Swiss oven, much to her delight. We are proud of our client inclusive process, and that it is so different from the old process which involved all parts of the build being undertaken separately which often lead to poor communication. Instead, we sought out people who wanted to partner with us on a regular basis, and brought them to the table to assemble a team for each set of our clients based on their needs and wants. We knew our clients deserved better than the old process, and this is what makes the Living Stone difference. At Living Stone Construction, we strongly believe that if a home is going to be built, it should be done right. It should not only be beautiful and built using high quality materials, but should also be designed deliberately, making effective use of the space available. We also believe that all homes should be as energy efficient as possible; this doesn't mean that you have to spend lots of money on renewables or extras, but it does mean doing the basics right. Our homes are about 50% more efficient than code, as a standard. We have a third party energy rater engaged on every project who works on computer modelling and efficiency design, and who tests and certifies our projects at the end. This not only brings an immediate return on the investment for our clients, it helps improve their overall health. We look forward to partnering with our clients to build happier, healthier lives well into the future.

The 2016 Southern Living Inspired Home: A mountain home at one with its setting

By Charles Richardson

A timeless setting
The first thing you notice about French Broad Crossing (FBC) is the exquisite Western North Carolina setting: pure, pristine, secluded, and in perfect harmony with the lush, densely forested hills that form a natural amphitheater of majesty and timeless beauty. Residents here liken it “to living in one’s own national park,” yet it’s just a short drive from the dynamic city of Asheville, NC. Indeed, much of the land at FBC is permanently preserved, held in conservation to prevent further development. Families are drawn to an idyllic living experience that can be passed down to future generations, in the same undisturbed state that exists today. It is here, against the backdrop of ancient rolling mountains and the mighty French Broad River—third oldest river in the world according to geologists—that the new 2016 Southern Living Inspired Home will reside.

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Growing Options for Seniors Ready to Move

Aging in PlaceSubmitted by Sean D. Sullivan

For many seniors, making the decision to move or downsize to a smaller home can be emotionally challenging. After raising a family or spending a good portion of their adult lives in one home, it is often difficult to think about leaving it. Yet, practically, it may be easier to live in a home that better accommodates their changing lifestyle.

To meet the growing need of these baby boomers, a new industry of “senior move managers” was created to help with the transition to the next phase of their lives. Senior move managers handle many aspects of a senior move. From setting up floor plans and helping determine what furniture to take, to packing the house and helping seniors sell or donate things they no longer want.

The National Association of Senior Move Managers provides resources and a directory of senior move managers across the country. Here are the three key things seniors should consider before they begin the downsizing process:

• It takes time. It is hard to imagine moving out of a home you have lived in for so long. Likewise, organizing all of the steps involved in a move can be overwhelming. Be sure to give yourself enough time to process the changes that will be taking place.

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