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.”