Per­fect fit

Bent­ley Homes de­sign ap­peals to young fam­i­lies, empty-nesters

Winnipeg Free Press - Section G - - HOMES - By Todd Lewys

IT’S a de­sign that pleases a lot of folks. Bent­ley Homes has de­vel­oped a bun­ga­low that ap­peals to young cou­ples look­ing to move up from a starter home, and empty-nesters look­ing to move down from a larger home.

For about $400,000, you can ac­quire a bun­ga­low with 3,500 square feet of liv­able space on a good-sized lot that backs onto ma­ture for­est. With 1,810 square feet on its main level and ap­prox­i­mately 1,700 square feet of space down­stairs, 118 Per­fan­ick Drive of­fers plenty of room to move. It’s ideal for a young fam­ily or empty-nest cou­ple who en­joy en­ter­tain­ing or hav­ing the grand­kids over. A sim­ple floor plan max­i­mizes the use of that space.

“Our de­sign­ers, led by Dustin Pierce, wanted to cre­ate a com­fort­able, func­tional home, but with­out a hefty price tag,” Bent­ley Homes’ Paolo Bryant ex­plains

“That meant the home would have to go with­out some of the usual ex­pen­sive up­grades, such as gran­ite coun­ter­tops. While the floor plan isn’t flashy, it still looks good and works well. While it’s nice to have a home that looks good, the first pri­or­ity is func­tion.”

De­spite the fact 118 Per­fan­ick isn’t one of Bent­ley’s more elab­o­rate artis­tic de­signs, it still con­tains some flair. For ex­am­ple, there’s the ex­tra-wide foyer with its soar­ing 14-foot ceil­ing and col­lec­tion of win­dows that com­bine to cre­ate a dra­matic en­trance. Yet, there’s no ce­ramic tile that marks the foyer; a high-grade vinyl, which mim­ics grey slate, was used to keep costs down.

“Hon­estly, the win­dows by the foyer were a bit ex­tra, but they give you a more im­pres­sive curb ap­peal. To re­coup some of the costs in­curred from do­ing that, we went with the vinyl floor in the foyer. At the same time, the ex­tra-wide en­trance and (dra­matic) curved walls don’t cost ex­tra. With us, those fea­tures — which in­clude nine­foot ceil­ings — are stan­dard. They look great, but don’t cost ex­tra.”

That theme con­tin­ues on into the open-con­cept great room, which — thanks to a se­ries of large win­dows run­ning along the back wall — ben­e­fits from a heap­ing help­ing of nat­u­ral light. The win­dows (five of them, plus deck doors) also pro­vide a view of the for­est out back from the roomy dinette area, while a curved is­land at once opens up the kitchen and pro­vides wel­come util­ity as a food prepa­ra­tion cen­tre.

Even though this is a home built for those on a bud­get, fin­ish­ing qual­ity hasn’t been sac­ri­ficed.

“With us, maple cab­i­nets (in this case honey-tinted ones) come stan­dard. We com­ple­mented them with a sim­ple green (glass) tile back­splash, and tex­tured (tan) ar­borite counter-coun­ter­tops,” Bryant says. “While fin­ish­ing qual­ity is im­por­tant, to us func­tion­al­ity is a real key. The kitchen isn’t a long hike from the din­ing area, and the liv­ing room is also very ac­ces­si­ble. In this case, less is more.”

But not that much less, as it turns out. With three more (large) win­dows, a maple en­ter­tain­ment unit with niche for 50-inch flat-panel TV and a rib­bon fire­place — plus hard­wood floors — there’s no feel­ing of aus­ter­ity.

“Granted, the rib­bon fire­place rep­re­sents a ma­jor up­grade, but we just felt it fit. To save money, you could just as eas­ily go with a nat­u­ral gas fire­place,” he says.

Mean­while, the home’s three bed­rooms are well-sep­a­rated, with the two sec­ondary bed­rooms in their own wing along with a four-piece bath­room (with deep soaker tub) and laun­dry room. The mas­ter suite is on the op­po­site side of the home. With a huge win­dow for park­land views, en­suite with dual sinks,sinks, ce­ramic tile shower and large walk-in closet, the mas­ter suite is roomy, func­tional and pri­vate.

“This isn’t a big home but you can still cre­ate sep­a­ra­tion. With the mas­ter bed­room on one side and the kids’ bed­rooms on the other, kids and par­ents have their own space, plus you get a main-floor laun­dry room that’s out of the way, yet con­ve­niently lo­cated. It’s all about cre­at­ing func­tion­al­ity through the best pos­si­ble use of space.”

Fi­nally, there’s the bright, open lower level (cour­tesy of three steel beams that largely elim­i­nated the need for tele­posts) that’s ready for fu­ture devel­op­ment.

“We wanted it to be a nice, big open area with built-in flex­i­bil­ity. With 36inch win­dows and all kinds of room, I think we achieved that,” Bryant says. “It takes the home’s func­tion­al­ity to a whole new level.”

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