6 hol­i­day-friendly home de­sign fea­tures

Cecil Whig - - OURCECIL -

— Whether you’re shop­ping for a new tra­di­tional, man­u­fac­tured or mod­u­lar home or just at­tempt­ing a ren­o­va­tion project, it’s im­por­tant to con­sider the func­tion­al­ity of key spa­ces like kitchens and liv­ing rooms. These most-fre­quented rooms will host meals, fam­ily gath­er­ings, movie nights, home­work ses­sions and hol­i­day cel­e­bra­tions, so they need to in­clude fea­tures that fa­cil­i­tate all these uses and more.

If the lay­out of your cur­rent apart­ment or house isn’t work­ing for you as well as you would like, it can seem even more un­liv­able dur­ing the hus­tle and bus­tle of the hol­i­day sea­son. As you con­sider which home el­e­ments will be the best in­vest­ment for your money, the home ex­perts at Clay­ton sug­gest keep­ing these fea­tures in mind:

Kitchen is­land — With the ex­cep­tion of gal­ley kitchens, vir­tu­ally ev­ery kitchen can ben­e­fit from an is­land. Kitchen is­lands are the per­fect spot for serv­ing Christ­mas morn­ing break­fast, set­ting out dishes for a Thanks­giv­ing buf­fet, food prep for a New Year’s cel­e­bra­tion or a stag­ing area for an all-night wrap­ping party af­ter the kids are in bed. Uti­lize gen­er­ous un­der­is­land cabi­net space to store large items like a crock pot or large serv­ing bowls. The is­land also makes a great space to add ad­di­tional seat­ing if you are ex­pect­ing guests.

Farm­house sink

(BPT)

— Also called apron sinks, farm­house-style sinks are per­fect sinks for hol­i­day entertainers and very trendy in new homes. Larger and deeper than stan­dard un­der-mount or top-mount sinks, a farm­house sink gives you plenty of room for wash­ing large kitchen items. The bak­ing sheets you used to whip up a batch of hol­i­day cook­ies, the big pot where you sim­mered chili and even the racks from your oven will fit eas­ily into a farm­house sink. What’s more, farm­house sinks give any kitchen a com­fort­ing, homey, yet el­e­gant look.

Sweep­ing tech­nol­ogy — With all the cook­ing and en­ter­tain­ing you’ll be do­ing in the kitchen, crumbs and spills are in­evitable. The last thing you want to do with a house­ful of guests is wres­tle with a full-sized vac­uum cleaner or risk hav­ing a hand vac prove in­ad­e­quate for your needs. Sweep­ing tech­nol­ogy like a cen­tral dirtremoval vac­uum sys­tem can make cleanup much quicker and eas­ier. The cen­tral dirtremoval vac­uum sys­tem unit in­stalls at the base of a kitchen cabi­net, and you sim­ply use a broom to move de­bris in front of the unit. A tap of the toe turns the vac­uum on, and the unit sucks the dirt in­side a pull-out pan. You can open the drawer and ditch the dirt im­me­di­ately, or leave it for later while you en­ter­tain guests. Cen­tral dirt-re­moval vac­uum sys­tems are an op­tional kitchen ap­pli­ance in se­lect Clay­ton home de­signs.

Fire­place — Few home fea­tures are more ap­pro­pri­ate for the hol­i­days than a fire­place that will add warmth and am­biance to any cel­e­bra­tion, no mat­ter how large or small. Gas log fire­places set a fes­tive at­mos­phere with the flick of a switch. It’s pos­si­ble to in­stall one in vir­tu­ally any style home, from site-built to man­u­fac­tured, and some ver­sions can even work on in­te­rior walls of a home. Many homes will even fea­ture a hand-laid stone or tile fire­place for a stylish, so­phis­ti­cated look.

Pet-friendly fea­tures — Four-legged friends are part of the fam­ily — and ev­ery hol­i­day cel­e­bra­tion. Home­builders now of­fer a va­ri­ety of fea­tures to make life more pleas­ant for pets and eas­ier for home­own­ers. Clay­ton Built homes can be cus­tom­ized with a pet dish drawer that al­lows you to hide feed­ing dishes when they’re not needed. A win­dowseat or hide­away cubby can be the per­fect es­cape spot for pets who feel over­whelmed by hol­i­day ac­tiv­i­ties and guests. And a built-in groom­ing sta­tion in a mud­room or util­ity room makes it easy to primp your pet be­fore hol­i­day guests ar­rive.

Sin­gle-level con­struc­tion — If you’re think­ing of get­ting into a new home in time to cel­e­brate the hol­i­days, re­mem­ber that a sin­gle-level de­sign and an open floor plan will make hol­i­day en­ter­tain­ing eas­ier and more en­joy­able. Hav­ing all rooms on one floor en­sures guests never have to climb stairs to find a re­stroom or go to bed. Plus, an open floor plan al­lows you to work in the kitchen and in­ter­act with guests — or keep an eye on kids — in the liv­ing room.

Choos­ing a man­u­fac­tured home can be a smart, af­ford­able way to get all the hol­i­day-friendly fea­tures you want — and be in your new home be­fore the New Year. Be­cause a man­u­fac­tured home is con­structed in­doors, bad weather won’t de­lay the con­struc­tion sched­ule. A man­u­fac­tured home can be com­pleted and set up on-site in a mat­ter of weeks. To learn more, visit www. clay­ton­homes.com.

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