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6th Mar, 2018
Articles, Blog

Let’s face it. When we sit down and look at a floor plan for our dream home, it’s easy to just think what’s in the design is the best solution. After all, a professional designer was behind the ideas so everything has to be the way it should be. So who needs to second-guess the plan?

“But here’s the thing: You tour homes. You look at floor plans and view room layouts,” said Rick McAlexander, CEO of Associated Designs in Eugene, Ore. “What you see may not be the ideal way the room should be put together or the right way to plan where each room goes. You have to evaluate how it all fits together, and then be sure it’s right for you.”


1st Feb, 2018
Articles, Blog

You’ve searched high and low for your first home. You’ve browsed all the realtor websites, all the neighborhoods. Nothing sparks your happiness, so instead of compromising on something existing, you are going to build your new home from the ground up.

The trick with building your starter home, of course, is being smart about what features, amenities, and styles you like and that won’t drain your pocketbook. Not an easy thing to do.

But don’t despair. We here at Associated Designs Inc., have highlighted for you three straightforward starter homes packed with all the modern features and amenities, and wrapped in time-tested exterior styles. And yes: They won’t break the bank.

“It’s common to be a little overwhelmed by all the...

1st Jan, 2018
Articles, Blog

Two home design gurus walk you through a home that needs a little updating. They show you some ideas such as how to put the finishing touches on a refurbished kitchen or a new window treatment. In the process, you see high-tech renderings of the home as it will be when all the updates are finished. Digital graphics and illustrations flash across the TV screen and you start to think to yourself, “Wouldn’t it be great to have those same visuals for the new home I want?”

It seems so simple and so easy to get all the flash and tech for a construction project on reality home improvement shows. In just a few days or at the click of a button, designs are there in 3-D with virtual walk-throughs … but that’s not reality. The reality is that the design...

1st Dec, 2017
Articles, Blog

A new year is just around the corner, and with it comes our choice picks for home plans and designs. But we’d rather not call this list our “Best of 2017” because in truth, home plans are so varied and so unique to each design and each homeowner that to mention all the great ones, we’d need a bit more space on the page.

“And that’s a good thing,” said Rick McAlexander, CEO of Associated Designs Inc. in Eugene, Ore. “We’ve got so many great home designs that it’s no surprise homeowners spend hours searching for that perfect home with all the right features and all the trendy amenities.”

Of course, there are home designs that are memorable, epitomizing a unique layout, modern features and...

6th Nov, 2017
Articles, Blog

Duplexes have gotten a bad rap. They show up in neighborhoods with the same look, same floor plans and no room for imagination. They are often thought of as utilitarian dwellings that allow developers to squeeze more homes onto a lot. Duplexes, in other words, are practical and simple.

But it’s time to think differently and look at multi-family housing with new eyes.

Duplexes are going upscale, blending the best of single-family living with the convenience and affordability of simpler living. Large modern...

3rd Oct, 2017
Articles, Blog

Historically, kitchens haven’t always been luxurious, open places with breakfast bars and double islands. And they certainly weren’t rooms where people wanted to gather. They were dark and simple, often utilitarian in style – an afterthought to the home plan. They were filled with noises, messes and smells. But the modern kitchen is an indispensable component to contemporary life. Instead of welcoming guests into the living room, the kitchen is the place we chat with friends over a couple drinks or conduct business or play games with family.

“The kitchen of today serves as...

6th Sep, 2017
Articles, Blog

“Utility” in its most basic definition means “a state of being useful.” So it’s no surprise that when we think of a utility room in a home, we think of the basics – laundry, ironing boards that fold down from the wall, and maybe some small cupboard space. Utility rooms, however, can be more than just useful spots to clean your clothes.

“I like to think that utility rooms are another living space in a home,” said Rick McAlexander, CEO of Associated Designs Inc., based in Eugene, Ore. “You can do so much more with them, so their usefulness includes...

1st Aug, 2017
Articles, Blog

If no two snowflakes are alike, then no two homeowners are alike – and that goes double for older homebuyers. The children are out of the house. You don’t need all that space and all of those rooms. Maybe you want to downsize to a smaller living style. Or maybe you’re the opposite and want to at least retain some of the family gathering spaces. Maybe you want to expand a bit, so when the kids visit with grandkids in tow, you’ve got a guestroom available and space to play.

Empty Nester House Plans, Home Trends Report

You see? Not all older homebuyers are alike. And therefore, not all empty...

11th Jul, 2017
Articles, Blog

A dream home is a new possibility. It’s all of your heart’s desires in a home that you can only imagine. Maybe it has a large kitchen that connects to a vaulted great room and covered patio. Or maybe it has extra storage, a large garage, and a bonus room. But finding a home that has all of the features you’ve always wanted is daunting.

“For many, the hunt for the perfect home can be discouraging – even impossible,” said Rick McAlexander, CEO of Associated Designs. “And everyone’s desires change. That’s why we have our annual Home from the Heart survey to help us build the home of your dreams.”

This year’s survey once again asked readers, like you, to share what features and design elements you want in your...

6th Jun, 2017
Articles, Blog

Gone are the flashy, formal living rooms and expansive garages that are so beloved in traditional houses. The home desires of Generation Y – better known as Millennials – tend to gravitate toward smaller spaces, versatility and minimalist floor plans. But that’s not to say that younger homebuyers don’t see the benefits of space or the need for certain amenities. They just like to have options.

“To the Millennial, a traditional home with big spaces and grand bedrooms can be repurposed, or up-purposed,” said Rick McAlexander, CEO of Associated Designs. “A garage becomes a workshop. A bonus room is a bedroom. They like to have a home that bends and adapts to their lifestyle.”

In a sense, younger homebuyers’ wishes are a...

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