Happy Homeowners: The Eckart Family

This new “Happy Homeowners Interview” features The Eckart family, who built their new home in Indianapolis, IN.  Read below to hear about Eckart’s homebuilding journey with M/I Homes!

 

M/I Homes: Is this your first M/I Home and what convinced you to choose M/I Homes over another builder?

Kelly and Paul Eckart:  Yes, this is our first M/I home. We chose M/I homes because we were highly impressed with the quality of the homes.  Everything from the materials used to the well-thought out floor plans.  From the minute we first walked in to an M/I home, we knew this was the builder for us.  Having previously built with a builder where almost everything was considered an upgrade, we were impressed with the items that were considered “standard” in M/I homes.

M/I: Are you happy with how your home turned out?

KE: We absolutely LOVE our home and wouldn’t change a single thing!

M/I: What is the name of your floorplan and what features of your home do you especially love?

KE: We chose the Clayton which in our opinion is the best floor plan that we have ever seen in a new home build. There is no wasted space and the entire layout flows nicely.  We love our hardwood floors.  We love the openness of our kitchen/family room area. We also love the many windows throughout our home that give us great views year-round.

M/I: Overall, how was your experience with M/I Homes?  Did you get to pick out your homesite and the floorplan you wanted to build, or had the home already been started?

KE:  Our experience with M/I homes was nothing but the best! We did get to choose our floor plan and homesite.  Leslie was the very first M/I employee that we came into contact with and she is the absolute best @ her job!  She was SO very personable and knew the neighborhood as well as many of the families already living here.  She was such a help to us.  Addie (our sales rep) helped in so many ways – navigating all the many decisions we were faced with as new homeowners and was a constant source of encouragement/information throughout the entire process.  Our construction manager Chuck was so good at walking us through the building process and calling us once a week to keep us up-to-date on what was happening with the build.  All of these people helped make the entire process enjoyable.

M/I:  Do you have any fun memories from the buying / building process?

KE:  We were so anxious for our home to finally start being built – it was hard to have patience. Because we lived close, we were able to drive out to our homesite frequently to see the daily/weekly progress being made.  It was so exciting when the frame went up and we could actually walk through all of the rooms.  Also, seeing what our views would be from each window was exciting as well.

M/I:  Was there something about your home that made you immediately know you wanted to move in?

KE:  From the moment the frame went up, then the drywall, then the cabinets, etc. we were able to really visualize our family living in these spaces and the memories we would soon be making together.

M/I:  What do you like about your neighborhood / community?

KE:  We have the best neighborhood in the greater Indianapolis area hands down! We love the fact that it is a smaller neighborhood – that actually started out as a custom home built neighborhood.  We have a great walking trail that goes around our neighborhood and provides a great way to get to know all of our neighbors.  We also had a block party this past spring that over half of our neighborhood attended.  Each month we have a men’s night out and women’s day out.  Our neighborhood exemplifies a great community where people know each other and care about each other.

M/I:  Anything you would recommend to someone looking for a new home?

KE:  Definitely talk to people about their experience with any builder you are considering. Also, visit model homes and look at the quality of materials they use on their homes inside and out.  Look at the overall feel/look of the neighborhood.

M/I:  What is your favorite memory in your new home thus far?

KE:  Hosting our middle daughter’s wedding shower this past summer. Also, the first Thanksgiving and Christmas we enjoyed in our new home. We look forward to making so many memories with our family and friends many years in to the future.

M/I:  What is your favorite space in your new home?  Do you have pictures you would like to share?

KE:  We have several favorite spaces in our new home! We LOVE our kitchen – especially the big island where our kids like to gather when they are home visiting.  We also love our family room and the beautiful views we have out our windows.  Our dining room is another favorite as well. We love to sit on our front porch in the morning and watch the sun come up.  In the near future, we hope to build a patio/deck and enjoy our evenings watching the beautiful sunsets as well!

M/I:  Anything else you think we should know about your experience or your home?

KE:  Overall, our experience with M/I homes has been excellent. There are honestly not any negative experiences that we had throughout this process.  Any minor issues that arose were immediately addressed and taken care of.  This was our second home to build and our experience with M/I was nothing at all like our first home building experience.  It was SO much better.  This is a professional company that truly cares about the families buying/building their homes and we saw that caring attitude in every M/I employee we came in contact with – especially Leslie, Addie and Chuck!

Happy Homeowners: The Randolph Family

This new “Happy Homeowners Interview” features Gary and Cheryl Randolph, who recently built their new home in Charlotte.  Read below to hear about Randolphs’ homebuilding journey with M/I Homes!

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M/I Homes: Is this your first M/I home? What convinced you to choose M/I Homes over another builder?

Cheryl and Gary: Yes, this is our first M/I home. We had our realtor take us around to see existing homes, but there was nothing that met our price/feature preferences. We soon noticed that some builders stuck houses wherever they saw a spot of land and had no thought of an overall community design. One place actually had someone’s front door opening out to the side of their neighbor’s home.

Once we started looking at new builds, we saw many different neighborhoods. Driving along Poplar Tent Road, we saw three developments in a row and we checked out each one. It was sort a Goldilocks experience. The first place we looked at was nice, but you were given a very limited floor plan selection, and there was no ranch style. The second place we looked at was M/I Homes. We fell in love with the neighborhood and the quality of the homes, but we did not think we could afford a home in this area. So, we went to the third development. Styles were limited, but not as much as the first neighborhood we saw. Prices seemed doable and we were willing to settle for a house that was not exactly what we wanted – no ranch style available there either though.

A couple of months later, we visited Charlotte again (we’re from Buffalo, NY). We had eliminated most of the developments we had visited earlier and had pretty much settled on the development on Poplar Tent. We actually picked out a home and the options we wanted, and were almost finalizing the buy on the last day of our visit.

We had three hours before we needed to be at the airport to return to Buffalo. What the hey, let’s just stop and talk to Wendy (M/I Homes) one more time before we fly home. We gave Wendy our budget and told her that we loved the Cambridge model but we don’t need the second floor. Wendy worked with us to see which (of the many) options we really wanted. Two and a half hours later, we were $9,000 over our budget. The thing is, we loved what we had drawn up much more than we disliked the $9,000 overage. The difference between what we would settle for and what we loved was huge. At this point it was a no-brainer. Wendy became our best friend.randolph-family1-1

M/I: Are you happy with how your home turned out?

C/G: Oh yeah, very happy. To save money, we decided to go with the standard lighting fixtures, no garage door openers or ceiling fans, so we were pretty busy picking those things out online and installing them. We did save a lot of money, and the electricians’ prewire work did make the installs very straight-forward. Our home is everything we had hoped for.

M/I: What is the name of your floorplan, and what features of your home do you especially love?

C/G: Our floorplan is the Cambridge without the second floor. Our favorite room is the bedroom. That bay window extension is beautiful.

M/I: Overall, how was your experience with M/I Homes?  Did you get to pick out your homesite and the floorplan you wanted to build, or had the home already been started?

C/G: We have worked with at least three other builders on previous homes. This has been our best experience in home building. And yes, we picked out everything. Having lots of choices is both a blessing and a curse, but we wouldn’t have it any other way.

M/I: Do you have any fun memories from the buying / building process?

C/G: Well, working with Wendy was fun. But our day at the Design Center was the most challenging. We picked out exterior colors, brick, fireplace stone, cabinets, countertops, toilets, kitchen upgrades, and so much more. We loved that Kelly was an expert at her job. She knew the colors of each neighbor’s home and guided us in picking out colors that would look great alongside them. Kelly was very skilled at helping us think about various aspects of each feature as we made our choices. Helping us think is much more beneficial than stating an opinion. She knew that.

Soon after the design center visit, we met John, the person supervising the construction of our new home. John made us feel comfortable when construction began but he was still an unknown to us at that point. As time went on, we realized that John really did mean it when he said that he builds each home as though he will own it. He kept things moving, kept us informed, and would not accept poor quality work. I guess that’s not really a fun memory, but it makes us really happy now.

M/I: What do you like about your neighborhood / community?

C/G: We like that it was clearly planned. We also love that it has curbs. That may sound silly, but our previous neighborhood had no curbs and there were always tire tracks on the lawns, unless the snow plows had completely destroyed the lawns. Then there were tire tracks in the mud.

M/I: Anything you would recommend to someone looking for a new home?

C/G: That depends on where the person is in their life. A young couple wants a starter home. We are at the opposite end of that. We wanted our last home. We wanted to get exactly what we wanted, so we would say now “don’t settle for something.”

M/I: What is your favorite space in your new home?  Do you have any pictures of that space you would like to share?

C/G: We could not pick just one because we are so happy with the layout. It has a large, well-planned kitchen space, the master bedroom with the extension looking out on the woods is so romantic and cozy, and the family room with stone fireplace is also our favorite!

M/I: What was something that surprised you the most with building / moving into a new home?

C/G: Wendy, John, and Kelly really listened to us, and really understood what would make us happy. They over-delivered and made this a home even better than our dreams. The upgrades, the wooded lot, the attention to our timeline, our budget needs – everything came together in our dream home.

M/I: Any suggestions you would give to someone building a new home with M/I Homes?

C/G: Take advantage of the opportunity to look at online pictures of other homes going up in the neighborhood! You can see how your neighbors put together different options to help you determine what you like and don’t like before heading to the Design Center. I know of no other builder who provides this view of their homes as they are being built. It was invaluable, especially because we were building our home in North Carolina while still living in New York.

** Recently retired, Gary and Cheryl Randolph moved from Buffalo, NY to Charlotte, NC in order to be near their grandkids and enjoy a moderate climate. Their retirement is an active one as they both love to bike and run. Cheryl has run a marathon and Gary completed a full Ironman (Lake Placid) at the age of 60.

Happy Homeowners: The Pence Family

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M/I Homes: Is this your first M/I Home and what convinced you to choose M/I Homes over another builder?

Tina and Lorenzo: Yes, this is our first M/I home.  We were able to see these townhomes being built from the ground up and felt that a quality home was being built.

M/I:  Are you happy with how your home turned out?

T&L: Yes, extremely happy and our home has exceeded our expectations.

M/I: What is the name of your floorplan and what features of your home do you especially love?

T&L: We have the Cardiff floorplan.  There are so many things about the home that we love, the hardwoord floors, upgrades in kitchen and bath, fireplace, full basement (we really needed after 34 years of marriage and 2 children) and the extra large 2-car garage.

M/I:  Overall, how was your experience with M/I Homes? Did you get to pick out your homesite and the floorplan you wanted to build, or had the home already been started?

T&L: We had a great experience in all aspects of the home purchase.  Our home was a spec house that was move-in ready so not a lot of choices from us but couldnt be happier with the end product.

M/I: Do you have any fun memories from the buying / building process?

T&L: This home was a spec home so we were actually not a part of the building process,  but we have been very pleased with the outcome of our home.

M/I: Was there something about your home that made you immediately know you wanted to move in?

T&L: Yes, we loved that it was a brand new home as well as the common area and gardens with a pond make our community, English Rows, so unique and beautiful.

M/I: What do you like about your neighborhood / community?

T&L: Again, the common area is very inviting.  We have frequent outings with all the neighbors.  It is a very mixed community with everything from empty nesters to brand new families – something for everyone.  We were new to the area and this community fit our needs perfectly.

M/I:  Anything you would recommend to someone looking for a new home?

T&L: We would definitely recommend looking at an M/I home – their diversity in everything from single family homes to condos and townhomes, with quality building,  is wonderful.

M/I:  What is your favorite memory in your new home thus far?

T&L: The community get togethers, especially the summer Regatta where the “boys” were able to race their remote control boats.

M/I: What is your favorite space in your new home? Do you have any pictures of that space you would like to share?

T&L: There are many spaces that we love but have really enjoyed the front porch (with a couple rocking chairs) and the front living area.  Both areas give us great views of the garden and pond.

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M/I:  What was something that surprised you the most with building / moving into a new home?

T&L: The great sense of community and how smooth and quick the closing process was with M/I Financial.

M/I: Any suggestions you would give to someone building a new home with M/I Homes

T&L: Customer service has been amazing – any needs you may have with a M/I home will be addressed. We are now at our 1 year anniversary and the customer service has continued.

M/I: Any additional items / stories you would like to share about your new home?

T&L: We downsized our home (by half) and have found this is perfect for our needs, very quiet, energy efficient and great location.

**Tina and Lorenzo purchased their new townhome in our English Rows community in Naperville, Illinois in September of 2015.  They enjoy spending time in the community with their neighbors, as well as relaxing on their front porch of their new home.  They have 2 children and have been married for over 34 years!

Happy Homeowners: The Carter Family

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M/I Homes: Is this your first M/I Home and what convinced you to choose M/I Homes over another builder?

Tom & Maureen: Yes, this was our first M/I Homes experience. We worked with a Realtor to help us find our ideal retirement home. After seeing several homes, we preferred the open floorplan of the Newport more than any other we had seen. Also, the New Home Consultant Michael Colo and later, Beth Vogl, were great. They were very nice, helpful, and informative.

M/I: Are you happy with how your home turned out?

T & M: Yes, the home has worked out well for us. There are some items that we will have to go back and do on our own but we are very impressed with our home overall. The space has worked out well; we have our things laid out where we like them. We purchased some new furniture and we were able to put our own touch on it so that it is different from the place we came from and it is very enjoyable.

M/I: What is the name of your floorplan and what features of your home do you especially love?

T&M: The Newport– We loved this ranch plan immediately. It was perfect because we knew we did not want a two-level home. We are able to get around well but wanted a home that was prepared for 15+ years down the road. We loved the open concept of the kitchen flowing to living room. We came from a condominium so space was very important to us. It was also great to have the master bedroom on one side and the three secondary rooms on the opposite side of the home.

M/I: Overall, how was your experience with M/I Homes?  Did you get to pick out your homesite and the floorplan you wanted to build, or had the home already been started?

T&M: Our overall experience was positive, our community had some restraints on interior design choices at the time but the individuals made up for it. Customer service was and continues to be spectacular. Kelly in the Charlotte Design Center was able to make a lot of our interior desires happen and she was very professional, Dax, our Personal Construction Manager had great communication with us, and Beth was the helping hand along the way. We were able to pick a homesite and we chose one that backed up to woods.

M/I: Do you have any fun memories from the buying / building process?

T&M: Our homebuilding experience was probably different from most because we were relocating from Boston. We only came down to Fort Mill twice and that was the Design Center appointment and Closing. Everything else was done remotely. Dax would walk through the house with his iPhone showing us the progress. Once they began construction, we could visit the website and see the progress which was helpful.

M/I: Was there something about your home that made you immediately know you wanted to move in?

T&M: We really liked the Newport floorplan and the community. The floorplan flows from the kitchen, to the great room, out onto the deck giving us maximum space when entertaining. Nobody feels overcrowded and if guests want to step outside, they can do that.

M/I: What do you like about your neighborhood / community?

T&M: We had two sets of friends that moved to the Fort Mill area before us. When we came to visit them, we loved the area and started looking at the quality of homes that you could get for your money and decided this was the community for us. It isn’t a huge community which we liked and we also liked that it was new. It has made it easy to make friends and know everyone in the neighborhood. There is another couple in Sutton Mill that we have become close to and several others who are friendly acquaintances. The people have been very friendly and daily walks with our dog, Savannah, has allowed us to meet many people. We love that the community is diverse and that there are young families, retired families, and everyone in between.

M/I: Anything you would recommend to someone looking for a new home?

T&M: Take in consideration the lifestyle you’re looking for as far as location. It is important to see what surrounds you and if it matches your interests. Also, make sure it fits not only your current needs but your potential needs in the future.

M/I: What is your favorite memory in your new home thus far?

T&M: Getting all the rooms painted was very exciting for us. We painted ourselves and it gave the home a nice personal touch.

M/I: What is your favorite space in your new home?  Do you have any pictures of that space you would like to share?

T&M: There are a lot of them. The deck is lovely. We asked for and got permission to put in a larger deck as part of the construction process. So it is quite large and it looks out onto the woods. It’s really quite nice, especially as the weather gets a little cooler. We sit out and eat breakfast and dinner out there a lot.  It is also good for entertaining, which we do a frequently.

M/I: Any suggestions you would give to someone building a new home with M/I Homes?

T&M: Aside from assessing your individual needs and making sure the location fits your interests, figure out what you want interior-wise and make sure that the homebuilder and community you choose offers it. We dove in head first and fortunately it worked out in our favor. Also, take a look online to figure out what you like because the Design Center consultation can be an overwhelming experience. We narrowed down our options before our appointment to ensure we could pick everything out in a day.

M/I: Any additional items / stories you would like to share about your new home?

T&M: We’ve been very happy in the home. The space has worked out well for us. Now that we’ve got everything laid out, we have our own touch on it so that it is different. We’ve explored the area and there are a lot of good restaurants.

 

**Tom and Maureen Carter recently retired from Massachusetts to South Carolina.  They are very pleased with their decision on relocating to the Fort Mill area. They spend time hanging out with friends, trying local restaurants, walking their dog Savannah, and Maureen has a passion for designing custom jewelry, which they have dedicated a room in their home to.

 

Happy Homeowners: The Hold Family

Our next Happy Homeowners interview brings us to the Hold family in Austin, Texas who purchased their new home in 2015.  Take a look and read about their experience building a new home with M/I Homes.

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M/I Homes: Is this your first M/I Home and what convinced you to choose M/I Homes over another builder?

Johnna Hold: This is our first home with M/I and it was an easy decision. We looked at as many builders in our area as possible and the second we stepped into the M/I Homes model we knew it was a perfect fit for us. The other builders were offering “upgrades” that M/I was offering as items that were already included in the base price. There was a clean and classic, yet modern feel to what was being offered.

M/I: Are you happy with how your new home turned out?

JH: We are so happy with our home! We have been in one year and not one day goes by that we aren’t thrilled with our choice of building with M/I Homes.

M/I: What is the name of your floorpan and what features of your home do you especially love?

JH: We chose the Callahan and could not love it more. We love the layout and the large rooms. When you walk in, the entryway is large and feels so welcoming.

M/I: Overall, how was your experience with M/I Homes?  Did you get to pick out your homesite and the floorplan you wanted to build, or had the home already been started?

JH: We had an incredible experience with the process from start until finish. We had several lots to choose from that could accommodate our plan and add-ons. We picked out everything from the site to the grout – it was fantastic!

M/I:  Do you have any fun memories from the buying / building process?

JH: We loved stopping by to see the process and watching it come to fruition. Our kids loved walking the slab and envisioning their rooms.

M/I: Was there something about your home that made you immediately know you wanted to move in?

JH: When the floors were put in it felt like home and we wanted to move in right away!

M/I: What do you like about your neighborhood / community?

JH: Our kids go to the school in the neighborhood and walk to and from school. They play in the street with friends and ride their bikes to the pool.

M/I: Anything you would recommend to someone looking for a new home?

JH: Make sure you are getting the smartest fit for your family. Think “long run” when purchasing your home. We thought about how our kids would grow and mature and what would be a wise choice for the long haul in our new home.

M/I: What is your favorite memory in your new home thus far?

JH: Our first Christmas in our new home is my favorite memory.  We are making new memories and starting new traditions. This Christmas we bought a real tree for the first time and it was a wonderful Christmas.

M/I: What is your favorite space in your new home?  Do you have any pictures of that space you would like to share?

JH: Our living room is our favorite gathering spot. It is where we all come together and relax.

M/I: What was something that surprised you the most with building / moving into a new home?

JH: Seeing everything from the ground up is a really neat experience. You have a whole different appreciation for your home. We also love being the original owners.

M/I: Any suggestions you would give to someone building a new home with M/I Homes?

JH: Go for it! We knew we wanted a third car garage and to convert a 1/2 bath into a full bath. Doing that on the front end is much more cost effective than doing it after. Make smart decisions that will add value to your home.  So often people pass up design options with the thought of “we will do it later”. You rarely get around to it – do it now!

 

**Johnna Hold is one of our wonderful homeowners in our Parkside at Mayfield Ranch community in Austin, Texas.  She has two children, William (12) and Anna (8) with her husband Will.  Will works in the Insurance Education and Johnna is a stay at home mom and home stager (can’t you tell from their beautiful decor?)

 

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