If you’re spending the time and money to custom-build a home, opting for high-quality building materials and high end appliances is almost always a good choice. At best, outfitting your home with economy appliances undermines its value. At worst, scrimping on materials may result in expensive structural damage. Investing in top materials and appliances will lower your stress and safeguard your biggest investment—your home.
First, let’s talk premium construction materials.
Remember back to when you bought that top quality mattress, engineered to be the perfect mix of support and plushness, to allow amazing air-flow, and to perfectly distribute body weight to ensure a better night’s sleep. The price tag made you grimace a little, didn’t it?
But in the end, that mattress was worth every penny. You started sleeping more soundly. You woke up rested and alert. You even started exercising, because you had so much energy. That mattress reduced your stress and changed your life.
Premium building materials have a similar value. They ensure that your home is long-lasting, that you don’t have to constantly worry about the logistics and expense of repairs. They make living in your home more about enjoying your home than maintaining it. Cheap products will need to be replaced sooner than custom grade materials. In the long run, this means low quality materials are actually more expensive than the high quality materials—and that’s just in terms of hard costs. (Don’t underestimate the mental toll of unexpected home repairs.)
You will be relying heavily on your builder and architect to advise you on the best materials.
The longer they have been in business, the more experience they will have with how materials wear over time. You can’t always tell how a door, window, floor, siding, cabinet, appliance, roofing (and on and on) will work out until you’ve seen it in use for a decade. This is why their experience is so important.
A high-end builder isn’t going to use poor-quality products, because they know that cheap materials are a short-term solution. Bluestone offers a 3 year warranty, which demonstrates that we are as invested as you are in building a home that lasts.
Let’s talk high-end appliances.
Luxury appliances look better.
Clearly you care about design. That’s why you’re hiring an architect to draft your plans and a quality contractor to execute them. In addition to being extremely functional, luxury appliances are objects of art. They have sleek, thoughtful designs that privilege aesthetics alongside utility. Often high-end appliances come in more finishes and styles, so they will be a better match with your over-all theme and decor.
Luxury appliances work better.
High-end appliances are based on superior engineering and built from better materials than regular appliances. This means they work better and last longer. (In many cases, they last a lifetime. They may even come with a lifetime guarantee.)
Not only does this mean you are less likely to have to scramble to replace a major appliance at an inconvenient time, it means you’ll get more result for less effort. Sub-zero fridges keep your food fresher. High quality dishwashers run more quietly and clean more thoroughly. High-end ovens preheat quicker and cook faster. A nicer range helps you avoid burning food, by producing more even heat. Luxury appliances come with one-touch and automated options, so may be able to easily set your washing machine to prevent color-bleeding, schedule your coffee maker to grind beans and brew your espresso, or program your oven to cut off at a particular time.
Luxury appliances are more fun to use.
You use appliances everyday, so they should definitely be fun. A nicer dishwasher may have flexible racks, while high-end cooking equipment may allow you to experiment with new methods and dishes.
If you love cooking, there is no reason you shouldn’t have the very best.
When you find something you love, you’ll want to cultivate your passion with the best equipment and tools. Professional levels of achievement require professional tools. If you’re really into pancakes, quesadillas and seared everything, springing for a top-of-the-line range with a built-in griddle will likely be a decision you will be grateful you’ve made when you experience the improvement in your quality of life.
High-end appliances are more efficient.
The added efficiency of high-end appliances is often so much greater that you may save money in the long run. A premium dishwasher only uses about half the water of a standard dishwasher, while cooking in an oven with a convection setting uses less energy. Energy-efficient washers and dryers may use about 50 percent less energy than standard washer and dryers. Similarly, a refrigerator with an Energy Star rating uses about half the energy of a traditional fridge.
Luxury appliances are smarter.
You may be able to operate luxury appliances by smartphone, via wifi. This means if you forgot to turn your AC up before leaving the house, you can do it from work—and save money your electric bill. Smart dryers will send you a text alert when your clothes are ready, so you can get them out before they wrinkle. Smart home security systems allow you to monitor security cams and collect other data about your home from afar, and some refrigerators even allow you to see inside your fridge remotely, so if you forgot to make a grocery list, no problem…just pull your fridge up on your phone and see what you need.
How to decide where to invest in quality.
Of course these are very personal decisions and not every splurge will give an equal return on investment with regard to quality of life. So how do you decide where to put extra money?
- Ask friends who have similar taste and hobbies.
- Book luxury homes at Luxuryhome.com to test kitchens, pools, hot tubs, deckings, etc. and take notes.
- Read our post Why a European Vacation and Pinterest is the key to your Forever Home.
- Research online
Researching product information and reviewing testimonials for products has never been easier than it is now. For example, while a consumer-grade stove-top burner may offer around 7,000 BTUs (a measure of heat), a luxury range burner will offer 15,000-25,000 BTUs. This means your water boils faster and your meat crisps perfectly. A luxury stove-top may also offer built-in ventilation without a hood, while a luxury oven may have a convection setting for more consistent cooking and beautiful browning.
The best part about custom building is that you are designing for the life you want—the next level of you. Doing your research helps you find out exactly what that life feels like.
Seek the advice of your builder.
There are no small decisions, when you’re custom-building a structure that should still be around a century from now. At Bluestone, we’re happy to offer our frankest opinion on all of these important decisions, because we believe in quality at every step of the process. And we believe in doing the work right the first time, so you don’t have to redo the same work every few years. The devil is in the details, and as you can see from our portfolio, we’re incredibly detailed-oriented. If you’re thinking of building a custom-home in the Asheville area, we’d love to guide your journey!