Transactions: Builders show their best in Parade of Homes
It’s that time of year. Anglers head to the boat shows. Gardeners study seed catalogs. And people planning to buy new homes, fix up the ones they have — or just dream a little —start planning which models to tour in the Spring Parade of Homes, sponsored by Roseville-based BATC Housing First Minnesota.
From noon to 6 p.m. Saturday, the doors will open to 472 new homes across the Twin Cities, central Minnesota and western Wisconsin. They’ll remain open from noon to 6 p.m. Sunday, and Thursday through Sunday through March 31. The final weekend also will include the Remodelers Showcase, devoted to 59 remodeling projects.
What are Parade visitors going to see?
Katie Elfstrom, communications director for BATC, highlighted some of the strongest trends:
- Mountain Modern, or as it’s known here, Minnesota Modern, continues to grow in popularity. The trend softens the stark lines of urban contemporary design with stone, new and reclaimed wood and other natural materials and colors.
- Technology has gone from novelty to necessity, with integrated systems designed to provide seamless coordination of everything from home security and energy use to entertainment.
- White remains strong, but dramatic colors and patterns are popping up in backsplashes, flooring, wallpaper and cabinets.
- Parade builders are responding to demands from empty nesters, with 80 ramblers, villas and townhomes featuring one-level living.
This year, Wisconsin takes the spotlight with both the most expensive and most affordable entries.
Oevering Homes LLC in New Richmond nailed down the title of most affordable entry with a two-bedroom, one-bath model at 1724 Morning Glory Drive in River Falls, priced at $210,000.
Myke LaVenture, executive vice president of sales and marketing for Oevering, says the key factor in meeting the target price is being in Wisconsin. LaVenture was born and raised in Woodbury, but when it came time to buy a home, he planted his Minnesota Vikings flag in Packer country.
“The house I was going to build for $490,000 in Woodbury, I built in Wisconsin for $270,000 — on three acres,” he said.
Oevering builds about 110 homes a year, and holding the line on costs is a challenge at all price points, LaVenture said. Oevering has trimmed its options from 80 floor plans to 37, organized in three divisions based on price. A typical home in its top line is a five-bedroom, five-bath, 6,800-square-foot design in Hudson, priced at $705,000.
The strategy is to bring in first-time buyers and keep them as they can afford to move up.
Buyers who aren’t worried about costs also are heading east.
“The west side has Lake Minnetonka we have the St.Croix River,” said Jeff Warren of Hudson-based Divine Custom Homes. He and partner Tami Sherman took the top spot in the Parade with a $3.75 million home at 1826 River Ridge Road in Hudson.
Warren and Sherman have spent 16 years building custom homes in the east metro and western Wisconsin. The biggest difference in Wisconsin is that there are no luxury developments or historic estates along the St. Croix. Buyers usually find raw land, cabins or small homes and hire builders to create their dream homes.
For example, the top home is custom design for a doctor who moved from Woodbury to be on the river. The site, part of an old railroad bed, hugs the bluffs, and massive windows take advantage of the panoramic views.
Mountain Modern is showing up across the market. Brothers and partners Ryan and Chad Hanson of Minneapolis-based Sustainable 9 Design + Build, are making their biggest commitment to luxury contemporary design this spring with a $1.35 million model for their new Peninsula at Lake O’Dowd development, a 14-lot contemporary community along Lake O’Dowd in Shakopee. Their model was chosen as one of four Dream Homes in the Parade.
The model isn’t open until Friday, but photos and a video of the property already are getting attention.
“The images have been shared thousands of times,” Hanson said.
One thing that’s not new is snow before and during the Parade, said Elfstrom.
“The builders have adapted to crazy weather,” she said.
Visitors can check out all the homes in the guide book, which is available at Holiday StationStores or online at the Spring Parade of Homes.
Sponsored by BATC-Housing First Minnesota
Noon to 6 p.m., Thursdays through Sundays
March 2-31, 472 new homes
March 29-31, Remodelers Weekend, 59 renovated homes
You can visit Parade homes for free. There are four Dream Homes you can tour for one $5 ticket, with proceeds going to the BATC-Housing First Minnesota Foundation, which builds and remodels homes for families in need.
The Parade of Homes, by the numbers:
- There are 472 Parade homes throughout the Twin Cities, greater Minnesota and western Wisconsin.
- The lowest priced home costs $210,000. Oevering Homes LLC built the two-bedroom, one-bath model in River Falls, Wisconsin. It’s No. 367.
- Wisconsin also is home to the most expensive home, at $3.57 million. Divine Custom Homes built the 8,270-square-foot home in Hudson. Look for No. 364
- The total value of all homes on the tour is $287,063,721, with 45 priced above $1 million and 19 priced at or below $300,000.
- Lakeville leads participation with 36 entries, followed by Woodbury with 30, Plymouth with 29 and Lake Elmo with 27. Edina has four entries, Brooklyn Park has three and Minneapolis two. If you want a road trip, there are entries in Faribault, Watertown and Sartell.