â€œItâ€™s the neighborhood you grew up in,â€ or as Rick Ahmann says, â€œitâ€™s the place you wish you had grown up.â€ Ahmann, a local real estate broker and partner Layton Sysum have worked for years to create a neighborhood with affordable housing as one of the key elements. And thatâ€™s just what they have done at Stone Meadows, a new community just north of Capital High off of Green Meadow Drive.
Some people call it Affordable Housing; others use the words Work-Force Housing. Whatever your definition is, the common theme is that the median family income in the market place can afford to buy it. It is with an eye towards affordability that the new community at Stone Meadows finds its way to the market.
The bungalow style homes here are reminiscent of the neighborhoods around Helenaâ€™s downtown areas. As one customer said, â€œItâ€™s a neighborhood focused on neighbors where every home has a front porch.â€ The current offerings of homes are priced from $154,900 to just over $200,000 and all include a detached 2 car garage as part of the price. â€œAffordable does not have to mean boringâ€ said Ahmann, â€œwe tell our customers weâ€™re building homes with character.â€ It shows in the plans being built here. The homes have interesting architectural details. While simple in design, each home definitely has a unique character. These are not your standard split-levels and faceless ranchers.
â€œThis neighborhood features sidewalks, boulevards and old-style street lightsâ€, says Sysum, â€œand the garages are located off of an alleyâ€. This is a design trend the neighborhood embraced by taking a page out of the past. Instead of homes that feature a garage as the most prominent design feature, these homes achieve a look and character of a bygone time and place. The sidewalk is more pedestrian friendly since it does not have curb-cuts leading to a â€œgarage with attached houseâ€. The community features City of Helena water and sewer, dedicated parkland and open spaces and is just a few minutes from downtown.
The builderâ€™s process is a straight-forward and simple 3-steps. Select your plan, Select your options and upgrades, and get your financing in place! â€œWe wanted to be sure we could get folks in a home and at the same time provide the opportunity to make it uniquely their ownâ€ said Sysum. The customer selects their floor plan from one of the 7 available plans ranging from single level homes to story and a half charmers. They then have the opportunity to select from a myriad of no-cost choices such as colors, finishes, cabinets, counter-tops, and light fixtures along with numerous upgrades from wood floors to air-conditioning. Once the customerâ€™s conventional, FHA or VA financing is in place, the builder is ready to construct the home with a delivery date scheduled just 90 days later.
Cottage Craft Homes has developed a website that features floor plans, exterior elevations, information about the community and much more. There is a special section on the new $8,000 First-Time Home Buyer Tax Credit along with information on how to take advantage of the tax credit this year. Cottage Craft Homes can be found on the web at www.MyCottageCraftHome.com