1. Housing Market Passes a Milestone

    According to the Wall Street Journal, the housing market has turned….at last!

    The U.S. finally has moved beyond attention-grabbing predictions from housing “experts” that housing is bottoming. The numbers are now convincing.

    “We finally saw some rising home prices,” S&P’s David Blitzer said a few weeks ago as he reported the first monthly increase in the slow-moving S&P/Case-Shiller house-price data after seven months of declines.

    “Nearly 10% more existing homes were sold in May than in the same month a year earlier, many purchased by investors who plan to rent them for now and sell them later, an important sign of an inflection point. The fraction of homes that are vacant is at its lowest level since 2006.”

    This is great news for our economy! For new homebuilders across the country this means we can now return to focusing on what we do best, building quality homes at fair prices for families who want to own their piece of the American dream.

    It also means many Americans can get back to work. The housing industry drives so many other important entities of employment. Construction workers and contracting crews, realtors and mortgage lenders, landscapers and pool builders are all affected by the housing market.

    At Neal Communities we have long understood that the housing market plays an integral role in the overall strength of our society. We also know that it is more than numbers on a spread sheet that dictate what is going on in the housing market. It’s smiles on children’s faces when they go to bed at night; it is a sense of comfort and security their parents feel knowing they are safe; and it is a sense of pride that comes only from home ownership.

    While the housing market may have been weak these past several years, there was never any doubt in our minds that it wouldn’t make a triumphant recovery. People need and want a place to call their own. We see that every day in the faces of our homeowners.

  2. Design Tip of the Month: Create a Color Board

    Are you tired of looking at the same dull white walls in your house? Are you feeling the need to ‘kick it up’ a little bit? Well, painting is the easiest and least expensive way to give your home an entirely new look! However, before you go crazy and start adding color to every room of the house, we suggest that you first create a color board.

    Creating a color board is a simple way to preview your colors to insure that they won’t clash with your furniture, rugs or other furnishings. It gives you a sneak preview to how your home will look when you are done.

    Here is how it works. Get a piece of poster board and start by grouping paint chips, fabric swatches, and photos of your furniture and accessories for each room to the board. Glue these items to your color board. If you lay out the entire house, you will be able see how the colors will flow from room to room. You can create color boards not only for paint options, but also furniture layout, fabric selections, window treatments, and area rugs. It will give you a snapshot of what the finished product will look like.

    Top interior designers use color boards all the time when working with clients. This allows them to present various options to their clients to determine what their preferences are in color, style and design.
    If you are doing an entire room makeover, you may want to use your entire board for that room. You can also include flooring selections (tile, wood, and carpet samples).

    For decorating inspiration and ideas, visit model homes! At Neal Communities every one of our model homes has been professionally decorated. No detail has been overlooked! From the flooring and fixtures to the furniture and paint colors, our team of professional and experienced designers has worked diligently to create the perfect home!

    Another great place to get ideas is pinterest.com. Pinterest lets you organize and share all the beautiful images you find on the internet. People use Pinboards to plan their weddings, decorate their homes, and organize their favorite recipes.

    And you can browse Pinboards created by other people. Browsing pinboards is a fun way to discover new things and get inspiration from other people who share your interests. Home decorating is one of the most popular uses for this innovative virtual Pinboard.