The Luxury Extras Luxury Home Builders Buy for Themselves

Posted by Amrock

The luxury extras that luxury construction company executives choose for their own homes reflect an insider’s perspective, writes the Wall Street Journal. The article reports that builders don’t have a problem splurging on high-end materials and house customizations, but aren’t as keen on the tech products many of their own customers demand.

Best features “invisible”

Drew Daniels, a luxury-home builder in the Chicago area, told the news outlet his $1.5 million home’s best features were invisible, such as a $120,000 radiant heating system and a $20,000 mood lighting system. The Daniels home’s most notable customization is a dog room with durable stone floors and a shower area for washing up muddy paws.

Arnold Karp, a builder in Connecticut, splurged on a $175,000 geothermal heating and cooling system for his $2.7 million home in Greenwich, Conn. Karp told the news outlet such features helped sell building clients who care about operating costs and the environment on working with him, even though a return on the investment from energy savings is far from guaranteed.

Builder’s homes function as showcases

The article notes that some of the reasons contractors splurge on their own home designs is that the property often serves as a test case for new technology as well as a showcase for prospective clients. However, the system is often give and take, with client experiences informing a contractor’s future personal projects.

“Everybody calls me two hours before the Super Bowl to tell me their fancy technology is not working,” Karp told the news outlet. A number of his clients had reportedly purchased a multi-device “smart home” automation system that was designed to be controlled via iPad. After numerous issues with such systems, Karp and Daniels avoided going with the same system for their own homes, opting for a simple wall-mounted model instead.

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