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  #16  
Old 04-03-2011, 06:56 PM
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I believe the answer to both questions is no. Definition of a track (actually tract) home is " area in which inexpensive and uniform houses are built", if you think this is what TV is, you haven't been here...gn
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  #17  
Old 04-03-2011, 07:27 PM
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Originally Posted by TrudyM View Post
As I understand it from you all. All homes in the villages are track homes little or no customization and the builder does not build custom homes were you can choose the appliances, funace, air, cabinets, etc. Not even the primier. Do I have this correct?

So if you want real custom you need to buy a preowned older home were the furnace air etc are ready to be replaced and get permission to alter as you like or buy in the historic (previous mobile home area of double wides) and tear down the trailer and build a custom. Have I got this right?
We built a designer model and had the following choices.

Flooring - carpet, wood, tile, vinyl. There were 3 wood choices, at least 12 tile choices.

Base molding - 2 sizes

Appliances - choose from several finishes and levels (basic GE vs GE Profile)

Lighting and plumbing fixtures - a dozen or more options

Interior and exterior paint - at least a dozen or more choices

Cabinets - more than a dozen to pick from

Countertops - laminate, solid surface & granite

Front door & garage door - at least a dozen or more to choose from

Last edited by tghoul; 04-04-2011 at 06:20 AM.
  #18  
Old 04-03-2011, 08:20 PM
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Originally Posted by golfnut View Post
I believe the answer to both questions is no. Definition of a track (actually tract) home is " area in which inexpensive and uniform houses are built", if you think this is what TV is, you haven't been here...gn
Glad you cleared that up for me. Had no idea what a track house was!

TV is not the place if you want to choose a lot, choose a builder etc. You may be able to do this with a teardown, but i can't imagine that could be cost effective.
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  #19  
Old 04-03-2011, 08:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TrudyM View Post
As I understand it from you all. All homes in the villages are track homes little or no customization and the builder does not build custom homes were you can choose the appliances, funace, air, cabinets, etc. Not even the primier. Do I have this correct?

So if you want real custom you need to buy a preowned older home were the furnace air etc are ready to be replaced and get permission to alter as you like or buy in the historic (previous mobile home area of double wides) and tear down the trailer and build a custom. Have I got this right?
You ask two similar questions asking if you have this right/correct based upon your understanding from "all of you". Is this also based upon, I assume, your two year membership on talk of the villages and your 305 post..
Regarding your two questions my answer to both is, NO you do not have it correct or right.
We are in the process of building a new home and we got quite a laugh with your line " track homes little or NO customizaton etc. etc. etc." good one.
good luck trudy
  #20  
Old 04-03-2011, 09:01 PM
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actually in the current environment, you can pick your lot and a whole miriad (sp?) of options, colors of interior and exterior, counters, floors and much more, or you can do what we did and buy one already built which has everything we could have ever thought of and then some, still lovin it after 6 years....gn
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  #21  
Old 04-04-2011, 07:42 AM
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NOT a tract home, by any stretch of imagination.

All of the above mentioned choices are given and some "kicks" I call them, extensions in areas of your home are allowed. Not everywhere but take them if you can, because it is relatively inexpensive in building to get more space.

What you can no longer do here is customize with colored carpet and unusual tile backsplashes or other unusual tile installations. (For instance in our home in Ohio, we have a large tile mural on the shower wall)

The reason, I am guessing, is that it is THEIR home until you close and YOUR creative choices may not be too marketable if you break the contract.

I am picky too, but I am very satisfied.
  #22  
Old 04-04-2011, 09:09 AM
Joe&Barbara Joe&Barbara is offline
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Default House Specifications

This may not help before you buy, but with the information perhaps you can get some answers from your salesman. If not get another salesman.

When you close you get a multi-page (yellow) spec sheet that gives almost everything you want to know. Paint color, part number for plumbing fixtures, HVAC specs, etc. You can also obtain from the builder, some of them leave them at the completed house, some you have to ask for. The drawing package, (9 pages I think), contains the plans from which the home is built. In my estimation it is priceless. includes, site layout, plumbing, electrical, structural, . . . . .

Hope this helps!!
  #23  
Old 04-07-2011, 09:38 PM
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Hello faithfulfrank,
Thanks for your comments on the "mystery specs" of The Villages.
The Villages will not give me in writing what specs. they will build the house to,
even though I have a deposit on a lot.
Of course one can know the model and make of the appliances, cabinents, flooring
etc. But they won't say if the concrete block is steel reinforced, the psi of the concrete slab, the R rating of the walls and ceiling etc. I know they have to build to Fl. State Code but some of the Fl. code is on the low side of energy efficiency.
It sounds like you are well acquainted with The Villages. I have spent several weeks there recently over two two trips. I have also visited the Plantation several times.
The Plantation is quite attractive, large enough to generate energy and a good selection of activities. The homes are priced considerably lower than The Villages, they own their own facilities and the total amenity fee is $85/p/month, with about a 2 million reserve. There are no CDDs, Bonds or other costs except about &400 p/year for fire service. The great majority of lots are bigger and offer more privacy. Golf is extra, but very reasonable.
However, The Villages seems to be even more energetic with more clubs and of course, their Town Centers are great. Golf in the Executive Courses is free, at least for now. Unfortunately, the amenities will be owned by the Morse corporation until 2040, at which time the Morse corporation will decide to sell them or keep them. (That info. is in the Covenents and Restrictions that all buyers must sign before purchasing a home in
The Villages) But one does pay premiums to live in The Villages and obviously huge numbers think it is well worth it.

What were the main reasons that you chose The Plantation over The Villages?

Glad to hear you are skilled enough to do most of your house upgrades.
And it sounds like Fl. will be at least your winter home.

Take Care and Keep on Smiling
stjames
  #24  
Old 04-07-2011, 10:58 PM
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  #25  
Old 04-08-2011, 06:50 AM
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Dear StJames,
You are correct in your post above. It sounds like you've done some good research.

In the many posts after it seems like from what others have said they do give you more info then first implied. Your questions about building specifics seem reasonable.....I would think they would be able to answer them. Could the solution be just to visit some other homes in The Villages that are in various stages of construction and see yourself? Could you perhaps speak to the workers actually doing a house and see for yourself? I did not remember if you were long distance or not, but perhaps a week long visit to get all of these answered would be worth it.

Perhaps making a list of all of your questions, posting them here might help. Your future neighbors may know the answers to your questions just by observing other homes being built.

I remember looking at homes in another 55+ community. The sales Rep took us through a model home. A few houses down, they were in the middle of another build. I told the sales rep, "Enough of the model...I need to see THAT one, as it will tell me much more" She thought I was weird.

I really do not know much at all about The Villages. I've only visited the squares. I've never been to a Villages home or any of its neighborhoods. I do know building construction, and am a licensed Home Inspector in the state of Florida.

So, you may ask, (as I'm sure others might also), "Why is this guy on The Villages forum?" Basically, I bought my Florida home 5 years ago, and miss it terribly every day I am not there. I've been stuck up in NY with it's high taxes, cold winters, etc. This forum is how I get my "Florida fix". Even as an "outsider" folks here have been kind to me, and I appreciate that. This year should be the year we sell up north and move here for good.

As to your question about picking The Plantation over The Villages....I work with a guy who bought in The Plantation. We visited, and I ended up buying the house across the street from him. It is the only spontaneous thing I've ever done in my life. When I bought I never even heard of The Villages.

I tell folks there are many nice 55+ communities. Hardly a bad one in the bunch. Like a rack of shoes, they all look good, but one will just "fit right". Check them out. The Villages is a one of a kind place that is doing something right, as almost 100k folks have found.

If you are long distance, perhaps you might want to hire someone who can be your eyes and ears, take daily pictures, etc.

Enjoy the build!

Respectfully, Frank
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  #26  
Old 04-08-2011, 07:11 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stjames View Post
Hello faithfulfrank,
Thanks for your comments on the "mystery specs" of The Villages.
The Villages will not give me in writing what specs. they will build the house to,
even though I have a deposit on a lot.
Of course one can know the model and make of the appliances, cabinents, flooring
etc. But they won't say if the concrete block is steel reinforced, the psi of the concrete slab, the R rating of the walls and ceiling etc. I know they have to build to Fl. State Code but some of the Fl. code is on the low side of energy efficiency.
It sounds like you are well acquainted with The Villages. I have spent several weeks there recently over two two trips. I have also visited the Plantation several times.
The Plantation is quite attractive, large enough to generate energy and a good selection of activities. The homes are priced considerably lower than The Villages, they own their own facilities and the total amenity fee is $85/p/month, with about a 2 million reserve. There are no CDDs, Bonds or other costs except about &400 p/year for fire service. The great majority of lots are bigger and offer more privacy. Golf is extra, but very reasonable.
However, The Villages seems to be even more energetic with more clubs and of course, their Town Centers are great. Golf in the Executive Courses is free, at least for now. Unfortunately, the amenities will be owned by the Morse corporation until 2040, at which time the Morse corporation will decide to sell them or keep them. (That info. is in the Covenents and Restrictions that all buyers must sign before purchasing a home in
The Villages) But one does pay premiums to live in The Villages and obviously huge numbers think it is well worth it.

What were the main reasons that you chose The Plantation over The Villages?

Glad to hear you are skilled enough to do most of your house upgrades.
And it sounds like Fl. will be at least your winter home.

Take Care and Keep on Smiling
stjames
I had the same reservations about the quality of homes here when we were considering buying a home more than three years ago. I was really quite offensive to a lot of veteran posters with my sceptical remarks about the place, the homes, the developer, (YES, ME) and just about everything. I could NOT understand why people really got on me and bashed my ears on this forum when I thought I was just asking realistic questions. I thought this whole danged place was just a little too good to be true.

Now I find myself just as defensive as the posters who were annoyed at me.

The homes here won't have a lot of the things that many of us left up north.
There will be no pretty stair cases, no basements, no soaring ceilings, not much architectural interest or diversity even in the expensive Premiers.

You can get more house for your money outside of The Villages and there are REAL bargains everywhere in Florida now, just as there are almost everywhere.

That said, I think that the homes are fine, and I really have not seen any shoddy building practices. They really have the process perfected.The heating and cooling bills are quite good I think, and I have no complaints about the new house we bought three years ago.

It isn't the HOUSE, although they are fine, it is this wonderful community and what it has to offer that makes the Villages so attractive. You mentioned that in 2040 things are up for change. Believe me, in 2040, I doubt I will be playing pickleball.

We are so glad we bought our first house here three years ago. Now we are attempting to sell our home in Ohio, and our home in Hadley and buy a little bigger home and live here year 'round. We have built several homes in our lifetime, so we are certainly not novices at the practice. Just my two cents.
  #27  
Old 04-08-2011, 07:25 AM
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It is a matter of supply and demand. If the demand is high you can do what you want to do and your products sell. To offer options becomes more costly to administer and it becomes a business decision. I am sure the developer is aware that his business can not please 100 percent of people's request but as long as his development is selling so well there is no pressure to change. It becomes a take it or leave it with the options I offer. It is not a truly custom choice but a choice with many options that the developer offers. This is very similar to buying a million dollar Toll home in the northeast. The specs are basic standards that are met no more no less. I was told by a developer that informant people who need to know them are not worth selling to because they cause more problems than they are worth. These are the customers you want to drive to your competition to drive their costs up. This is just one opinion, neither right or wrong.
  #28  
Old 04-08-2011, 07:37 AM
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A follow-on to scroll's post: In our somewhat limited time (proportional to those of you who have been in/around TV for many many years) of being involved in what TV is all about, we've noticed the numerous changes that have been made over time to virtually ALL of the homes the developer puts up. And it seems like they're very interested in hearing your feedback - we get asked by the sales folks for our feedback when we wander through some of the open houses, though that could also be perceived as just a "conversation starter" on the part of the sales person. The floor plans, options, etc. seem to be constantly evolving - - - for the better. Even with our 4 year old Patio Villa, we see a few changes now being incorporated into the newer versions that are nice.

Granted, TV's not cranking out 100% custom homes. But I do believe they're listening to what the market is looking for.

Bill
  #29  
Old 04-08-2011, 09:39 AM
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Bsed on our experience of living in The Villages for 5 yeras
there are a numbers of unanswered quetsions. The Reason being they do not have to answer them. Bets of Luck.
  #30  
Old 04-08-2011, 11:01 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jflynn1 View Post
Bsed on our experience of living in The Villages for 5 yeras
there are a numbers of unanswered quetsions. The Reason being they do not have to answer them. Bets of Luck.
Could you tell us more of what you are thinking?
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