Kitchen Renovations: Where to Splurge

A well-designed kitchen can make an entire house feel more luxurious. The heart of the home, the kitchen is where families and friends gather to prepare food, discuss their days, enjoy meals, and unwind with a drink.

The Horton Group knows how important the kitchen is to most people, which is why we incorporate the best quality and design into the homes we build. For the luxury condominium units at The Residences at 66 High Street, we called on Bender to design the kitchen cabinetry with designer Daryl Zorn.

Bender has six Connecticut locations, with national recognition for their award-winning showrooms. For the model units of the Whitfield and Leete buildings, Zorn worked closely with our interior designer and Nicole White from One + Company Real Estate, the listing company for 66 High Street, to make selections.

“The rest were custom units where I worked directly with the buyers and got a feel of the styling they liked. The styles range from traditional to somewhat farmhouse with distressed cabinets to transitional,” Zorn said.

Kitchens continue to be the most desired room to renovate. The average kitchen renovation costs over $20,000, according to Home Advisor, and can easily go much higher. Because Bender focuses on function, budget, and innovative design, we reached out to them to determine which items are worth the splurge in the kitchen.

1. Cabinet Box Construction

A quality-built cabinet is essential for new kitchens. Pay attention to both the material of the cabinet box and the way it is built. Some manufacturers claim all plywood construction, but with poor assembly. Paying more for the build of the cabinets will go a long way in your kitchen.

2. Qualified Contractor or Installer

Spending money on the quality of the cabinets will go to waste if not installed correctly, and it is not the best time to try out your DIY skills. Find a contractor or installer who is an expert with cabinetry. They know what screws to use, how to level cabinetry, and how to adjust drawers and hinges. A quality installation job will last a lifetime and makes it easier for other contractors in your kitchen, including plumbers, electricians, and countertop installers.

3. Appliances

High-quality appliances not only add to the design of your kitchen but, more importantly, better your cooking experience and the food you eat. With advanced technology, high-end appliances give you more control over how you cook and make cleanup easier.

4. Cabinet Hardware

Hardware allows for endless customization options in the kitchen. Mixed metals, including brushed brass, chrome, and matte black, are trending in kitchen designs. Bender recommends choosing two or three metals that complement each other and play off of one another in cabinet hardware, light fixtures, and faucets. The “jewelry” of the kitchen, cabinet knobs and pulls can make the difference between a nice kitchen and a fabulous kitchen.

No matter what you decide to spend your budget on in the kitchen, you cannot go wrong with quality products installed by a professional.

Should associations allow dogs?

Dogs are great companions, but should they be allowed in condominium communities? We’re taking a look at both sides of the question below.

Yes, dogs should be allowed.

Dogs can be integral parts of any family. Fun-loving and compassionate dogs can positively contribute to life within a condominium community, especially if many of the residents have dogs. Neighbors at The Residences at 66 High Street often gather to walk their dogs together. Some pet-friendly associations do more than others by incorporating dogs parks or pet washing stations on the grounds. Based on data from the American Veterinary Medical Association, 36% of households own dogs. For this reason, allowing dogs can significantly increase the buyer pool.

No, dogs should not be allowed.

There are liability issues that associations face when dogs are allowed. Almost a third of all homeowner’s insurance claims are due to dog bites, which is why associations must generate rules if they decide to allow pets. In addition, if not properly cared for and cleaned up after, dogs could be a headache for members of a condominium association. Without adequate training, any dog, large or small, can be disruptive and unruly.

If an association does allow dogs, there will be guidelines that must be followed. Pets are required to be registered, and when out of the residence, dogs need to be on a leash and promptly cleaned up after by owners. If you are looking to buy in a pet-friendly community, ask the following questions:

  • Is there a weight limit?
  • Are there breed restrictions?
  • Are there restrictions on how many pets you can have?
  • What rules are in place for pet owners and their pets?

Are pets allowed in your community? If so, what restrictions are in place?

Leete Condo sells at the Highest Price Per Square Foot in New Haven County

With sweeping views of the salt marsh and Long Island Sound, the stately Leete is one of the newly constructed buildings in the luxury development at the Residences at 66 High Street. While this award-winning development continues to grow, The Horton Group remains dedicated to providing residents with luxurious amenities and masterful craftsmanship in the heart of historic Guilford.

Two closings in the Leete building took place in the past month, including Unit 39, which became the highest price per square foot in New Haven County this year when it sold for $1,985,275. With more units under contract, we can’t help but reflect on the history, work, and community that has made this possible.

The History

The Horton Group took on the development of the Residences at 66 High Street, beginning with the transformation of the historic Mill building. Originally built in 1884, the building served many purposes, including a factory in World War II era. During this time, women were employed to assemble ball bearings for military vehicles, while the rear portion of the building doubled as a school for the children of factory workers. When renovating the building into 15 luxury condominiums, many original features were left intact, with units showcasing antique brick, steel, and exposed beams, paired with high-end finishes and modern day amenities.

The three new buildings on site, including the Leete, feature Type II-B construction with reinforced concrete and steel, which is high above the standard for new construction in the area. Each unit is thoughtfully laid out and designed to capture the most breathtaking views on the Connecticut shoreline.

The Work

As each year passes, the Residences at 66 High Street continue to showcase some of our best work. The development has received Home Building Industry Awards, or HOBIs, every year since 2016, including Project of the Year, Best Condominium Community, Best Historic Rehab, and Best Luxury Townhouse. As each new building goes up, we continue to pay attention to every detail, choose top quality products, and work with the best industry professionals. This work has allowed us to build a development we are proud of.

The Community

While the accolades are a perk, the community at 66 High Street is why we really love this work. Walking distance to shops, restaurants, and the Green, it is easy to enjoy all that downtown Guilford has to offer. Residents often gather together to walk their dogs, complete a workout in the fitness room, or enjoy an evening sharing laughs over a meal. When we first started this project, we envisioned a neighborhood feel, but never expected such a strong and welcoming community.

The community, combined with Guilford’s rich history and the quality work put into every unit, allows us to continue to create and sell luxury homes on the Connecticut shoreline. We are honored to have our work recognized, both by the Home Builders & Remodelers Association of Connecticut and by the people who chose to call 66 High Street home.

The recent closings and the units under contract, exclusively listed with One + Company at William Raveis Real Estate, speak to the work we have put in, and we are excited to watch as this community continues to grow.

Car Charging Stations at 66 High Street

Tesla has experienced massive growth in the past six years. The plug-in electric car models allow people to charge their cars rather than fill up at a gas station. Not only are these luxury cars cheaper to run, but they are also better for the environment.

With the increase in sales, more charging stations are being opened throughout the country. People need to be able to charge their cars, and charging stations at home or work are the most convenient option, as it can take between 1 and 12 hours to charge, depending on the charger (Supercharger Stations the fastest option, though not available for home use). Being able to get home, plug in your car, and charge overnight is most convenient for Tesla cars.

Connecticut is one of the states where Tesla has installation services, making it possible for residents at 66 High Street to have home chargers installed through Tesla or an independent electrician. The quickest home charging option is the Tesla Wall Connector, although owners can also use the Mobile Connector included when purchasing a new model.

In a multi-unit dwelling, Tesla owners need to speak with either the board, manager, or owner of the complex before installation. Tesla provides a template letter if you need approval to install a charging station. At 66 High Street, some of our residents already have charging installed in the underground parking garage.

As more charging stations appear in New England, Tesla automobiles are becoming an option for more people every day. The Horton Group strives to make the communities we work with both luxurious and sustainable, and are available to help residents who own a Tesla set up a home charging station.

What is Radiant Heat?

Stepping out of a relaxing hot shower or bath onto a cold tile floor can send chills up anybody’s spine. Imagine, instead, of stepping onto heated tile that keeps your feet and toes warm and comfortable. With radiant heated floors, this is possible.

Radiant heating systems lie under tile or stone, allowing heat to be directly supplied to the floor you walk on. This is the ultimate way to give your bathroom a spa-like feel. In our luxury condo units at 66 High Street, every bathroom has radiant heat under tile from Tile America.

There are three types of radiant heat systems: hydronic-based, forced air, and electric radiant heating. Hydronic based is the most popular and efficient and works by carrying hot water through tubes installed under floors. One nice feature about radiant heat is that it can be installed in a portion of a room, for instance, just in front of the bathroom vanity.

Although radiant heat can be pricey to install, the benefits may outweigh the cost. Benefits include:

Evenly Distributed Heat

With radiant floors, heat is more evenly distributed throughout the room. With typical forced hot air, the heat quickly rises, leaving the bottom of the room and floors cold. With radiant heated floors, the heat begins at the ground and naturally rises to heat the rest of the room, which keeps your feet and toes warm.

No Noise

Radiant heat is completely silent. No sounds are coming from the radiator or forced air vents. You feel the warmth, without hearing the heating system.

You Can Install in a Portion of the Room

You can choose to install radiant heat in an entire room or just a portion with a pre-sized heating mat. If you want heated floors when you step out of the shower, you can opt for a rectangular space of radiant heat right in that spot. You could choose a different tile to highlight this heated area for a visual cue. This will also allow you to repair without ripping up the entire floor, since the heating system is permanently under the flooring.

Radiant heat adds a luxurious feel to any space. With options for installation and pre-selected sizes, it becomes an affordable addition.

What room do you want to install radiant heated floors in? Let us know in the comments!

How Secure is a Multi-Home Building?

Despite the advantages of moving into a multi-home community, it is natural for residents to have concerns about security. With a steady flow of residents, visitors, workers, or mail and delivery services in close proximity to your home and belongings, it is important to be sure you and your belongings are safe.

In condominiums and apartment buildings, there are various ways to ensure a true sense of security. As listed on the Peace of Mind Technologies (POM) website, these might include:

  • Establishing a cooperative culture of security: All residents should establish clear expectations regarding security measures and take responsibility for the health and safety of the entire residential community. Cooperation is key.
  • Landscaping: Carefully manicured landscapes and green space help signal to visitors that the property is cared for and monitored.
  • Access control: POM suggests that key cards, rather than keys, are a great security measure as they can digitally log entry and exit into a given building.
  • Remote monitoring and remote access for deliveries: Security personnel can manage the flow of vendors or package deliveries and grant them access to a designated room for deliveries. Separating delivery traffic from residential traffic improves overall security.
  • Motion detectors: Similar to security measures like cameras and lights, motion detectors can be monitored remotely and sense intruders.

Our ongoing luxury condominium project – The Residences at 66 High Street – has adopted similar methods for enhancing security.

For one, current and future residents at High Street make up an unbelievably caring and trustworthy community. The landscaping is also constantly maintained. As far as the building is concerned, there are cameras throughout the buildings to monitor all points of entry. In order to enter the building, residents are given a unit-specific code to enter on a keypad. Additionally, each residence comes equipped with cameras in the foyer and security systems.

The opportunity to live at The Residence at 66 High Street and be within walking distance of historic downtown Guilford and the train station is one to be enjoyed. As it is our job to ensure this enjoyment, we want to do all we can to give residents peace of mind and make them feel safe in and away from home.

 

What makes the Nest Thermostat stand out?

We think a home should be comfortable and cozy. The right temperature sets the tone for this. Smart thermostats keep your home at your ideal temperature, without taking away from the aesthetic of your space.

In 2010, after assuming significant roles in the design and development of the iPod, Tony Fadell and Matt Rogers founded Nest Labs. With the company’s founders experienced in revolutionizing one industry, Nest Labs sought similar success with the release of their first product – the Nest Thermostat.

Aesthetically, the minimalist, circular design makes the thermostat handsome and sleek. Yet the product’s true beauty lies in Nest’s innovation and obvious care for its consumers. The smart technology within each unit establishes Nest as a clear industry leader.

The Nest Thermostat is programmed to adapt to consumers’ schedules, adjusting temperatures accordingly to provide optimal living conditions. The thermostat can easily be controlled by the Nest mobile app if on vacation or away from home. By investing in innovation and adaptive smart technology, buildings can achieve far greater energy efficiency and lower energy costs. According to Nest’s website, the estimated average annual savings falls between $131 and $145.

At Horton Group, we are steadfast in our commitment to energy efficiency, as our mission is to provide high quality and sustainable space to prospective buyers and tenants. Nest thermostats are included in every unit at our current luxury residential development, The Residences at 66 High Street. Similar to Nest thermostats, behind the aesthetic appeal of our projects, innovative systems are in place to ensure a comfortable, cost-efficient and sustainable way of life.

To learn more about the Nest Thermostat, click here.

 

2018 HOBI Awards

The 2018 HOBI Awards Dinner at the Aqua Turf Club was full of laughs, celebration, and a welcomed chance for us to connect with others in the Home Building Industry.

The Horton Group is honored to receive four new HOBI Awards, bringing the total up to 11 in three years.

Horton Group’s 2018 HOBI Awards:

  • BEST CONDOMINIUM COMMUNITY for The Residences at 66 High Street
  • BEST CONDOMINIUM UNIT for The Residences at 66 High Street
  • OUTSTANDING NEW HAVEN COUNTY NEW COMMERCIAL for 350 Goose Lane
  • OUTSTANDING VACATION REMODEL for 21 Palms, Marathon, FL

We are proud of all our work at The Horton Group, and are thrilled that these three projects have been recognized by the Home Builders & Remodelers Association of Connecticut.  

The Residences at 66 High Street

Residences at 66 High StreetThe Residences at 66 High Street is a luxury condominium community in Guilford, CT. Each unique residence features an open floor plan highlighted by high ceilings, a gourmet kitchen, finely appointed baths, and high-end finishes. Not only does this development provide an unparalleled level of opulence and sophistication, residents love the sense of community and inclusiveness at 66 High Street.

350 Goose Lane Office Park

350 Goose Lane Office Park combines the renovation of a 4,200 square foot post and beam building, two new buildings, and ample green space. Former home to Wilber & King Nursery, The Horton Group preserved the beautiful landscaping and pond for a commercial space with incredible benefits.

21 Palms

21 PalmsLocated in Marathon, a city set on 13 islands in the Florida Keys, is 21 Palms. After Hurricane Irma in 2017, The Horton Group had an unexpected rebuild to complete – one that made the beachfront vacation home even more pristine. 21 Palms is equipped with everything you want while on vacation, including luxurious amenities, a pool, boat dock, and epic ocean views.

We are so grateful to do this work. And to be recognized with HOBI Awards? That lets us know we are doing it right.

What’s it like living at 66 High Street?

Kathy Moniello, a resident at The Residences at 66 High Street, shares her experience of living in one of the luxury condominiums in Guilford. 

After selling an oceanfront home in Westbrook, Kathy moved to High Street in December 2017. “Because I was leaving something so beautiful, I knew I couldn’t settle,” she said. The Residences at 66 High Street have not disappointed.

“Everytime I pull in and see the beautiful grounds and walk to my unit, I feel joy and pride in ownership.” 

From the high-end units, to the friendly and supportive residents, to the helpful team at The Horton Group, Kathy has settled in to a new life in Guilford.

The high-end look and feel of 66 High Street, including the property, amenities, and individual units, is something Kathy appreciates. Within her unit, she loves the top of the line appliances, ample storage, and ability to customize to her needs and style. With the fitness room being completed, residents are bringing in a personal trainer for group classes a few times a week. Kathy is also looking forward to the proposed pool.

It’s easy to be captivated by a luxurious unit, but when paired with incredible neighbors, that unit becomes home. “I don’t know how we have attracted so many wonderful people,” says Kathy. The residents help each other out, spend time with each other, and have created a strong bond. “Last week,” she says, “we were all out with our dogs, then before you know it everyone went to get a bottle of wine. Someone got the pizza they were making, and we were all over at my unit having a little party.”

The Horton Group has spared no expense building the Residences at 66 High Street.

“They have been amazing throughout the entire process,” Kathy explained. “Whether it is Earl, Kenny, or Jason, they want the very best outcome.”

Kathy’s unit was completely finished when she bought it, but she wanted to make some changes, including switching to a stackable washer dryer and installing a central vac system. “This can be difficult to do post construction, but instead of saying, ‘It can’t be done,’ Jason came in, looked at what I wanted and said, ‘This is how we can make it happen.’”

By paying attention to every detail during the development, building, and marketing of 66 High Street, The Horton Group built more than luxury condominiums. They built an unparalleled community. And it was just what Kathy was searching for.

 

Interested in the Residences at 66 High Street? Schedule a showing today.

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