2015 Showcase of Homes

2015 Showcase of Homes

Homes: 2015 Showcase of Homes

2015 Showcase of Homes

2015 Showcase of Homes

The planning for this year’s Home Builders Association of East Central Illinois (HBAECI) Showcase of Homes started right after last year’s Showcase ended.

Story: Bridget Broihahn

The planning for this year’s Home Builders Association of East Central Illinois (HBAECI) Showcase of Homes started right after last year’s Showcase ended.

“When we shut down the lights, we met and shared the plusses and minuses,” Terry Greene, Executive Officer, HBAECI said.

The formal planning, however, started last December.  The committee wanted to make sure things were well underway.  Last year’s Showcase was the first after a long five-year hiatus.
The event was very successful, too.  This year’s Showcase of Homes stands to be another first, as well, but for another reason.

“This year we are adding the first ever Showcase Home Expo,” Natalie Gross said.

The Showcase of Homes will take place at The Trails at Abbey Fields, Champaign, from June 19 – 28 on weeknights from 4 to 8 p.m. and weekends from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.  The Showcase Home Expo will run June 19 from 4 to 8 p.m. and both June 20 and 21 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Gross is real estate broker for Keller Williams.  She is also the Showcase of Homes Event Committee Chair. The committee began looking for a good place to have an expo in the spring, but there were no decent places to have it.  Instead they decided to run the Expo right next to the Showcase this year.

“The Expo is going to be an opportunity for people to see a lot of new and different products-an opportunity to meet professionals in the trade,” Greene said. Gross agreed that the Expo will have a lot of new local vendors.

“It is a Home Show, not any other items, like crafts, or the guy who makes handmade furniture,” Gross said. The Showcase Home Expo will be held in a 60 by 220 feet tent adjacent to the Showcase of Homes.

Greene said that the HBAECI staff and volunteers are dedicated to providing a first class experience for all exhibitors and attendees.  The HBAECI is devoting more than $25,000 in a Showcase of Homes and Expo marketing and advertising campaign, including newspaper, television, radio and social media.

Greene said the events will have easy access.

“The infrastructure is there,” he said. “There are 55 lots in The Trails of Abbey Fields.  Six of those lots will be in the Showcase.”

Greene said the tract of land was originally developed by Hallbeck Development, Champaign. “Essentially, the homes have all the upgrades,” he said. Gross said that people will be able to vote for their favorite home.  A People’s Choice Award will be awarded to the most popular home. “In regards to the houses, we have added value. It’s the builders’ way to show off their skill and what they can do,” she said.

The builders are: Signature Homes, Armstrong Construction, Rave Homes, Ironwood Homes, Miller Construction and Premier Homes of Illinois.

“I would like to say that all of our builders have their own unique style,” Green said.

Gross agreed that the builders have their own aesthetic. One of the popular pieces of new construction is the finished basements, according to Green.“Yes, we had the battle of the basements last year,” Gross said.

Across town, Chris Miller of Miller Construction said he is looking forward to the Showcase of Homes and Showcase Home Expo. He is featuring The Rushmore-a 4,760 square feet home that has five bedrooms, four bathrooms, finished basement, office right off of the kitchen and a drop zone.

“A drop zone is an 8 feet wide cubby that has a charging station for all of the family’s electronic devices,” Miller said. “In the basement is a theater and bar.” The home has high end trim, Metrie Fashion Forward doors, French doors, a huge loft on the second floor, shelving built into all closets, granite kitchen, all hardwood floors and the list goes on, according to Miller.

“The hardwoods have multi-width different plank sizes.  It looks really nice,” he said.

Carrie Brown, the designer at Miller Construction said she is also looking forward to The Showcase of Homes adding a broader customer base for Miller Construction.  “Most builders say that customers need to go here or go there for their flooring or lighting. We have it all here in our Design Center, and we can lay it all out right in front of the customer’s eyes,” she said.

Green said that the Showcase should have upwards to 10,000 visitors at this year’s events.

“We have a good committee of 12 people who bring many talents to the table.  Our builders show a lot of pride and are very impressive,” he said.

For more information go to: www.hbaeci.com