Category Archives: New Home Design

Smart Technology in Your Custom Home

Pittsburgh custom homesOne of the most frequent requests we get from our custom home clients is how to incorporate smart home technology into their home building project. As Google, Amazon, and other companies refine and add to their voice activated smart home systems, other companies continue to develop new products to make daily living more convenient.

Here are some considerations when planning smart home features from the ground up. Continue reading

Mudroom Must-Haves

Spring has arrived, and whether that means rain or more snow (will winter ever end?), there will be mud. Mudrooms have their roots in rural living, back when country roads weren’t paved and everyone — not just farmers — came home dragging dirt on their heels. At the time, a mudroom was a simple, small vestibule area off of the kitchen. Around the 1980s, home designers gave new life and prominence to the mudroom as a much larger and organized space between the kitchen and attached garage.

Your family’s lifestyle plays the biggest role in deciding if you should include a mudroom in your new home and how big it should be. Do you have a dog or two? Love camping, gardening and other outdoor activities? Do you have kids involved in multiple sports that require a lot of bulky (and possibly muddy) equipment? Then a mudroom is just the thing to keep clutter and dirt from spilling into your living spaces. Continue reading

Soaker Tubs Still in Style

Pittsburgh custom home builderIt used to be that everyone’s dream bathroom featured a jacuzzi tub of some sort, either a traditional rectangular built-in or a larger size tub as a focal point in the master bath.

Homeowners in recent years have moved away from bathtubs altogether in the master suite, opting instead for large, walk-in showers featuring steam, hydro massage, and other features. Spa-like showers aren’t going away any time soon in home design, but building new and customizing your master bath means that you can include space for a freestanding tub and really turn the space into a retreat. Continue reading

How to Choose the Right Size Floor Plan

Pittsburgh custom homesThe average size of new, single family homes built in the U.S. continues to measure about 2,600 square feet. When you decide to build a new home and start looking at floor plans, it can be difficult to imagine living in the spaces as they are drawn on paper or depicted on a computer screen. The measurement of  a room doesn’t always mean it will be a good fit for how you will use the room. So how can you make sure that you are getting the perfect size home for your budget and lifestyle? Here are some things to consider. Continue reading

Paragon Homes has earned two 2017 Housing Excellence Awards.

award winning custom builderIt always feels good to be recognized for a job well done. Paragon Homes has earned two 2017 Housing Excellence Awards from the Builder’s Association of Metropolitan Pittsburgh (BAMP) against the largest field of applicants in the history of the awards. View photo gallery.

For our clients, the Mowreys, we created a custom floorplan that features a big, open living area with tons of natural light, a custom kitchen and his-and-her private studies, since both spouses work from home. Upstairs, the master bedroom has a spectacular shower, double vanities with a makeup table, and double walk-in closets for lots of storage. Two additional bedrooms have their own walk-in closets, and there is a spare bedroom for guests or crafts. The family requested a second-floor laundry and designed custom storage spaces above the garage and on the lower level.

Outside, both homes boast ample space for relaxing and for the kids to play. It’s important to us that our clients not only get a beautiful home, but one that stands the test of time. Some examples of our high-quality construction practices in this home are premium grade lumber and other building materials, upgraded fixtures and hardware, 16-inch stud spacing interior and exterior with 2×6 exterior walls, solid core doors and real wood windows.

Paragon Homes Housing Excellence Award winnerThe other winning home was built for the Schmitz family, their award-winning custom dream home is an elegant, modern retreat for the parents that also grows with the family as their needs change.

As you enter the home through the 4-car attached garage, you pass through a long hallway of custom-built lockers and drop zones to help keep things organized. The interior then opens into a great room, kitchen, and sunroom area where the family intends to spend most of their time. Elsewhere are the first floor are a formal living room and a large formal dining room for dinners with extended family and friends.

The home’s second level has a large laundry room, a spectacular overlook of the foyer, a master suite with dual master closets, and three additional bedrooms, one with a private bath and two that share a Jack & Jill bath. A third-floor loft includes two additional bedrooms, a full bathroom, and a movie room.

Thanks so much to BAMP for the honors as well as all our suppliers and craftsmen, and even bigger thanks to the Mowrey and Schmitz families for trusting Paragon Homes to build your perfect custom home!

Build your own Award Winning Home with Paragon Homes! Get started today.

The Pros and Cons of Open Concept Floor Plans

Consider Your Day-to-Day Lifestyle

Almost every real estate or home renovation reality TV show involves the quest for an open concept floor plan. Open concept design, which means common areas in a home have no walls or only partial walls, grew out of mid-century modern architecture in the 1950s.  And although there’s already some buzz about “retro” home design favoring enclosed living rooms and kitchens, open concept isn’t going away. Continue reading

A New House For Your New Family

Keep Children in Mind When Looking For a New Home

Tuesday Tips from a Pittsburgh Custom Home BuilderA new baby brings overwhelming feelings of joy — and sometimes an immediate yearning for more space. Whether you have already welcomed a new family member or are planning to have kids a few years down the road, there are lots of things to consider if you have decided to buy or build a new house.

Overall house size is usually tops on everyone’s list, and there is no question that it’s a biggie.  An extra bedroom or two will be helpful when grandparents come to visit or if one parent is working from home and needs extra office space.  But you should weigh more than just the number of bedrooms and total square footage in a house. Pay attention to features in the house that could affect your ability to keep an eye on your little one or make it harder for you to keep a fast-moving toddler out of trouble.

When you are searching for or designing a house, new or expectant parents might want to look for or include the following:


  • An enclosed room or another area on the first floor that can be used as a playroom when your kids are younger and a den or media room when they are older. Open floor plans are appealing as far as giving toddlers room to move around, but it’s good to have a safe spot for them if you need to step away for a moment.
  • Roomy garage or other storage space that makes it easy to store/hide larger kid toys and bikes.
  • Fenced in outdoor space that is free of safety hazards such as standing water and retaining walls that young children could climb.
  • Lots of flexible indoor storage for kids’ toys and other gear. Large closets are essential, but don’t forget about entryway closets and cubbies, laundry room storage, and window seats and other built-ins for fast clean-up in each room.
  • Placement of inside staircases, railings and loft spaces. Look at interior home design through the eyes of a crawling baby. Architectural features that are impossible to baby proof might not be worth the headache and worry, even though the baby/toddler phase seems to fly by.

Whether you are looking at an existing new home or shopping for a lot to build on, one of the best things to consider as far as suitability for your young family is how many other young families you see in the neighborhood. Seeing kids outside in strollers or on bikes means you and your children will not only enjoy the new house, but could make a lot of new friends.