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June 24, 2024

HDM turns Ten

Next week marks the 10th anniversary of Housing Design Matters. Time flies when you’re having fun! It has been an honor working with builders and developers around the country, from small startups who took a chance on a new opportunity to established divisions wanting to take their product line to the next level.

I also want to thank the awesome interior and landscape designers who make our houses shine inside and out, along with the photographers who capture the way these houses are designed to live. Finally, I want to thank our readers of our weekly Matters of Design blog series. You have made the past ten years awesome.

What’s in a Name?

I named the firm after what we do rather than who we are. The market is full of very talented architectural firms named after their founders. We deliberately didn’t use my name or initials in the name because I believe what we do is far more important than who is doing it. Housing design does indeed matter – far more than the person who designed it.

Our goal is to improve the lives of those who live with our designs. We strive to add joy along with ease of living. We want our exteriors to be cute – something residents will be proud to call home. We strive to do this while making our designs attainable to the most people possible.

The Housing Design Team

I am fortunate to be surrounded by an awesome team of designers including Tom Devine, Tony Lynch, Justin Bucy, Gene Santos, Tim Fetters and JT Burwell. It is so refreshing and uplifting to collaborate with designers who have checked their egos at the door and are always looking for ways to make our work better. And let us not forget Kevin DeClerk, who keeps these blogs coherent and engaging, and Penny Stunzi who keeps the our books in order.

Strategic Partnerships

But HDM is a small, nimble group who relies on our strategic partners that I’d like to give a special shoutout to.

Thank you for your continued support!

Design Solutions from a Working Mom’s Point of View

Early in our tenure, I realized my life knowledge and experiences as an architect and a working mother needed to be shared with our client’s. I still advocate simple design principles to minimize the daily stressors and maybe even add a few moments of calm. It could be as simple as not walking past the kid’s bedrooms and bathrooms on the way to the primary suite, not crossing the streams between kids and grown-ups, and avoiding the naked run from the bathroom that kids will undoubtably do at the worst time!

Next Adventure Show home

Our next milestone was being invited to design the Next Adventure Show Home with Builder Magazine, Taylor Morrison, and Lita Dirks & Co in for the 2017 International Builder Show (IBS). Thank you, John McManus and Carol Penny Thompson for recognizing our young firm as worthy! It was an amazing collaboration that focused on the 55+ buyer and really pushed the idea that 55+ should be fun with age-friendly features discreetly making our lives better. This award-winning house catapulted HDM into the national spotlight.

Matters of Design

During our frequent team meetings in Orlando, John McManus asked if I would write a few blogs about designing for the 55+ buyers. It was then that I discovered I had a passion for sharing design ideas in a written format. Initially I had a backlog of blogs, so the weekly deadline seemed less daunting. But my, how quickly you run out of content when you post weekly! This is why I encourage you to respond to my emails, you might just spark my imagination for the next topic!

Daily Lifestyle Solutions

Another milestone was creating the Daily Lifestyle Solutions – a collection of design concepts designed to make our buyer’s lives easier:

  • Messy Kitchen – A high functioning alcove to keep the main kitchen tidy and ready for entertaining.
  • Connected Laundry – Reducing steps to the closet where clean clothes go.
  • Parcel Delivery Vestibule – To keep deliveries out of sight and out of the elements.
  • The Beverage Center – Because our Kitchens have a Drinking Problem
  • Pet Solutions – Because pets are one of the decision makers in home buying!

Broad Range of Housing Types

The wide array of housing types we design keeps us on our toes – from single family production homes 20’ to 90’ wide and everything in between, customs, townhomes of varying levels, single-family for rent, and rental cottage homes. And since most of our designs are in a community, we have designed a variety of clubhouses and community amenities.

Our services

Naturally, we provide design services – as little or as much as our client’s need. This may include retooling an existing floor plan, adding a new elevation or an entire line of houses for a new community.

Through our strategic partnerships, we also offer full-service construction documents and exterior color services. Lastly, we do offer color graphic services.

Making our Future Bigger than our Past

While I listed a lot of past accomplishments and achievements, we must always be looking to do more and never rest on our laurels. Soon, I am going to continue to create short videos on housing designs as both an educational tool for our clients and their buyers. I would also like to write a book – which years of blogging has given me the confidence to do. I’d love to bring a land planner into our strategic partnership and explore the nuances of 3-D printing.

Open to Opportunity

As we strive to make people’s lives better through great design, we are always open to the next opportunity to do so. Let us know how we can help you.

Thank you for coming along with us our journey and allowing HDM to join you on yours. Let’s keep it going!

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This post was written by Housing Design Matters