If you have enjoyed learning about the evolution of the kitchen in a home with Lucy Worsley, you will get a kick out of the “History of the Home” episodes about the bathroom.
She started the documentary placing a chamber pot (aka bedpan) inside her bulky Victoria-style dress, apparently demonstrating how someone in that era would relieve themselves.
That’s just the beginning of her entertaining antics and eye-opening demonstrations as she traced the transformation of the bathroom for the past 700 years. Poo is not taboo in this enlightening journey.
The bathroom, according to Lucy, is the room that took the longest to evolve. It is a space we now considered the most private of spaces in a home. However, back in the Middle ages, washing, grooming, and going to the toilet happened in the public; in bath houses and with no gender separation.
Communal toilets, comprising of long benches with holes in them, were also common and typically built over rivers; a logical means of waste disposal. And what about toilet paper? From sponge-on-the-stick for the wealthy, to a piece of linen, to a handful of straws, and in the absence of anything else, the hand, are the common ways to clean after a trip to the public toilet.
By the end of 16th Century, public baths went out of style due to the lack of clean water and the fear of airborne diseases. The next turn in the idea of cleanliness would be welcomed by teenagers who believe in simply putting on a clean set of clothes instead of showering. Tudor people started putting on clean linens instead of washing themselves. The linens, however, were kept clean by soaking them in urine for two days before agitating them with home-made detergent and water.
The Tudors had three types of toilet; a communal one called great houses of easement, a chamber pot, and for the rich, a portable closed stool. The invention of the flushing toilet in 1596 and subsequent innovations in plumbing slowly started the evolution of the bathroom we know of now. Fresh water was made available to homes. A washing station (similar to our modern day vanity sink) was placed in bedrooms and slowly became a desirable item.
The industrial revolution transformed residential spaces and “The Crapper”, named after Thomas Crapper who manufactured and promoted the flushing toilet in the 1860s, became a common household item for the rich in the Victorian age. Other manufacturers of the flushing toilet began to introduce their own line of porcelain thrones with interesting names like Spedan, The Deluge, The Oracle, The Revolver Washdown, and The Dreadnought.
In the 1880′s, the bathroom began to take shape with familiar components like shower, bath tub, sink, and toilet. According to Lucy, there were about 4,700 patent applications for newer and better bathrooms in the late 19th Century. What had been a public space, the bathroom became a very private and highly essential room for personal hygiene in a home.
Below is a quick look (ie. Bathroom 101) at the basic types of bathrooms in modern days, depending on what components (ie. sink, toilet, shower, tub) you find in the space. At Home Creations, our floor plans offer a variety of bathroom layouts with at least two full baths; a private one in the master bedroom, and a shared one near to the secondary bedrooms and common areas. There are also plans available with two and a half bathrooms.
So, if you were to design your own master bathroom, what would it include? Separate show and tub? One or two walk-in closets? Open or enclosed toilet?
Part 1 … You have a grown-up job. You’ve figured out how to pay bills on time. Your kitchen is almost entirely free of instant ramen. You get your oil changed regularly.
Once you’ve figured out how to stay in the financial black, you can start focusing on building your portfolio instead of just balancing your checkbook. Buying your first home and beginning to build equity is one of the best ways to do that.
Of course, you don’t want to rush into anything when you’re making this sort of decision: you’ll want to become as educated as you can about the home buying process, your options, and how much capital you can create by buying a home for investment. And as you’d probably expect, today’s young home-owners are a far cry from those of your parents’ generation. See the home buying trends and statistics from the National Association of Realtors.
New home buyers favor accessibility over traditionally coveted features.
Today’s first-time home buyers are a new breed of consumers: they’re budget-conscious, focused on location, and flexible on a home’s size and condition.
- Of all the home buyers in 2012, 39% were first-timers.
- The average age of first time home buyers was 31 years old.
- 51% of first-time buyers are married couples.
- New home buyers favor internet searches over traditional real estate advertising.
- While location wins out over a home’s size and condition, nearly a third of new home buyers plan to move within 5 years.
- More than 75% of all home buyers draw from their savings for their down payments, and 96% finance their new homes with a mortgage. Many use first time home buyer bond programs for their down payment.
The average age of first-time buyers has increased in the past few decades – from 25 in the 1970s to 31 now. And the median income for a first time home buyer rings in at just under $60k. Just as people tend to get married later in life these days, younger men and women tend to rent (or, hey, live with their parents) for longer than they used to.
Buying your first home is a huge decision to make – but it’s also a liberating, coming-of-age sort of process. At Home Creations, we work with everyone from brides-to-be to retirees, and we make sure that the buying process is comfortable and accessible.
Over the next few weeks, we’ll be discussing the benefits – and affordability – of buying a new home. Check back regularly to see where new homes trump older ones – and how you can get started building your portfolio with us.
Ready to begin your journey towards owning a new home, click here to start.
Buying a home – especially your first home – is a uniquely exciting, creative, and whirlwind process. And when you’re in the middle of it, it helps to know that there are other people going through the exact same thing. We’ve compiled some information about just who is getting into the real estate game right now – and how they’re going about it.
According to the National Association of Realtors, the country’s young guns are jumping into the home buying scene in droves this year.
- Generation X (individuals born between 1960 and 1980) made up 31 percent of the home buyers in 2013.
- Generation Y (individuals born between 1980 and the early 2000′s) accounted for 28 percent
- Younger Baby Boomers (individuals born between 1955 and 1964) accounted for 18 percent
- Older Baby Boomers (individuals born between 1946 and 1964) were responsible for 14 percent of housing sales
When people get into retirement age, home buying numbers begin to drop significantly.
- Ever heard of the Silent Generation (individuals born between 1925 and 1942)? This group made up 10 percent of recent housing purchases.
- The G.I. Generation (individuals who grew up during the Great Depression) made up the smallest percentage at less than 1 percent of recent buyers.
Based on these numbers, Generation X and Y made up the bulk of the housing market in 2013. It makes sense, when you think about it – these folks have generally acquired enough income to buy rather than rent, and they’re more likely to have growing families that require a bigger living space.
Income levels among home buyers in 2013
In spite of a not-so-great job market, Generations X and Y were able to make ends meet and jump into (or stay in) the real estate scene.
- Median income for Generation Y home buyers – *$66,200
- Median income for Generation X home buyers – *$93,100
*These numbers are lower in the Oklahoma Housing Market
Home buying preferences of Generation X and Y Generations X and Y are often grouped together; we talk about them like they’re completely different, but the groups are very similar in some aspects, especially compared to the much older and younger age groups. Here are some of their overall housing preferences from 2013.
- Energy Efficient homes: Younger buyers look for eco-friendly properties that include energy-efficient appliances, windows and a well-insulated home.
- Flexible space: Another aspect young buyers appreciate in a home is multi-use areas. Buyers want space that could be a nursery, man cave, craft room, home gym – whatever their hobby or need happens to be at any given stage.
- Tech-friendly homes: Homes with state-of-the-art home security systems or other technologically advanced features are hugely popular with younger buyers.
- Reduced square footage: The days of the McMansion are behind us. Today’s young buyers only want to pay for the space they will be using, leading to an upward trend in smaller home sales. Plus, smaller homes tend to make for higher energy efficiency – and buyers love that!
- Open floor plans: Another feature younger buyers love in a home is open floor plans. This means the dining room, living room and kitchen are often all in one open space. Open floor plans eliminate wasted space from interior walls and corners – they allow homeowners to utilize every aspect of their home regularly.
- No more fixer uppers: We’re guessing this has something to do with HGTV: in the past few years, we had seen increasing popularity with fixer-upper homes that buyers could customize and/or flip. But today’s buyers are over it – they much prefer a move-in-ready home that already includes their high-priority amenities.
- Ranch style homes: In general, younger buyers are requesting ranch style homes. We don’t mean the shag carpeted, popcorn ceiling 70s throwback: a modern ranch style is a single family, one-story detached home. These models tend to the have open floor plans and are generally designed for efficiency and functionality.
Generations X and Y use technology all the time, so it only makes sense that they would use technology to search for homes and research what they want. Young buyers are usually very in-the-know about local home prices and already know which homes they want to visit.
Why people are buying now
Younger home buyers – generally, new home buyers – reported that their main motivation for buying a home was simply to own their own place. The fact that interest rates are the lowest they have been in 60 years is a huge incentive as well. Repeat buyers or individuals who are older and buying their second or third home, on the other hand, said that they wanted a place with higher square footage. A small percentage of buyers said that they moved into a new home as a result of moving for a job. Hear from our homeowners why they chose Home Creations.
We’re in this together
Buying a home can be a very intimidating prospect – but at Home Creations, we’re here to help. Whether you are a completely “typical” home buyer for 2014 or have a totally different situation, you’re among friends. We’ll facilitate your whole buying and moving process by giving you access to tons of helpful information and helping you get to know your community and neighbors.
Getting married is an exciting journey – and it’s one that’s full of decisions. Where will you live? What will the wedding be like? Should you open a joint bank account?
When you’re in the midst of so many milestones, sometimes there’s nothing more welcoming than a convenient, all-in-one-place event – like, say, a bridal show.
Here’s where you’ll find us in 2014.
- January 18 – the Oklahoma Bridal Show. Check out our Facebook Album for photos.
- March 30 – the Oklahoma Bridal Show – Norman Spring 2014 – Sam Noble Museum, OU, Norman
- July 13 – Oklahoma Bridal Show OKC Summer 2014 – Cox Convention Center, OKC
- September 28 – Edmond Oklahoma Bridal Show Fall 2014 – Nigh University Center, UCO, Edmond
- October 5 – Tulsa Oklahoma Bridal Show Fall 2014 – Tulsa Convention Center, Tulsa
We like to change it up, but here are a few things you can expect to see from us at the bridal shows we attend:
- Assorted drawings and prizes for our visitors (we are giving away a prize every 30 minutes if you are spotted carrying our goodie bag!)
- Information about our popular free home buyer seminars
- Answers from our experienced New Home Consultants – ask us about up and coming new home communities, how to buy a home, financing options, and anything else you can think of in relation to becoming a homeowner!
- Starter-kit with flyers explaining the benefits of owning vs. renting, checklist for house-hunting, new home incentives, and more.
We’re here to help you get your marriage off to a great start. Join us at an Oklahoma bridal show this year – we’ll help you build your dream.
BBC has a documentary series called “History of the Home”, which brings its audience on a historical journey of homes from the middle ages to the modern days. The series, telling stories of rooms like kitchen, bathroom, bedroom, and living room, is intriguing as it provides viewers an insight on how these rooms and its function came about.
Modern house hunters are spoilt for choice as homes and floor plans are in abundance online and through different home builders. Home Creations herself, has over 100 floor plans available across its new home communities in the Oklahoma City and Tulsa metro areas.
Most of our homeowners would say that the kitchen is the most important part of their home. The host of the documentary, Lucy Worsley, even noted that it’s possible for someone to spend a lot of money in the kitchen than any other rooms in the house.
Hearth was the heart of the kitchen
Lucy started telling the evolution story of the kitchen dressed up like a peasant entering a medieval home, which was essentially one room with a hearth in the middle used for cooking and warmth.
She traced the transformation of the kitchen to the extravagance of Hampton Court in Europe during the Tudor period, where the room was a separate building from the rest of the residence.
With advances in building technology and unlimited resources, the rich kept the smell, smoke, and fire danger of the kitchen far away. People started desiring that separation as some of the “luxury” filtered down through the society.
Too bad there wasn’t Febreze then …
“The Georgians, like Tudor aristocrats, pushed their kitchen out and kept it away from the social center of the house,” explained Lucy. A huge degree of separation from the kitchen in the 18th Century was a symbol of social status as the smell of cooking in other living spaces was associated with “the lower class who could only afford to live in a single space”.
On location at Kedleston Hall, an English country house, Lucy and Peter Brears, a food historian took under a minute to walk (because the servants were not allowed to run) from the kitchen to the dining room with a bowl of hot soup. For most modern households, it’s almost unacceptable if food took more than 10 seconds to reach the dining room table.
Much has changed, hasn’t it?
How often have the smell of cookies in the oven or barbecue over the grill triggered warm fuzzies in your mind (and stomach)? ”Home buyers often asked for an open floor plan,” said Courtney Brankel, Home Creations Online Sales Consultant. “And what they are really asking for, is a space where they can cook, serve, and entertain while having their guests in plain sight.”
The smell of cooking is now very much a part of what a home is. Executive Chefs of any household would also take pride in their collection of modern appliances that compliment their culinary skills. From being the center of a house, to a separate structure, to the basement of a building, and back in close proximity to the rest of the house, the placement of the kitchen has come full circle. Click to view the “History of the Home – Kitchen” playlist.
Which kitchen layout do you prefer; the 1,833 s.f. Bridgeport (a fully furnished model home at Montague in Edmond) or the 1,845 s.f Darlington (a fully furnished model at Farmington in Newcastle)?
Prior to the May 3, 1999 tornado, there were no construction methods in place to adequately hold the roof on houses. Harold Conner (University of Oklahoma Professor Emeritus of Construction Science) and owners of Home Creations felt certain construction methods could be utilized, not to make homes tornado-proof, but to give homes a much better chance to withstand a tornado coming down the street.
By August 1999, three tornado safety features became part of all Home Creations homes, making our homes safer and giving the homeowner added peace of mind. We continue to hold true to our commitment to build stronger and safer homes by using anchor bolts, tornado straps, and oriented strand boards in all our homes in communities across the Oklahoma City and Tulsa metro areas.
Click to read the news story aired on KOCO Channel 5 on Feb 24, 2014 when meteorologist and engineer Tim Marshall shared his findings about the safety measures implemented on homes in Moore after the May 2013 tornado.
The process of moving to a new community is both exciting and intimidating. Once you’ve dealt with the actual relocating – unpacking the last box, making a few spare keys, having a meal in your new dining room – there’s a whole new opportunity to begin.
Getting involved in and familiar with your new community usually takes a bit longer than arranging your living room furniture – but it’s well worth the effort. Here are a few ways you can go from being the new neighbor to the neighborhood fixture.
Take a hike. Getting a bit turned around is par for the course when you move to a new community. To clear your head and get some exercise that doesn’t involve cardboard boxes and hammers, take a walk around the streets and parks in your new neighborhood. You’ll get to know the neighborhood’s layout, and you’ll probably run into some of your new neighbors. If you see people working in their gardens or out walking, introduce yourself. It’s far less awkward than going door to door!
Contact the neighborhood association. You’ll probably be welcomed to the neighborhood with a basket and some information from your neighborhood association. If the answers aren’t included in your brochures, ask about neighborhood rules and regulations and any important dates (trash day, association meeting dates, etc.). Usually, HOA’s (Home Owner’s Associations) will have community events you can participate in to get to know your neighbors. Be sure and attend!
Play the host. Once you’ve had a couple weeks to settle in and meet a few folks from the community, consider hosting a housewarming party. Invite new coworkers and neighbors – you’ll probably discover some surprising shared interests!
Become a regular at local hangouts. Whether you’re a coffee snob or a fitness junkie (we don’t judge!), there’s a place in town where you can make yourself a regular. If your budget allows, incorporate time spent at local spots into your routine: enroll in classes at the yoga studio, read the local paper at a bookstore or coffee shop, attend a concert or play in the park. You’ll have an opportunity to meet people with shared interests and build a small community outside of your immediate neighborhood.
Stay up-to-date on local issues and events. There’s more to community involvement than meeting people: you can also contribute to local causes and participate in municipal decisions. Attend neighborhood association and crime watch meetings – and even town hall meetings if you’re interested in larger civic issues. If you have experience or great ideas, consider joining a committee that you could commit some time to.
Lend a hand. If you have any skills or time to volunteer, let people know. You can keep it simple by picking up trash on the weekends, or even try your hand at coaching or mentoring children at a local school or community center. If you have children, you can even offer to host a playdate with neighborhood kids or carpool to school. Your new neighbors will return the favor.
Start a club. Scope out local organizations and groups – ask around, check out the flyers at local businesses, or join a local Facebook group to track these down. If you see a need for a new group like a book club or bowling team, just start the thing yourself. People will show up, and you’ll grow your contacts list more quickly than you could’ve hoped.
Getting involved in a new community really boils down to two things: reaching out to your new neighbors, and making yourself visible and available. Have fun, and enjoy your new home!
Stay in the loop by liking Home Creations on Facebook - you’ll hear about our new developments, community events, and meet some new neighbors. Home Creations homeowners can connected by joining our mailing list and enjoy the benefits of the Homeowner Loyalty Club.