Archive for February, 2012
It’s that time of year again to pull those boots out of your Austin custom homes‘ closets, dust off the cowboy hat, jump in the horseless carriage and head east to Travis County Expo Center. On March 9th, Rodeo Austin will open its gates for the 75th time. It was back in 1938 when County Extension Agent T.H. Royder worked with the Austin Chamber of Commerce to organize the Travis County Baby Beef Show. The show took place across the street from the Capitol at West 11th St. and Congress Ave. Back then the show featured only 16 animals. It’s safe to say that Austin Rodeo has grown quite a bit over the years.
Nowadays the Rodeo features live musical performances from some of the biggest bands in the country music industry. This year when you go to Rodeo Austin you’ll be able to see Eli Young Band, Chris Young, Clay Walker, Demi Lovato, Jake Owen, The Band Perry, Sara Evans, Josh Abbott Band, Glen Campbell, Bellomy Brothers, Gavin Degraw, Josh Turner, Stoney LaRue, Brett Michaels, and Kevin Fowler. One name you may not be familiar with is Jonathan Fox. He’s a local, up and coming country artist mixed with a little southern rock. He will be playing a set on Thursday, March 15th. If you have not heard his music, you can check it out in the iTunes Store. I highly recommend him.
Good news continues to emerge for those in the market for custom homes in Austin. The U.S. economy is showing evidence of an upturn. It’s not quite on the level increase we saw in the mid-90′s by any stretch of imagination, but even the slightest of upturn can give us hope for the near future. After all the Dow Jones did touch 13,000 points today for the first time since May 20, 2008.
It’s no secret that Texas has not been hit as hard as the rest of the nation during the recession. That being said, it’s not hard to believe that the Texas economy is bouncing back faster than other parts of the country as well. According to the monthly Economic Indicators report on the Central Texas region prepared by the Austin Chamber of Commerce, three of the top eleven U.S. metros that experienced growth in employment and growth in per capita GDP from 2010 to 2011 are from Texas (1 – Houston, 2 – Dallas, and 11 – Austin).
If you have not been formally introduced, allow your Austin TX custom home builders to acquaint you with the quickest website to ever reach 10 million unique visits per month. Pinterest is a new social network that can be described as the largest brainstorm of all time. It allows you to connect with friends, share photos and ideas, and store them in organized categories within your profile. When you create your account, the categories (called “Boards”) that come stock in your profile include For the Home, Favorite Places & Spaces, My Style, Design & Fashion, among many others. You don’t have to stick with just those boards though. You can modify or delete them, or create your own.
Once you have your boards created, you can begin pinning pictures that are already on other people’s boards. On the Pinterest homepage you’ll see a feed of pictures that people are pinning in real time. Once you you get the hang of adding pins to your boards, you’ll want to begin to connect with friends. This is made simple by logging into Pinterest using Facebook. When you log in using Facebook, Pinterest will have a list of your Facebook friends and ask you to select the ones you’d like to follow. You can now share your pins with your friends and begin to build inspiration from them. Though there might be thousands upon thousands of pictures on Pinterest, pinning doesn’t just stop there. When you go to other websites and see pictures you like, you can use the Pinterest bookmark tool to save them and add them to your boards.
Greetings from the wonderful Orlando, FL! We are currently in Day 2 of our pilgrimage to the Mecca of custom home builders, the NAHB International Builders’ Show. We finally have a couple minutes to fill you in on what we have experienced so far.
Collectively we’ve attended over 24 seminars covering a variety of subjects including custom home building, land development, time management, and architectural design, just to name a few. It was really neat to get the team together at the end of Day 1 to discuss key takeaways from each seminar and what new, innovative products we could implement in the custom homes in Austin we build.
I’d like to highlight one product in particular; it’s a power outlet with 2 USB ports so you can charge your smartphone, mp3 player, digital camera, or tablet without needing multiple adapters. Just in Q4 2011 alone, Apple sold 17 million iPhone units in the US alone, according to their quarterly results announcement. With the use of smartphones and tablets growing at all-time high rates, now is the perfect time for a product like this. And have you ever lost your Apple USB Power Adapter? I have on two occasions and paid $29 for each replacement (please tell me I’m not the only one the only one who’s had happened to). However much these outlets cost per unit, it’s worth it!
Every year, the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) hosts the International Builders’ Show® and, yet again, your Austin custom home builder will be attending. With more than 50,000 attendees, 900 industry suppliers and more than 165 education sessions, this is by far the home building industry’s largest event of the year. You’d think the show would give us a chance to get away from the stress of the office and soak in the warm Orlando sun. Yeah, right!
At Sterling Custom Homes, we set up an intricate schedule for each team member to follow so we can get the absolute most out of the show. During every time slot of education sessions, each team member is assigned a specific session and a back up session. When a team member is not in a session, they are on the showroom floor checking out new industry specific products, innovations, and business solutions. Not all home builders go to the show, but to remain cutting edge in a constantly evolving custom home industry, we believe it is imperative to remain as current as possible with industry trends and standards. The International Builders’ Show® presents us with the absolute best opportunity to do so.
We don’t go to the show solely for our benefit, but even more for the benefit of our clients. The knowledge gained through the education sessions helps us optimize our construction processes, which improves our clients’ experience with us. The new products we are exposed to on the showroom floor increases the efficiency of the homes we build, positively affecting client satisfaction with us, but more importantly, their home.
We are very excited to go to the International Builders’ Show®! This year, thanks to the wonders of social media, we are going to provide you with nuggets of information we receive at the show in real time. In order to accomplish this, stay tuned to our Facebook, Twitter, Google+, and Pinterest pages for updates. We will also publish a daily blog post to wrap up each day of the show, so stay tuned!