Posted by Reyna Estrada in Happy Homeowners

“Home” means a lot of different things to different people. For some, it’s a place for family gatherings and holiday cheer—for others it’s somewhere to watch young children grow up while creating memories through love and laughter. Perhaps it’s a place of transition from one stage of life to another; a divorce, a first home, or a big move to an unfamiliar location.

A conversation with homeowner Teri A. quickly revealed that her home is an extension of the very essence of herself: what’s important to her, her tastes, her preferences, an expression of her style. When asking what was most essential to her, she stated she wanted a home that “sets hers apart from others.”

Upon leading the way into the heart of her home, Teri glowed as she told the story about when she first moved in. She stayed up night after night making everything just perfect before she could rest and relax. As she showed the way to the main living area of this open-concept villa home an immediate sense of warmth and openness provided quite the welcome. Lovely earth toned décor created a perfect ambiance to relax and chat.

Beginning the Building Process

Teri had a long history of home-building experience, being that this was her fourth time building a new construction home. Previously, she had chosen to build with a custom home builder, and when asked why she didn’t choose to stay with a custom builder her response was that she “met Paul (Hallman). And, when you click with a salesperson, things just go really well.”

It was compelling to know what it was about Paul that had made such an impact on her decision. She went on to explain that she had such a comfortable feeling around him and they had just easily developed a relationship right away. She talked about how easy the relationship was and placed a strong emphasis on the fact that there was no discomfort and there was just such a genuine feeling about him. Could the trick to having a positive experience during the early stages of homebuilding be connection and feeling safe?

Teri began talking about how she decided on her lovely Kaiden floorplan, a one-level home with a basement, and for her, it was important to have a home with bedrooms on the main level. It was evident after an hour of speaking with Teri that family was very important to her and stressed that she needed a home with all bedrooms on the main level so she could accommodate her elderly parents who would visit. Stairs were just not an option.

Personalization Is Key

Throughout the hour in Teri’s home she was proud in expressing how her home was the hub of all family gatherings, holiday parties, and entertaining friends. She went on to mention how the “open feeling is so perfect for hosting.”

She spoke about her remarkable fireplace, which was more-or-less the staple piece of her open-concept family room, and it became apparent that this fireplace was her baby. This was a unique, custom feature that she hadn’t seen anywhere else, and as a woman who knows what she wants in a home, personalization was important to her. Her tone exuded gratitude as she went on to explain the hoops M/I Homes went through to customize this item and allow her vision to come to life. Get fireplace inspiration here!

Advice for Future Homebuyers

As the interview came to a close, it became obvious that Teri felt a lot of pride in her home and felt that THIS is what the home building experience should encompass. One final question wrapped up the conversation and Teri didn’t miss a beat with her answer.

“My advice to people is if you have any issues, bring it up to the people at M/I Homes. They’re there to help you. They will come up with suggestions for you that are really good and will solve problems for you.”

Teri urges those in the new home search to go and look at model homes and get a feel for what they like. She closed by sharing with us that she truly “loves her home,” which, is always the icing on the cake to hear.

Leaving, we loved picturing Teri in her home getting ready to host her next elaborate party for friends. Knowing Teri really was “Home for the Holidays” leaves us eager to gather with loved ones next to a cozy fire for our next family gathering. Get more ideas to host the best holiday ever or find the perfect housewarming gift in time for the holidays!


Reyna Estrada
Reyna Estrada


Reyna Estrada has been with M/I Homes since 2008. As a National Manager of Internet Sales, the team mission is to serve our customers on their online home buying journey with speed, efficiency, and world-class service. Reyna and her family have lived in North Carolina for over 20 years, and they enjoy world traveling and volunteering in the community.

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