McCaleb Homes News & Blog

Caleb McCaleb Named to Economic Advisory Council

CalebTripCaleb has been selected as one of two Oklahoma representatives on the Economic Advisory Council for Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City. Caleb just returned from his first meeting with the Council, and shared what he learned. Bottom line is that the Fed has not raised the Federal funds rate since 2006 and it now sets at zero. The Fed Board of Governors is going to start moving rates up in small increments starting sometime between May and October. The first move will be 25 basis points and then a wait and see period before raising another 25 basis points. This is contrary to what other world central banks are doing as they are easing rates. Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City President Esther George met with 10 representatives for 2 days as they shared their regional perspectives on the economy. The move is not intended as an inflation stop because it is only around 2%, but rather a return to interest rate normalcy. The Fed feels that there is no safety net since we are setting at Zero interest rate right now and in case the economy needs a boost.

Trader Joe’s and REI Come to OKC

Much to the delight of Oklahoma City residents, rumors about Trader Joe’s and REI opening locations in local area were confirmed to be true. The first Trader Joe’s location in Oklahoma is on track to open its doors in Nichols Hills Plaza, a little bit north of the new REI location.

The added sales tax will prove to be a great benefit to Oklahoma City, and many residents are already excited about being able to acquire the unique items offered by the franchises. Prior to this, the nearest Trader Joe’s location was all the way in Dallas. The new location is ideal for homeowners living in the Communities where McCaleb Homes builds, being within very reasonable driving distance from the Town Square Community.

Mortgage Rates Fall

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Following current trends, mortgage rates have fallen recently. This is following a downward dip that mortgage rates had already taken. This means rates are at an almost record hitting low in past history.

Freddie Mac, a mortgage company, stated that “the nationwide average for a 30-year mortgage declined to 3.59 percent from 3.66 percent last week.” This is the lowest the rates have been since May 2013.

A very common loan choice is the 15-year loan for those that are aiming to refinance. This rate has slimmed from 2.98 percent to 2.92 percent and that is just in the last week or so.

Not too long ago the going rate for a 30-year mortgage was at a 4.23 percent rate and the 15-year mortgage at 3.33 percent. An article from USA today has shared the fact that, “Mortgage rates have remained low even though the Federal Reserve in October ended its monthly bond purchases, which were meant to hold down long-term rates.”

If inflation stays under the target rate the central bank has stated that there shouldn’t be an influx in rates. The USA article also revealed that, “The Fed sent a message last week that it will be “patient” in raising interest rates from record lows despite the steadily brightening outlook for the economy.”

Lower mortgages mean better opportunities for homebuyers that are looking to get into a new house. They might be looking for an upgraded house or simply their first family home.

Last year McCaleb Homes slashed their prices on many homes which made the opportunity for homebuyers who might have been looking for a lower priced home possible. A superior quality home for sale-like prices, the market opened up for the new homebuyers.

McCaleb homes also offers the tools to calculate what your monthly payment amount could be. Although just an estimation, you can still use this tool to calculate the going rates and start the process of getting into your new home.

Demand is now high and home prices are on the rise. Now is the time to get into your new McCaleb Homes!

Oklahoma City Featured on National Geographic’s Best Trips of 2015

A recent article from National Geographic has listed Oklahoma City as one of the best trips to take in 2015.

The article recommends several time frames to a plan a trip, including for the OKC Memorial Marathon on April 26, the Regatta Festival in October, and the deadCENTER film festival in June. The article also details several of Oklahoma City’s best attractions, such as places to stay, eat and shop.

Restaurants such as Back Door BBQ and Wedge Deep Deuce Pizzeria and their signature dishes are highlighted, as well as places where you can acquire local treats like Kize Bars and Strong Tonic. The article contains links to a multitude of the different local companies and attractions to get more information, as well as resources to help plan a trip.

The article is a very interesting read, and brings the beauty and culture of Oklahoma City to the forefront. If you are thinking about relocating to Oklahoma City, perhaps a trip to experience the local culture could help you decide. Oklahoma City has quickly become one of the most popular and safest cites for families to relocate to. Why not experience it for yourself?

Neal McCaleb has been inducted into this year’s Hall of Fame!

Last week marked a very historical moment for the McCaleb Family. Our own Neal McCaleb was inducted into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame. The 87th class of the Oklahoma Hall of fame was held last week. Also inducted were: Wanda Jackson, Blake Shelton, Alfre Woodard, Harold T. Holden,Thomas H. McCaslan, and Peggy Clark Stephenson.
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All the inductees are known and renowned in their careers as the best and brightest, excelling in their industries. Shelley Rowan stated, “All of our inductees excel in their respective careers, and Oklahomans for a long time have been the best, the brightest and the only in the things that they’ve accomplished, along with showcasing an extreme generosity in giving back to our state.”

The Oklahoma Heritage Association was founded in 1927 with the goal of teaching the youth of Oklahoma the history and founding of the state they reside in. In 2007 the Gaylord Pickens Museum was opened so that many can observe the accomplishments of the honorees.

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Neal McCaleb, a co-founder of McCaleb Homes is one of the inductees, receiving this honor for his many years in private and public service. He was the first Secretary of Transportation in 1987 as well as the director of the Oklahoma Department of Transportation by Governor Henry Bellmon. He served again as Secretary of Transportation in 1995 and director of the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority. President George W. Bush appointed him Assistant Secretary and in 2003 he furthered his support of American Indian economic development  with the Chickasaw Nation. Neal McCaleb now serves as the chairman of the board of the Chickasaw Nation Industries.

One of the highest honors any citizen can receive from the state is to be inducted into the Hall of Fame. Whether it be a well-known entertainer, an artist, or an individual who has improved the state in general, 662 people have been inducted since 1928.

photocred: http://newsok.com/gallery/articleid/5366646/pictures/3486053

HOPE Home

In November, the Hope Center of Edmond will raffle off a home built by McCaleb Homes in the Town Square community. The groundbreaking took place in July, and the home’s construction continues according to schedule.

The HOPE Center of Edmond (Helping Our People in Emergencies) is a privately-funded organization with the goal of assisting the Edmond and Arcadia communities by providing food, clothing and other expenses. The center was founded in 1984. Tickets for the raffle are available at $100 each. There is no limit on the number of tickets per person. You can buy tickets by going to the HOPE Center website and filling out the form, which can be submitted online, via mail (PO Box 2915, Edmond OK 73083) or taken directly to the HOPE Center of Edmond, located at 1251 N Broadway. You can also call directly to purchase tickets.

McCaleb Homes is happy to help the Edmond community by being a part of this collaboration.

Can I Hire My Own Contractor?

A question like that is common for home builders to hear from customers. It is not unusual for the client to request that a trade contractor that they have worked with in the past be used instead of those subcontracted by the builder. They may also ask to use specific brands or materials, such as carpeting or plumbing items. There is a good reason that the majority of builders do not agree to this. Standing by proven and familiar subcontractors is beneficial for both the client and the builder. The reason has to do with the relationships between the parties involved: The builder, the supplier and the subcontractor.

Approved Suppliers

To begin with, we will talk about purchasing from suppliers. Most builders have a selection of approved suppliers for the sake of reliability and standardization. The warranty was created based on the performance of reliable materials that the builder is used to working with. If a builder allowed the client to choose unfamiliar products from an unproven vendor to fill critical roles in the home, that could put the guarantee behind the warranty at risk.

For instance, if the homeowner were to order a carpet from a supplier that was not approved by the builder, then discovered that it was from a European carpet supplier that takes many weeks for delivery and it is made with metric measurements. Products from unfamiliar suppliers bring an element of risk with them, potentially capable of putting the whole project behind schedule.

Approved Contractors

The reasons for using trusted contractors are even more evident. Most builders rely on subcontractors as much as their own workers. Trade partners are an essential part of the building team. As such, the builder will usually only give highly important jobs to subcontractors who have demonstrated skill and reliability. With familiar partners, it can be easier to give the homeowner an accurate estimate and stand behind the quality of the work.

To see whether a subcontractor will be a good fit for a larger project, they will usually hire them for smaller jobs and evaluate their performance over a period of time. They should be able to produce work of high quality, able to stand up to the requirement of the warranty, on a consistent basis, they should work well with the project managers, they should be able to make accurate bids, and they should be reliable and responsive. It might take years to determine a professional’s skill level and build up trust to the point that they can be let loose on large, complicated projects with minimal supervision. A single good job does not necessarily guarantee that future jobs will be handled with the same level of quality.

If a builder allows the client to hire unproven subcontractors, they lose a measure of control over the project. An unfamiliar subcontractor can be a wild card. There is no way to know for sure how they will perform or how they will interact with the other workers on the project. And even if the homeowner agrees to be responsible for the final result, and potential problems could still reflect negatively on the reputation of the builder. And a good reputation is one of the most vital qualities of a successful home builder.

In the end, construction is an industry where good relationships are key. Maintaining amicable partnerships with trusted subcontractors is one of the primary assets to making a the construction process go smoothly. And the relationship goes both ways. If the subcontractor fulfills their end of the deal, they deserve to get paid a fair price and have their shot at the major contracts they have worked hard to earn.

Not everything will always go completely according to plan, and when problems arise, such as poor weather or delays in shipping, a good relationship with a subcontractor can pay off. If the builder and subcontractor have a mutual familiarity and respect, they might be more inclined to make adjustments in their schedule to make sure the project stays on track. Everyone’s on the same team.

Affordable Housing in Oklahoma City

Shaila Dewan at The New York Times recently wrote an article about trends in the housing industry, and why many people are finding Oklahoma City to be a particularly inviting destination to move to. Some of the points from the article include:

  • In the past, many Americans were willing to pack up a moving truck and hit the road to pursue their dreams, find a better job, or live in a more comfortable clime. But more and more, the primary motivation for relocation within the United States seems to be the desire for cheaper housing.
  • In the US, the cheapest housing can often be found in the fastest-growing cities, which is a 180 from the trends that developed in the earlier years of the 21st century, when credit was easier to attain. The number of domestic migrants that point to housing costs as their reason for moving is over twice what is was just under a decade ago.
  • The ever-increasing rent prices and difficulty of getting a mortgage on coastal cities has led to a surge of new blood headed to cities located in inland states. These cities tend to create and easier and more stable living situations for families. Oklahoma City has been particularly friendly to those who choose to relocate there.
  • Oklahoma City was the 12th fastest-growing city in 2013, and has captured a large part of the millennial demographic. Many of the new residents have had their lives transformed for the better. Many now enjoy bike rides through beautiful suburbs, coming home to enjoy master suites the size of entire apartments they once stayed in.
  • The total volume of people who relocate to a different city or state has seen a decline in the recent past, but a noticeably larger number of movers say that their main reason for making the switch was the search for an area with more affordable housing. The decline in total movers could be linked several different causes, including a slowly-recovering economy, and various trends in the job market. As mentioned at the outset, there are number of different reasons Americans pack up and move. But nearly 20% of movers venturing more than 500 miles cite cheaper housing as their motivation. This is more than double what is was in 2007.

You can read the Full Article at NYTimes.com. And of course, to see some of the beautiful homes available in Oklahoma City from McCaleb Homes, have a look at our home listings and be sure to follow our Facebook page to stay up to date.

HOPE Center Dream Home Giveaway

At 2 pm on July 9 at the Town Square community, a groundbreaking for a new home will take place. This home is the result of a collaboration between McCaleb Homes and the HOPE Center of Edmond, and will be part of the Dream Home Giveaway sweepstakes. Tickets can be purchased for a chance to win this beautiful home in a brand new neighborhood, with the proceeds going to the HOPE Center.

For more information on entering, you can visit the HOPE Center website.

Creative Uses for Glass in Your Home

The term “Jack of all trades” usually denotes a person or object that is somewhat good at multiple things, but not great at any one thing. Like the phrase itself, the connotation is somewhat neutral: not bad, but not great. But something being versatile does not have to mean it has to be mediocre. Out of the common building materials, glass not only fills a large number of roles, it fills some of them as good or better than traditional materials.

Glass designs for your home straddle the line between beautiful form and functionality, and with the numerous and diverse forms, styles, colors, patterns and textures available, you can find something that fits well into almost any design scheme. But what glass does best is to create sleek, modern styles.

Glass Used as Tiling: The most common use for glass panes in the home would likely be as tiles. In recent times, many designers have opted to use them in kitchens in bathrooms. They come with several distinct advantages over ceramic tiles. They tend to be stronger for their weight, they are naturally waterproof, and they come in a wider range of colors and patterns.

interiordesignGlass for Railings: Glass railings are a common sight in the upper levels and staircases of American office buildings. They are usually made up of panes of glass supported by metal frames. Using such a style in your home can create a fantastic, contemporary look. If you find metal to be too cold and industrial for your home, you could instead use plastic or wooden frames.

Glass for Tables: Whether it’s on a coffee or dining table, glass table tops are very sleek and clean looking. The transparency also makes the area look a bit more spacious. Even other table surfaces can benefit from glass table tops. Placing one of the right size on top of a wood or stone surface can protect the finish from damage.

glass-door5Glass for Doors: Everyone has seen glass doors, whether they be on business buildings, shower enclosures or patio doors. However, using them in the interior rooms of the home can create a unique style. Often, you will want them to be textured or frosted, so that there is some amount of privacy between adjoining rooms. For something more modern, you might have a door made of a single glass pane that hangs and slides from a rail above the doorway.

Glass as Art: The possibilities of glass really open up in the world of art. Glassblowers have refined their techniques over many centuries, and with modern equipment, they can create some truly breathtaking designs. You might choose small glass vessels and containers, or perhaps larger, more elaborate sculptures. Simple colored glass panes can be placed on the walls for minimalist art, or you can place custom printed or patterned glass. Glass mosaics can also be beautiful additions.

Making smart use of glass when designing a home can give it a unique personality that makes your home sleek and modern. In addition, glass is often affordable, eco-friendly and long-lasting. Have you considered some of the ways you could use glass designs in your home?

Craftsman Glass services and installs custom glass designs in the Denver Colorado area.