The Charleston Homes Experience

It’s easy for us to tell you Charleston Homes will meet all of your home building needs, but we want to show you what our customers say. Since our goal is to leave you completely satisfied with your new home, we listen to what each and every customer has to say.

We recently caught up with Kevin and Renae, customers who were just about to close on their brand new Charleston Homes home to see what they thought about their experience.

What Did They Like About Their Charleston Homes Experience?

Kevin doesn’t hesitate when asked what he liked about the process from the first step of the way. “I think we really appreciated a lot of the selections you did have. You had them laid out right there in your model home.”

"I liked the different model homes adjacent to each other with the different styles. We looked at some of the different options and how they were established so we could get a different feel for the different alternatives that you had,” he said.

How Did They Pick Out the Family’s Lot?

“We got the website on the Port Ridge neighborhood. We just spent an afternoon with that website with what was available, the different lots. We narrowed down each one and scoped out our selections,” Kevin said.

"Based on what we wanted," Renae emphasized.

Construction: Right on Schedule

Charleston Homes is a process oriented company and maintains a relatively rigid schedule on the construction of the home. But we also allow for customization by the customer. This was one aspect that pleased both Kevin and Renae with their new Charleston Home.

“With this house we had a much better opportunity to choose from the list,” Kevin said, as he contrasted it with his previous experience with another home builder. “You did some research for us on certain components.” This helped Kevin and Renae make an informed decision when it came to their new home.

Kevin also expressed his confidence in Charleston Homes when he saw the construction schedule for his home. “To me, that spoke a lot about your company, that you understand your building process very well. It’s very well laid out and you pretty much met all the elements along the timeline.”

They were also pleased with building updates so they knew the status. “We knew just where we were at in that process,” Kevin stated.

We pride ourselves on being right on target with our construction schedule and both Kevin and Renae were pleased with the fact we did that with their home. “My grandmother predicted we would never get into our new house before the new year,” Renae laughs, as they are ready to close in mid-December, as promised.

The Walk Through Was Key

Before the process was complete, we allow our customers to walk through and make sure the new home meets their exact expectations.

“Any little thing that we saw, they were marking with tape and answering questions,” Renae smiled. “If I didn’t think something was right I would be nice about it. They were popping tape up saying, ‘We’re going to fix it, no problem.’”

When asked, on a scale of one to ten, how their experience with Charleston Homes was and Kim said without hesitation, “A ten! It was so easy... I didn’t have to do anything!”

These are the words of real life Charleston Homes customers regarding their experience with us. We did everything we could to make them happy and we succeeded. We would love to do the same for you and your home building experience.

Buying a Charleston Home While Selling Another Home

Today we have local Omaha realtor, Lisa Ritter joining us and answering some important questions we are frequently asked in our office. She offers great insights for anyone who wants to buy a new home but has an existing home to sell.

How Can I Buy the Home of My Dreams if I Have a Home to Sell?

Interview two to three realtors. Pick the one you feel most comfortable with. Be wary of agents who claim they know exactly what they can get from your home. The reality is a good realtor knows there are no guarantees. Instead, they can give you a general prediction based on trends and averages, but not a firm price.

Also, check out a potential realtor online. This is a great way to get a feel for how the realtor operates and how they feel about the homes they represent. How is the photography of the homes they have for sale? You will never get a second chance to make a powerful first impression so online presence is very important.

How Can I Plan Out the Sale of My Home in Advance So My Activities are Intentional and Not Afterthoughts?

Knowing exactly how much your home is worth very early in the selling process is very important. Get your home evaluated so you know how much you can expect. Also, as you are interviewing several real estate agents, ask them what they believe your home is worth. While one realtor might over value your home, three realtors will not. The opinion of those in the real estate field is very valuable.

If the Market is Ripe for Buying a New Home, Will My Home Sell Quickly?

When home prices are low and it’s a great time to buy a home, it’s not necessarily a great time to sell your home. This is the law of supply and demand. However, don’t be fearful about selling your home! With rates being so low, you should take advantage of the move-up opportunity. If new home prices are low there are probably many in your community who will also want to buy a new home. This can create an influx of homes for sale.

Of course, an environment that is great for buyers does not mean your home will not sell. Just make sure you find a great real estate agent, list the price as accurately as possible, and be patient during the process.

Want to learn more about how to get into a Charleston Home? Contact our office at 402-933-7224 or find us online at Charleston Homes.

If you would like to get in touch with realtor Lisa Ritter, contact her at (402) 612-2413 or find her online at her website.

Parties, Plenty of Space, and Parking: Our Jackson Two-Story Plan has it All

Do you dread when it's your turn to host the family for Thanksgiving? Just when you think you have room for everyone, Aunt Mary and Uncle Jack and their five teenage boys show up unexpectedly, and your well-planned dinner party spills over into the living room, and you have at least three or four people sitting on the floor with their plates. You need more space! An open design with a huge family room and dinette area might just fit the bill, and give you enough space to bring out the extra folding tables. And you may want to buy a bigger turkey next year, because you'll be sure to have extra guests! Our Jackson two-story floor plan gives you all the space you need and more—not to mention plenty of room in the garage for cars and storage. For a look inside, have a look at my latest video blog and see just how much room you could have!

Your cars need a place to live, too

When people are looking for a home, I've found that they often get dazzled by the floor plan, but forget about where they will put their cars. Both husband and wife may have their own cars, and teenage children are sure to want theirs too. And once you start having guests, you soon have vehicles lining the street in front of your house, and in front of your neighbor's house as well. The Jackson design includes an incredibly spacious three-car garage with plenty of added storage. At 31 feet wide, even with three cars in there, you'll still have plenty of room to stack up those folding chairs and extra tables you'll need for your holiday parties.

Bringing back the kitchen pantry

I love modern designs, but one thing I've always admired about a lot of the older homes is that they all had big kitchens with separate pantries. The biggest complaint I hear about modern designs is that the kitchen is designed for people who go out to eat all the time. There's not enough cabinet space, not enough working space and countertops, and they're just too small to be comfortable. The kitchen isn't just a workspace, it's a social space. The Jackson floor plan includes a spacious kitchen with a separate dinette area—of course, with plenty of cabinets and countertop space. Want room to store all those goodies and special ingredients? Check out the walk-in pantry!

We all need a little more space than what we have

I've always noticed that people tend to grow into whatever amount of space they have. I think it's best to start out with a home with plenty of room and grow into it—the idea of a "starter home" sometimes just doesn't make a lot of sense. The Jackson two-story plan has four full bedrooms including a huge master bedroom with en suite bathroom upstairs. Downstairs off the family room is a separate enclosed dining room. But remember, we already have a dinette area between the living room and kitchen, so that can also be turned into an office, den, or "man cave".

Room for everyone

As much as I do love those older homes with the big kitchen pantries, a particularly annoying design flaw I see in a lot of the older designs—and even in a lot of the newer ones—is lack of closet space. In the old days, there were not closets at all, you just used an armoire. Beautiful, but just not enough space! The master bedroom has a huge walk-in closet, so there's space for everyone. And I know from experience—when a husband and wife share a closet, one person—I won't say which one—usually ends up with about 80 percent of the available space. It's better to start out with an oversized closet and make sure there's enough room for everyone.

There's really no need to live in a too-small home when one with plenty of space is so affordable. I really enjoy the Jackson floor plan because it has so many unique features. I think this one combines some of the best home designs of the past 100 years. Charleston Homes isn't just your ordinary home builder. Our designs were created with real people in mind. I encourage you to call us today to schedule an appointment and take a walk-through of one of the Jackson floor plan model homes.

Are These 3 Things Ready for Winter at Your Home?

With winter quickly approaching, there are several things you need to do to get your home ready today so you are not left out in the cold when the spring thaw comes around. By being proactive, your home will be ready for the chilly temperatures that are just days away.


To help prevent the various substances and solutions road crews put down in the winter to help melt ice from causing an unattractive peeling and chipping away of your driveway or sidewalk top, winterization is necessary. It’s impossible to prevent these substances from creeping up on your concrete, but it is possible to prevent some of the damage they create. Once this gets into the pores of your concrete and it refreezes, it will damage or even destroy your concrete.

For cracks in sidewalks and driveways, use a caulk to fill the void. This prevents moisture from getting into the concrete and causing problems.

Gutters and Downspouts

Before the first snow, look in the gutters and downspouts to make sure all the fall leaves or other debris are cleaned out. As an added measure, run some water from a garden hose to fully clean the gutters out. Make sure you also clean the gutters out with the water, as well, since leaves may have accumulated in there, as well. This will prevent ice from backing up in your gutters and causing damage to your roof and ceiling.

Sprinkler System

Frost can go as deep as three feet so it is very important to blow out your sprinkler system so the ice does not damage it beyond use in the spring. Water is probably still in your lines and freezing temperatures will cause them to bust.

To blow out your sprinkler system, simply shut off your water supply and open the drain on the supply line to allow it to drain. Remove the back flow preventer and hook up an air compressor. This step is crucial and should not be attempted if you are not familiar with the proper procedures. Not allowing the compressor to get too hot or exerting too much pressure is important to prevent further damage to your pipes. Calling a professional for help might be a wise choice to make sure your sprinkler is completely ready for winter.

Winter is a great time of year. However, you need to take a few precautions to make sure you are not left with a few surprises and unexpected expenses when spring rolls around. With the proper planning now, getting your home ready for winter is a relatively easy process.

Two Easy Home Safety Measures: Smoke Alarms and Exterior Door Locks

There are a number of things you can do to have a more secure home. At Charleston Homes, we believe security is one of the most important features in our homes. Two of the easiest, yet often overlooked aspects to have a safer home, are the smoke alarms and exterior door locks.

Smoke Alarm

Charleston Homes wires our smoke alarms throughout the home so they all work together. If one alarm goes off, all of the smoke alarms will go off to alert people throughout the house to a fire. In addition, the alarms have a battery backup in the event of lost power. At Charleston Homes, we also install a smoke alarm in every bedroom so that you will be alerted even if you are sleeping.

You also need to have a regular schedule to change the batteries and test the alarm to ensure it is in proper working order. Many people choose to do this at the beginning and end of daylight savings time. Whenever you choose to do it, maintaining a schedule for your smoke alarm maintenance is important to keep your home as safe as possible.

Exterior Door Locks

Locks are the first line of defense against unwanted intruders in your home. For double security in your front door, Charleston Homes uses a double closure system. This includes a deadbolt and a key lock. These can easily be installed by you or a qualified professional. The double security means that things like picking or breaking a lock is not as easy as it would be without it.

In addition, Charleston Homes doors come with a header and a bottom seal to make each door more structurally sound. This not only keeps unwanted visitors out, but can also add an extra layer of insulation to keep other things like hot and cold temperatures out, as well.

Back doors are also an important consideration when it comes to security. Most slider doors have a typical one closure lock system. This type of lock consists of a top closure which has a hook that goes down. Charleston Homes back slider doors have two closure hooks that add an extra layer of security for the back of your home.

In addition to the double slider door locks, we also recommend a dowel rod or steel safety rod as an additional layer of security for your back door. This prevents someone who is able to break through the hook locks from gaining access to your home.

While it is common knowledge that securing your home is important, it can be difficult to know exactly where to start to give you the type of security you want and need. Starting with your smoke alarm and exterior doors will give you basic safety measures that are relatively easy to maintain.

Quartz vs. Granite Countertops – Which is Best for Your Home?

A big thanks to Consolidated Kitchens and Fireplaces for their expertise on this interesting subject. The next time you need a quality countertop, be sure to check out their website at

When you build a new house, there are many decisions that must be made. It’s important to choose quality products that will last as long as your home. Kitchen countertops are an important part of any home since they will be used literally thousands and thousands of times over the life of the home. But how do you know what you should choose?

Quartz and granite countertops are two of the highest quality countertops on the market today. But, which is best for your home? There are a few considerations to keep in mind when making this important choice.

Quartz Countertops

Quartz countertops offer superior quality and durability. Cambria® is one type of quartz countertop that will give your kitchen cabinets the durability you need in what is frequently the busiest room in your home. Cambria® countertops are 93% granite, mixed with polyester resin.

These quartz countertops are: 

*Scratch resistant
*Won’t allow substance and odors to absorb into the countertop
*Engineered, which means the consistency of the slabs is very consistent from one piece to another.
*Allow for near perfect color matching, even down to the specific color hues

Quartz countertops are a great choice when durability is important, as well as a uniform look and color are considerations in your home.

Granite Countertops

Granite is a natural rock product from the earth. It is composed of quartz, potassium, sodium rich feldspar, and mica.  It is formed near the earth’s core and pushed up to the surface through volcanic activity. It is an excellent choice for countertops, particularly if a more rustic, natural, and earthy feel are what you want to give your home.

Granite countertops are:

*A natural substance
*Scratch resistant
*Vary in appearance from slab, due to the fact they are all natural

 What Can You Do On Quartz and Granite Countertops?

Since both of these types of countertops are such high quality, many questions frequently arise from consumers as to just how durable both of these countertops actually are.

Can I Cut on These Countertops?

 Most likely cutting will just dull your cutlery, but it is possible to take a chip out of these products so it is always recommended to use a cutting board to protect your countertop.

Can I harm these counters with heat? 

Both sustained and dramatic changes in temperature can damage the stone countertops. As a precaution, you should always use a hot pad to protect your countertop.

What Type of Warranty Do These Products Carry?

Cambria® quartz countertops have a limited lifetime warranty. Since this particular type of counter top is man-made, there is no maintenance required on it.

Granite countertops also carry a limited lifetime warranty.  However, since it is a natural product, it does occasionally require a little bit of maintenance that is very simple.

Both quartz and granite countertops offer superior quality to any home. By examining many of the individual differences, you can determine which type is right for your home. CKF is Nebraska's only Accredited Fabricator and Installer for Artisan Natural Granite and Cambria®  Natural Quartz.

Fall Landscaping Tips

Every yard needs a little freshening up by the end of summer. Gone are the scorching sun, heat, and drought of summer. By fall, your yard is ready for a few fall updates and preparing it for the winter chill. With a few simple proactive steps, your yard can be more beautiful and healthier than ever in the spring.

Fall is for Planting

We often think of spring and summer as the best time to plant. While this is true for certain items, fall is the best time to plant trees, plants, and perennials. The warm soil and cool air offers a great recipe for healthy planting. This dynamic duo helps root structures grow and become better established. Spring and summer planting requires surviving hot temperatures. The fall, however, offers a time of less stress on the root system and gives it plenty of time to be established. Vegetation will continue to grow through the winter, as well, provided the ground temperatures are above fifty degrees.

Trees are an excellent choice to plant in the fall. They will provide color, protection from the wind in the winter, and shade in the summer for years to come. These factors can help significantly reduce energy costs for years to come, as well.

In addition, landscapers and nurseries offer larger discounts in the fall to encourage you to plan during this ideal time. You can save hundreds or dollars on larger landscape projects by simply purchasing during the autumn planting season. This allows you to either save a significant amount of money or make your allotted fall planting money go much further than it would just a few short months before.

Winterize Your Lawn

Lawns are usually something we concern ourselves with while the grass is quickly growing and the sun beats down on it, draining it of crucial moisture. However, fall is an excellent time to get your lawn ready for the upcoming cold temperatures.

Water might not seem like something you need to be as concerned about in the fall, but it is important to make sure your lawn is still getting the proper amount of water. Turn down the frequency of water output during the fall months since more water is being absorbed into the ground with the cooler temperatures fall ushers in. Overwatering a lawn in the fall can cause serious problems later.

Irrigating your lawn is another consideration. By making sure you have the proper amount of water on your lawn for the fall, you will help root systems become well-established. Also consider applying a fertilizer to your lawn. This will give it much needed nutrients for the coming months.

Winterize Your Sprinkler System

In order to properly winterize the sprinkler system, you should drain the system completely. It is important to get it ready for winter so that it works properly when spring rolls around. This can be done by calling a professional or even by a knowledgeable sprinkler owner.

Properly draining the sprinkling system will prevent the back flow preventer from cracking and breaking. When this happens, the back flow preventer must be replaced. This should be done early to get ready for any possible unexpected early freezes.

There are a number of considerations in the fall when it comes to your lawn. While your frequency of mowing may decrease, the lawn should still be properly maintained. It is an excellent time to plant, winterize your lawn for winter, and prepare your sprinkler system for the coming winter. Paying extra attention to your lawn in the fall will reap a much healthier, stronger lawn in the spring.

Moving Into Your New Home

Moving into a new home can be an exhilarating experience. The idea of living in your dream home can be one that captures your imagination. However, the concept of moving from one home to another can also hold its own unique stressors for that needs adequate preparation.

What To Expect Prior To Closing

Obviously it would be impossible to move into a new home without closing on it. Charleston Homes tries to make this somewhat stressful process, and the moments before it, as simple as possible.

First, you will walk through the home one final time with a sales associate to make sure that every detail you need accomplished before you move in is done. By this time, there should be little or no work left to do since Charleston Homes staff have already gone over each detail thoroughly, but the last walk-through helps everyone know that the home is in the exact shape it should be.

This final walk-through process should take no longer than 15 minutes.

What To Expect at Closing

Once you arrive at closing you should be confident that things are in order at your new home and everything is ready for your arrival. In fact at this point, the only thing missing from “Home Sweet Home” is you!
Shortly before you arrive to closing, call your lender to double check the exact amount you are bringing to the table for your down payment.

Once you arrive at closing, bring you personal ID. This will help verify your identity throughout the multitudes of paperwork that closing entails.

In addition, be prepared to receive the keys to your new home. As the old saying goes, “Your destiny awaits!” Holding the keys to your new home is an exciting event. Once everything else is complete in the closing process, the moment you have imagined finally has arrived!

Other “Moving Day” Considerations

Scheduling trash pick-up might not be at the top of your list of exciting things to do when you move into a new home. However, it is something that will certainly be noticed if it is not done.

If you live outside of city services, trash removal is something that must be on your “To Do” list when you move into a new home. In addition, you need to change over any utilities from your current residence. If cable or satellite TV is important to you and your family, consider calling your preference of this provider in advance, as well.

Closing on your new home does not need to be a stressful life event. When you make sure that everything is in order and all of the paper work is signed at closing, it’s important to remember the minute details. Things like transferring the utilities and setting up cable television quickly make a new house turn into a home.

The Home Orientation and Walkthrough

When you purchase a home from Charleston Homes, you are purchasing more than just an empty house. We strive to help you take your house from a simple house to a home. Part of making your house into a home is to make sure you understand exactly how everything in your home works.


When we give you a home orientation and walk-through, we will show you things like the kitchen cabinets and make sure that you understand any variances in wood and how to properly maintain them. There are multiple items throughout your new home that we want to make sure you know how to operate and use properly.

Understand How Things Work

Nothing is worse than moving into a new home and having no idea how to use the new appliances and features that come with your new house.
We will walk you through each aspect of you new home, ensuring you know how to use each feature it contains.

Understanding how your new high efficiency furnace works and even things like your new garbage disposal is important. We know you want to move into your custom built home being “in the know.” A new home is more than just aesthetics, but also the functionality of it, as well.

Maintenance and Warranties

How long do your warranties last on your new appliances? What type of maintenance needs to be performed in order for everything to operate the way it should? These are all covered in your home orientation and walk-through.

There are so many things to keep in mind when you move into a new home. It can be overwhelming. When you have a home orientation and walk through with Charleston Homes, we make sure you are up to speed on your new home so your transition is as easy as possible. 

The Importance of the Pre-Construction Meeting

When you build a new home, there are a number of meetings that need to take place to make sure that your Charleston Home is exactly the way you pictured it when you first decided to build a new home. One of the most important meetings is the pre-construction meeting that takes place immediately before construction begins.

Visit the Lot

When you have your pre-construction meeting, you will first go to the lot with the builder to view the actual lot. It is wise to discuss how the house will sit on the lot and where the property lines are. In addition, we will go over grading and drainage around your property.

Go Over Internal Details

Once you meet with the builder at the lot and make sure that your new home is on pace to be exactly as you envision it structurally, it is also very important to go over all of the internal details that your new home will have.

Even though these details may have been revealed in earlier meetings, it is wise to verify these again, as your tastes can change the more you think about how you envision your home. It is also valuable to double check that the sales agent has correctly recorded your wishes.

Final Review of Plans

The last portion of your preconstruction meeting is to review every aspect of your plans with both your builder and sales agent. This ensures you get a final time to go through each and every detail of your new home. It is also an excellent time to ask any questions that you might have that have yet to be answered. Most likely this will be your last opportunity for this type of exchange before construction begins on your home.

Pre-construction meetings are one of the most important steps in building a house. This meeting will give you the opportunity to make sure that the home is customized the way you want it.

3 Reasons Why Now is a Great Time Build a New Home

Since the housing bubble burst a few years ago, many may wonder if buying real estate is a sound investment. The housing market remains steady, so not only is now a great time to buy, it’s a great time to build a new house, as well.

Why is the housing market ripe for building a home? Here are 3 reasons that you might consider if you have thought of buying or building a home in the last several months:

Reason #1: Right Now You Can Get the Best Interest Rates in History

Although interest rates vary from loaning institution to loaning institution, one thing is certain: it will be a low rate. With the state of the economy in the last few months, people have been nervous to invest. Banks and other lenders have responded with lower rates. They are practically begging you to borrow money from them for an incredibly low rate.

Rates are so low you can save $100- to $200 per month on a new mortgage. What you do with that extra money is up to you. Maybe you want to build a bigger and better house than you could afford a few months ago. Or, perhaps pocketing an extra couple hundred dollars every month that you can use elsewhere in your budget is more appealing. Whatever your wishes are, you will save money if you choose to build today.

Reason #2: Large Availability of Lots

In the Omaha area today, there are about 17,000 lots available. This is such a large amount that it will take several years for them all to be purchased for a new home.

The real question becomes, “Where do you want to live?” The massive availability of lots right now makes so many great neighborhoods and communities in the Omaha area a possible new home location.

With the influx of so many plots of land available there are more willing and able people looking to build a home. This leads to great pricing from developers all that want you to live in their neighborhoods.

Reason #3: Construction Costs Have Stayed Low

After the economic slowdown over the previous year, construction costs have fluctuated. Some builders are offering an incredible value to help build your dream home.

Here’s great news: Those prices are still rock bottom low.
You can have much more house built for the same money as a smaller home would be built just months ago. Now is the time to snatch up these low construction prices.

Here’s the bad news: We don’t know how long those prices will stay this low. That means in the very near future, constructions costs could rise dramatically. As a result, anyone considering building a home needs to act quickly to make sure they secure the current low building costs.

These are 3 great reasons if you have even considered building a home, you should act now. It’s not often that you will see record breaking low interest rates, a large availability of land, and low constructions costs all at the same time. If there has ever been a time to build a new home in the Omaha area, it is now!

The Steps of Building a New Home

Deciding to build your own home is a big, but exciting decision. There are several things to keep in mind as you look to build your own home and create the home of which you always dreamed.

The First Steps When Thinking About Building a Home

From the moment you decide that building a new home might be in your future plans, you need to consider a few things to make sure you take the right steps from the start to build a home that is both affordable and possible.

Selling Your Current Home: If you have a home to sell, talk to a local real estate agent so you can know exactly how much your current home is worth. They will help you determine the equity you have in your home and, as a result, you will know exactly how much money you have invested in your current home that you can put towards the home you would like to build.

Get Pre-Approved for Your Home Loan: Once you know exactly how much equity you can use towards your new home, contact your bank or loaning institution of your choice. Getting pre-approved for a loan early in the process will help you know exactly how much money you have to invest in a new home. This will also prevent you from falling in love with a potential home that is completely out of your price range.

Determine the Style of Home You Want: Determining exactly what your family will need in the next few decades from a home you are considering building can be a bit daunting. Contact Charleston Homes to get an idea of the types of home they build and evaluate how each plan could meet the requirements you have for your new home.

Find a Lot: The Sales Team at Charleston Homes can help you find a lot that is perfect for the type of home you want to build. They can help you find the right location, anywhere in the Omaha Metro area!

The Advantages to Building Your Own Home

Maybe you always dreamed of what it would be like to build your own home. Or, possibly you cannot find the exact home that meets your unique specifications. Whatever the reason you are considering building your own home, there are several advantages that you can look forward to as you watch your new home appear from the ground up.

Warranty: One of the greatest advantages of building your own home is the control you have over the selection of what goes into the home and the fact that each item chosen is new. With items like new appliances, there is generally a warranty. This warranty allows you to rest assured you will not be encountering any unexpected expenses for that particular item for an extended period of time. For example, there is no need to budget for possible air conditioner repairs for a few years since any problems would easily be covered by the original warranty.

In addition, Charleston Homes provides a one year “bumper to bumper” warranty that covers most everything on new construction.

You are the First Owner: Another great advantage to building your own home is the fact that you are the first owner of a home. You know exactly how well it has been cared for. This allows you and your family to make a long term investment in quality that you will care for in a way that will prevent numerous repairs in the first several years in your new home.

In addition, since you are first owner, able to pick out the exact style and quality of the items you want in your home. This includes items like carpet, appliances, counter top, siding, and a variety of other items that will be a part of your new home.

Building a new home can seem a bit overwhelming initially. However, the staff at Charleston Homes makes the process easier for you, by breaking the process into several manageable steps.

For more information, please contact one of our Sales Team at 502-5600 or 934-2212.

REALTOR Appreciation Month

At Charleston Homes, we are taking time to acknowledge Realtors in the Omaha Metro area. That is why June is designated as “Realtor Appreciation Month!”

Throughout the month we’re offering you some great incentives! Those Realtors who register with their buyers in Charleston Homes models will receive a $50 gas card. Also, if you sell one of our selected inventory homes you can earn up to $2500 in cash bonuses. And we continue to pay 3% on all of our inventory homes all year round!

We will also be hosting a couple of open houses to show our appreciation. On June 16th we will be showcasing our Portal Ridge models on 101st and Giles from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., and on June 23 we will be at 150th and Fort showing our Saddlebrook models. At both of these events you can enjoy wine, cheese and prize drawings! You won’t want to miss out on the Grand Prize drawing!

So, come see what Charleston Homes has to offer you and your clients. . . you could win big! Remember, the special incentives are just during the month of June. We look forward to seeing you soon! If you have any questions or for more information, feel free to call our Saddlebrook Sales Team at 934-2214, or our Portal Ridge Sales Team at 502-5600.

Why You Can Feel Confident About the Quality of Your Charleston Home.

When building a new home, you do not want preventable mistakes and setbacks to take up time and money. Also, you want to make this usually stressful experience more enjoyable by knowing that professionals are there to make sure you get the quality home you deserve. At Charleston Homes, we go above and beyond to make sure you get the most value out of your newly-built home.

So what exactly is "Quality Assurance?" Generally, it refers to the monitoring of some kind of project to assure quality – as the term suggests. There are two main goals of the quality assurance process: that mistakes are minimized before they even happen and that everything is constructed correctly for its intended purpose.

At Charleston Homes, the Quality Assurance Process is carried out by the superintendent. This person’s main responsibilities include making sure projects are done on time, everything is installed correctly and most importantly, that your house is well built.

Pre-Check … First to Arrive at the Scene!

Charleston Homes prides themselves on their commitment to superior quality, keeping your home values in mind – this is why our superintendent arrives prior to the city inspector, to make sure the home meets safety regulations and applicable building codes.

During the “frame check,” we make certain that everything is in order and properly prepared for the upcoming stages of construction. Our commitment to each client individually is illustrated through our eye for small errors that may have occurred during construction that were overlooked; things like unclosed floor seams due to unexpected rainy weather won't make it past our critical eyes. These are the small details that we care about, so the home building process doesn’t miss a beat.

Attention to Detail

Here at Charleston Homes, our superintendents are trusted and highly knowledgeable about home building. Whether it’s nail plates, insulation, sealants or lateral bracing, we go above and beyond the standard checks, even before the city inspector gets there. We ensure the house meets our high standards during every stage throughout the building process.

Check, and Double Check

We never want you to feel unsure about your new home, so we work and communicate with you to make sure all the construction is going according to your plans and selections. Sometimes, it is hard for a client to tell with his or her own eyes if something looks off – that is why we’re here for you. We are your eyes, ears and “hands” into the world of home building.

You are Important to Us

Our Quality Assurance Process requires considerable attention to detail. We provide this, while also striving to exceed your expectations through a systematic and trustworthy process of inspection. We care about the long-term quality of your home and will stand by your side throughout the process. We want a Charleston Home to be “your next home,” and we can achieve it together.

If you have further questions or comments, call us at our Saddlebrook location at 402.934.2212 or at our Portal Ridge location at 402.502.5600.

Why Build with Charleston Homes?

There are countless advantages that come with building a brand new home. A home is a space that you will reside in for a good portion of your life, so it is important that it meets all you aesthetic and functional needs. Let Charleston Homes be your partner throughout the home-building process, and we will ensure you get the very most throughout the planning, constructing and furnishing processes.

Charleston Homes can also assist you in looking for a house that is already built, by making sure it still meets your requirements and is personal, even though it may not have been built under you direction.

Consider Lofts!

Charleston Homes offers various different floor plan options to accommodate your needs: ranches, one-and-a-half story and two-story homes are all available. But one featured aspects of some of the homes we have recently constructed is the loft plan. Some home buyers may be confused about what a loft is, exactly, and the different uses of it. Let’s explain…

A loft is an attic-like space that not portioned off into rooms, but fashioned more like a studio. It traditionally resides right below the roof of a house. A loft basically provides a blank slate for all types of activities and usage. Here are just a few ideas:

Game Room - Spend some quality family time in a game room loft, or let the kids use the space for all of their toys! A loft provides lots of room to move around freely and spread out a bevy of play things. You can also let the kids be as loud as they want if you consider getting the room soundproofed.

Spare Bedroom - A loft makes a quaint extra bedroom for friends and family. While it may be smaller than a normal bedroom, you can always up its appeal by adding extra electrical sockets and lighting.

Hobby Space - If you ever just want time for yourself to do your own thing, a loft is a great place to do so, and you can partake in your interests without disturbing anyone else in the house. Sewing, kickboxing, painting, and hundreds of other hobbies can be well accommodated in a loft.

Storage - If you need extra space to stow away unused or seasonal items, a loft is perfect! Whether you need the storage space permanently or just for a few weeks, a loft is a versatile room that works great for stashing away idle items.

The only thing to be weary of when planning the usage of loft space is weight – some loft floors can only handle so much weight, so keep the amount of furniture and equipment in mind when furnishing the space.

Personalize Your Living Space!

Here at Charleston Homes, you come first. We work hard to meet your every desire and create the house of your dreams. Different flooring, siding, countertops, windows and appliances are in your hands, and can be combined in different ways to fit your vision.

As opposed to moving into a pre-furnished home, you have a more prominent role in deciding the overall look and feel of your new home. Location is also an option you have, on account of Charleston Homes currently does not own any particular property.With the location option, you gain the advantage of setting up shop in a chosen location that is in proximity to your work and activities.

Let Us Put You at Ease

The home-building process can be stressful and pricey, but when working with Charleston Homes, we will make the process as enjoyable as possible, as it should be. We want to make your new home special, because we know it’s important to you and your family.

For more information on Charleston Homes, various floor plans, model locations and financing, visit our Web site at

The Truth about Sanitary Improvement Districts (SID)

New Home Buyers – Learn All About Sanitary Improvement Districts from Charleston Homes!

Hey, Luke Ediger with Charleston Homes here in Omaha! Recently, I got some great information from Walt Slobotski of NP Dodge about sanitary improvement districts or otherwise know as an SIDs.

Now, I know this isn’t the most exciting topic in the world! However, it’s one of the first questions new home buyers ask when they come to Charleston because they want to know how it will affect their taxes.

First, some background on SIDs in case you’re not familiar with them. Well, any time a new subdivision is created it has to be financed because new streets, new lighting, new streets, etc. have to be created.

So, a SID is essentially a financing tool, and it’s used extensively in the state of Nebraska and, especially, Omaha.

Second, with the recent economic turmoil in the nation, some new home buyers worry that they’ll get stuck with sudden and dramatic rises in taxes if a SID finds itself in financial trouble.

There are government safeguards in place to help protect homeowners!

Now, another question new home buyers often ask is, “When I build a new home in a subdivision, how much higher are my taxes going to be in comparison to established homes?”

The answer is they will be higher, but not by much! Remember, you’re paying for new everything – sewers, roads, lighting, etc. – so, you’re getting the benefit of the latest technology and a wonderful living environment.

If you’d like to learn more about this subject, contact us today. Our numbers are 402.502.5600 or 402.934.2212! Or drop us a line at!

Things to Look For When Selecting a Lot for Your New Home!

Today we’re going to offer you some money-saving, frustration-preventing advice on selecting a lot for your new home, so let’s get started!

Your first determination is location – where exactly are you going to build your home?

The second is…what type of house are you going to build? In terms of lots, there’s a difference between building, say, a two-story and a ranch house.

Now, these determinations are critical for two simple reasons: One, the house has to fit on the lot. And, two, it has to meet the covenant requirements within the neighborhood.

For example, for setbacks, some neighborhoods require a five-foot side yard while others mandate a seven-foot one, etc. (You can find information about the covenants for particular neighborhoods online.)

Then, there are the things you simply never expect like encroachments, power lines, pedestals, or even fire hydrants located in the middle of your driveway!

That’s why you need to work with professional builders like us. We’re highly experienced at spotting such problems and helping you to avoid or overcome them before you waste precious money and time.

Now, you may be curious as to what types of lots are available in our area. Well, in general, there are three kinds, as described next.

The Flat Lot

From the street, the lot rises slightly (3’ to 6’) to the house area. This type keeps the drainage going all the way around the house and to the street.

The Daylight Lot

From the street, this lot also rises slightly, but then drops off a bit more steeply (3’ to 6’ feet). The slightly steeper drop-off allows the bottom windows of your house to have a great view.

The Walkout Lot

From the street, this lot also rises slightly, but comes down more steeply in the rear (6’ +). In the rear, water will draw toward the back, while, in the front, water drains to the street. Plus, of course, you can “walk out” from the lower level, often beneath a deck, into your backyard.

Bottom line: Every lot is different, and there are a lot of factors to consider! That’s why it’s important to work with building professionals early in the process.

To find out more, call us today at
Saddlebrook (934-2212) or Portal Ridge (502-5600)

Or, contact us on the web at!

Charleston Homes Celebrates 3 Years!

We at Charleston Homes want to personally thank you for helping to make us a success! It’s our third anniversary on April 1, and, naturally, we wanted to celebrate a bit by giving you evidence of the success you helped to create:

• Since we started in 2007, we’ve sold over 160 homes!
• To date, we’ve doubled our sales each year!
• In 2009, we sold 81 homes and closed on 64!
• We have a new corporate office, more staff, and more streamlined processes!

And – you know what? – we did it all in one of the worst economies since the Great Depression! And we couldn’t have done it without you – our customers. You’re our most valuable asset, and we just wanted to let you know that we appreciate you every day!

Come visit our 7 models and see why Charleston Homes should be your next home! Or give us a call at 402–502–5600 or 402-934-2212!

Location - One of the Most Important Factors When Building YOUR Next Home!

Did you know that location is one of the most important factors to consider when building a new home?

Why is it so important? Well, for several reasons, but one of the biggest lies in the future! By this, I mean that the home’s location is likely to have a significant impact on the resale value of that home.

Now, of course, there’s no guarantee as to how much a home will appreciate over the years, but, historically, they’ve had a significant increase in their value long-term. They’re a great investment!So, this tells you that you should definitely choose a location carefully when building a new home.

Here’s an example:

Take two houses in the same neighborhood. One is in the middle of the neighborhood while the other is on the corner of a busy street. Most people feel the one in the middle will have more value because it’ll be quieter and there’ll be less danger to children.

The school system is also a vital element in terms of choosing a location for your new home.
Everyone wants their children to have the best education possible.

Another factor is neighborhood amenities – swimming pools, walking paths, parks, etc. Such neighborhoods may cost you more in terms of homeowner association fees, but the extra amount can be well worth it for the pleasure all these amenities provide.

We can help you find the perfect location when you contact one of our sales agents.

We build in Omaha, Bellevue, Papillion, Gretna, Bennington, and Elkhorn. And, we know everything there is to know about those neighborhoods! We love to talk about our wonderful homes and how they can be the perfect place for you and your family.

Contact us today by giving one of our agents a call at 402-502-5600  or 402-934-2212 or check out our website at

Better yet, come out and visit one of our models as soon as possible at 150th and Fort or 101st and Giles.

3 Things You Must Know When Financing Your New Home

A special thanks to Mellody Fairbanks of The Fairbanks Team for this interview. Mellody is one of the premier loan officers in the Omaha area, and she has a ton of valuable experience.

She and I agree that there are three extremely important areas that you, as a home buyer, need to know about when financing a new home. Why? Because those areas will definitely cost you money unless you act now! Let me explain each of those areas so you can understand exactly how they’ll affect you.

Area 1: Interest Rates

Although it may not seem like it, interest rates have been extremely low over the past year or so. One reason they’ve been low is that the federal government bought over a trillion dollars of mortgage-backed securities to stabilize the housing market.

But, that program ends March 31! And that means there won’t be as much money out there after that time. As a result, it’s likely that interest rates will go up.

So, for example, let’s assume you’re looking at a $200,000 Charleston Home with a 5% interest rate on the mortgage loan.If that interest rate rises to 6% after March 31, then you’ll be paying about an extra $125 per month. Over the life of a 30-year mortgage, that adds up to…well, you don’t need to do the math to realize that’s a lot of money!

The net result is that you won’t be able to get as much house as you wanted! So, our recommendation – act now and save a bundle to get the home you really want!

Area 2: Loan Process Changes

Over the past year or so, there have been around 300 changes in the loan application process as the federal government has tightened its rules and regulations to protect consumers and the market. Everything must now be fully documented. Be aware that there’s plenty of money out there; you just need a loan professional like Mellody to coach you through a slightly more complicated process. Net result – deal with a preferred lender to save time and stress! Mellody or other Omaha loan professionals will make your experience a smooth and enjoyable one!

Area 3: Credit Score

As part of the fed’s tightening of the mortgage market, they’ve required that credit scores be raised in order for home buyers to qualify for a loan. My recommendation is to work with a preferred lender upfront to review your credit report.


Because sometimes there are blemishes on the report that can hurt your score. Hey, it happens to the best of people! All you need to do is work with a lender to get pre-approved upfront. He or she can coach you to get rid of those errors so you can raise your score and get the home you always wanted and deserve!

So, don’t delay! Call us right now at 402-502-5600: Mellody and I would love to talk to you!

Value Engineering Sets Charleston Homes Head and Shoulders Above Other Omaha Builders!

Hi, I’m Jim Nickman! As Director of Production for Charleston Homes, value is my main concern; that is, value for you in one of our fine homes! It’s all part of our unique “value engineering” concept.

Now, let me define what that concept means for you right from the start.

For some builders, value simply means saving money. We have a far different (and better) idea. To us, value means, we build the best possible product at the most reasonable price we can give you!

Let me back that statement up with some real proof about the elements that go into each and every one of our homes:

Wall Studs

We use Engineered Studs to give you straighter, truer walls! Now, these studs cost us three to four times more to put in than with typical 2” by 4” construction, but we give you a better, finished product!


Often, people don’t think at all about subfloors, but they must be of sturdy construction because, of course, they get walked on every day! We use a 23/32” Oriented Strand Board (OSB) tongue and groove subfloor system in all our homes.

Some builders save money for themselves by using 5/8” flooring, but, to us, that’s the not best value for our customers. Instead, we use the OSB subfloor system to give extra rigidity and a snug, reliable fit!


In Charleston homes, we use a Plaster-of Paris-type of material around all the tubs and showers. This eliminates or minimizes the amount of squeaking you sometimes get from movement in those tubs and showers. Not every builder in our area does this!

Engineered Floor Truss System

We use an engineered floor truss system in all our homes. These systems are engineered to carry a specific load at a particular point in the house.

That means every joist is where it should be, which helps carry loads straight down through the house. In turn, this increases the rigidity of the floor and provides extra strength where necessary.

Another beauty of the engineered floor truss system is that it creates what’s called an “open web” design. That means you can create a much more open and spacious basement because there aren’t any unsightly beams, columns, or ductwork to consider!


When you visit one of our homes or see one under construction, you’ll find blue flashing all around our windows in addition to the standard caulking.

This flashing helps with air filtration and eliminates or minimizes moisture penetration! It’s just another way that Charleston Homes adds value to your home because it saves you money on maintenance costs in the long run!

By now, I’m sure you can see that true quality is built into every one of our homes because of our commitment to the best value for our customers.

But, hey, don’t take my word for it! Come talk to us at Charleston homes so we can demonstrate that quality for you. Contact us at 402.502.5600 or visit our web site at

Five Insider Secrets to Hiring a Trustworthy Home Builder

Building your own home is one of the most exciting and important decisions you’ll make in your life. That’s why it’s important to make that decision based on vital facts and information.

I’d like to help you with that process by providing you with five steps for choosing the best builder for your needs.
I guarantee you that if you follow these guidelines, you’ll save time, money, and a whole of energy!

Step 1: Determine Your Budget

Talk to your lender about the budget you’ll need in order to build a home. And then, once that budget is set, stay within it!

Remember, building a new home is often a conceptual process, and that means costs can get out of control in a hurry if you’re not careful.

Also, keep in mind that many builders work with preferred lenders which can streamline the whole loan process because lenders know exactly what paperwork they need from the builder and vice versa.

Step 2: Search for the Right Builder

The best thing you can do is to go onto the Internet and Google 'builders' in Omaha, Nebraska. There’s a lot of free information on lots of great builders in the Omaha area. Compare price points, where the builders build, how they operate, etc.

By the way, you’ll find three kinds of builders around here, generally speaking:

1. Custom builders – These builders work from designs and blueprints to build a home “from scratch.” Their homes start at around $200,000 and can go up in a hurry because it takes so much time and effort to build such homes. Remember, the more time it takes to build a home, the more money it will cost you. 

2. Semi-custom builders
– These builders, like Charleston Homes, have several floor plans you can choose from. For example, Charleston has seven floor plans to suit your needs. That means we can move things around within those floor plans (but not the foundation). It also means you can build your home on a lot in the neighborhood of your choosing…get the colors you want, etc.

3. Production builders
– These builders own their own land and may build 300+ homes a year. You can’t make changes at all on these homes.

Step 3: Start Visiting Models

Once you’ve selected several builders to investigate, start visiting model homes and take a look at key features in terms of quality and workmanship.

Equally important, pay attention to the sales associate and his/her communication! Remember, you’ll have a long-term relationship during the building process so you want good two-way communication. You want to know upfront that they’ll be listening to you and meeting your needs.

Step 4: Visit a Construction Site

Look for builders’ representatives willing to accompany you to one of their homes under construction. After all, they should be proud of their work and not have anything to hide.

Check the condition of the work site. Clean worksites are safe worksites, plus it shows pride in the quality of the work being done exactly what you want for your home.

Step 5: Ask to Meet with the Builder

A builder should be willing to meet so you can ask a lot of technical questions; for example,…What kind of insulation?…What type of windows?...etc.

In the process of asking questions, determine how well the builder communicates with you. Remember, this is a long-term relationship so you want open and clear communication at all times.

Alright, I hope you enjoyed learning about the steps for selecting a builder, and I recommend you follow them so you get the best home for the money within a reasonable time!

To learn more about the process of new construction with Charleston Homes or any other builder…call us right now at 402.934.2212, email us today
, or better yet, come out and visit one of our models as soon as possible at 150th & Fort or 101st & Giles right here in Omaha, NE.

Welcome to Our New Video Blog! - The 5 Key Advantages of New Construction over Existing Homes!

Welcome to our new video blog! Every two weeks, we'll post a short video tip you can use for preventative maintenance, home improvement, and long-term appreciation of your residence. What topics would you like us to discuss? Join us on Facebook, Twitter or leave a comment on our blog with your feedback and ideas - we appreciate what you have to say!

I want to start this message with a fact that may surprise you – you can build a new home for a price similar to that of an existing home in today’s market! And for that price, you get five key benefits you won’t be able to enjoy if you purchase an existing home. Let me explain what those benefits are so you can make an informed decision.

Key Advantage #1: Flexibility and Originality!

With new construction, you can design your home exactly the way you want it. Instead of having to settle for somebody else’s design, you’re able to put your new home in a location you want…how you want it…in the color you want it, etc. In short, when you build, you’ll have a home you love right from the start!

Key Advantage #2: Safety and Energy Efficiency!

New homes are much safer than older existing homes. That’s because they have to meet updated building codes. So, you can be sure there’ll be no dangerous asbestos or lead in any part of your home. Everything – windows, siding, roof, wiring, etc. – will meet all current local, state and federal codes.

And this means you’ll also save money on energy costs because new construction makes maximum use of the latest “green” technology!

Key Advantage #3: Flexible Floor Plans!

With existing homes, you may get a “functionally obsolete” floor plan; in other words, you can’t easily change that plan to suit your needs. For example, they used to put bathrooms in kitchens! Just think of how expensive it can be to alter that kind of arrangement!

Our new construction avoids this kind of inflexible situation with open floor plans. These plans allow for very easy and inexpensive changes as your living needs change. Simply put, they’re just great for today’s style of living!

Key Advantage #4: Modern Amenities

When you build a new home in a new neighborhood, you get the best amenities available in that neighborhood – new schools, new roads, new utilities, and the access to all the newest businesses in the area!

Key Advantage #5: Peace of Mind!

New homes come with a warranty so you know you’re protected against defects for a minimum of one year. And many companies offer extended warranties! This is a huge advantage you won’t get with the purchase of an existing home!

So, there you have it – five great benefits of building a new home! Hey, to learn about more benefits of new construction with Charleston Homes…call me at 402.502.5600, email me today at or, better yet, come out and visit us as soon as possible at 5304 North 150th Street Omaha, NE 68116!

What topics would you to see on our blog? Leave a comment below and let me know!......