BY CHRISTINE TASSE

Looking to buy a new home? Congratulations! Starting the search for a new home can be so stressful, but I am here to remind you that it can also be easy and exciting.

Considering a new build is a completely different experience than buying a resale. When thinking of a resale the first thing that comes to mind is high pressure and quick decisions. I’m here to remind you that timing, patience and being informed is what led my husband Joe and I to buy new with Activa.

Why Vista Hills?

There is a lot to consider when choosing the location of your new home. We were immediately drawn to Vista Hills. Although the neighbourhood is set slightly back, you are only minutes to The Boardwalk and Costco. All the amenities you need are right at your fingertips, not to mention the neighbourhood is surrounded with over 200 acres of protected forest. There are trail heads located throughout the neighbourhood for easy access and a park within a 5-minute walk from every home. This is a great feature for families and couples who enjoy getting outside and being active.

Selecting Your Perfect Home

Once we decided Vista Hills would be the location of our future home, we were tasked next with picking our lot location and model. Activa offers various lot sizes and models and each size lot offers a few models that fit on that lot size. We went with a 36-foot lot located on a quiet street. The model we chose was the Magnolia, which features 3 bedrooms, 2.5 bathrooms and a family room loft.

Your choices start immediately with optional structural upgrades. We were given the option to relocate the laundry from the mud room up to the 2nd floor hallway and chose to turn the family room loft into a 4thbedroom. Last but certainly not the least, we upgraded to the luxe ensuite, featuring a HUGE soaker tub and walk in shower. Not to mention his and her sinks!

Notable mentions include 9 ft ceilings come standard on the main floor and the option to upgrade the basement ceiling to 9 ft if you choose. You can also upgrade your sliding back door from 6 ft to 8 ft. This is a great added feature for summer entertaining in the backyard!

Picking your finishing touches

Activa truly shines in the design process- figuratively and literally. Wait until you see all the beautiful features displayed in various different rooms at the Design Studio. It offers so much more than other builders in the area. You will be assigned a Design Consultant who will help you pick all your finishes from floors, cabinetry, hardware and more. The options are endless! You start with the standard and add on from there. For those new to this process, standard defines what comes included with your house which features a full selection of materials and colours. All the upgrades from standard have assigned additional charges. Your Design Consultant helps you keep track of everything and can give you a hand in making your selections.

We really put Maggie (our amazing and brilliant design consultant) to the test with our kitchen and ensuite. When you say personalize, Activa says yes! Activa worked with us to create the perfect kitchen layout to accommodate a build in oven and microwave, as well as a bar fridge. Our ensuite consisted of adding extra cabinets for added storage and two-tone tile in our walk-in shower.

Breaking Ground

This might have been my favourite part… Getting that email from Activa that the building phase had begun! All of a sudden, Vista Hills suddenly became a stop I often made on my way home. Seeing progress week over week was certainly very exciting, as an empty patch of land quickly started to resemble a home.

It’s important to remember that it is still a construction zone. Entering your framed home is strictly off limits, but don’t worry, you will be given the opportunity to walk through it with your Activa Customer Experience Coordinator.

Seeing Progress

You will get a few opportunities to enter your home with your Customer Experience Coordinator. This is your main contact for all building inquiries and questions and you will get to meet them at your first Design appointment!

Your first meeting will be the pre-drywall appointment. This consists of walking through your home with your CEC and making sure all the electrical is positioned correctly and any possible light fixtures/other features have been relocated accordingly.

You will have a couple more opportunities to enter your home depending on any custom additions or extras that may need sign off. We got the opportunity to enter again after our cabinetry in the kitchen and ensuite had been installed to ensure all the upgrades we made were correctly delivered.

Your last appointment is pre-delivery and this occurs about 1 week before your closing date. This is your last chance to call out any imperfections in the paint or incorrect upgrades. Activa will walk through your home with you and make sure every faucet, shower and light are functioning in your home. We took this opportunity to take final measurements for a few furniture items we were thinking of purchasing.


Delivery

This is it! The moment you’ve been waiting for. We waited about a year from purchase to delivery, so to say we were excited was a complete understatement! Our home was absolutely perfect. We did a quick walk through that morning, and once the lawyers had all signed off, the keys were left in the lockbox and just like that, we were home! We were so excited that we moved in that same night!

Activa has implemented every measure to make sure building your new home is as easy and seamless as possible. They are flexible and open to working with you on any request and I am confident they would go above and beyond for you, just as they did for us!