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SL Parade of Homes to feature solar panels, LEED-certified homes

The model unit at Broadway Tower, owned by DaVinci Homes, will be one of 36 homes/condos featured in the Salt Lake Parade of Homes.

By Kelly Lux

Real Estate News Utah

The 63rd Annual Salt Lake Parade of Homes, the longest consecutive running parade of its kind in the United States, will showcase popular trends in residential building for 2009, including solar panels, LEED Certification and a new concept known as “universal design.”
“The Parade is where builders can strut their stuff, where new features are shown in homes to the consumers for the first time,” said Curt Dowdle, executive officer of the Salt Lake Home Builders Association, host of the Salt Lake Parade of Homes. “It is where we display the newest and latest and greatest ideas in home building.”
Dowdle said the solar panels will be presented as a standard in homes valuing less than $220,000 — until now, homes in that price range did not include the panels except as an extra option. One homebuilder will be exhibiting an LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Certified home. Another builder will showcase a universally-designed home, or a home built to meet the needs of people of all ages and abilities, Dowdle said.
“All kinds of new innovations are typically displayed for the first time at the Parade,” Dowdle said.
These and other features will, hopefully, Dowdle said, stimulate sales in the real estate industry — the primary purpose behind the establishment of the Parade 63 years ago.
While the Parade remains to encourage interest in the housing industry, the Salt Lake Home Builders Association has made changes this year to accommodate more affordablehomes that are selling in a down market. In fact, Dowdle said 19 of the 36 featured homes are priced under $350,000.
“We moved the market,” Dowdle said, explaining that there are fewer new homes priced above $350,000 on the market since financing for the higher-priced homes is harder to obtain. To ensure the Parade was still viable during the housing crisis, Dowdle said the SLHBA decided to adjust the market, making it an “affordability parade.”
To accommodate the ranging prices in Parade homes, the SLHBA created Parade categories: Traditional Homes, Builder Models and ‘Spec’tacular Homes.
Traditional Homes, according to the Salt Lake Parade Web site, are brand new homes — fully landscaped and decorated — that will be judged by Parade attendees. Builder Models are homes that are open by home designers on a daily basis throughout the year as model homes and can be rebuilt on nearby lots by the showcasing builders, Dowdle said. ‘Spec’tacular Homes have been built on speculation, without landscaping or furnishings, and are available for purchase. Mortgage loan companies will be on site at the spec homes to assist interested buyers.
However, the Parade isn’t just for people who are interested in buying a home. Dowdle said the annual event is for everybody. Many of the more than 20,000 people who have attended in previous years, and who are expected to attend this year, go to see the interior decorating, the landscaping and the architecture showcased in the parade, he said. But even those who are just window-shopping sometimes end up buying a house, Dowdle said.
“We end up selling houses to people,” Dowdle said. “If you come out, we will pique your interest in a new home.”
Tickets to the Salt Lake Parade of Homes are $10 — a steal if you ask Dowdle, who says you can’t buy a ticket anywhere else in the world and see as much. The event runs for three full weeks from Aug. 7 to Aug. 23. The homes will be open daily from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Dowdle suggests parade goers take their time and plan on spending a few nights in order to see all 36 featured homes. Tickets can be purchased online at
Participating Builders:
Bangerter Homes
Building Group
Carlco Builders
Cashman Development
Center Pointe Development
DaVinci Homes
Destination Homes
Fieldstone Homes
Garbett Homes
Gary Anderson Construction
Gold Medallion Homes
Gullbrandsen Communities
Hamlet Homes
HardRock Homes
Hearthside Homes
Holmes Homes
Huckleberry Homes
Icon Building Group
Ivory Homes
J&J Sons Construction
Jar-Con Construction & Development
Kaizen Construction
Legacy Custom Homes
Pepperdign Homes
Premier Properties
Rainey Homes
Signature Development
Steven Dailey Construction
Taylors Walk
Wright Homes


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