Kettler Forlines Homes Blog

Blog Category - Tips

Hosting Thanksgiving? Time to start prepping!

Categories: Tips | Posted: November 16, 2018 | Comments Off on Hosting Thanksgiving? Time to start prepping!

You love Thanksgiving. The traditions and togetherness. Family and friends gathering around. And, now that you are all settled in your brand new Kettler Forlines home, you’ve volunteered to host Thanksgiving dinner. But the magnitude of the task has just hit you. Don’t sweat it. You can do it – and make it look effortless – thanks to your new state-of-the-art kitchen and a flexible open floor plan! Here are some tips for making your first Thanksgiving in your new home easy-as-pumpkin pie!

Invite early. The key to a stress-free Thanksgiving is to plan early. Once you commit to hosting, the first thing you need to do is invite everyone you want to come. Even the last minute types are likely to make Thanksgiving plans early in November, so start putting feelers out there ASAP. In the meantime, start thinking about where you’re going to put everybody. (Kettler Forlines’ versatile, open floor plans make this part soooo much easier!)

Be organized. Planning and organizing is imperative. It’s the only way to make sure you don’t find yourself with missing ingredients, a house that’s a mess, and hours of cooking still to be done when your guests arrive. Start by making a schedule leading up to dinner, along with to-do lists, and shopping lists. (Lists are Organization 101. They let you see everything you need… and checking things off feels sooo good!)  

Plan your menu. The big day will be here before you know it, and you need a gameplan. The first step? Figure out what’s on the menu. Chances are, your guests will want to bring things… you just have to tell them what you need. Once you have the menu set, start shopping for non-perishables (e.g. baking ingredients, bread cubes, herbs & spices), and designate a corner of your spacious pantry “Thanksgiving Central”. Closer to the day, head to one of our local farmers markets or orchards for fresh fruits and veggies!

Cook in advance. Don’t stress out trying to cook everything on Thanksgiving Day. Create a timeline, and figure out what can be made ahead of time. Casseroles can be premade. Vegetables can be chopped and ready to steam. Some things can’t be cooked early, like the turkey, but almost everything else in the meal can be prepped and ready to just pop on the stovetop or into the oven. Let’s put that new state-of-the-art kitchen to work!

Set up in advance. Establish your dining space (formal dining room, the family room, maybe even the sunroom). Figure out if you’re having a sit down meal or a buffet-style repast. Then, as long as you don’t have to worry about pets or small children upsetting things, set everything up days before the event. That way you won’t be scrambling to find the extra chairs that are somewhere in the garage; cleaning the dust off the extra wine glasses that are on that high shelf in the kitchen; and counting the flatware only to discover you don’t have enough right before the first guest arrives.

Offer snacks before dinner. Tasty appetizers benefit the chef as much as the guests. Bowls of nuts, some crackers and cheese, and trays of crudité or hot apps strategically placed in the living room or lower level rec room will keep them busy munching while you finish up!  

Keep the kids entertained. For children, it seems like Thanksgiving dinner takes forever to land on the table. Keep ‘em occupied with games out in the yard, and movies or craft projects in the rec room.

Above all, relax and enjoy. Let your guests marvel at the incredibly family-friendly design of your new Kettler Forlines home, while you perform culinary magic in your new kitchen! Learn more about our homes at kettlerforlineshomes.com.

Come to the Mountain… Sugarloaf Mountain in Maryland!

Categories: Tips | Posted: October 9, 2018 | Comments Off on Come to the Mountain… Sugarloaf Mountain in Maryland!

One of the best parts of living in a Kettler Forlines home is the location. We are surrounded with natural beauty and tons of recreational opportunities. A particular favorite is Sugarloaf Mountain in Maryland. This geologic wonder is breathtaking and stunning – and so closeby!  

  1. Indulge your inner naturalist. Sugarloaf is a paradise of indigenous flora and fauna. You can walk for miles along the trails, logging different species of animals (owls, hawks, wild turkeys,snakes, deer, foxes, rabbits and more!), trees (oaks, poplars, birches, hemlocks), and wildflowers!
  2. Bring your picnic basket. The scenic overlooks are a prime spot for picnics. Since the mountain stands over 800 feet above the farmland below it, the views are outstanding.
  3. Go exploring. Whether on bike, horseback or foot, the trails that meander through Sugarloaf Mountain in Maryland will take you on quite an adventure. There are a variety of trails, so you can explore different parts of the mountain every time!
  4. Take a peek at the Strong Mansion. Once the home of the Strong Family, this historic mansion has been refurbished and is one of the most popular event venues in the area. The grounds and gardens are simply stunning.  
  5. Be respectful. Sugarloaf Mountain is a Registered Natural Landmark in Maryland that is preserved and maintained by a non-profit founded by the Strong Family in 1946. Though it is privately owned, visitors are welcomed but requested to observe the rules. Sugarloaf Mountain is open every day from sunrise to sunset.

hiking maryland
In a Kettler Forlines home in Maryland, you always have the opportunity to head outside and discover something new. For more information on our homes and communities, please visit our website, or give us a call at 301-208-2588. We can’t wait to help you find your dream home!

The Beauty of Multigenerational Living

Categories: Brightwell Crossing, Tips | Posted: September 10, 2018 | Comments Off on The Beauty of Multigenerational Living

Grandfather with grandson.

From sharing holidays meals to watching each other grow, a home is more than just a living space — it’s a place that tells the story of your family. That’s why at Kettler Forlines Homes, several of our homes are spacious enough for everyone. We call this “multigenerational living,” or the opportunity for the whole family to enjoy the comfort of the very best home.

In The Reserve at Brightwell Crossing, a scenic and cozy community in beautiful Poolesville, 3 floor plans offer expansive family guest homes. In the Kensington, Kenwood, and Potomac, members of your family can enjoy a large suite complete with a bedroom, living and dining room area, kitchenette, full bathroom, and laundry closet.

Whether you prefer this special attachment built onto a home in The Reserve at Brightwell Crossing or customized on your own lot, we guarantee that it’ll provide the utmost comfort. If you want a space for an aging parent, a child who has moved out and returned, or a caregiver, our multigenerational living opportunities provide everything you’ve always dreamed of for you and your family.

Available Home at Brightwell Crossing

The best things in life should be shared with those we love the most. When it comes to the place where you spend your days and nights, there’s nothing sweeter than enjoying simple pleasures with your whole family. In a Kettler Forlines home, you’ll never miss a moment of what makes your family so special.

For more information on our multigenerational living opportunities, please visit our page, or give us a call at  301-208-2588. We can’t wait to work with you and bring your vision to life!

14 Things To Do in Montgomery County

Categories: Events, News, poolesville, Tips | Posted: June 4, 2018 | Comments Off on 14 Things To Do in Montgomery County

At Kettler Forlines Homes, we’re committed to bringing you the highest-quality way of life. That’s why our all of our communities are built within the most desirable towns of Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia, and Pennsylvania.

One of our most beloved communities, The Reserve at Brightwell Crossing, is nestled within the charming Poolesville, MD, where outdoor opportunities are boundless and a friendly small-town personality is always waiting with open arms.

This Summer, celebrate new beginnings and head outside for some seasonal fun with the whole family! Here’s our list of the top 14 things to do and see in and around Poolesville:

 

  1. Hike at Sugarloaf Mountain

Experience wildflowers, gorgeous geography, and stunning views while getting some exercise in! There are trails for all skill levels, so everyone can enjoy themselves and make memories of the spectacular scenery.

 

 

 

 

  1. Sugarloaf Mountain Vineyard

Take a day off for yourself and enjoy delectable tastings and live music on the weekends. This relaxing winery is just what you need on a warm day! Who knows, you just might discover your new favorite bottle of wine…

 

  1. White’s Ferry to Virginia

Take a calming ride across the Potomac River on the historic White’s Ferry! Once you reach Leesburg, VA, you’ll be surrounded with opportunities to shop, sightsee, and enjoy live music, local craft beer, delicious food, and so much more.

 

  1. Rocklands Farm

Ideal for both adults and children, this winery, farm, and market practices holistic agriculture to produce fresh and tasty products. Experience this community-oriented venue and enjoy the deliciousness!

 

 

 

 

  1. Hike Along the C and O Canal

Lovingly referred to as the “Grand Old Ditch,” the Chesapeake and Ohio Canal is one of the most scenic and historic gems of Maryland. Spend the day hiking along the C and O Canal —

just make sure to bring your camera!

 

  1. C and O Canal Lockhouses

Travel back 100 years in time and spend the night in one of the C&O Trust’s historic lockhouses! Strip yourself of today’s technology and bustle, and experience a peaceful night enjoying the simple things.

 

  1. Canoe on the Potomac River

The mighty Potomac River offers an unending amount of activities for both you and your family. Take advantage of the gorgeous weather and rent a kayak or canoe, and see the town like you never have before!

 

  1. Sarah E. Auer Western County Outdoor Pool

Renamed last summer after the late, beloved local swim coach, Sarah Auer, this open, outdoor pool is the perfect place to cool off on a hot day. Get some great exercise in and work on your strokes, or lounge and relax with your family and friends or a good book.

 

  1. Friday on the Commons

Starting June 15th, you and your family will have a wide variety of fun event options on Whalen Commons in the center of town. From movie nights, to carnivals, to “Bark in the Park,” there’s something exciting and memorable for everyone.

 

  1. Local Farm Picking

What better time than spring to pick your own delicious fruit? A charming place like Homestead Farm has opportunities to pick treats like cherries and blueberries, as well as the chance to experience farm and animal life.

 

  1. Golf at Poolesville Public Golf Course

Golf

There’s nothing quite like a relaxing round of golf. This picturesque golf course is waiting for you to come and play! Aside from an 18-hole course and driving range, Poolesville Public Golf Course also has horseshoe pits, volleyball nets, and play areas for kids. The whole family will be excited to visit!

 

 

  1. See a Concert at the Wolf Trap

If you’re a music fan, the beloved Wolf Trap will become your new oasis! See an indoor or outdoor concert at this incredible, 117-acre park, where artists like Steven Tyler, Ziggy Marley, and Alanis Morissette will be this summer!

 

  1. iFLY in Gaithersburg

Who knew that you could fly indoors? iFLY is a facility that gives you the chance to feel the sensations of flying through the air, all within the confines of an indoor space. This one-of-a-kind experience is perfect for those who fear heights but are looking for a real thrill.

 

  1. Strathmore Hall

Concert

Located in North Bethesda, Strathmore Hall is a breathtaking theater that offers a wide variety of events, from musical theater, to outdoor concerts, to comedy shows. Take your family or friends out for a night of unforgettable, state-of-the-art entertainment that everyone will love.

This spring, get outside and enjoy the most beautiful season of all! Poolesville offers unmatched outdoor opportunities that will let you create lifelong memories with your loved ones.

For more information on The Reserve at Brightwell Crossing, please visit our webpage, or call 301-208-2588. We can’t wait to get started with you on this incredible journey!

Improve Your Life with Energy Efficiency — Kettler Forlines Homes

Categories: News, Smart Home, Tips | Posted: May 1, 2018 | Comments Off on Improve Your Life with Energy Efficiency — Kettler Forlines Homes

New Kitchen

Improve Your Life with Energy Efficiency — Kettler Forlines Homes

With a growing need to care for our planet, practicing energy-efficient habits is more important and widespread than ever. What better place to “be green” than in our own homes? Today, many homeowners search for environmentally-friendly procedures and products when choosing a builder.

At Kettler Forlines Homes, our Clean & Green Program pledges a conscious commitment to the environment: each home that we build improves energy efficiency, durability, and indoor air quality. Not to mention, with lower heating, cooling, and maintenance costs, our homeowners get to save money every year while reducing environmental impact.

Every day that you wake up in one of our custom-built homes, you’ll feel great knowing that your lifestyle choices reflect a sensitivity to our planet. Our luxury features and amenities guarantee a pleasurable and safe experience day in and day out, while our promise to optimize energy efficiency provides a sense of fulfillment. Aside from saving a significant amount of money on utility bills, you’ll certainly feel the physical and emotional effects of an energy-efficient home, like the comfort of proper insulation.

The process of building a custom home with us is one that you won’t forget — your personal style and choices become the blueprint, and your appreciation for the environment pervades each and every inch. We make sure that the procedures and materials we use to craft your home respect the environment, so you’ll always know that your personal space was created with care. When all is said and done, you get to reap the rewards of your environmentally-conscious choice.

At Kettler Forlines Homes, wasteful spending and harmful energy practices are a thing of the past. When you take care of the planet, you take care of your family, your coworkers, your friends, your economy, your pets, and of course, yourself. Your life in your new home will be the greatest chapter you’ve started yet!

Start saving money by saving the planet, and enjoy every last minute of life in your home!

Smart Homeowners Deserve Our Smart Home Plus Program!

Categories: Brightwell Crossing, Smart Home, Tips | Posted: March 20, 2018 | Comments Off on Smart Homeowners Deserve Our Smart Home Plus Program!

Smart Home Program

From smart phones in our pockets to smart boards in the classrooms – smart technology is with us wherever we go. At Kettler Forlines Homes, we realized this technology should run throughout your homes as well! We’re excited to introduce to all of our smart homeowners, our Smart Home Plus program.

New Homes

Offered at The Reserve at Brightwell Crossing, the Smart Home Plus program is an upgrade that you can choose to personalize your new home! With the program, not only will you have more peace-of-mind in your new home due to increased safety measures, but you will also have wireless convenience at your fingertips!

Our Smart Home Plus Program includes Z-Wave enabled:

-Programmable thermostats

-Garage door openers

-Keyless front door entry featuring Schlage locks

-Home security system

-Smoke detector

-Doorbell security camera

All of our smart technology is enabled through Z-Wave, which allows you, as the homeowner, to control all of the features directly from your cell phone, regardless of if you’re in your home or not! With the click of a button on your phone you can change the temperature, close your garage door, even see who’s ringing your doorbell.

If you’re interested in our Smart Home Plus Program, but need a rundown on how exactly these features function, we offer free consultation with our trained Technology Specialist. They will assist you with understanding the technology as well as customizing your smart home to meet your individual needs!
Make the smart move and find your new smart home at The Reserve at Brightwell Crossing.

What would you do with a guest house in your home?

Categories: Brightwell Crossing, Build On Your Lot, Tips, Uncategorized | Posted: February 7, 2017 | Comments Off on What would you do with a guest house in your home?

Kettler Forlines Homes is now offering the option of adding an attached family guest house to some of our new home designs, like the Kensington, Kenwood, and Potomac. This unique living space provides an expansive suite, complete with a living room and dining room area, full bath, laundry closet, and a private entrance. The Potomac’s guest house also includes a kitchenette, laundry, and a separate HVAC system. The suite is situated so the residents can access the main house through the kitchen.

Many of our homebuyers have been opting for the family guest house in their custom homes. We’re seeing some interesting uses, so we thought we’d share 6 uses for a guest house.

1. Multigenerational living. The lifestyle trend is shifting toward extended families living together. With a family guest house, you offer more than a spare bedroom to an aging parent or an adult child who has returned to live at home. This more complete living space provides ample room for someone to feel at home, where they can get away to enjoy solitude when desired. With the private entrance, this plan offers a sense of independence that is important to the people living in the attached-but-separate home.

2. Office. When you’re looking for more than a “home office”, use the guest house as an office suite. Create multiple offices, a conference room, and even a showroom (e.g., for an interior decorator or caterer).

3. Studio or workshop. Do you have a passion for your art, craft, or hobby? Imagine having a large space where you can set up your tools—from easels to music recording equipment. Your personal studio or workshop enables you to have a ready workspace, not just squeezing into a nook of the house.

4. Home school. Maybe the “guests” in your guest house are your children or students. For a home school or private preschool, the Kettler Forlines’ design allows for multiple classrooms. You’ll have plenty of space for setting up teaching tools, like a science lab, computer lab, smart boards, art studio, and library.

5. Man cave extraordinaire. Be the envy of your friends with a multi-room man cave. Incorporate a home theater, game room, pub, and fitness center. Maybe save the bedroom for when you’re in the dog house for spending too much time in the man cave!

6. Live-in caregiver residence. Do you want to have an au pair or caregiver live with you? Finding a truly qualified professional who meets your needs can be a tough task. When you include an exceptional living arrangement, you’ll have a distinct benefit to offer.

As you’re planning your new home, think about the ways in which you can better use the living space—not just now, but in the years ahead. Talk to us at Kettler Forlines Homes if you’re contemplating a move in the Washington, DC metro area. Explore our communities or we can build on your lot.

A strong foundation is the start of a quality home.

Categories: Brightwell Crossing, Tips, Uncategorized | Posted: December 13, 2016 | Comments Off on A strong foundation is the start of a quality home.

When we start building your home, Kettler Forlines Homes invests in a foundation that is superior to others. After all, this foundation supports your home, so there should never be a concern with the structural integrity of your new home.

We have been working with our foundation contractor, The Bartley Corporation, for 35 years. We rely on their knowledge, experience, and expertise—and they’ve never let us down. We chose The Bartley Corporation because they take extra care with their foundations. Here are some of the ways that Bartley builds a stronger foundation for every Kettler Forlines Home:

  • A high-range water reducer in the concrete admixture increases the strength and reduces the curing time, while requiring less water in the mix.
  • Most builders meet building codes with a foundation wall that is 8 inches thick. We require 10-inch walls—25% thicker.
  • Building code requires concrete that is rated for 2,500 pounds per square inch (psi). Kettler Forlines Homes exceeds that minimum by using 3,500 psi for a stronger wall system.
  • Bartley’s factory-trained waterproofing mechanics apply a waterproofing spray for a greater level of moisture protection.
  • The drainage system is engineered to intercept water that may seep down the outside wall or under the slab due to groundwater conditions. This type of drainage provides extra protection for your home’s foundation.

Minor cracking is normal in concrete floors and walls. Foundation cracks can occur from shrinkage as the concrete cures, as a result of the water in the concrete’s mix drying. It can also result from thermal contraction or the weight of the applied load. You’ll most likely spot concrete cracks near beam pockets, window and door openings, corners, and expansion joints in concrete floors.

While you might not like the look of a crack—and we certainly don’t—they aren’t necessarily a sign that your structure is unsafe or damaged.

Our quality starts from the ground up. We have higher standards than other builders, because we have higher expectations for ourselves. If you’re thinking about a new home in the Maryland region, take the time to understand some of the differences that contribute to the quality craftsmanship that goes into every Kettler Forlines Home.

Safety tips for exterior holiday lighting

Categories: Brightwell Crossing, Tips, Uncategorized | Posted: December 7, 2016 | Comments Off on Safety tips for exterior holiday lighting

The holiday season is here. People are decorating their homes with sparkling lights that add so much sparkle to the night view.

That also means pulling out ladders, hanging lights, and connecting a growing web of extension cords.

Before you end up experiencing something like Clark Griswold’s exterior holiday lighting nightmare, follow a few safety tips.

Strings of lights
• Use only lights that are certified for use outdoors.
• Check the connection, sockets, and plugs. Never use a string of lights with cracked sockets or exposed wires.
• Hang the light strings on hooks. Don’t staple or nail them, which can damage the protective insulation.
• Use LED lights instead of incandescent. They use less electricity, last longer, and run cooler.

Extension cords
• Use only those cords that are certified by an independent testing lab (like UL).
• Choose a cord that is long enough, rather than connecting multiple cords.
• Do not staple or nail the extension cord because it can damage the insulation that protects the wiring.
• If you’re using the extension cord outdoors, make sure it’s approved for that use.
• Inspect any cord (new or used) before plugging it in, checking for fraying, cracks, or exposed wire.
• Make sure the amperage of the extension cord is compatible with the amperage of your lights.

Installation
• Do not use a metal ladder when hanging lights outdoors, because metal conducts electricity. Choose a fiberglass or wooden ladder instead.
• Stay at least 10 feet away from any power lines.
• Plug into ground fault circuit interrupters (GFCI). If your outlets are not GFCI, add a portable outdoor GFCI to handle your outdoor electrical needs.
• Do not overload your electrical outlets. The increased electricity can cause overheating, which leads to an electrical fire.

From gentle twinkling to a bright display, use caution with your exterior lighting so you can enjoy a safe holiday!

Your Address, Our Homes – The Perfect Pairing!

Categories: Build On Your Lot, Tips | Posted: November 3, 2016 | Comments Off on Your Address, Our Homes – The Perfect Pairing!

Have you already found the perfect property? Let Kettler Forlines Homes take you all the way home, delivering quality craftsmanship, unparalleled value, and exceptional customer service. Our custom home building experts will guide you through the entire “Build On Your Lot” process, from designing the plan to walking you through your new home.

For nearly 40 years, Kettler Forlines Homes has been building custom homes that win awards. And when we say “custom”, we mean it.  We listen to your ideas and build on your vision. We have 18 unique home design plans that we created with flexibility in mind.

Throughout “Build On Your Lot” process – from choosing designs, floorplans and elevations, down to the finishing touches – you’ll have the help of your dedicated Kettler Forlines Homes team. We’ll customize your home to complement your property. Our consultants work with you to design and build the home that matches your needs and enhances your lifestyle – from exterior materials to types of flooring, number of bedrooms to kitchen design.

Additionally, our full-service program handles all the details required for building a house on your lot. We check out all permits, utilities, any special zoning requirements, setbacks, and easement regulations – all the site improvements that need to be done. We can even assist in obtaining financing.

Thanks to our hardworking and dedicated team at Kettler Forlines Homes, your home will be built precisely to your order, while you enjoy an exceptional level of customer service that no other builder can match. Because in home building, that’s what dreams are made of!construction-plans-and-hat

Before moving forward with designing and building a custom home on your lot, let us take a look at your property. Every building homesite is different – which means every homesite has its own lot development requirements. By doing an on-site consultation, we can walk the property and understand its features.  We’ll discuss your ideas and offer advice that could save time and money – both in design and construction. Contact us to schedule for free site consultation.