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Cliffs Living: Turning a Spec Home into Spectacular

Aug 19, 2021

Meadowview family brings individuality to built-for-sale template

Building a second home was a first for Tara and Lance Snyder.

The couple, whose primary residence is in Charleston, South Carolina, had always purchased existing homes—until they discovered Meadowview at The Cliffs at Walnut Cove. A built-for-sale project by Cliffs Builders, this creative new community is designed to offer the convenience of a turnkey property while still allowing buyers to customize some of the home’s elements.

Because, let’s face it, building a new custom home is a potentially daunting endeavor, especially for first-timers like the Snyders—the process is filled with infinite decisions and, quite often, unexpected delays and inevitable hiccups along the way. Partnering with Cliffs Builders allowed them a taste of the customized process without being too overwhelming.

“We have truly had the chance to create our vision from the ground up,” Tara Snyder says.

Cliffs Builders built-for-sale program comprises a variety of luxury home packages with a choice of several set floorplans, a mix of finish options, and varied appliance choices. A template of inspiration gives buyers the flexibility to individualize their new homes, with a timeframe that’s about half that of a complete custom build.

The Snyders downsized several years ago to a condominium in Charleston, and then began searching for a second home. As Tara and Lance are both still working—and love to travel—they didn’t want to be chained to home projects and yard work. Meadowview at The Cliffs at Walnut Cove ticked all the boxes for them: the community is close to an abundance of restaurants and cultural events in Asheville, North Carolina, and yard maintenance is handled by the POA, making it an ideal lock-and-leave situation.

When they discovered Meadowview, the only thing currently under construction was the model home—which happened to be on a lot they loved. Kevin Adams, Director of Construction at The Cliffs, agreed to sell the model, even at that early stage within the neighborhood, and the Snyders eagerly signed on.

Framing was already underway on the 2,400-square-foot model but there was still plenty of opportunity to put their own stamp on the home. The biggest upgrade the Snyders made was altering the outdoor living space. While the original plan calls for a screened porch and a patio out back, they opted to screen in the entire space, which includes a stone-faced fireplace.

“The house has these beautiful, big, accordion doors on one side, and when you open them up, it adds about 700 square feet to our living space,” Tara shares.

For the interior design, the Snyders worked with Elizabeth McGee from Cheatham Fletcher Scott, an architectural and design firm in Augusta, Georgia, that The Cliffs uses for many of its projects. Tara was so impressed that she ultimately hired Elizabeth and her colleague, Meghan Hickox, to do “all the pretty stuff.”

After living in a traditional-style home in Charleston for many years, the Snyders wanted a design that juxtaposed mid-century modern elements with a mountain aesthetic. Their new home’s stucco and Tennessee stone exterior fits the latter, while the interior trends modern. Case in point is the focal fireplace wall in the living room, faced floor-to-ceiling with honed black granite. In the kitchen, gray-and-white marble countertops continue a clean line all the way up the backsplash, while marble drapes to the floor over the waterfall island.

From Charleston, the Snyders monitored the Meadowview home’s progress in real time via an app called CoConstruct, a construction-management software program that makes it possible for homebuyers at The Cliffs to see their specs, design choices, and even photos on an individual online account.

“What was great was having the designers as a sounding board. They made sure everything was cohesive,” says Tara, who chose a black-and-white palette warmed by wood tones. “Cliffs Builders were also good about that. If we said we wanted to do X, Y, and Z, they would be honest and say ‘I think X and Y makes sense, but you don’t want to do Z.’”

With construction completed late this summer, the Snyders are anticipating the mountain getaway experience their second home provides.

“We love the community,” Tara says.

This story was featured in Cliffs Living magazine. To read more stories like this one and learn more about The Cliffs, subscribe here.

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