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May 25th, 2017 | Posted in Insights

Whether you’re in the market for a new home or just
want to see the latest trends in household décor,
the Wilmington-Cape Fear Home Builders
Association’s Parade of Homes is the perfect opportunity to look
at dozens of great examples.

This free annual showcase for the region’s builders is also a
platform for specialty vendors, including kitchen and bath designers
like Markraft Cabinets. About half of the nearly 100 homes in the
2017 event feature kitchens and bathrooms by Markraft, according
to Bryan Sartin, the company’s director of marketing.

“This is an opportunity for us to extend our showroom out into
the community in dozens of brand-new homes,” Sartin said.
But, he added, “supporting the local builders is number one.”
The Parade of Homes – the local residential construction industry
the largest annual event – honors builders with outstanding designs.
Judges from outside the area award the top builders Friday evening
before the Parade’s final weekend during a banquet attended by
approximately 300 builders and vendors.

To qualify, homes on display must have been built within the
past year and remain unoccupied. They also cannot have been
judged in the previous year’s competition.

“These are brand-new construction,” Sartin said, noting the
homes “show the most up-to-date trends” in design and technology.
Prices range from $200,000 to $1 million-plus. Some have been
custom-designed for buyers, while others were built on spec and are
on the market.

It can be challenging to visit every entry, but Sartin said some
visitors do manage to get a quick peek at quite a few – 10 to 15 in a
day – by spending about 15 minutes in each one.

Some visitors choose to tour houses in their price range or a
specific location, but many gravitate to the high-end offerings for
inspiration. A particular feature in a million-dollar home can certainly
be adapted for a smaller place, after all.

“Most people don’t go to buy a house; they’re looking for ideas,”
Sartin noted.

And from his perspective, some of the best ideas involve cabinets
and countertops.

“They go in and see a beautiful kitchen, and see that it was done
by Markraft,” Sartin said.

And with that information, he said, many of those visitors then find
their way to Markraft’s showroom.

Visitors can be confident that what’s on display during the Parade
is indicative of a vendor’s work. Markraft, for example, doesn’t know
until its work is complete which homes will be featured. So, what
participants get is the vendor’s normal, consistent level of quality
craftsmanship, without any extra work or unusual touches.

The event runs from noon to 5 p.m. April 22-23 and 29-30.
Free plan books are available at Parade stops to guide participants
to the homes, located in New Hanover, Brunswick and Pender
counties. The book includes a map with a color-coded legend to
help users find homes in their preferred price ranges, as well as floor
plans, elevations, and descriptions.

Tour maps can be found at local Harris Teeter or Food Lion
locations, or you can download a mobile app to your smartphone
or tablet. Details are on the Parade of Homes website –

Want to see the latest in kitchen and bath creations?

Join the Parade of Homes tour, then visit Markraft’s showroom any time. Markraft’s
professional kitchen and bath designers consult by appointment
but drop-in visitors are always welcome to browse the showroom.
The Design Center is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through
Friday, at 2705 Castle Creek Lane, just off Castle Hayne Road.