The Mystery Behind the Winchester Mansion

The Winchester Mystery House in San Jose, California is one of the most beautiful mansions in the world.

It’s also one of the most bizarre. Windows in the floor. Doors that open to a two-story drop. Secret passageways. Stairways to nowhere (which could have been a famous song by Led Zep had they ever written it).

Why such an odd construction? It was built by ghosts.

The mansion was the brainchild of Sarah Winchester, the wife of William Wirt Winchester, who was the heir to the Winchester rifle fortune. After her infant daughter and husband died, Sarah Winchester sought the guidance of a spiritualist.

The Boston Medium explained to her that her family was cursed by the ghosts of all those who died by the “The Gun That Won West.” The only way to appease the spirits and save her life was to move west and use her blood money to build the spirits a house.

Legend has it that Mrs. Winchester literally let the spirits design the house. She would conduct nightly sances where good spirits would give her instructions that she passed to her foreman every morning.

That turned the mansion into a sprawling 7-story maze of 160 rooms, 47 stairways, and 13 bathrooms. In fact, the number 13 appears quite a bit in the house: rooms with 13 windows, walls with 13 panels, chandeliers with 13 candles, even walls with 13 coat hooks.

The unusual design of the mansion was also spawned by Mrs. Winchester’s attempts to disorient evil spirits that were stalking her. She allegedly never slept in the same room two nights in a row and would often sneak through secret passages to deter ghosts… because ghosts can’t pass through walls or anything.

Mrs. Winchester also believed that if construction never stopped, she …

Elite Modular Mansion Homes

Modular mansions come in sizes that might startle the average home buyer. Elite modular homes are available in five, ten and sometimes fifteen thousand square feet. These homes are the latest trend among the financial elite. To the wealthy, modular mansions make sense because you get more home for less, receiving all the extras they expect without any sacrifices.

The general public takes longer to catch up with new trends. Some still believe modular homes are just fancy trailers, but nothing could be further from the truth. Just like trucks were once considered just a work vehicle, some trucks are now considered luxury vehicles. The same can be said for modular homes, they are now available in every size with any floor plan that the customer desires.

From their humble beginnings modular homes have evolved to become high precision homes, with built-in fixtures that incorporate the latest advances in automation, cad-cam design, and quality control. From a construction standpoint, the accuracy and strength excels over the traditionally stick-built home. The average modular home contains 17-20% more material compared to the same home built on location.

The additional material comes from the need to strengthen the home for shipment and the crane assembly once it reaches the building site. The added strength and rigidity helps maintain a solid home for generations to come. At the site, most homes are set in place in two to four days, and the finish work which includes electrical, mechanical, septic, garage, driveway, and other architectural details, are normally completed in a 60-120 days. The shorter completion time is an added attraction for many buyers, waiting to see their dream home.

Size has no limit as attested by the 12,700 square foot Cape Cod modular mansion built in Massachusetts that was comprised of 26 …

Designing and Building a Luxury Mansion: Things to Keep in Mind

Building your own home means you are the one who is in charge of the design and the outcome, allowing you to make that dream home a reality. If your plans are to build a luxury mansion, then you’re dealing with a lot more space to design, challenges that can pop up, and decisions to be made. Obviously, you want the end result to be everything you had dreamed it would be, getting there is a process and it’s one that can be quite stressful at times.

Before you start the process of designing and building your very own luxury mansion, here are a few things you may want to keep in mind. These tips can help you to nip those challenges in the bud before they even pop up and cause problems.

Choose a Reputable and Experienced Builder

Few tips are as important as this first tip. The builder you choose can literally make or break the project, as they will be with you from start to finish making decisions with you, offering you advice, and bringing in their own crew.

A great place to start is by asking around with friends and family who may have experience in their own builds. Ask about who they have used and what their personal experiences were – both good and bad. You will also want to do your own research, which can often be done online. Once you have a few builders in mind, look up customer reviews and ensure there are no issues that you should be aware of.

Schedule an Interview with the Builder

Before you actually hire a builder, you will want to schedule an interview with them. Think of it as a “getting-to-know-you” type of session. This is your chance to ask important questions, such as what …

5 Things to Consider While Shopping for Vacation Property

Many people consider buying a second home to be close to their favorite vacation spot, making weekends and unexpected visits much easier to organize. Still, no matter how appealing the joys of Lake Carroll real estate might be, the decision to buy a vacation home should be taken very seriously. Let’s look at several things to consider before making the decision to buy.

Costs

A vacation home should be managed like any other property. Owners still need to pay property taxes, insurance, gas and water, and all the other miscellaneous expenses associated with property ownership. Remember that these costs will still accrue even when the house stands empty, so your budget needs to take them into account.

Location

Ideally, a vacation home should be accessible. If it takes a day or more of traveling to get to the property, you may find yourself dwelling more on the origins of the phrase “busman’s holiday” than anticipating your relaxing getaway, and chances are it won’t get much use. Something within easy “striking distance” of your first home will give you more value and satisfaction. It will be convenient to get away quickly and enjoy more time on holiday. Lake Carroll is an example of the right setting, since it’s roughly two hours from Chicago and a short drive from a much of the Upper Midwest.

Ease of Use

A lot of factors fall under this category, but the idea is to examine how easy—and how enjoyable—it is to be onsite at your vacation home. For example, some homes might be fine for a weekend, but are in such an isolated area that shopping and access to needed services becomes an issue. When getting the groceries becomes an expedition and the plumber’s bill is already high before he steps foot in the door …

The Advantages of Using Fireplaces

There are many reasons why a fireplace is a great asset to your home. Not only does it keep you warm, but it is also essential and can make a huge difference to your home and lifestyle. They are not just an architectural addition, but it also gives you the added touch to make your place feel like home.

1. Provides Much-Needed Warmth

Having a fireplace in Stockport carries a big advantage especially during the biting cold months of winter. There is nothing that can match the ambiance that crackling logs and woodsy aroma can give you. The fireplace gives you with the means of staying physically warm and emotionally at ease.

What says warm and cozy better than a fireplace in your living room and kitchen? Just the thought of curling up with a book or watching TV in front of the fireplace makes long for that feeling of warmth and comfort. It’s no wonder why the fireplace serves as a place in your home that brings everyone together.

You can huddle near the fireplace t escape the cold from the outside and spend quality time with everyone. Even your pets would greatly appreciate it.

2. Intimate Mood and Setting

A fireplace is something your family and friends could very much enjoy. It also provides a sense of intimacy, just as a candle can set the mood. Simply sitting in front of the fireplace while sipping some wine gives you an effortless romantic setting you and your loved one will surely appreciate.

The warm light from the fireplace with its trade oak frames gives out a dreamy and romantic scenery that draws people close. You don’t have to go anywhere far, with a warm fireplace you can have your romantic escape inside your home.

3. Reliable and Independent

Natural …