New homes are popping up all over Lee’s Summit. This fall, dozens are scheduled to be open for the annual Home Builders Association of Greater Kansas City Fall Parade of Homes.
The 71st annual parade features a total of 330 homes in eight counties throughout the Kansas City metro area. This makes the local tour the second largest Parade of Homes in the United States. And those in Lee’s Summit can tour 40 of those homes.
Brook Cox with Summit Homes, which has several homes on the tour, says Lee’s Summit is a good place to build because the area still has a lot of space.
“We like to start our own communities,” Cox said. “Lee’s Summit has opportunity for new communities to start from the ground up.”
Cox says the draw of downtown Lee’s Summit, area shopping and restaurants combine with easy access to most parts of the metro area to make it appealing to people either wanting to build or purchase a newly constructed home.
“I feel like homeowners and residents of Lee’s Summit get that small-town feel and the still have the convenience of the city. You are still about 20 to 30 minutes from anywhere in Kansas City here in Lee’s Summit,” Cox said.
More than 100 area builders are participating in this year’s tour, which runs Sept. 22 to Oct. 7. Every house on the tour will be open daily from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Admission is free. An online search at KCParadeofHomes.com helps parade-goers narrow down their search by price, amenities and location. The HBA also has a mobile app to download at that site.
HBA Communications Director Kari English says the app allows people to pick favorites and map the best route to their favorite houses.
“We’ve done it for a couple of years. We have gotten lots of feedback and are always trying to improve it and make it more user friendly. It is a handy tool we think people like a lot,” English said.
Many tour-goers are not in the market for a house, but simply trying to see the latest trends for architecture, home efficiencies and design elements. Cox says that’s just fine with the builders.
“A lot of the people who walk the parade might just be looking for design ideas, but it is nice for us to be able to put our product in front of them so that in a few years when they are in the market for a house, hopefully we’ve made an impression,” Cox said.
One of the Summit Homes on this year’s tour is in the Lee’s Summit community of Mill Creek of Summit Mill. The home featured there is the community sales office, which means the company designer has included some extra elements to show off what can be done in one of their new homes.
These elements include white shiplap with wallpaper in the office, new vinyl flooring in the basement and a unique stick-on barn wood product in the dining room.
Cox also suggests people taking advantage of the opportunity to visit tour homes pay attention to the areas the homes are in.
The Mill Creek of Summit Mill neighborhood is a planned community with about 170 houses built by Summit Homes. It includes a fishing pond, playground, trails and a pool. It is also near a new elementary school.
“I think the most important thing is your location and lifestyle, how convenient it is for your work life and community as well as the other amenities within the community,” Cox said.