If you're Brad Olinger, there's no such thing as beginner's luck.
The first project Olinger's Columbia Tusculum-based company Sterling Homes built for popular regional luxury home showcase HOMEARAMA® won top awards in each category from the event.
Last month, the Jefferson, which was built in West Chester Township's Oaks of West Chester subdivision, landed fan-favorite awards for its kitchen, lower level, master bathroom, outdoor living space, exterior, landscaping and decorating. The 4,500-square-foot home at 7134 Laurel Oaks Drive also bested six peers and landed a first-place award from kid voters for their favorite home.
The home has a list price of $899,000, after an initial list price of $949,000. Olinger said the property has a few prospective buyers. The two-story home, which has a brick and stone exterior, has four bedrooms and four full bathrooms and one half-bathroom.
After launching Sterling Homes in 2012, Olinger said most of his company's development work has been in the city of Cincinnati. Sterling Homes' work so far is a pivot from that of his father Jeff Olinger at Sycamore Township-based Pinnacle Building Group which has built homes in large suburban communities around the country such as Wetherington in West Chester and River's Bend in Maineville.
"As we've grown, we wanted to show that we could bring the characteristics of a home in a Hyde Park, Mt. Lookout or in an older neighborhood and bring it to a suburban neighborhood," he said. "We were excited to see the public took it well."
Sterling Homes worked on the Jefferson with Mary Cassinelli Architects, Designs on Madison and Bzak Landscaping. The team's goal: Add features throughout the homes that provided early 20th-century elegance with French country decor and design features such as heavy trim molding, bluestone countertops, polished chrome features and glass knobs on doors. Olinger said each room was planned as its own individual space with an open floor plan.
"We love old details," Cassinelli said. "That was the initial focus. ... We wanted to give a sense of comfort as (visitors) walk in the door and through the house."
Once Olinger shared the concept he envisioned for the home, Cassinelli said it took about 30 minutes to complete preliminary sketches of the home's exterior.
Without a committed buyer for the home, Amy Holt, owner of Designs on Madison in the O'Bryonville section of East Walnut Hills, said the team was able to have "free reign" on developing designs – as long as they were within budget. Holt, who worked on the project with her niece Jill Koch, said the home's interior color scheme features pale blues, cream and beige.
"It all comes together to give that sense of comfort," Cassinelli said. "I think that’s what people reacted to. When looking around the kitchen, people walked through it and smiled. It may not have been their taste, but I think they appreciated what we tried to do."
Olinger said the home is named after his three-year-son Jefferson.
"It seemed kind of fitting with the time period and style of the house," he said. "He's also my first son and this is my first HOMEARAMA®."
Next year, HOMEARAMA® will be at the M/I Homes-developed community Rivercrest in Hamilton Township. The Home Builders Association of Greater Cincinnati organizes the home showcase and the event in Warren County in 2017 will be organization's 54th.