Your home is more than a simple life investment

Published 3:19 pm Monday, April 9, 2012

By MOLLIE BROWN / Community Columnist

Jonathan Belcher, president and co-founder of Signature Homes, told chamber members in their March meeting that now is the time to buy a new home. He said now is the time to do away with an “I can’t afford it” mentality.

“Families changed after 9-11,” Belcher said. “We want to spend more time with our family and neighbors. And our lifestyles changed after that day. We need more efficient living space and outdoor living areas have become extremely popular.”

Jonathan Belcher, right, and Calera Chamber of Commerce President Bill Davis. (Contributed)

Belcher said a home is much more than an investment. In good times and in bad, the opportunity to own a home has been a cherished ideal and a source of pride, accomplishment, stability and peace of mind.

“It’s where we raise our family,” he said. “Everyone talks about going home. When you were in college you went home, you invited friends to your home. When you get married you go back home for the holidays.”

Consumer confidence is on the rise thanks to low interest rates and the fact most homes today are constructed or remodeled with products manufactured in the United States. A home built today is 30 percent more efficient than a home built three years ago. Belcher reported home building is improving the economy. “Home building creates jobs. Constructing one hundred new homes creates more than three hundred full-time jobs and puts monies back into the community. We’re talking over $23 million in wages and nearly $9 million in federal, state and local tax revenue.”

A new home that sells for $173,000 generates approximately $31,000 of economic impact. Fifteen percent of our economy relies on housing and it has a tremendous impact on the local economy. Housing prices vary based on the economic growth of individual communities.

Belcher is a member of The Greater Birmingham Association of Homebuilders, which is hosting the 2012 Parade of Homes April 21, 22, 28 and 29 from 10 6 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays from 1-6 p.m. Belcher described what homebuyers should expect in a newly built home.

“The ideal home includes features such as lighting and music control, security camera, energy efficiency, a storm shelter, outdoor living space and smartphone apps to control the home.”

Mollie Brown can be reached at