(Photo: Beck Building Company)

Small Luxuries

Forrest Watson of Beck Building Company noted that although wealthy homebuyers aren’t pursuing tiny home construction, per se, they are showing an inclination for homes that are smaller than the grand mansions some people might envision.

“There’s been kind of a reduction there,” Watson said, where a high-end custom home might be between 6,000 or 10,000 square feet instead of 15,000.

[Related: Homebuyers want spa, not spartan, in bathroom design]

He believes “people being a little more conscious of the environment and their spending, and what they really need,” are driving the trend toward smaller homes.

Bringing in building partners to start working together early helps architects, engineers and designers make sure a smaller home still has everything the client wants and needs.

“More thought put into the design from that preconstruction phase is allowing them to see how they can get what they want with smaller spaces and a more thoughtful approach to the architecture,” Watson said.

From mountains to midtown

Contemporary design is popular among Colorado homeowners regardless of whether they live in Avon or downtown Denver. However, Jill Anderson of Beck Building Company noted that urban homeowners have started to take a new approach to how their luxury homes are situated on their lots.

“There’s been a whole rearrangement of how the house is oriented,” Anderson said, “in order to maintain a level of privacy, and yet still have this open concept.”

She described a home that Beck recently completed in Cherry Creek that was designed around a courtyard, with the outdoor areas in the center of the home.

[Related: Green builders get creative  with custom homes: Rocky Mountain Green]

“It’s very open [with] the very large lift-and-slide doors, but it’s very private,” she said.

Privacy is critical when designing homes for urban clients, but is easily overlooked in the mountains, she said.

“Up in the mountains, there is so much privacy already given the remoteness of many of these job sites,” she said. In some mountain homes, “we don’t even have window treatments on the windows because there are no neighbors.”

Danielle Andrus

Danielle Andrus was previously the managing editor for Colorado Builder, and is currently Editor for the Journal of Financial Planning.

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