Rohn Newman was ready to buy an Ashton Woods home in Milton even before that company had bought the land. In a peculiar bit of prescience, Newman always thought the acreage off McFarlin Lane would make an ideal location for a community, so much so that after months of driving by, he finally stopped and asked the farmer who owned it if he’d ever thought of selling.
“It turned out he had just sold the land to Ashton Woods,” recalled Newman. “My wife and I were very excited because we had friends who bought an Ashton Woods home, and we really liked the layout. A home at that location was just what we were looking for.”
It was several months before building at Heritage at Crabapple began transforming that pasture into a community, and Newman was willing to wait. At the same time, he made sure that Ashton Woods knew he was ready when they were.
“I was hounding people nonstop to get in!” Newman admits. “When you get in at that level, you get to pick what you want – your lot, the color of your house. Those sorts of things get stricter as time goes on.”
The location was particularly desirable to Newman for three reasons. The first was connected to the area’s walkability.
“The community where we were living had some major roads right nearby, so our two kids could only ride up and down one block,” he said. “We wanted a community that was bigger. We also liked the elementary, middle and high schools are all within walking distance, and so are a number of good restaurants. When we put those items together, there wasn’t any question in our minds that this would be pretty cool location.”
The couple also wanted a specific design, one that incorporated a master on the main level and accessible features, such as wider doorways, so they can age in place.
“We didn’t want any stairs on the first level, so the master is down and there are three bedrooms upstairs,” he said. “And the kitchen is the new family room; when people come over, everyone winds up there. In this plan, we can stand in the kitchen and see people in the living room. Last Thanksgiving, we had about 35 family members here, and the layout accommodated everyone comfortably.”
Sales consultant Julie Gentry worked hard to help the couple pick a lot and a plan that fit the needs of the family, said Newman. “I can’t say enough good things about her. When she said she was going to do something, it got done. No matter what we asked for, she looked into it. There were times when the answer was, ‘I really tried, but we can’t do that,’ but there were plenty of times when she got things approved for us.”
The Newmans were among the first to move into the 63-home community that includes a pool and cabana. The single-family designs reflect a mix of Craftsman, Colonial, Queen Anne and Greek Revival styles that range in size from 3,600 to 3,900 square feet. Several plans accommodate five bedrooms and four baths.
Among the standard features are 2-car, side entry garages with a third carriage area. Kitchens are equipped with granite counters, tiled back splashes, maple cabinets, stainless steel appliances and recessed lighting. Ceiling heights are 10 feet on the main and nine on the second floor or basement level. Hardwood floors extend throughout. The master bedrooms are elegantly appointed with tray ceilings, walk-in closets with wood shelving, and baths with soaking tubs and tiled floors and walls.
Getting so many standard features in such a spacious home was another motivating factor, said Newman. “With interest rates being what they’ve been, I wanted to get as much home as I could comfortably afford,” he said. “And now this was the time to do it.”
Heritage at Crabapple
Price range: from the $600,000s
Number of homes when completed: 63
Styles: Craftsman, Colonial, Queen Anne, Greek Revival
Square footage: 3,600-3,900
Lot sizes: about a quarter acre
Schools: Crabapple Crossing Elementary, Northwestern Middle, Milton High
Getting there: From downtown Atlanta, take Ga. 400 north to Exit 9, Haynes Bridge Road. Go west for 1.3 miles, then turn left on Old Milton Parkway, which becomes Rucker Road. Follow Rucker for 2.8 miles; turn right on Broadwell Road, which becomes Birmingham Highway. Turn left into Braeburn on McFarlin Lane, and continue three blocks to Heritage at Crabapple.