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Meet the Owners of Our Spring 2022 Parade Home

Every year, Heartland Builders is thrilled to participate in the HBA Parade of Homes in the Greater Grand Rapids, MI area! We’re so proud of the work we do and love to share it with the community. The Parade of Homes is an opportunity for us to showcase the planning, detailed design, master craftsmanship, and pure joy that go into every home we build. 

The event also gives us the chance to do something even more important – give our homeowners the floor and let them explain, in their own words, why they love their new Heartland home and the process behind building it. For each Parade of Homes, we choose a home that we’re in the process of building to be our featured home, and we interview the owners to learn more about their experience. 

For the Spring 2022 Parade, we interviewed Jerri and Jake about the custom Providence home they’re building in Rockford, MI. This unique home has such personal customizations, and we can’t wait for you to learn about it!



How easy was it to make customizations to your home that were important to you? 

3D design was easy, there were no issues there. The architectural designer was able to move things around, and it was pretty easy!

What part of the entire process was easier than you expected?

Not having to go to 55,000 stores to pick out tile! It was nice to not have to do that. Plus, the designer, Jen,  could get us a sample if we did want to see something else.

Which aspect of the build process was most helpful in making the entire process easy: Pre-priced plans? 3D plans? Construction timeline? 

Having the floorplans online to have something to start with. We looked at other plans but having some already on the website, and then having some that said ‘We did this one from THIS floorplan’ made it easier.



Of all the customizations you made to your home, which one was the most special to incorporate and why? 

The ones that meant the most to me (Jerri) were taking the staircase that was U-shaped and orienting it straight down. Also removing the pocket office and making the master bath come around to the walk-in closet to accommodate my needs. Another thing was being able to make the bathroom zero-entry. A couple of other builders were not willing to do that!

Tell us about how you incorporated Universal Design features into your home to make it work for you and your lifestyle. 

I (Jerri) sometimes use a wheelchair and a walker, so we incorporated features that give me more freedom. I want to be able to get around on my own without always having to have Jake’s help. Features like wider spaces so that I can get my wheelchair, walkers, and other things I need through the doorways and hallways in different parts of the house is helpful. We needed 4 ft 6 inches clearance everywhere so I can travel with the wheelchair in the kitchen and stairways. The zero-entry shower was also very important. 

Which part of the process was the most fun and why? 

The fun part was picking everything out. We haven’t done that in a long time… since the first house, we built years ago. That was a semi-custom home but you only had like four choices. This was more like “Here you go!” and it was fun. Now I’m wondering how it’s all going to look and come together! I think it’s gonna be beautiful. I’m pretty good at matching stuff!



From start to finish, how many months did it take to complete your dream home? 

We signed the design contract on June 8, 2021, and we move in at the end of June 2022.



Would you recommend Heartland Builders to someone looking to build on their own lot? 

Yeah! We wish we had known about the referral program earlier!

Give future homeowners the inside scoop! What can they expect when working with the whole team at Heartland Builders? 

It was pretty comfortable. We didn’t feel it was a business meeting. It didn’t feel rigid at all.

If you had to describe the entire process in one word, what would it be? 

It was an easy process, and very organized. My mother-in-law said, ‘Are you sure you want to stress yourself out building a new house?’ But we didn’t find it was that stressful because it was all laid out, which was nice.  

Anything you’d want to tell someone looking to build? 

Don’t be afraid to ask your questions! 


NOTE FROM HEARTLAND: This is great advice because we can’t read your mind, and it helps the Heartland team from the beginning, too!