Annual tour kicks off June 15 with 29 stops in Lancaster and Lebanon counties
Nearly three decades ago, the Building Industry Association of Lancaster County hosted its first Parade of Homes, showcasing 50 new homes across Lancaster city and county.
The tradition continues this year, with 29 homes in Lancaster and Lebanon counties putting out their welcome mats from June 15-23.
And although some things have changed — most notably, home prices — the event’s main goals — to be a source of inspiration and a means for promoting the local building industry — have not.
If you’ve never checked out the Parade of Homes tour before, here are seven reasons you should this year:
You want to buy a home
If you’re in the market for a home, many of the 29 homes on the Parade tour are for sale. And since the homes are judged by a panel of industry experts in a variety of categories — from best kitchen to best landscaping — they typically include a host of upgrades.
Not only that, there are prices and styles to appeal to a wide range of buyers, from a townhome at just under $200,000 in Lebanon to a 5-bedroom home on half an acre in Manheim Township, priced at $855,900. Styles include modern cottage to farmhouse. Some are in neighborhoods that feature a variety of amenities, and several are in 55-plus communities.
You want to build a home
If you want to build your home from the ground up, you’ll need to choose a builder. The Parade of Homes offers an easy way to see the work of 18 local builders up close and personal. Plus builder representatives are often at the homes, offering an opportunity to meet them in person and ask questions.
You’re considering a remodeling project
Maybe you love your current home but you’d like to redo your kitchen, update a bathroom, add a sunroom or create an outdoor living space. The Parade homes are not only a great source of ideas, but they also offer the rare opportunity to see those ideas come to life in a home setting.
Want to get a feel for granite, quartz, marble and solid-surface countertops? Debating a freestanding tub or a floating vanity? Considering a covered deck or a stamped concrete patio? You’ll find it all on the Parade, plus some things you might not have thought of — like pot fillers and chimney-style hoods or custom tile showers and sleek toilets.
You want to see the latest home design trends
The Parade of Homes allows local builders to showcase not only the quality of their work, but also the latest trends in home design.
Among the trends you’ll see on this year’s tour are black-trimmed windows, show-stopping light fixtures, more affordable quartz countertops, simpler exteriors with bold front door colors, rustic modern accents like rough-appearing wood-look flooring and interior brick walls, mixed metals and luxury vinyl plank flooring.
You want to redecorate
The Parade of Homes isn’t just about architectural details like vaulted ceilings, crown molding, ladder transoms, and board and batten siding — although you’ll see all of that on this year’s tour.
Each home is beautifully furnished by professional interior designers, offering 29 opportunities to get inspired by furniture styles and arrangements, accessories, window treatments, color palettes and more.
You want to incorporate smart technology in your home
Smart home technology is the rising star of in-demand amenities, and you’ll find it in several homes on the Parade, including wireless remote features like automated blinds.
The Parade itself has gotten “smart” as well, with a ParadeSmart app that makes it easier than ever to plan your tour route and keep track of everything you discover along the way.
Visit the app store, type in ParadeSmart, download the free app, and select the Lancaster/Lebanon Parade of Homes.
The app includes details on each home, along with directions, and also allows you to create a customizable map as well as take notes and photos.
You want to have some free fun
There’s no cost to tour any of the entries on the Parade of Homes. All homes are open from noon to 6 p.m. on weekends and 5 to 8 p.m. weekdays, so it’s easy to find time to drop in.
And even if you’re not in the market for a new home or you’re not planning your next home project, who knows? Once you notice that mudroom with built-in lockers or that “pocket” office off the kitchen, you may get inspired.
The Lancaster/Lebanon Parade of Homes is sponsored by Fulton Bank and UGI Utilities. For more information, visit lancasterparadeofhomes.com.