Sunday, September 09, 2007

House Hunting, Plantagenet Style

Overseas readers may not be aware of this, but American subdivision developers would be lost without England. That's because so many subdivisions have English-inspired names (my town has one called Buckingham, for example) and corresponding house models. Today's newspaper, for instance, has a full-page ad featuring house models called Exeter, Essex, Victoria, and Windsor, and there's even a model called Chaucer, though with a "French Country Styled Exterior" that seems incongruous for the father of English literature. (The Chaucer doesn't come cheap; it's $674,900, which means that most people who would get a kick out of buying a house called the Chaucer couldn't afford it.)

So what if there were a development named "Plantagenet Estates"? Here's a few prospective models:

The King Edward II:

Do you like to leave your work at the office? If so, your house hunting is over! This homebody's delight features a home theater, a workshop, and an oversized recreation/exercise room. We've left the landscaping to you!

The Gaveston:

Fit for a royal favorite, this luxurious model features extra-large walk-in closets and a built-in jewelry chest! And you'll always be sure you're looking your best thanks to our oversized mirrors.

The Despenser:

This beauty comes only on our largest lots and features a unique floor plan that allows for easy future expansion! Perfect if you're thinking of adding some extra acreage down the line.

The Mortimer:

Are there two very special people in your life? Is discretion a must? Designed for the busy man of action, this handsome house sports dual staircases, dual kitchens, and dual owner's suites.

The Isabella:

This elegant home, using top-of-the-line material and assembled by the finest craftsmen, is truly fit for a queen. Why settle for less when you can afford the best? YOU DESERVE IT!

The King Edward III:

This deluxe model, offered to only a handful of customers, features an underground parking area with an interior entrance so that your important guests can come and go away from the eyes of prying neighbors. Don't miss this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity!

4 comments:

Alianore said...

LOL! Love The Despenser especially.

I didn't know that American subdivision developers were so fond of English names (and I'm not even sure what a subdivision is, to be honest)

Susan Higginbotham said...

Thanks, Alianore!

Basically, a subdivision is what results when a developer buys a large tract of land (in my area, usually what used to be a farm), divides it into dozens of smaller lots, constructs a house on each lot, and sells each lot and house to individual owners. Most developers have about half a dozen house models for buyers to choose from, so Plantagenet Estates is pretty typical. Some builders may also include lots for commercial businesses, and some local governments require builders to construct public school buildings within the subdivision as a condition of getting their building plans approved. Probably the most famous American subdivision is Levittown in Long Island (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Levittown,_New_York), which was built to satisfy the need for affordable housing after World War II. The current trend in subdivisions is to construct "McMansions" on the lots--very large, very expensive houses with lots of bells and whistles.

Gabriele C. said...

The Plantagenet houses sound very nice, but I want a Roman one - complete with baths and an aula. :)

Daphne said...

Very funny!!