Every year, during the first weekend in June, the Golden Sands Home Builders Association [GSHBA] invites locals to tour a dozen homes throughout Portage County, to help spark ideas for their next home building or remodeling project.

The homes can be viewed starting this Friday until June 4. The hours are from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m., Monday and Friday. The hours are from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday and Sunday. Tickets can be purchased for $8 at any Parade home during Parade hours and infants are admitted for free.

“It’s really a great event for people to check out the newest home products, building materials, technologies and ask industry experts any questions they may have,” Carrleen Hyer, executive officer of GSHBA said.

According to Hyer, all of the homes that are presented in the Parade Tour are of the utmost quality and craftsmanship because all the builder members that submit entries of their homes into the Parade tour are required to go through a rigorous process to meet GSHBA expectations.

The GSHBA also gives its builder members the opportunity to sponsor the event to ensure that this event is financed and made possible for the public.

“We put the platinum sponsorship up for auction each year and the participating builders have a chance to bid on the sponsorship,” Hyer said. “The sponsorship includes mention of platinum sponsorship on all advertising we do for that year for the Parade [including print, TV, radio, social media, posters, etc.]”

The highest bidder this year was Heartland Custom Homes.

“It means we at Heartland Custom Homes believe highly in the value of our local builders association and the Parade of Homes so much that we provided funds to offset a portion of the cost of the Parade of Homes,” Brennan Nelson, new home consultant of Heartland Custom Homes said.

Professionals of GSHBA, including Heartland Custom Homes, a builder partner of Envision. Home at Last., is no stranger to the Parade of Homes: they’ve been involved with the Parade of Homes for over 30 years and earned two placements on the tour this year.

This year, Parade homes that Heartland Custom Homes built can be found at 4106 Sonday Drive in Amherst Junction and 7481 Rolling Hills Road in Custer.
The Amherst Junction Parade home features over 1,800 square feet, stone accents, vaulted ceilings in the living room, dining room and kitchen. The floor plan also features a walk-in pantry and basement access from the garage.

The Custer Parade home boasts 1,600 square feet on the main level including a tile shower with glass panels in the master bath, luxury vinyl plank flooring, a walk-out basement, craftsman porch posts and a covered deck overlooking a valley.

Nelson said the tour gives the public ample opportunities to pique their interest in home building and remodeling, including the ability to see the quality and craftsmanship of Heartland Custom Homes, the added advantage of having the ability to visually see and touch the styles available to them and seek out answers to questions that they may have about budgeting.

“People should come to our homes to see how we create beautiful homes,” Nelson said. “Each customer or family has their own idea of budget. We love to work alongside our customer to build them a home they are proud of that is in their budget. We also love to meet new people in our community, whether they are potential customers or not.”

Nelson said that he hopes that after people visit Heartland’s Parade homes, they’ll be left feeling impressed with how well the homes are built and designed, pleased with how affordable the homes are and content with their experience speaking with friendly Heartland staff members.