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How Ormewood Park House Scored $635K Contract Months Before Finishing

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Because "custom spec" makes total sense

It might sound oxymoronic, but homebuilder and designer Sarah Roppoli had a very specific goal in mind with a recent Ormewood Park project: to bring a custom home to market as a spec house.

Roppoli, owner of the boutique StudioSD company and an HGTV veteran, was working under the assumption that Ormewood Park and surrounding neighborhoods are primed for more expensive designer homes that buyers don't have to custom build themselves.

With a new-build on Vernon Avenue, Roppoli "really pushed the envelope in terms of level of design and finishes for Ormewood Park," she told Curbed Atlanta in an email. "I added a lot of upgrades that you don't see in many spec homes in the area."

The result? The property went under contract before Roppoli could list it — months before construction was complete — for full asking price of $635,000, she says.

Let's have a closer look:

The lot was rather large for intown (200 feet deep), allowing for a detached garage that creates a courtyard between it and the back deck. Meanwhile, the four-bedroom, traditional-style house spans 2,865 square feet, brandishing a "showstopper" kitchen that Roppoli describes as the home's highlight, with upgraded KitchenAid appliances, "exotic" granite, a fireclay farm sink, rows of rustic open shelves, and a dual-temp wine fridge.

Elsewhere, there's marble tile in the master bathroom and a painted cast-iron tub, thoughtful lighting choices, a large laundry room, mudroom with a built-in bench and cubby, and a first-floor flex room with adjoining full bathroom. Roppoli handled design duties herself.

Like other new-builds around Atlanta in this general style, the house has a front porch that's almost flush with the front yard. Roppoli says the logic behind this approach boils down to two things:

"To lower the house so we weren't too tall for the street, since our roof pitch is high (only one-story houses on our end on the street, minus us and next-door house) and to get rid of the railings and make it a more open welcoming front porch," she wrote. "The increased accessibility of a one-step entry helped seal the deal for me too, since I was pushing multigenerational living with that flex room on the first floor (potentially for aging parents or in-laws)."