Homes On Parade

If you're in the market for a new home or just looking to spruce up the one you're already in, you're in luck.  Over the next week, 22 new homes will be open around the Tyler area, giving you a look inside.

It's part of the "2004 Holiday Parade of Homes" and some are already taking advantage of the tour.

From the outside it looks like any other upscale home.  But those who built this house at 1416 Royal Oak Drive in Tyler, say it's what's on the inside that makes it special.

"There have been alot of things, as far as technology, that we use now-- like a new tech shield on the roof that keeps the attic 10 degrees cooler. That helps with utility bills, advances like that are certainly helpful to home buyers."

From technology that saves you money to a kitchen that can keep your attention, every detail has been planned with today's family in mind.

"We're now moving to the age where we have a nice formal/informal family room that you can use for baby showers, just for your family to feel comfortable and not feel like it's something your family can't go touch," said Sandy Stewart of Stewart Designs.

That's good news for Russell Brown. He's getting married to his fiancé Patti next month. They toured the new home Sunday. He says a new home is also in their future.

"We've already got alot and looking to build next year so we're getting some ideas and things," he said.  "I don't want our house to be old in 20 years, I want it to still look new and alot of these homes in 20 years won't look old."

While not every idea will fit into the Browns future plans, designers say just getting a chance to look can make a big difference.

"You can share your ideas and concepts with them and lots of times they are surprised saying 'oh that's great' so they love being able to share those ideas with people so they can incorporate them into their own home," said Stewart.

If you would like to get a behind the scenes look, you haven't missed out. The Holiday Parade of Homes will be open again next Friday and Saturday from 10 to 6 and on Sunday from 1 to 6.  It costs $10 per person and you can purchase tickets at individual homes. The Parade is sponsored by the Tyler Area Builders Association.  Proceeds benefit the Azleway Boy's Ranch.

Chris Gibson, reporting