Built To Endure

Local Company Designs, Prefabricates and Ships Homes that are Built Worldwide

By Andrew Honey

When it comes down to logistics, Topsider Homes, located in Clemmons, NC, has an impressive history of overcoming challenges to ensure its homes not only arrive safely, but also maintain top quality in all aspects of the construction process.

From Alaska to the Baltic, Topsider has delivered homes in some of the most challenging environments in the world.

Originally designed in 1968, Topsider's unique pedestal base was a solution to expensive and unsightly foundations otherwise needed for mountainous and sloping terrain. The octagonal shape and extensive floor-to-ceiling glass also allowed magnificent panoramic views from every room. They soon learned that the pedestal's strength and durability was also perfectly matched to coastal settings.

Since then, new construction technologies have enabled Topsider to expand its designs to homes ranging in size up to 20,000 square feet, utilizing every conceivable foundation type, from pilings to full basements.

Topsider Homes' post & beam building system uses no interior or exterior load-bearing walls, as large timbers carry the loads most other homes must support with spaceinhibiting interior walls. The result is a building system that allows complete design flexibility, including floor-to-ceiling glass walls, detailed finishes and other upgrades -- all without sacrificing structural integrity. In fact, structural integrity is a natural characteristic of post & beam construction, and its stability against the forces of nature such as earthquakes, hurricanes and heavy snow loads is extraordinary.

Topsider Homes have withstood the most devastating hurricanes in modern history, including direct hits from Hugo in the Virgin Islands, Andrew in the Bahamas and Florida, and Ivan, Katrina and Rita along the Gulf Coast. The hurricane and storm resistant features of Topsider Homes are the result of a unique blend of modern engineering and state-of-the-art building technology, combined with the post and beam building system. This combination creates houses that are structural battleships, resistant to tropical storms, hurricane force winds and storm surges. Because pedestal and stilt homes are elevated and multisided in design, storm winds flow around, over and under them with far less damage-causing wind resistance than with conventional homes. As Topsider Homes evolved, it soon became evident that qualified builders were a key component to its success. When the panelized, prefabricated parts of a home were shipped, a builder in another state -- or another country -- would finalize the construction. Being able to utilize the services of a builder familiar with the Topsider building system was invaluable, so Topsider embarked on a builder recruitment program. Today, Topsider Homes has a vast network of qualified builders all around the world.

To support the evolving needs of its business and clientele, Topsider also offers its clients a wide array of services, including in-house architecture and design, complete interior design services, builder recruitment assistance and training, national financing programs and more. Today we hear a lot about ecofriendly building practices as more companies go "green" in both design and materials. One of the major green features of a Topsider Homes is its natural efficiency in regards to heating and cooling -- the major energy consumption feature of most homes. Topsider's multi-sided designs have considerably less exterior wall surface than rectangular homes of similar size, and since interior floor plans have few, if any long hallways, the length of heating and cooling ducts is minimized and is far more efficient. Floor-to-ceiling windows allow passive solar heat gain, and for cooling, standard three-feet-wide eaves provide summer shading while rooftop cupolas with operating windows provide efficient ventilation and natural cooling.

While each home is custom designed, Topsider has over 120 basic house plans on its website, and also offers no-obligation, free cost estimates on its homes. For more information, visit www.TopsiderHomes.com, or call toll-free: 1-800-941-9801.


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