Live Work Construction
Though he’s best known for his luxury custom homes in Norton Commons, Jason Black (owner of Artisan Signature Homes) also has his hand in some of the commercial projects of Norton Commons. A popular concept in Norton Commons is the “live/work” lifestyle investment with buyers looking to diversify with a commercial first floor and a 1,500 – 2,500 square foot rental unit on the second floor.
The idea is that you could own a business, work on the first floor and live on the second floor. Restaurants are a particularly popular type of business to attach to residential space, but just about any business can be constructed as mixed-use. Meeting Street seems to be the hub of these live/work properties.
A new December bed and breakfast is opening in the heart of Norton Commons, but it looks just like a house. Most of Jason Black’s commercial/residential units are done with high-end finishes, so the luxury executive apartments he does typically rent out for $2,500 – $3,000 a month. “They’re very charming buildings,” Black says, with 10-foot ceilings in the rental units and special attention to detail.
From a builder’s perspective, code issues like fire and sound suppression must be considered in the construction of these mixed use spaces. Strict parking ordinances and determining the right amount of spaces to accommodate the clientele must be worked out as well. Paperwork for Norton Commons and Louisville Metro must be pored over to ensure that all legal requirements are met.
From a buyer’s perspective, living and working in the same building can be very convenient. Although, some clients prefer to rent out the upper units as a way to subsidize their lower-level business property rent. For instance, a local dentist Black worked with is paying her own rent using the supplemental checks from the two renters who live above her office; in 15 years, her building will be completely paid off and she’ll then have the rent as added income.
As one would imagine, these luxury rental units in Norton Commons are in high demand, especially among area newcomers who aren’t sure if they want to make a bigger investment purchase just yet. Not surprisingly, most do end up making a permanent home in Norton Commons.
To listen to this podcast episode and to read the full transcript, visit the Norton Commons Live Work podcast episode at Lenihan Sotheby’s International Realty’s website.