Classic Hits

National builder Ryland Homes is expanding its floor plan offerings in Taylor Plantation, located minutes from the Ashley River in North Charleston.

Unveiling novel floor plans doesn't always take months of design and effort. Sometimes it's as basic as reviving past favorites.

That's what Ryland Homes is doing at Taylor Plantation in Dorchester County, dusting off a few unused designs there. The California-based builder responded because it wanted to reach a wider home-buying audience.

"They are more affordable," says David Dix, sales counselor with Ryland Homes at Taylor Plantation. Dix says the builder retained several floor plans while introducing others. "We went with the tried and true models," he says.

Those layouts include the 2,843- to 2,868-square-foot Williamsburg, which at $235,000-$239,000 has one of the best values per square foot in the builder's upscale Lowcountry series; the Virginian, priced at a moderate $218,000-$219,000 for 2,287-2,311 square feet; and the 2,348 to 2,361-square-foot Huntington, one of the mid-range Woodland series. It costs $191,000.

In all, Ryland has a dozen floor plans at Taylor Plantation priced from $170,000 to $259,000 and sized from 1,540 to 3,016 square feet.

All homes are characterized by open layouts, notably nine-foot or vaulted ceilings; three or four bedrooms; two to three baths; kitchen dishwashers and ranges; sodded yard; and two-car garages with carriage-style doors. Blown ceiling and wall insulation and low energy windows are power-efficient perks.

Some features such as formal dining rooms, breakfast areas and kitchen islands are standard to certain plans.

If buyers want more, they can pay for options, Dix says. These include an extra room that could be a guest suite or entertainment area, a screened porch or sunroom and a den or loft. Hardwood floors, wainscoting and fireplaces can be added. With extras, the Virginian can be built with six bedrooms. Each plan has three different looks to them.

With such variety, buyers can focus on the perks they want. The 2,996- to 3,016-square-foot Hampton floor plan, for instance, is "a great family home. We can open it up to 3,400 square feet with a sunroom," he says.

Five of the 12 models are the one-level ranch. "We see the demand," Dix says. "Lots of people from up north come down; the older buyer doesn't want an upstairs," he says.

The community is popular with servicepeople and families, because the neighborhood is close to Charleston Air Force Base and the Naval Weapons Station complex. "In the more affordable homes, we are seeing first-time buyers," Dix says.

Taylor Plantation is conveniently located just four miles from Charleston International Airport. The development also features amenities such as a walking trail alongside the Ashley River.

With the tweaked lineup of homes, Ryland expects sales to be steady. "Why reinvent the wheel?" Dix says. "We've got a really good wheel."

To get to Taylor Plantation from downtown Charleston, head west on Interstate 26 to exit 209, Ashley Phosphate Road. Turn left on Ashley Phosphate and continue to Dorchester Road. Proceed across Dorchester, where the road becomes Park Forest Parkway. Go about a mile. The entrance to Taylor Plantation is on the right.

Reach Jim Parker at 937-5542 or jparker@postandcourier.com.

Neighborhood:

Taylor Plantation

Location: Dorchester County

Phone: (843) 767-4677

Hours: 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday, noon-6 p.m. Sunday and Monday

Web site:

www.ryland.com