Buying a home is more than a bricks and mortar decision. You’re also buying into a neighborhood, region and community. New homes come with proximity to shopping, restaurants, jobs, and recreation. The Census Bureau estimates that Americans live in their homes for just over 8 years before selling. That’s why choosing location is as vital as amenities, finishes, and floorplan.

Rob Rice S Ridge James and Ginny front exterior
For James and Ginny Nakauchi, Steilacoom Ridge is their perfect forever home. Photo courtesy: Rob Rice Homes

Rob Rice Homes’ Lacey development Steilacoom Ridge is ideally located in the Hawks Prairie area. Minutes from I-5, JBLM, downtown Olympia, and the Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge, it conveniently places you in the heart of all the action yet the neighborhood offers expansive open space and recreation areas.

Steilacoom Ridge offers 10 different floor plans ranging from 1,700 to 2,500 square feet. Whether you’re looking for a two-story charmer or an easy one-story rambler, they’ve got you covered. Homes come landscaped with fully fenced backyards and high quality finishes.

For James and Ginny Nakauchi, the luxury Juniper rambler was the ideal downsize from their previous 3,500-square-foot home. They had both lived in Hawks Prairie for years and were very attracted to the growing development.

James, a retired Air Force veteran, loves being close to VA services around the base. They both travel extensively and being able to quickly pop onto the freeway is a plus. They carefully chose their lot site as it faces a pond, giving them amazing views year round.

The Nakauchis started their Rob Rice journey three years ago. They looked at lots on the site map and debated which layout and features were most important. Sales and real estate staff answered loads of questions and they eventually worked out the logistics. Their first lot choice didn’t work for the elegant Juniper—the land’s L-shape and elevation shift best fit a 2-story home—so a back-up building site was researched and they moved forward. From that point on, construction only took six months and they’ve loved every minute since.

Rob Rice S Ridge gourmet kitchen
With gorgeous customization, homes in Steilacoom Ridge are a true pleasure to come home to. Photo courtesy: Rob Rice Homes

Their new home includes a gas fireplace, hardwood floors, stainless steel appliances and a decadent master suite. The most important part is that the Nakauchis got the advantage of choosing from hundreds of different surfaces selections.  Choosing hardwood, tile, countertops, paint, exterior detail & more.  This is all included at no cost when choosing to build a pre-sale home with Rob. The Juniper floor plan offers oversized windows and a light and bright open design scheme. The expansive patio is ideal for the Nakauchi’s to watch ducks, eagles, and wildlife, enjoying the Pacific Northwest’s finest scenery.

“Our hopes, as our neighborhood grows, are to see Steilacoom Ridge become a friendly neighborhood where residents know and respect their neighbors and take pride and responsibility for the upkeep of their properties as well as for the entire Steilacoom Ridge community,” says James. “We, and many of our neighbors, appreciate the natural beauty of our pond area and the many wildlife it attracts that live there.”

There are more than 550,000 veterans living in Washington State. Add those to the 210,000 residents of JBLM and it makes developments like Steilacoom Ridge a perfect spot for retirees and active duty military. Families enjoy the nature hikes at the Wildlife Refuge, WARC off-leash dog park, and endless fun at the nearby RAC. There are restaurants galore and new businesses springing up often.

Since 1985, Rob Rice Homes has developed more than 43 communities and built over 3,000 homes in the Thurston County area. Their success has resulted in awards from industry experts but—perhaps more importantly—praise from happy clients like the Nakauchi family. They see repeat homebuyers and love discussing the company’s growth, goals, and mission.

Rob Rice S Ridge backyard view
For James and Ginny, the water view means bird-watching and natural beauty is at their doorstep. Photo courtesy: Rob Rice Homes

To find your perfect neighborhood, Realtor.com suggests making a list. This can include needs, wants, and wildest dreams. When you start looking for properties, categorize which is most important: yard, fixtures, amenities, layout, square footage or neighborhood?

Then comes a crucial—yet sometimes overlooked—step. “It’s important to visit a prospective neighborhood at various times of day and on both weekdays and weekends to get a feel for what it would be like to live there. Look at how the homes are maintained to see if they meet your standards. Try to talk to residents about the community and test out your commute at the time of day you typically go to work. Finding the right neighborhood takes some legwork, but it’s important to choose a place to live where you want to come home every night.

When you’re ready to explore Steilacoom Ridge, fill out the information request form or visit our open house Friday through Monday 12:00-5:00.  For information on all of Rob’s communities go to: www.robricehomes.com.

Nearly 300 years ago historian Thomas Fuller said that “We can live without our friends, but not without our neighbors.” But if you choose carefully and are lucky enough to choose Steilacoom Ridge, friends and neighbors can be the same thing. Just ask James and Ginny.

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