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New construction in Spring Valley was perfect move for this happy couple

Fri, Apr 16th, 2010
Posted in Home & Garden

Tom Lawson stands in his new living room, the perfect place to relax with a fire and a remote control. Photo by Jason Sethre

Tom Lawson and his wife Fran have traveled the world with his colorful career in the Central Intelligence Agency, raising their children in places such as Australia, London, Turkey and Tokoyo.

Now retired, the Lawsons are enjoying their days with their grandchildren.

With Tom and Fran growing up in the Spring Valley area, moving back to this beautiful town brings them back to their roots.

But, it was their grandchildren that became the driving force behind their decision to relocate to Spring Valley. As a matter of fact, all of their grandchildren, including a set of twin baby girls just learning how to crawl, reside in the Spring Valley area.

Prior to moving to Spring Valley in their newly constructed home, they lived in Eyota. It was somewhat of a compromise, because they couldn't find what they were looking for in the Spring Valley area and their builder of choice, Dave Foster, was swamped with new construction when they built their home in the Eyota area just a few years ago.

Tom indicated that he and his wife had heard such great things about Dave Foster's work that they had always hoped they could have Foster Construction, Inc. build a new home for them.

Well, the timing was just right.

With the slowed new construction market, while Dave Foster was busy remodeling older homes, he was able to fit the Lawson's new construction dream home into his list of projects.

The Lawsons were finally going to get what they had wanted years ago -- a home built by Foster Construction, Inc.

While the landscaping and lawn have not been completed at this point, currently on the list of "things to do" now that the weather is prime, with the construction of the new home just completed nearly two months ago, there was plenty to talk about inside the home.

This 3,400 square foot three bedroom, two and half bathroom ranch style home includes a three-car attached garage, all resting on a very large lot in the city limits of Spring Valley.

Walking into the master bedroom, a custom feature was the trea ceiling with a very nice fan hanging in the center just above the Lawson's kingsize bed. In addition, all three large bedrooms provide ample storage with very large walk-in closets.

Set up with a coaxial cable jack and an electrical outlet high up on the wall, Tom explained his plans for a flat screen TV in the master bedroom.

Connected to the master bedroom is a master bathroom with lots of walking room, double-sinks and plenty of drawers and cabinets. The shower is separate from the jetted-tub, which is almost like having an indoor hot tub.

Conveniently located just outside Tom and Fran's master bedroom is a laundry room as tidy as they come. With an attractive, clean look and feel, this laundry room is meant to be seen. There's plenty of countertop space for folding clothes, the washer and dryer are practically out of site, and the wonderful cabinetry is a clear indicator that the Lawsons strive to keep their home organized and presentable for guests.

One of the largest rooms in the house is the kitchen area open to the dining room with beautiful oak cabinets. And, the oak doesn't stop there. Oak has invaded this home, covering the floor, doors, windows and stairway. That new house smell is even more pronounced with the scent of oak in the air.

Before taking a trip downstairs, visitors can enjoy stepping into Tom's study and office area near the front part of the house.

And, one last stop before heading downstairs is the living room area. With a gas fireplace adorned in some of the finest oak, the Lawsons maintained consistency in their selection of woods from top to bottom.

In every room of the house, large double-paned windows play a role in opening the rooms up to natural daylight, making the house bright and inviting.

With just one bedroom on the main level, the two remaining bedrooms are located in the nearly finished basement. Situated in the lower level with a ping pong table in the family room and a couple of bedrooms displaying traces of youngsters -- toys -- visitors will find this home is kid-friendly.

Located in the utility room is a high efficiency furnace, the access panel to the electrical main service coming into the house, water heater and a radon removal system.

According to Tom, all new homes constructed in the State of Minnesota are required to install a radon mitigation system.

With the smell of a fresh catch in the spacious kitchen, tasty walleye direct from the waters of the Mississippi River to be exact, the Lawsons are happy to entertain their children, inlaws, grandchildren, and long-time friends.

Tom shared that he was fine with living in Eyota a few years back due to proximity for his wife traveling to work in Rochester within 12 minutes, in addition to his short drive to the Mississippi where enjoys casting his line to catch a few walleye.

But, the grandchildren lived in the opposite direction of Tom's fishing trips, so the couple sold their home in Eyota and moved to Spring Valley -- saving them a bunch of money in gasoline for all the trips they were making from Eyota to Spring Valley on a weekly basis.

The Lawsons are very proud of their children and grandchildren, and being close to family is very important.

One thing to note for anyone considering new construction or any home remodeling project, material costs are climbing upwards as a result of limited production and therefore limited supply. So, now is a good time to build a new home or initiate a remodeling project, but having a trusting relationship with your builder is critical to a harmonious end result.

Congratulations to Tom and Fran Lawson on their new home, and thanks to Dave Foster, owner of Foster Construction Inc., for helping us connect with this happy couple to tell their story.

Following the interview with the Lawsons, Dave Foster indicated the wide array of customized construction approaches he has learned over his 35 years of experience.

Foster Construction, Inc. has done everything from installing geothermal systems to wood basement foundations. Dave indicated that it's important to sub-contract only the best, and that's what makes the difference. Ultimately, his preferred sub-contractors, while all independent business owners, all represent his company with projects he assumes, so he spends every day on the construction site making sure the process is progressing as planned.

Foster Construction, Inc. will be showcasing photos of their work on their new website www.fosterconstructioninc.com, coming soon.

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