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options to add griddles in place of the typical burners. “Because of the grate system, you can remove them and add on something like a griddle element which people might find really useful when they’re cooking,” Gaskill said.

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Keep it cookin’ Today’s ranges and cooktops offer plenty of power for home chefs

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et’s face it: for some time-sensitive folks, the microwave is where the majority of cooking takes place. However, for many families, the range or cooktop is still the most essential cooking appliance in the kitchen. Ergo, it’s no wonder that homebuilders pay such close attention to offering the latest technology when it comes to cooktops and ranges in their new homes. And with all those features comes a variety of choices — e.g., gas or electric? Induction or griddles? The answers, of course, depend on the options offered by your new-home builder as well as what culinary amenities appeal to the chief cook in the family. Gas or electric One of the first decisions any homeowner must make about their cooking device is whether it will be gas or electric. Some new-home builders offer a choice between the two, others offer one as standard with

the other as an upgrade, while some don’t offer a choice — they’re either gas or electric depending on how the particular community is serviced by the local utility company. Therefore, before you start envisioning your new kitchen, make sure you know what options are available in your new home. “We have two choices with your heating element: it’s either a gas cooktop — which is the one that has the industrial-looking grates — or an electric cooktop which is the smooth glass cooktop,” said Julia Gaskill, Maracay Homes’ Design Studio manager. “Gas is the most popular — if you talk to anyone in the cooking or restaurant industry, gas is the method they use. It tends to offer more even cooking and it gives a nice industrial look, too.” Of course, there are plenty of home chefs who are fiercely loyal to electric cooktops, preferring the sleek look, quick heating elements and easy cleaning. Cooktops or ranges Generally, a builder will include a range — a single appliance with a cooktop and oven — for kitchens that do not include a wall oven. Cooktops are usually offered when a wall oven is built into the design. “It depends on the community, but Maracay offers slide-in ranges — where

TAYLOR MORRISON’S NEWEST NORTH SCOTTSDALE COMMUNITIES ARE OPENING SOON Copper Sky will feature large home sites, while Andaluza will boast stunning Upper Sonoran Desert views. Both will showcase three brand new, never before built executive floor plans from Taylor Morrison’s prestigious Capstone collection. These homes offer elegant interiors of up to 4,342 square feet featuring desirable options including: • Prep Kitchens & Wet Bars • Expanded Covered Patios & Courtyards • Expansive Owners & Guest Suites Entertaining will be a breeze in these thoughtfully designed single-story homes priced from the $800s

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LUXURY LIVING AT ITS FINEST For more information, visit taylormorrison.com/arizona or call 480.346.1738 Sales Center is located at the Southwest corner of Pima Road and Westland Road in North Scottsdale Taylor Morrison received the highest numerical score in the United States in the proprietary Lifestory Research 2016 America’s Most Trusted™ Home Builder study. Study based on 39,079 new home shoppers in the United States. Proprietary study results are based on experiences and perceptions of consumers surveyed between January and December 2015. For study details, go to www.lifestoryresearch.com. All information (including, but not limited to current and future views from any property, prices, availability, incentives, floor plans, site plans, features, standards and options, assessments and fees, planned amenities, programs, conceptual artists’ renderings and community development plans) is not guaranteed and remains subject to change or delay without notice. Images do not reflect a racial, age or ethnic preference. Prices may not include lot premiums, options and upgrades. Maps and plans are not to scale and all dimensions are approximate. Photos and descriptions of any planned improvements, features or amenities may not be an actual representation and are for illustration purposes only that remain subject to change and which are under no obligation to be completed. Images do not reflect a racial or ethnic preference. No binding offer to sell or lease may be made or accepted prior to the issuance of the final AZ Subdivision Public Report for the Community. A public report is available at the AZ Real Estate Department’s website. Not an offer to sell or lease where prohibited or otherwise restricted by law. Please see a Community Sales Manager for details or visit www. taylormorrison.com for additional disclaimers. Taylor Morrison/Arizona, Inc., ROC # 179178B. © August 2016, TM Homes of Arizona, Inc., AZ DRE # CO535669000. All rights reserved.

your oven and cooktop are one unit — as well as drop-in cooktops which is essentially when you have a wall oven plus a cooktop that’s nestled into a countertop,” Gaskill said. No matter the type of power supply, standard cooktops and ranges are typically 36 inches wide — the exception being gourmet-style ranges by brands such as Wolf, Viking or SubZero, which generally are 48 inches wide. What’s new? Plain and simple, cooking just isn’t what it used to be. Easier cleaning, faster heating elements and sleeker designs are all expected with a brand-new cooktop or range. “Maytag brand has invested in power features allowing consumers to boil, sear and reheat with confidence,” said Michael Ledford, senior product development manager for Whirlpool. “Whirlpool brand has launched full-depth front-control ranges that allow consumers to get a builtin look without the hassle of a built-in installation.” Induction cooking, which is faster than traditional heating, also is a popular feature that makes some cooks choose electric cooktops. Meanwhile, with gas ranges and cooktops, there often are

Things to think about In the end, experts say, the choice comes down to the primary cook’s personal preferences as well as whether gas or electric service — or both — is offered in your community. In addition, Ledford recommends that new-home buyers should think about attributes such as clean-ability and even-heating for both the cooktop and the oven. “The next time you’re making some of your favorite dishes, take note to anything you particularly like or dislike,” he said. “Look for features that deliver to those points.”

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1HZ FRORUV DQG WH[WXUHV While we’ve gotten comfortable working with stainless steel and black for appliances, there are new hues on the horizon. Slate, a gray-like color that has the same texture as black appliances, offers a stainless-steel-like look that is described as being much easier to keep clean than stainless steel. Also, Whirlpool is releasing a “black stainless” finish that’s described as a fingerprint-resistant stainless steel. And if you really feel colorful, some high-end ranges are available in a variety of colors to brighten your kitchen.

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