"I wanted something simpler," says Dallas builder Matthew Thomas, "a place to relax after being in other houses all day long." Matthew, who works with his wife, Lindsay, constructing homes, longed for a streamlined life. A residence with an efficient layout was important, but so was a home-automation program that would consolidate and, better yet, perform time-consuming everyday chores, like closing the shades in all the rooms at night. The couple got the chance to turn a dream into reality when they built their first home, a 3,700-square-foot HardiePlank-sided dwelling in a central neighborhood in Dallas.
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