Part 2: How Lee Wetherington’s Vision for His Homestead Became a Reality With Us

Life in the rustic, remote areas of the Suncoast is truly one-of-a-kind, from sweeping properties featuring vistas of centuries-old oak trees, palmettos and grasslands with abundant wildlife to the distinct, relaxing feeling of seclusion permeating each living space. It’s a beautiful experience that an increasing number of homeowners are seeking, with the U.S. Census Bureau recently noting that far-flung communities on the outskirts of metro areas are likely to be the fastest-growing locations in the nation.  

For our founder, Lee Wetherington, and his wife, Caroline, it’s an aspirational lifestyle that recently became actuality in the form of a breathtaking homestead, complete with an organic garden, livestock and more – the perfect retreat, intended to be their last. From meticulously creating a farm across their 30-acre property to designing and building their incomparable Transitional Modern estate with Lee Wetherington Homes, bringing the vision to fruition has been a singular experience for the couple. In this second edition of our three-part blog series, we’re exploring Lee and Caroline’s tailored journey through the “Wetherington Way,our tailored design and building process, and the many unique details incorporated across their ranch. 

Watching an Incomparable Custom Home Take Shape

A dream home is truly tangible – not simply an ambition – and Lee Wetherington Homes has achieved this for thousands of discerning Suncoast homebuyers through a consistent process, focusing on a personalized experience. No two homebuyers are the same, which is why a unique approach matters in creating a masterpiece, which intertwines innovation with timeless styles and Florida’s iconic lifestyle. Lee and Caroline not only envisioned designing a modern ranch home, but a fully custom estate that maximized unobstructed views of the acres of surrounding woodlands and pastures. 

With the absence of nearby neighbors, Lee and Caroline, working closely with our team of designers, incorporated expansive windows in nearly every room across their living space, allowing for natural light – and the stunning scenery – to shine through. From exploring our state-of-the-art design center to selecting forward-thinking accent lighting, exquisite flooring, cabinetry, statement-making touches and more, every aspect of a custom home is considered when embarking on the Wetherington Way. While many homebuyers, including Caroline, feel the finishes are easy to overlook, our team provided a full presentation of potential selections as a helpful reference in making these truly exciting, important decisions.  

How a Quiet Life on the Farm Came To Be

Through our design process, “what could be” is no longer imagination, evidenced in Lee and Caroline’s addition of an attached workshop now affectionately known as the “Honey House,” which is used for not only honey processing but also drying herbs and curing vegetables from in the property’s organic garden. The ranch, from its pastures to the animals that roam the land, has taken several worthwhile years to build. In 2023, Lee and Caroline, who for a decade has been certified by the Florida Department of Agriculture & Consumer Services as a beekeeper, both worked for seven months to obtain their Organic Certification from the USDA and diligently keep up with best practices. They’ve joined the over 43% of Americans – a 17-year high, according to the National Garden Association – now growing some kind of food to eat at home. 

Pasture-raised poultry, including chickens, broilers, and turkeys, are thriving on the homestead, providing free-range eggs and meat, which is processed on-site. A flock of Katahdin sheep are now sold seasonally twice a year. Lee and Caroline have even begun raising cattle, with a starter group including a South Poll bull and several Jersey cows, intended for beef and dairy for themselves. It’s an original life enjoyed each day – like what our team at Lee Wetherington Homes has delivered for so many homebuyers stretching our over 40-year legacy.