Are you looking to add value to your new home?
Or has the time come to begin that renovation but you dont know where to start?
I’m incredibly lucky to have worked with and for some of the best in the industry during my relatively short career and every single one of them has been nothing but generous, especially when it comes to advice. So here’s my chance to pay it forward, I only hope I can do it justice and you enjoy it as much as I enjoy sharing it.
Let’s start the ball rolling with the top 5 2015 home design tips we’ve all been talking about this year.
1. Keep It Neutral
As a general rule, if you need a trade certificate in order to change it when you’re sick of it, keep it neutral.
The devil really is in the detail when an otherwise timeless bathroom is dating more than a 40 year old virgin due to a ghastly mosaic tile, or perhaps your modern classic kitchen is touting a ‘good-idea-at-the-time’ splash back that went out with the Soda Stream.
– Neutral doesn’t mean boring. Classic colours and finishes applied to well designed, modern cabinetry or architecture will stand the test of time.
– Art is a great (and easily removable) way to personalise your space. It will set the mood and also give you a colour scheme to work with in your soft furnishings and accessories.
2. Furniture Placement
If there’s no room in a room, is it still called a room?
Often furniture placement is the last consideration in the design even though it can significantly affect how you use the space.
I’m often asked how to style bedrooms that don’t have the wall space to hold the required bed and bedside tables, so a ‘Queen Bedroom’ becomes an oversized single bedroom or study in functional reality.
– Doors and windows, both location and size cause the main issues, so triple check these.
– Consider furniture placement for each room based on standard sized furniture that suits the home’s possible occupants. Ask the question, ‘Who’s the B.O.S.’ (Bums On Seats) to work out what you’ll need in your living areas to accommodate.
– Often we have trouble ‘visualising’ a room, and what may look good on the plan could be problematic in reality, so give yourself layout options where you can.
– Establish ‘flow’ by drawing a line on your plan that indicates how you would move through your home and each space. If your line ends up looking like it’s tracking 3 blind mice, you should consider going back to the drawing board (in the literal sense).
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3. Comfortable Living
I’ve always said you can never have too many private parts. Isolating bedrooms from living areas and master bedrooms from secondary bedrooms will guarantee happy campers.
This nocturnal privacy along with designated spaces such as children’s or parents retreats, media rooms and self contained outdoor living is the reason our dependents, continue depending, so builder-beware.
– A bedroom won’t feel private if it opens directly off a living area – give the entry to the room a vestibule to easily solve this issue.
– Place your main bathroom or robes between secondary bedrooms as an added privacy buffer.
You can never have enough time, money or storage. Which is funny because storage costs money which takes time to earn and garage sales take up time selling all the things you’re storing to raise some money. When I said funny, I meant confusing.
– Storage is often an after thought but it is a very valuable commodity, so from the very beginning keep in mind that every room requires some form of storage, as does everyone and everything living within it.
– Walk-In-Storage is high on the wish list however, being able to ‘walk-in’ requires enough space to walk in, so weigh up if your quest for more storage, costs you more storage.
– Design and invest in storage fit-outs based on the items you need to store both now and in the future. Adjustable racking systems are incredibly clever and have no end of optional add-ons but they are pricey so shop your options.
5. ‘Patience is a virtue’,’ knowledge is key’, ‘learn from your mistakes’ and other such wise sayings were coined by those who have built or renovated before you.
The most resounding design tip I have for you is to ‘Employ the Experts’.
– Your builder will have a trusted team of professionals within their network who consider your builders business to be valuable, so make the most of this relationship while you have access to it.
– Do the research. Ask to see your experts portfolio or their recent work and brush up on the essential basics of their area of expertise so you can talk-the-talk.
– Design now, execute later. While you’re in the zone, complete every design aspect of your build or reno in one hit, even if you’re doing it in stages. This will guarantee a cohesive, well executed and evolved final product and will save you time in the long run.
Time is money – waste it and it will cost you, use it wisely and you will profit.
These are just 5 of 2014 home design tips from the thousands of tips we all have to share.
I’d love to hear your top design tips!
Please ask me any design related questions you may have in the comments section below.