Month: October 2019

Did You Overlook Something in Your New Home Design?

Did You Overlook Something in Your New Home Design?

There are quite a few details involved in designing a new house and it is very easy to overlook certain aspects of what will make that house a home. I have been a home designer for almost three decades now and have come up with a list of things that are often forgotten in the layout. Maybe that list can be of some help to you.

Number one on my list is storage space! Are you allowing for this? Chances are that if your home is cluttered now, you either have too much stuff accumulated or there is not enough storage space to store this stuff. If you overlook this in the design of your new home, you may be transferring one problem from your old dwelling to the new one.Did You Overlook Something in Your New Home Design?

The common lack of storage in homes are:

– Pantries for extra food stuffs like canned goods that would be overflowing from the kitchen cabinets.

– Clothes closets that are too small to handle the wardrobe of a family member for at least one season. Make sure they are large enough.

– Coat closets in the entryway of the home. When this omitted, the living room, kitchen or dining room starts becoming a catch all for winter coats.

– Linen closets are often overlooked also. This space is for sheets, pillow cases, washcloths, and towels. All too often, if a home does not have a linen closet, extra shelves have to be added to handle these.

– Attic or basement storage that is easily accessible to store Christmas lights and family keepsakes. When attic or basement storage is unavailable the garage fills up with all this stuff.

If the home is in an area that experiences more than usual rain or snow fall, is there a mud room for taking off those muddy boots so you do not track up the house? I have seen mud rooms equipped with a sink to wash up before coming into the main house. This is also a good aspect of a well designed home if someone in the house likes to do auto mechanics in the garage. They can wash the grease off before it gets to far into the home.

One other thing to consider would be allowing enough natural light into the home. Too often there are too few windows pointed in the right direction to capture natural light in the mornings and evenings.… Read More

How to Cut Costs When Building a House

How to Cut Costs When Building a House

Everyone would like to save a little money when building a new house. After all, there are added expenses when building, such as repayments on the land and during the construction phase which often adds pressure on both the buyer and builder to have the house completed as fast as possible. These simple tips will help to cut costs even before you start building your new house.How to Cut Costs When Building a House

  1. Choose a block that is already prepared – A new subdivision should have all your services in place and also have a nice sandy block ready to be built on. This will reduce the cost of your earthworks which can be significant. If you’re buying in an established area with the intention of knocking down and rebuilding, call the local council to find out what the conditions of the land are like in that area. They may be able to tell you the type of engineering detail that is common and if limestone or rock is prevalent.
  2. Ensure your home designer has a track record of bringing house designs in on budget – this is also such an important step as a poor house designer or architect can spend your money on poor construction details that provide no benefit to the home or the owners. Be sure to ask them how they have performed in the past. It’s their job to ensure that they deliver a home on budget, and not blame their clients for ‘changing their mind’.
  3. Make all your product and colour selections before construction starts – Most owners don’t understand why this is critical to cost savings. A builder will typically send out for quotes at the start of the project. If colours and product selections have been totally completed then the builder can receive quotes for the entire home. The builder can then take approximately 3 days to do a full building schedule and print off the purchase orders for the entire home and send them out. In 99% of cases, suppliers and contractors will honour the quoted price even if the supply or labour is not done on site for another 9 – 12 months! However, if a builder doesn’t have the selections until the last minute, prices may rise which will mean additional costs to build.
  4. Have your house independently designed by a building broker – this will allow you to go through a tender process which will create competition between builders and allow you to get the best building price. Building Brokers will also know which builders pricing is most competitive at the time, and will help you get the best building prices possible.
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Bringing the Past with You

Moving from one coast to another has been an interesting experience. I moved with my husband because he’s in the military. We’ve moved around a lot, but not to the west coast until now. I’ve missed all of the homes that we’ve been in, and all of the wonderful people that we’ve met along the way. In our last home before moving, there were these amazing wood shutters on the windows. The new home we moved into didn’t have them, so I had to find a company that would be able to install them.

I did some searching for local shutter companies and found one that would come to my home to do take some measurements and do some consulting for free.… Read More