10 Things You Should Consider When Building a New Home
If you are planning on building your new home, a lot should be considered before you start building. After all, you want to ensure that you will end up with your dream home. To give you a helping hand, here are 9 of the most wish-list items to keep in mind.
Think About Your Life & What Your Future Looks Like
If you are going through all of the effort to build a new house, we are sure that you will want it to be right for you both now and in the future. So, make sure you do not only consider your needs today but think about what you will need in 5, 10, or 15 years down the line. After all, your needs and life tend to change. If you are thinking about starting a family in a few years, for example, you will need to make sure your home is perfect for your new addition.
Storage Ideas for Your New Home
There is only one place to begin – storage space. One of the most common complaints people have about their new homes is that they do not have sufficient storage space. When you go to your design center appointment, share your storage needs with your design center consultant. It doesn’t hurt to create a handy checklist of the types of storage spaces required in each room, from the kitchen, baths, and bedrooms, to whatever garage solutions you need.
Built-In Storage Solutions
Storage solutions include those that are built into your new home during construction, such as built-in bookcases and shelves, master bedroom fitted closets, kitchen cabinets and drawers, pantry, and bathroom linen closets, garage tool storage, as well as craft and hobby supply storage. Built-ins have the advantage of being space-saving and tidy. Because built-ins are a component of the home’s architecture, they save square footage and help keep the traffic flow in your home clear.
Every entrance into your new custom home needs a catchall spot. Whether this is a mudroom, as you enter from the garage where you can drop muddy shoes, coats, keys, and book bags, or a coat closet near the front entrance to hang up your guest’s coats, think about how you’ll live in your new home to determine your storage needs.
You might want a large built-in to house the flat-screen television with open shelving to display and store your favorite items in your family room.
Homeowners who love to tinker in their garage need storage space for tools or even need a workshop area. Your custom home builder has a wide variety of garage storage solutions that can be added to your home design plans.
Don’t Treat Your New Laundry Room as an Afterthought
Since laundry day is rough enough, you might as well do it in a stylish and functional space. Perhaps nowhere in the home is storage and organization more valuable than in your laundry room. The revolving load of clothes coming in and out, as well as supplies needed to clean them, can make for an unsightly mess.
Get Creative with Storage Spaces
Whether you are designing a large or small-sized laundry room for your new home, solve your ugly laundry room issues with various creative ideas like tilt-out bins behind cabinet doors to keep laundry baskets out of sight, and pullout cabinets to hide cleaning supplies. You can also maximize wall space with open shelving to create cubbies for laundry baskets.
A Functional Space Makes a Huge Difference
Your laundry room serves as command central for the care of your clothing, so make it as functional as possible in your new home design. Today’s homebuyers want laundry rooms with deep sinks and plenty of surface space to fold clothes.
If you want even more “wow” features, add a Murphy-style wall-mounted ironing board complete with shelves for the iron and accessories. Or, opt for an under-the-counter pullout ironing board. And don’t forget to include space for a full-height cabinet perfect for hiding the upright garment steamer.
Save Now with Plenty of Light Fixtures, Indoor & Outdoor Outlets
During the home build process, the lighting walkthrough typically happens in the rough-in stage, after framing is complete and before the drywall goes up. Usually, you will walk through the framed house with your electrician or builder and talk about where fixtures, outlets, and light switches will go.
You will need to ensure that you have more than enough power outlets for your new house. Because if you do not have enough electrical outlets, adding more will cost a lot of money and plenty of hassle later down the line. Start thinking through the electrical and lighting plan well before the electrical walkthrough. This will allow you more time to consider what features and outlets you want and where.
If your budget is tight, but you know you will want more lighting fixtures, a home theater, a finished basement, solar panels, or an outdoor kitchen in the future, ask the electrician to run the wires and cables to the areas where you have plans. That way, you can easily add those features when the time is right.
Bedroom Lighting Essentials
When designing your bedrooms, place outlets between your nightstand and bed instead of in hard-to-reach areas like behind your bed and nightstand; that way, you won’t scuff your hands or have to move furniture each time you want to plug something in. Instead of going with the standard two-socket outlet, ask your electrician for outlets with four or even a USB port to create simple charging stations on each side of your bed.
Consider hanging pendants in your master bedroom, small chandeliers, or wall scones as your bedside lights, so you don’t have to crowd your nightstands with a table lamp.
Lighting Essentials for Bathrooms
When designing any bathroom in your new house, there are many options to consider regarding outlets and lighting.
The most important part of designing any bathroom is not placing a light directly over your head as you stand in front of your master bathroom vanity. The downlight will produce large, unattractive shadows on your face, making shaving or doing your hair and makeup a challenge. To avoid this, place lights for your bathroom vanity on both sides and above the mirror. If you can’t manage to do both, the second-best option is to put lights for your bathroom vanity either on both sides of the mirror or above the mirror.
To keep your sink area clear, place electrical outlets inside a bathroom vanity drawer so you can plug in and store hairdryers, electric toothbrushes, and electric shavers. Make sure you use one of the top drawers for this so you can easily use the plugged-in appliances while standing at the mirror. If you use a bottom drawer, the appliance cord may not be long enough to reach you.
Kitchen Lighting Essentials
Instead of having outlets scattered on your new beautiful backsplash, have an outlet strip installed inconspicuously under the upper cabinets. Along with putting an outlet strip beneath upper cabinets, you should also add lighting under upper cabinets so you can see as you are chopping, mixing, or cleaning on the counter space below.
Plan precisely where your dining room table will go and place a lighting fixture centered over your table, which may or may not be the center of the dining room.
Lighting for Living Rooms
One of the most overlooked aspects when designing a lighting plan for your living room or family room is extra outlets for holiday decorations. Start thinking about where your Christmas tree and holiday lights will go and add outlets in these places. You should also add light switches to these areas, so you don’t have to crouch down and wrestle with plugging in your Christmas tree or garland. You could also ask to have a light switch that controls all the indoor holiday lights and a second switch to control all the outdoor holiday lights or put your holiday lights on a timer.
Lighting for Outdoor Spaces
Don’t forget to add outdoor lighting to your new custom home build. Place some wall lights beside your doors, plus uplights and downlights on your home and in your landscape. You can also put motion sensor lights above your garage, in your front yard, and even in your backyard. Outdoor lighting will highlight certain home design elements and can even make certain areas appear larger.
To increase the usability of your outdoor space after dark, add weatherproof outlets and USB ports around outdoor living and dining areas, allowing you to avoid running extension cords across those spaces for watching outdoor movies in the summertime.
Think About the Cabinet and Furniture Placement
During the design phase, don’t overlook where you want the kitchen cabinets, appliances, and furniture to be placed. Most families assume that kitchen tables, sofas, and other furniture can be factored into the house layout once moving into your custom home. However, if you don’t consider these elements, you will find a bit of a puzzle on your hands trying to fit everything into your home and have it be functional. Before building a house, start planning your cabinet and furniture layout. You’ll be glad you did!
Save Money with Renewable Energy Sources
It is essential to look into solar panels and other renewable energy sources if energy efficiency is important to you. After all, we all have a responsibility to save our planet, boost energy efficiency, and reduce our reliance on non-renewable resources. By considering this during your custom home build, you can ensure the sustainability of your home’s energy sources and reduce your monthly energy costs. For example, you can choose to install solar panels that will not cost anything to use when the sun powers your home. You should also look into installing a smart thermostat in the house for more savings.
Research Contractors with Care
Next, we cannot ignore just how important it is to select a custom home builder with care. You need to make sure that you choose a trusted and reputable builder. We have all heard horror stories about home construction that does not replicate the initial plans in any way. You can make sure you do not find yourself in one of these nightmare scenarios by carefully selecting the right builder. Do plenty of research and read up on the home building projects they have worked on so far. Nowadays, if a business has a bad reputation, you should be able to easily pick up on it, as there are many different review websites out there where people leave their comments and opinions.
Add on at least 10% to the estimated project cost
One of the biggest mistakes you can make when building your custom home is underestimating the project costs that are involved. The last thing you want to do is run out of money while building your brand new dream home. This is why it is crucial to estimate all of the costs carefully. We always recommend that you add at least 10 percent to the total amount you have calculated. You’ll need to plan contingencies for something you might have forgotten or for some unforeseen circumstance which means more money is needed.
Fail to Plan, Plan to Fail
We are sure that you have heard this saying before, and it is particularly apt when it comes to building a house. There is no such thing as over-planning when building a custom home. After all, there is so much that needs to be considered, from foundations to light fixtures and ensuring that everything has been planned to perfection so that the home building goes smoothly.
Once things start moving, it is a whirlwind of decisions being thrown at you daily. Time is money when you are building a house, and it is incredibly stressful to have to slow things down because you can’t decide what tile you want in the master bathroom. Pick out as much as you can before you start!
Keep the House Value in Mind
Last but not least, when you are building a house, it is imperative to consider the resale value. After all, you want to make sure that all of your construction and design choices add to the value of your new house, rather than reducing it. The resale value of your house is something that requires plenty of research throughout the planning phase.
Final Words on Building a Custom Home
So there you have it: ten of the most important things to consider when building your own custom home. There is no denying that there is a lot to consider. Still, careful planning can ensure the home building process goes as smoothly as possible, so you do not experience any significant and expensive hurdles later down the line.