New Home Essentials
When it comes to building your own home from the ground up, it can require tons of planning and thought, even if you aren’t building a custom home. A new home means that the slate is completely clean and you can really do anything you’d like. With this freedom comes tons of work and we hope that this list of recommendations will help start thinking about these types of details!
A fun little detail that is worth considering before building is if you might be installing a hanging egg chair or something that will be carrying large sums of weight later down the line. This will affect the amount of pressure being placed on the structural supports of your house and it is important to raise these details up to your builder beforehand in case it changes how they build certain parts of your house to keep it safe. This is not to scare you, but whenever you place significant weight on something that may not be designed to hold that weight, it is important that you consult with a professional to ensure your safety and the structural integrity of your house. All being said, I love the look of hanging egg chairs and think that they add a lot of personality and comfort to a space so I have linked a few fun options below. If you are not looking for something that hangs to avoid these struggles, there are also tons of standing chairs that have the same look as a hanging egg chair!
As someone with a dog, a young child and a messy partner, it is super important to me to have as many things in my home be washable as possible, so that at least I can make an effort at keeping my house clean. One of the things that is overlooked is the doormat. It is a high traffic item that gets the worst of the dirt. People rub their muddy shoes on it when they enter and leave dripping wet umbrellas there. So that is why I love patterned washable doormats! Even if I can’t get all the dirt out, at least the pattern will hide it a little and not be as noticeable, compared to if I had a solid coloured mat.
Next up, one of my favourite things in life is being able to change things up regularly! I love the look of tile but your budget may not allow for a more permanent, professionally installed backsplash right away. There are some great options now in peel and stick tiles that look just like the real deal. This means that for areas that may be a little lower traffic but you want that sophisticated tile look, you can save the professional labour costs and make it into a fun and easy DIY project that can be replaced down the road. I have linked some great options below that make the process super simple and straightforward, even for beginners!
On the same note, I have always loved the personality of stained glass but have found that stained glass is hard to come by and is rather pricey when you do find something. So instead, an affordable alternative is using window film that has cool designs on it that can achieve nearly the same exact thing as actual stained glass. Whether you want the rainbow light refractor look or the look of real stained glass, the options are endless and are much more achievable for ordinary people! Furthermore, if you aren’t 100% sure if you like the look yet, a $20 trial price is much better than committing to a hundred dollars for a single window.
Another way to make a space feel more elevated and intentional than it is, is to use a bold wallpaper to create an accent wall. This makes the room feel super unique and designer-esque. I love a big statement wall that has gorgeous wallpaper that you can get lost in for hours on end. Everyone has different preferences, but I truly believe that there is a wallpaper out there for every style, whether that be minimalistic prints, big and beautiful floral designs, or a repeating geometric pattern.
One last custom-like feature to consider is investing in high quality closet organizers that can make the space feel like a custom built walk in closet. Additionally, if you’re anything like me, I have a phase when I first move into a space (after I settle in) when I like to keep my house looking like a magazine showroom. But that lasts for a week, maybe two if I’m lucky. Then the chaos of my busy life takes over and my house never returns to that state. But by having a spot for everything, I know exactly where to put something and where to go look for it. So by investing in a good organization system, you will also have a much better chance at keeping your closet nice and tidy down the line, past the initial extreme organization phase. The following are great generic organizers that offer a feeling of luxury without the associated price tag!
Another thing I love to incorporate into every space in my home is environmental consideration. I like to go about this in two main ways: having plants around in every space and using energy efficient products whenever possible. Luckily my house has tons of natural sunlight and I like to only get low-maintenance plants so I have no problem with the happiness of my plants. However, to help keep them look planned and clean, I like to get cute little plant stands and wall hanging organizers. Amazon has a lot of great options but here are my favourites:
After such a long and tedious planning period, the last thing you want is for your beautiful new house to get mouldy and have to rip it apart to fix it. To prevent this from happening, there are plenty of things that you can do, such as ensuring air-tight seals between the tub and the flooring and having tile flooring instead of wood or carpet in wet areas. One of the most effective way is by ensuring proper ventilation to get rid of the humidity before it does any damage. This can include making sure your bathrooms have a window that you can open after showering and good bathroom ventilation fans. To make sure you (or your family!) don’t forget to turn the fan on before getting in the shower, I would recommend investing in humidity censored fan controllers. There are plenty of options out there, but this option from Amazon has great reviews and seems to work exceptionally well if they are installed properly. If you are not electrical savvy, I would recommend getting a professional to install it; better safe than sorry!
Finally, when it comes to power efficiency, I wrote an entire blog about living more sustainably where I go into more detail about specific things you can incorporate into your home to reduce your personal environmental footprint. It covers everything from low-flow toilets to motion sensors and lights. However, another thing that was not mentioned, but is worth considering, is solar-powered outdoor lights. Whether this be patio string lights or walkway lights, the solar power efficiency has improved significantly over the past few years and is truly shocking how much light you can get without adding to your electrical bill!
I hope this guide has been helpful in getting you started in thinking about making this house your home and if you have any further questions about going about designing your house, book a consultation here!
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