Design your home right – and feel right at home
You’ll be making lots of decisions about your home before even the first sod is turned. Here are a few things to keep in mind before you start.
When you’re buying, building or renovating, choosing a location is just the beginning of the decision making process. Your home is your biggest investment, and making smart choices about what you want from your floor plan and design can keep you from spending money on rooms and extras you just don’t need.
Deciding on your floor plan can be a simple numbers game – allocating a bedroom for you and your partner and each of your children, and maybe adding an extra room for guests or a home office. And of course you’ll need at least one bathroom (and preferably two). Don’t forget necessities like power points, network cables and air conditioning outlets.
You want to create the right environment for healthy sleep, so having all the bedrooms located together, away from the street allows for more privacy and less noise. With that said, you might consider locating a parent’s retreat some distance away from the kids’ zone so the generations can take a break from one another.
Match your lifestyle, goals and budget
Unless you’re planning to renovate and sell quickly, it’s wise to focus on exactly how you and your family want to spend time together – and apart – in your new home. Instead of going for a bigger home, spend on quality so you’ll end up with a really comfortable home you can be proud of. If you get everything you want but it’s not built or finished to a high standard, you won’t enjoy any of it.
This principle of ‘rightsizing’ your home also applies to how much space you allocate for each room. If you like a relaxing soak, consider a bigger bathroom with easy-to-clean floor-to-ceiling tiles. Or if the kitchen is the place where your family likes to gather, be sure to make it a priority for your budget and floor space, and invest in quality appliances and a low-maintenance splashback. Think a craft room is essential for your pre-school kids? Maybe it’s better to plan for a larger, more versatile rumpus where they can hang out with friends as they grow older.
When it comes to splurging on features for your home, you can never have too much storage, light, or power points and don’t forget to include outdoor taps, power outlets and a washing line. Maximising your natural and artificial light sources is vital for creating a beautiful and practical home, so a bigger budget for things like skylights, pendants and dimmable lights will be money well spent.
Custom joinery can transform the dead space in corners into essential storage areas and you’ll always be grateful for a well insulated home – perhaps with some air-conditioning or ceiling fans – to keep you comfortable in the warmer and cooler months.
Big ticket items like a swim spa or a fully-fitted outdoor kitchen are often seen as luxurious extras. But if you’re a serious wine connoisseur, for example, it could add a lot to your quality of life to have a cellar on your home must-haves shopping list.
The golden rule? Think about your family, your work and your day-to-day life – both now and into the foreseeable future. Once you’ve got a handle on your needs and wants, it’s easier to choose a house design that can make your lifestyle dreams come true.
The information in this section has been prepared as general information only without consideration for your particular investment objectives, financial circumstances or particular needs. Read the full disclaimer.