The Little Things
There is nothing more frustrating than moving into your brand new custom home only to find out that your furniture doesn't fit the rooms correctly, you don’t have a plug for your lamp by the sofa, and your favorite armoire is too wide for the space you intended. These disappointments can be prevented however, by thinking about your furniture placement and considering your lifestyle needs before your house plans are finished.
When your plans are being drawn ask your architect or plan designer to put some furniture in (to scale) so that you can see exactly what will fit. Provide pieces of furniture and sizes so that they can be properly placed on the plans for you to see if they work in the space allocated for them. Don’t forget about ceiling height and design when placing tall pieces of furniture. When your home is complete and you move in you don’t want to end with not enough space so that things don’t fit or too much space that you feel compelled to fill it.
Consider built-in cabinetry versus freestanding furniture. These add both architectural interest to a home and great functionality. Built-in entertainment centers, bookcases, desk areas, window seats, and china cabinets can all be planned ahead and incorporated into your plans.
When you are planning for furniture placement be sure and consider window placement and size. The last thing you want to do is find out later that your large pieces of furniture cover the picture window with the great view of the backyard.
Many homeowners fail to consider lighting when they are designing their new home. Lighting can add both drama and function to a home. Spot lights, art lights, under or over cabinet lights, and dimmer switches can all make a big difference in the way your home feels and looks.
Planning ahead for enough electrical outlets can save you some frustration. Floor outlets for lamps that will be utilized in the middle of rooms, outlets in cabinets for computer equipment or appliances, and outlets in the eaves of your roof for holiday lights are just a few things to consider.
When you're planning your electrical needs don't forget about placement of TVs, home theaters, or sound systems. Wiring during construction is relatively simple and inexpensive, while adding it later can sometimes be much more difficult and costly.
Special attention should be given to closets so that they can be designed for the specific way you use them. Ample space should be given for hanging items of different lengths (suits, dresses both long and short, and pants), folded items, shoes, purses and belts. Do you need a closet for winter storage or holiday decorations? Do you prefer linen closets in all the bathrooms or is the storage underneath the vanity cabinet enough space? Don't forget about storage space in the garage for equipment, tools, and water heaters. Storage is one of the most often overlooked items when planning your new home.
The more time you take to think about all the little things you might want and need in your new home ahead of time will save you frustration later. Put the time in to consider all possibilities and you'll be much happier in the end.