12 May 2020
What better way to spend all this extra time you have than getting a head start on your house design? Not only is it productive, it’s also fun – a win-win!
Be a squirrel
No, really. Squirrels are really good at foraging, so you’ve got to harness your inner squirrel and go foraging for ideas. This inspiration can come from anywhere; cut out of magazines, house programmes on TV, even things you’ve seen while out and about. Squirrels are even better at remembering where they put things, so don’t forget this crucial part of the mimicry. There’s no point spending hours and hours saving loads of pictures, only to lose them all later. Make a scrapbook or a folder on your computer with everything in it, and remember where you put it.
Put it on paper
Lists are wonderful. If you’re more of a mind map person, however, you can make one of these instead. Alternatively, bubble diagrams are a great idea to figure out how the layout will work, and also offer designers a little hint of what your design brief will look like. As long as you get down everything you want from your new house, the format doesn’t really matter. Here’s some things to consider:
- How many bedrooms do you need? Don’t just think about the house’s permanent residents; consider any family visiting too. But obviously you don’t need a room for every family member unless you particularly want a ten-bed house!
- How many bathrooms do you need? Maybe you want to treat yourself to an ensuite, or maybe you want to pare it back to minimise the cleaning?
- Consider your downstairs space(s). Do you like open- or broken-plan, or completely separate rooms? Research the pros and cons of all the options.
- How much do you enjoy cooking? If you're always in the kitchen it's probably worth giving it a nice view and lots of space. If not, you can just make it a separate room for function and focus big views and space on the living area.
- Think about your current house. What really works for you, and what really doesn’t? Are there some elements you’d like to keep, or will your new home be a complete overhaul of everything you’ve lived in before?
- Do you want any extras that are tailored to how you live? Maybe a walk-in wardrobe if you’re a garment enthusiast, a boot room if you’re planning lots of muddy dog walks, or a ‘wow factor’ staircase if you really want to make an impression.
What to keep in mind
Your budget. Be realistic with this. If you have a smaller budget but want a huge window around the front door, you might have to compromise, as glazing is expensive. The good news is that we can help you with this; there are plenty of ways to minimise build costs (like building in simple shapes, for example – curves are the enemy here!). So, keep the budget in mind, but don’t write off a feature you really want just because you think you might not be able to fit it into the budget. Jot it down anyway and we can take a look together.
The most important thing about the designing process is reaching a design that fits your needs, the plot, and the planning conditions. But don’t worry, the last two are up to us to sort out. Use this time to get all your ideas down, and we’ll take it from there.