We all want a perfect home for our family, but what is perfect? Perfect is something different for everybody. There are no two people alike, neither are two snowflakes or two homes. There is no perfect human, no perfect snowflake and there is no perfect home. There is a different best of any of these for everyone. But how can you create a home that you love and is the best for YOUR family?
Well, you need a few things. Things like love, purpose, a plan, a house of your choice to work with, perseverance, willingness to learn, etc. Besides, there are a few things to look out for, to avoid and to focus on when creating a home. A few principles to follow, in order to create a home that is the best for your family. If you follow them, you’ll do a great job.
The point is:
Don’t chase perfect! Create the best!
You can do it if you follow these principles:
1. Have a Clear Vision of Your Home!
Many people buy or rent a house because that is the next logical step in their lives without having a vision of their “dream home”. Getting a house is simply a need for them to be fulfilled or just a task to execute, but they don’t really know what they want, except that it needs to be worth their money, should be as big as they can buy, and as perfect as possible. They have never defined what is perfect for them or the best, for that matter.
Without having a clear vision of your dream home, you just simply cannot create the best home you could possibly have. You’ll make random choices and a lot of energy is going into correcting bad decisions, or you’ll just leave it at that, and settle with less than the best. You don’t have to! Just get a clear vision of your dream home, to the smallest details. Don’t carve it in stone, though, because you’ll have to adjust it along the way, but it is like the house: if you don’t have one, you have nothing to create a home in. If you have no vision, you have nothing to create a home by. Do you?
2. Make Plans!
The secret to achieving the best home is planning the home. Having a clear vision enables you to make detailed plans that will be your guide to make that vision come true. Don’t restrain your vision to material things. Rather have a lifestyle plan. A vision of how you want to live. Because planning a home isn’t just buying a floor plan. Planning a home goes beyond the layout. It defines the functions, draws the flow, specifies the furnishing, determines the decor, locates storage space etc. according to your lifestyle. A good plan takes care of every small detail of the home, considering your activities, habits, and the mundane that is part of your daily life. The more detailed your plans are, the closer you get to your dream home, the one that is best for you and your family.
In order to reach your home’s full potential, put a big effort into planning your home. Again, don’t carve in stone but do have something that you can adjust along the way.
3. Learn and Research Everything You Have to Make a Decision About!
We can’t all be constructors, and cannot possibly master all the skills necessary to make a home, yet we have to learn a ton about trades, materials, systems, styles, etc. in order to make all the decisions right about every small detail of the home. Learn about how things work in a house, like plumbing and electricity, how to maintain things, basic decor rules, home management, and many, many more essential skills and systems. Ideally, we pick up some knowledge along the way since childhood, but usually, we still need to take a deliberate learning curve before and while actually creating a home. Even if you hire professionals for all the work, you’ll be glad you’ve learned, because you’ll be more confident when telling them what exactly you want. They take you more seriously when you know their stuff.
Also, research the things you want and wish for. It might turn out that there is a better option, or a cheaper one with the same qualities, or the downsides outperforms the advantages of the desired idea. Be well informed before making your choices.
4. Design the Functionality for Your Family!
The main questions you need to ask yourself about your house are:
- Does it suit my family’s lifestyle?
- Does it support my family’s activities?
- Does it work for us or against us?
It is important that your home serves your needs and your dreams. If family connections are important to you, create space for being together, playing together. If you need a workspace, find room for one in a less frequent area of the house. If you are a musical family, have space that focuses on playing music. If you love to work out, make a place for your running pad. If you homeschool, you need a dedicated space for learning. The point is: make room for everything that is part of your lifestyle and don’t have wasted space by having rooms with functions you never need. Changing the functions of a room is usually easy, and doesn’t even break the bank. Eg. If you normally eat in the kitchen and hardly ever use your formal dining room, probably it would be a perfect place for a sitting/music room or a schoolroom.
Dare to make changes and adjust to your family’s needs!
5. Personalize Your Space!
When someone enters your home, they immediately get an impression and a ton of information about you by simply looking around. Your home reflects you, so it is important that you put a clear message out there. Their attention will not be grabbed by the price tag of your furniture but by the colors you’d chosen, the style you embrace, the accent pieces, etc.
The good news is, that you can decide what you want to grab their attention with. You can lead their eyes. It also means that sore spots can be hidden, too, so you don’t have to stress over perfection. To let them know you better by what they see, display some special or fun family photos, art pieces you cherish, souvenirs from your trips and holidays. Everything and anything that makes the place yours, that makes you feel home. If you do that, they will enjoy your place with you.
6. Use Cohesive Decor!
There is so much to learn about home decor! (Remember #3?) However, it is not that difficult if you stick to a couple of basic principles. One of them is to focus on cohesiveness. Decorating each room differently with random items will not give a cohesive feeling or look. You need a couple of decor elements that overarch the entire house. That element can be a color scheme, some texture, and your unique style. Decor can be changed with little effort so don’t stress over making it right at first. Experiment until you get the look that makes you feel good, and learn, learn, learn to get it right. Trial and error is a good way to learn but can take forever. Put some time into researching or some home decor courses, too.
I find that it’s much easier to get the look I want if I know about each piece of the decor the reason why I have it and why I put it there. Purposefulness goes a long way in home decor, too.
The return on investing in learning the principles of home decorating in order to create the look you want is pretty high. An investment you’ll never regret.
7. Upcycle What You Have!
You can add to the cohesive look in your home by using a fine mix of old and new furniture. You can find old pieces at vintage stores, flea markets, garage sales, but also everyone has meaningful old stuff that holds memories for them. Maybe you have a desk from your old dorm or a dresser from your childhood room. Upcycle it and reuse it. Having beloved items around makes you love your home, too. Repaint old pieces or do a makeover to fit them in your home’s style. If you have only new, carefully chosen furniture, your house will look nice but with no character or reflecting your personality. Small details are important and make a lot of difference. Embrace old treasures and make them yours!
8. Make a Budget!
If you want to spend your money well, you also need a carefully planned budget. It can make or break your entire home creating project. Make a budget and stick to it. You need it to be clear about how much money you need to be able to finish your project. You have to define how much you can spend on each area of your home improvement, on decor items or home tools. Whatever you have to do to create the best home for your family.
Either you assign the amount of money for the project you have saved, and make plans to spend that money, or make your plans, see the total amount you need, and determine how you make the money in order to execute your plans. In the first version, you’ll have to make compromises, in the second option you’ll need to make sacrifices. Cut spendings, find a part-time job, learn a couple of necessary skills yourself, etc. However, a thoughtful and detailed budget that you can stick to, is essential to succeed in creating your dream home.
9. Keep in Mind That the Cheaper Is Sometimes More Expensive!
When you make your choices about the details, you’ll certainly need to make some compromises. To cut the money back, you need to consider cheaper solutions here and there, but you have to make sure that the cheaper version is as good as the more expensive one, otherwise cheaper can turn into really more expensive. In areas where you have to choose between the best and the cheaper you need to answer a few questions in order to make the right decision.
- Is it something that cannot be changed later? Or you can change it anytime.
- Is it a must-have element of the plan, or something it-would-be-nice-but-can-be changed?
- How would the change affect other areas or the overall plan?
Research and learning are your friends when making such decisions. Read reviews, find ways to test things, check it out in others’ homes, – ask, read, try, visit, – do whatever you have to to make sure that you make the best decision for YOUR family. Also, don’t forget that some things may work for others but not for you. A little self-knowledge, thorough research and exploring, can change a lot of things you have in mind.
10. Take Your Time!
Creating a home takes time. Big time. Creating a home does not happen only by executing all the plans laid on the drawing board. It takes much more than that. Just proceed step by step, enjoy your journey, and learn as much as you can along the way. Get to know the place first, don’t want to accomplish everything at once. You change during the process, and your plans change, too. Make all the necessary adjustments. And remember: it’s never done, creating a home is a lifetime process. There is a recurring pattern in the proceeding though: the time when you work hard and the time when you enjoy what you did. This cycle repeats itself, again and again.
11. Be Ready to Do It Again and Again!
Not because you keep swapping places but because every home is a dynamic, ever-changing place. We tend to think when the work is done and we enjoy the fruit of our labors, that creating a home is done for life. It is not. Life changes and your home needs to keep up with the changes. Different life stages need different settings. You’d better make the change rather than watch it happen. Be prepared for creating your home more than once!
Keep these in mind and create your happy home for your family!
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