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February 13, 2012

Doing Your "Homework"

“Home-Work” is the process of seeking and discovering just what kind of house you want; what the special features and qualities will be and how your new house will reflect your lifestyle, tastes, budget and dreams. The key to staying in control of your process is finding the right team and planning thoroughly. There are many steps involved in planning the home that is perfect for you. Let this be your guide as you begin by taking the following steps:

1. Make a list of rooms and spaces desired.
a. Create a paragraph or a series of notes about the characteristics of those rooms. (i.e. storage possibilities/needs, design details you like, closets, bay windows, built-in seating, closets, wainscoting, specialty rooms and spaces, etc.)

2. Keep these things in mind when listing rooms and detailing needs for rooms:
a. How many people will be living in your home?
b. Do you have children, if so how many?
i. How many rooms do they need and which features will they require?
ii. Do you have elderly living with you or frequently visiting? What needs do they have or will have?

3. Do you have pets and do you need anything special for them?
a. Pets may change flooring considerations, add pet doors, laundry sink for bathing, etc.

4. Do you entertain? If so, how often? Is it casual or formal?
a. What special features would help to make entertaining in your home easier?

5. How many computers do you have? TV’s?

6. Where will televisions be located? Will sound be an issue?

7. Do you need work spaces, private offices, or project rooms/spaces?

8. Should the kitchen overlook the playroom/pool/yard so that you can cook or work while keeping an eye on children or activities?

9. Do two or more people work in the kitchen at the same time?

10. Do you want your kids to be able to have computer bays in a children’s work/play area that can be monitored from the kitchen?
a. This is an increasingly popular alternative to having the kids be alone in their rooms doing homework with or without their computers.

11. How often do you eat meals as a family?
a. How often would you like to eat meals together as a family?

12. How many bedrooms will you need and will that be contained in one story or two?

13. How many bathrooms would you need or like?
a. Does the master bath have two sinks, separate vanity spots?

14. How many closets will you need in your home, and how much closet space do you want in each one?

In addition, think of all the places you have ever been – your childhood home(s), houses you have lived in or visited, places and spaces you have dreamed of, etc. What are the most wonderful and memorable spaces you can recall? Think of details in those spaces.

Think about the houses you have lived in the past. What worked in those homes and what did not work for you? What do you wish you had? What could have been better?

Be as thorough as you can but accept the fact that you cannot sit down and think of everything off the top of your head. Consider this to be an open list. Once you have captured most of your list it is time to sit down with our sales person and our architect to put together rooms and spaces that will function best for the way you life.

This type of "homework" can be fun; enjoy the process!