As a designer, I am always listening to ways clients want to make a construction grade home function better for their family. Many are small details that shouldn’t be considered extras but are necessary for a truly functional home.
Here is a list…
_more outlets! In drawers, pantries, closets which come in handy for chargeable vacuums and appliances you don’t want sitting out on your kitchen counter
_in areas where you don’t want to see outlets use double outlets so there is 4 in one
_outlets hidden under the mantle for christmas decorations, etc.
_outlets hidden in the exterior soffit for christmas decorations, etc.
_outlets in bathroom drawers for charging razors and toothbrushes without it having to be left on the counter
_outlets in the kitchen under cabinets so it doesn’t interrupt the backsplash
A detail I always include in my home designs is electrical outlets in the floor, because of the ‘open’ layout most clients want, couches and tables are centered within the room not up against wall,s so if lamps are needed outlets in the floor prevent cords all over the room.
_always more storage!
_larger broom closets for storing more than a broom
_central vac closet
_a laundry room! not closet
As a designer I tell clients over and over again that you need more than just one layer of lighting! Always include task, ambient, accent, and decorative. There should be no dark corners in your house when all the lights are on, which comes in handy when cleaning. Task is functional, ambient is overall lighting, accent is used to accent architectural features it can’t provide lighting for tasks on its own and decorative lighting is exactly that an added feature like chandeliers or pendants that can provide ambient light as well.
_ pre-wired motion sensor for exterior lights
_pre-wired security system
_pre-wired sound system inside and outside
_pantry light (open/close sensor)
_light switch by the bed
_have a master switch at exits to shut off all power to lights and more when you leave the house
I offer electrical plans when designing which allows for my clients logic for switches etc. It often is overlooked but your logic and the electricians might be very different and it is YOUR house! That’s why furniture plans, floor plans, plumbing plans, electrical plans, and lighting plans should all be considered at the same time so you know exactly where an outlet, light switch etc. will be needed and nothing is forgotten or overlooked.( Below)Notice how my furniture plan and electrical/lighting layout plan correspond to each other.
Preplanning also helps with….
_landscape design- plan where a deck, garden will go before hand so you can appropriately plan for a water line, where you’ll keep the hose, the air conditioner.
_when digging a trench for water line, add irrigation and outdoor wiring.
_stones from construction site could be used throughout the garden
_a designer can keep plants and trees so you have a headstart for a garden, most construction companies clear everything first,and asks questions later
_a designer can help situate the house on the property to maximize views, outdoor land use and save energy which helps to provide a more cohesive indoor/outdoor flow.
_when you have the floor plan watch for ‘boxing off of spaces’ which hides areas where added storage closets or shelving could go
_cast iron plumbing pipes so you don’t hear a loud ‘whoosh’ from the second floor.
_don’t let a plumber caulk around the base of the tub, it would be quite costly if a small leak went unnoticed
_soundproofing around bathrooms,and between floors
Hire a designer! It’s our job to think of things you can’t, and help your house function around your family’s unique needs.
If you were building a house, what would you add to this list?