Archive for the ‘Tips to Designing your Dream Home’ Category

3D Home Designs

1. Understanding traditional 2-D floor plans and elevations can be difficult. Many people can get the general idea from a floor plan but have trouble visualizing how the design is going to look. Being able to see and experience your design in 3-D will help you understand how it is going to work. The more you understand the look and feel of your design, the more comfortable you’ll be at making decisions.
PURINTON 1st Floor
2. Designs can change and evolve in real time, during meetings with your designer. Meetings are the best way to be included in the design process and to make sure nothing is overlooked.
What does a design presentation in 3D look like? It could be a fly-through video or multiple interior & exterior perspective views of your project. I’ve found that the most efficient and productive 3-D design meetings are one-on one with the client. Showing the new project room by room. This usually always brings up design questions, and changes can be made to the model during the meeting for instant results.

PURINTON Interior Perspective

3D Interior Perspectives & Cross Section of a home designed by Teresa with Midcoast Home Designs

PURINTON Exterior Perspective

3D Exterior Perspective of a home designed by Teresa with Midcoast Home Designs

3. Design review boards generally respond positively to presentations that include 3-D. Three-D to show how a building relates to the existing environment or to a neighbor’s home is a very powerful tool when you’re seeking design approval. I’ve had great success by rallying the support of neighbors when they can understand clearly how a building is going to look and feel compared to theirs. 
3D Exterior Perspective of a home designed by Teresa with Midcoast Home Designs

3D Exterior Perspective of a home designed by Teresa with Midcoast Home Designs

4. Three-D design can help cut down on changes after construction has begun. Reducing the amount of changes during construction can help save time and money. But it can be hard to do until you really understand what the space will look and feel like, which is where 3-D design comes in.
5. It helps you avoid paying for work you don’t want. Having a clear understanding of your project before construction begins is the best method to significantly reduce the problem of unnecessary charges.
With all that said, there is definitely no substitute for having an experienced architect who understands the permit process and building codes. While 3-D design can be helpful to you and your architect, know that great designs do not come from computer programs. They come from design professionals (like myself, Teresa here at Midcoast Home Designs) who have spent countless hours designing, reviewing plans, improving details and listening to everything you want in your home.

Tips to Designing your Dream Home

Once you’ve made the decision to build rather than buy your next home, the biggest step after finding the right building lot is to design your future abode. This can be tough; putting together a home design that reflects your taste, yet also fits your needs and budget is a balancing act that takes planning. The following are ten guidelines to help you on your way.

1. Do Your Home Design Homework
You must first decide what type of home to build. House styles today are as varied as those who live in them, offering you a banquet of ideas from which to borrow.

When you see a home that appeals to you, decide exactly what features or characteristics caught your eye. Make a note of these or, better yet, make a quick sketch. Keep all these ideas together in a file. You don’t have to decide how to implement them all yet, but eventually you’ll decide how best to fit these into your home design plan.

2. Create Your Home Design List
When creating a list of criteria for your home design, start with the basics: the number of bedrooms, the number of bathrooms, the number of family areas, the choice between a formal dining room or a more open, community eating area, porch or deck styles for your home’s entrances and the size of your garage.

Once your basic list is complete, tackle planning for individual rooms. You’ll want to list features that are most important to you first and then add from there. This list can include kitchen features, master bathroom features, audio wiring for speaker systems, Internet and phone connections and so on.

3. Check Local Zoning Laws
Zoning laws can affect everything from house framing to yard fencing. Checking first to see what zoning laws your community has can save you many headaches.

4. Design Within Your Budget
Once your list is completed, compare it to your budget and adjust to fit. This is particularly difficult for first–time home builders, a big problem according to Tom Dickinson, veteran builder and a Building Inspector for Logan City, Utah.

“It happens more than you’d think,” said Dickinson. “People’s eyes get too big for their budgets and in the end they wind up overshooting the mark—sometimes leaving them without drapes, blinds and even furniture.”

One way to get a handle on your budget from the beginning is to invest in home design software that includes an estimator, which gives you a running total of costs as you design your home.

5. Design to Fit Your Plot
Your land is unique; each plot has assets and challenges. Keep these in mind while creating your home design. Use existing grades of your plot to your favor. If your lot slopes sharply to the side, consider a walkout side basement door instead of the traditional back door. Working with your land, instead of against, saves you excavating costs and retains more of your plots natural character.

You should also position ground–level bedrooms and bathrooms toward the back of the house, away from street and foot traffic, and design windows, foliage and fences to maximize beauty and increase privacy.

6. Maximize Your Space Efficiency
When mapping out your floor plan, make sure there is a logical flow to your home design. You want to simplify life for your contractor while he builds and for your family while they live in it. Some things to consider:

A. Design direct access to the kitchen from the garage
B. Design all your plumbing in one general area, reducing pipe distance
C. Place your heating ventilation and air conditioning system as centrally as possible, allowing forbetter D. Temperature balance throughout your house
E. Bedrooms should be isolated to reduce noise and increase privacy
F. Place your washer and dryer on the same floor as bedrooms (for two or more story homes)
G. Make sure all doorways, hallways and stairways are wide enough to move furniture through
H. Make sure that light switches are placed appropriate to traffic flow and that outlets are conveniently placed

7. Plan for Expansion
If you can’t afford to build your entire dream house now, plan your home design so that expansion is not only possible, but easy. One way of doing so is to build your home in phases.

For example, build your main house first, add your detached garage in a few years and then finally, finish that basement. Pick affordable priorities and tackle those first.

8. Picture Interior Design
When putting together your floor plan, place furniture in the design to see how it all fits together. You can do this using graph paper, magazine clippings or by using home design software. Also, consider your lighting scheme, paint and flooring choices, and how your design will work for entertaining–planning for all your favorite activities will help you create proper seating, dining and socializing space (and will insure that your kitchen sink is not visible from the front door!)

9. Don’t Forget the Sun
The position of the sun can affect your home design in many ways, depending on the direction your home faces. A south facing home will be warmer in the winter, but hotter in the summer. Place windows to take advantage of natural light, which allows for better energy conservation. And if you particularly enjoy sunrises or sunsets, then design places into the east or west sides of your home to spend time doing so.

10. Beautify All Sides of Your Home Design
Remember that window placement affects the inside and outside look of your house. Whether you live on a corner or in the middle of the block, the sides of your home are going to be seen. Design the look of your home so that you’d be proud to let anyone walk around it, putting small design elements here and there—whether they be architectural (decks, porches or a covered patio), “landscaping” (flowers gardens, shrubs or an arbor) or better yet—both. Work to create a pleasing, comfortable atmosphere wherever visitors may go.

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