Keeping your home and design expectations in check

Homebuyers are funny creatures.

I guess it would be more appropriate to say that people in general can be funny creatures. It is in our nature to defend against change and to seek out the possible negatives in a situation before our minds and hearts can accept something new yet we can exist in something which doesn’t work for years and shut our objections down.

I witness this again and again with my clients as they seek out new homes or choose to re-design their existing place and I find it fascinating.

A recent client was shopping for a home; moving from a small 800 sq. ft. bungalow to a 1,500 sq. ft. home which seemed (to me) like a great improvement!

Walking through the house my clients turned up their nose a bit at the size of the walk-in closet declaring that it didn’t seem big enough.

I wondered how they were managing with their existing 3×5 closet now and smiled to myself as they measured and re-measured this 6×11 foot closet!

I was thinking how a closet that size would be a welcome addition in my home but it was interesting to watch the process as they overcame their own objections.

I have witnessed clients who live with damaged, dirty and non-functioning floors for years who decide on new carpet or laminate who become experts of the highest level declaring what won’t work.

I completely understand that clients are careful with their hard earned dollars which is understandable but I find it interesting when there is no middle ground from old awful materials to the best of everything.

Sometimes a middle ground can be a safe place to land when you are planning a move or a renovation project.

It can often work in your favour to make those small steps towards your goals and to create pockets of security for yourself financially when choosing such large ticket items.

The temptation to go from zero to one hundred in a few seconds is tempting and extremely exciting yet we can sometimes overdo it in our zeal.

When you are replacing a dilapidated stove, maybe consider the mid-range model instead of having to have the one which is thousands of dollars more which has all the possible decorations. Middle of the road may not be a bad choice and will free up some funds for other improvements you may want to make.

Spending your money wisely is key, just because you CAN afford it doesn’t mean you SHOULD.

Many regrets and piles of consumer debt are created when people lose sight of how even a simple choice can improve their lives. It doesn’t have to be the Cadillac of everything and it can be worth a second look before turning up your nose at something which is perfectly suited for your lifestyle, even if it isn’t the largest closet or the biggest ensuite. If you go from having no ensuite to having a smaller one, isn’t that a step in the right direction?

As someone who wants to guide my clients to the best decision for their lifestyle, I may not always give you the most expensive option or the biggest home to look at; you may be surprised to find me somewhere in the middle of the road with a perfect option you may not have considered.

Kim Wyse is a local freelance designer. Find her on facebook at ‘Ask a Designer’.