Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Target Giveaway

**Contest closed!  Click here to see the winner!**



Today is the day of Tips and Tricks for the Mama!

Over at my family blog, I'm giving away a $50 Target gift card for the best packing tips and tricks...and over here...I want your best ideas and suggestions for things you would include in a house you were building.  Mix and Match Mama's new kitchen is underway and I covet any advice, tried and true tips, suggestions or things not to do when designing a kitchen, pantry, closet, bathroom...really, any advice on any area of a home would be appreciated.

So...how do you enter to win over here?  All you do is leave me a comment below with your best suggestion and you're automatically entered to win a $50 Target gift card.  Make sure you leave your name in the comment as well.  I will randomly select one of the entries to win (so you don't necessarily have to give me the best suggestion to win...you just have to give a suggestion ).  Only one entry per person per blog (so that means, if your name is picked on both blogs, you could walk away with a $100 Target gift card...).  Contest ends at midnight CST tonight and the winner will be announced tomorrow.  Best of luck and thanks in advance for your tips and tricks!


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319 comments:

Randi Jo :) said...

My tip for house-building (if your experience is going to be anything like mine) is to be prepared for lots of delays! It's okay! You WILL get into your beautiful home eventually!! <3 Trust in God's timing!

Jen and Mike said...

Find out what finish your builder uses on door knobs and hinges. Learn from ou mistake and don't wind up with gold finishes!

mhudmon said...

Make sure to have easy pull together meals or already prepared meals for the first few days in the house when things are in disarray - it will make your life a lot easier and less stressful when dealing with everything else going on in the house with the move. During the chaos it so nice just to sit down enjoy a nice meal with the family!

Chrissy said...

Make sure you get a linen closet in your kids bathroom. We were kid free when we built and there is no closet in that bathroom and no room for shelving. 1 sink cabinet for a daughter and guests is not going to be enough and I'm not sure how we fix that now!

Elizabeth said...

Sadly, I have no advice! I don't even know where to begin! I enjoy reading everyone else's tips, though! :)

Anonymous said...

My advice would be to print out pictures of ideas you like to show your builder. I printed pictures of layouts for the laundry room, mudroom, etc and then discussed them with the builder and customized them to make them exactly how I wanted so later I wasn't left wishing it was a bit different. Now is the time to make it exactly like you want and works best for your family! Good luck!
-Kim R

Doreen said...

Shay - love your blogs! We have built 4 homes and now we just moved into our 1st ready built home (won't do it again). My advice is this. Even though we have wireless phones, printers, and etc please continue to put telephone jacks in rooms. I work from home and my basement office doesn't have one and it makes it difficult at times to get good reception on your cell phones. I had to put in an outlet phone transmitter just to have a land line but I wish I had a direct wired line. Also, for each bed and the bathrooms I had a box that I put in the clean sheets, mattress pads, towels, toilet paper, soap and etc in so when we got the beds setup I had everything I needed to get our rooms ready for our 1st night's sleep without rummaging through boxes. It was a life saver. Best of luck on the move(s) and build. I'm secretly jealous. I think we are going to put the house the market in the spring and look at building again.

Doreen

Carrie said...

This sounds odd, but have plenty of light switches. The house we bought was built by an electrician and has lights and switches galore. We have light switches on each side of the bed (one for the main bedroom lights and one for the outlet beside the bed for turning lamps on/off). Plus two other sets of switches on the room to turn these same lights on/off.

Skye said...

Don't forget to label fragile or this side up!

Camden's Corner said...

My experience is to have a great relationship with your builder. I am sure if you made him some of your yummy treats he will be grateful!

christen said...

Ireland somewhere that if you have extra room your property always build an extra space in your garage.
It is typically the cheapest space to build and provides an extra space for a car or storing work supplies.

Anonymous said...

Hi Shay.

When we built our house I wish we made our garage larger so we would have extra storage room, almost like having a built-in shed.

Good luck with your house and enjoy the process! It's fun and exciting to have a brand new house to make memories in!!

BTW we have the same birthday!!

Heather A said...

If I were building (or renovating my kitchen), I would definately include a double oven. I am lusting over one of those babies now and have been for over a year. Oh, and by the way---my family LOVES the lasagna rollups with spinach and cream cheese; they are DELICIOUS!

Kim Bayt said...

Hey Shay,
My piece of advice would be to make sure to include your kids in the process. Let them have input on the colors/themes of their own bedrooms and bathrooms. Try to make what could be a scary experience (leaving the only home they know)into a positive and exciting event!
Kim Bayt

Hannah Myer said...

Order extra! For things like paint and tiles (even door knobs) order 10-15% extra of what you need. When a mark gets on the wall or tiles crack down the road, you'll be grateful that you have the exact same item to repair it with, and you don't have to worry about it being discontinued. Also, put dimmers on all your light switches! Nothing can kill a mood more than a room being too bright or too dark!

Didi said...

My advice is to trust your instinct on what you want. You may be in this house for a long time so make sure your builder is not trying to convince you to do something you don't really want or need. Also, tons of closet space! You will never regret it!

Mary Mueller said...

Storage! I don't think you can ever have enough storage room... closets, drawers. One tip for the bathroom, don't put pull-out drawers right next to the bathroom door. As a dear friend just discovered as her one year old pulled the drawers open, making it impossible to open the bathroom door more than a half an inch, she was locked in their for quite awhile as they figured out how to get the drawers shut! Good luck with your house building... too fun!

Tara G. said...

Another quick thought- if you have things that are sentimentally valuable that you won't need during transition (photo books, your husband's football items, etc.), I would pack those myself and store them at your parents' home rather than at a commercial place if you plan on going that route.

Assuming this means you've sold the house and I rejoice with you! We are heading out today to go back and take care of a house we rented out while we were overseas and put it back on the market. Having a hard time getting motivated for the trip and work ahead...!

Unknown said...

Storage -you can never have enough. Make sure EACH room has areas designated specifically for storage (closets, built-in cabinets, shelves, pantries).

Trish
jflynn006@twcny.rr.com

Your Darling Life said...

We have never built but would love to some day! What I would love to do and I guess my advice is built-ins in every closet for organization. Every time we've moved I've put in new shelving for the closets, pantry, laundry room, etc. It sure would be nice to have that built in!

Jenny

Rebecca Hinton said...

Closets! Put them every where you can. Even if you think you have enough, add one more.

MorganizewithMe said...

My tips (from a daughter of a Custom Home Builder)
1-Nurture your relationship with your builder and be a good communicator-which I'm sure you are already!
2-If possible put in a laundry chute? Depending on the design of house.
3-Create a Drop "Locker" Zone - where you will most likely be entering the home.
4-Have your Kitchen open to your living spaces for entertaining purposes.
5-Think timeless when choosing perm fixtures, colors, trim etc.
6-Maximize all storage options.
7-Create a fun spot for kids ie. phone booth, small play nook...
8-Kitchen-put in drink fridge drawers? and maybe two dishwashers...just tips I have seen done.

Can you tell I want to build a custom home...sigh.
Blessings to you Shay (&Sean) :)

Amy Maysa said...

Lots of light switches and plugs, dimmers too.
Plan ahead, so make spaces that will accommodate many older kids for when the little ones grow up. More closets never hurt anyone!

Rebecca Hinton said...

Closets! You can never have too many. When you think you have enough, add one more!

Dawn said...

I hope to build a home in the future and a storm shelter is definitely on my list of musts! It may sound silly to some, but all of the storms lately make me wish we had one.

Natalie Stephens said...

I've never built but I have been through two total home remodels. Stressful is an understatement. My best piece of advice is have a sense a humor. Oh and a bottle, no BOTTLES, of wine. Seriously. Good luck!

Anonymous said...

assemble an "emergency bag." Include a first aid kit, toilet paper, paper towels, Clorox wipes, hand sanitizer and snacks. You do not want to be tearing through boxes looking for these items. :) Good luck!
-Carrie F

Casey Hayes said...

Shay - My husband and I put in a slate shower. It is very pretty. However, it is extremely difficult to keep clean. If I could go back, I would NEVER use slate in the shower. It is my biggest regret about our house. So my advice is, whatever you do, do NOT use slate in any of your showers. An interior designer picked the slate for us...big mistake!
Casey Hayes

Katy said...

Kitchen advice:put the outlets under the counters, not on the wall in the backsplash. That way your backsplash is solid and beautiful with no outlets breaking it up!

Kitchen pantry:if space allows build a small desk in back of pantry. This is a perfect place to store bills, manuals, recipes, etc and it is out of the way and hidden!

Happy Building!!

Katy Brunker

rebecca faris said...

Make sure u inspect everything and make sure you are happy with it all before u sign off on anything

Rebecca

Becky said...

one thing that i saw on pinterest about a building new house is to write something on the frame of the house! like your names, a quote, or a bible verse! it seemed like a really cute idea :)

Lindsay F said...

My advice would be to start early! Even if it means living out of boxes for a while it makes the actual day/days you move a lot easier. I also think it's important to stay organized and label, label, label :). What has also always made moving easier for me is having lots of help whether it be from friends, family, or movers! They can help take care of kids and dogs (well, family & friends not the movers), and having them around can help you stay sane and makes everything go by a lot quicker (and often times more fun)! Good luck!!

Burkway said...

Hi Shay!!
We literally JUST moved into our newly built home that we custom designed and built. :) LOVING it!

#1 - My kitchen is the favorite room in the house, so I spent some extra time planning and designing it :) Something we did that EVERYONE has commented on, we have an EXTRA large walk-in pantry WITH our upright freezer inside of it :) Extra freezer space for all the freezer meals that we do and no need to have to go downstairs every time.

#2 - Also in the kitchen, we have 9 ft ceilings and decided to go with extra tall cabinets throughout the entire kitchen. Not only does it give extra cabinet space, but it also gives it a really modern look and makes the kitchen look HUGE!

#3 - We have USB outlets multiple place throughout the house! Some people don't even know they exist. They are so handy now that so many electronics can be plugged in by USB. We have one right in our kitchen so that phones and iPods, etc can be plugged into charge while sitting on the kitchen counter-top. :)

#4 - We have a mudroom/laundry room right off of the hallway coming from the garage! I love having the extra sink right there so that if we come in from outside all muddy or dirty, hands can be washed right away without going through the house, ALSO dirty clothes can come off right away and go into the washer. It's also nice to have the laundry away from all the bedrooms so that if needed, a load can be going while sleeping with disturbing anyone.


Hope these are helpful! ENJOY every minute of the building process. It goes by quickly! Ours was 90 days from start to finish :)

Ali G said...

My biggest piece of advice comes from the kitchen. Make sure to enclude a cabinet for baking sheets. And a cabinet for spices. This has helped me make my kitchen so much more organized :) Best wishes! Building a home is an amazing experience!

Mami2jcn said...

Check references and the better business bureau when selecting a contractor!

mami2jcn at gmail dot com

Katie said...

I suggest you enjoy every minute of it - getting to build a house is an awesome experience!

Carolyn said...

Hi Shay, I have been following both your blogs for 9 months now. I love both your blogs & cute family! We are in the process of building a house as well! One of the first changes we made to our plan was to close off our second story great room, as it would share a common wall with our master upstairs, and my husband had a concern about noise. Having the 9 ft ceilings, and adding a lot of windows helps the great room not feel closed in. Since we closed off the great room, we decided to install a dual zone thermostat (one for upstairs, and one for downstairs). This way we can turn off the heat/cold downstairs at night....save $!!

Anonymous said...

Hi Shay,

There are a few things they I wish we would have done in our house when building. We have a closet right when you enter from the garage but I wish I would have put lockers too. That way there is a place to store my purse, bags, etc...now they end up on our kitchen counter. I also wish we built extra storage in the garage for riding toys. We are trying to figure out a way now to add on or build a shed. Good luck! I loved building and enjoyed the process. Try not to stress and keep in mind that they always take longer than expected. I also blew our budget right away...whoops!

Annie Cox

Kelli Harshman said...

Our house was custom built, but not by us. The one thing the previous homeowners included that I LOVED was built in hampers in the bathrooms. It’s right underneath the towel closest with a small door to lift up and drop clothes in. No more messing with the store bought hampers with liners.
I do not have this, but, I like the idea of having “hideaways” on the kitchen counter to hide appliances. It’s almost like a little door that slides along the kitchen counter. It gives the kitchen a clean, clutter-less look.
Something I saw on Pinterest that I will definitely be including in my house (one day) is little nooks in the shower to put shampoo, soap, razor, etc. I do not like the look of the shelves that hang over the showerhead, or having everything placed along the edge of the tub.
Can’t wait to see pictures of the new home! Good Luck!

walshpartyofthree said...

Extra sinks. We have one in the garage, one in the mud room, and two in the kitchen. We use all of them all the time!

Rachel Ailor said...

I think a towel warming drawer in your bathroom is a great idea, so you have toasty, warm towels whenever you get out of the shower!!

Christina said...

My husband and I live in a 1930s home with practically ZERO storage space! I fantasize about a dream kitchen with a large pantry (like the pictures in the Container Store's catalogue!) and lots of spaces for uniquely shaped items - like a tall, narrow space dedicated for storing baking trays and cookie sheets, pull out drawers, and some neat way to organize tupperware!!! Oh and I think a hanging pot rack is a must!

Merideth said...

Closets! You can never have too many.

Christened Amy said...

Have fun with it. Plus have plenty of storage spaces and outlet plugs.

Jen said...

I've never built a home but it is an exciting time so I'd suggest taking lots of pictures of the whole process. My sister did that with one she built and has a whole book from shutterfly made that shows progress. It's cool to look back on.

Tia said...

Kitchen I would have pull out dishwashers. Large pantry and a butlers pantry. Lots of storage in the house. In the laundry room, a small closet with an outlet for mop and broom sorage.

Jodi said...

My suggestion would be to build pantry shelves, closet shelves, etc w/ slide out options and lazy susan options. that way you don't have to reach into the back of the closet - you can just pull out the shelf to see everything!

Jen rachel said...

If I were building...I would want a heated flooring in my kitchen :)

Alice said...

Have them make one of those hidden storage shelves that go between the wall and your refrigerator for canned goods. That thing is so neat!!

http://pinterest.com/pin/185210603395282420/

http://pinterest.com/pin/207798970278481689/

http://pinterest.com/pin/1266706114816781/

http://pinterest.com/pin/482870391267059958/

Thanks for the giveaway!

Casey said...

Please make your bathroom windows with frosted-glass. Not sure why some people do it any other way...but it sure helps keep things modest and the neighbors appreciate it! haha

Jen said...

We just built a house last summer. I would suggest having the electrician run an outlet on either side of your bed (one for each lamp on your nightstand). Also, if you are like us, we knew we were likely building our "forever" house. We decided that we'd rather spend a little more money up front for the fixtures/upgrades we wanted now instead of having to do them down the road. Good luck! I'm sure it will be great!

RachelZoe said...

Shay, I would DEFINITELY go all Scrooge McDuck and build a pool full of gold coins to swim in!! :)

-Rachel Tapscott

kj7 said...

Transition to two homes in such a short period of time can be difficult but doesn't have to be. Make several boxes to set aside that you will need handy when you move into the new house from the rent house...things like towels and linens. It's super important to label what's in each box to make the hunt more easy when you need to find something you thought you had set aside already. Best of luck!

LC said...

I love the idea of writing something meaningful to your family on the framing or even putting you last name and date in some wet concrete. We did our handprints in the concrete when we were little kids and I still love going to my parents house to see them!

Elizabeth Stiles said...

Try and pick out fixtures and finishes that you love and make the most sense for you! If you love all of the little details about your kitchen, then you will probably love it as a whole as well! Good luck!

Aubs said...

we are looking forward to building a home one day but being military we've lived in alot of different homes and my advice? think through electrical outlet placement!! i can't tell you how much time i've spent trying to figure out why in the world outlets are placed where they are because it makes no sense!! such a small detail but can be such a headache!! so excited for you!! =)
~Aubs

Jessica Doolittle said...

Pay extra to have each room painted the color you want instead of the builders basis white/beige. It makes things so much easier in the end!

Allison B. said...

Three words: white. crown. molding. It makes your earthy paint colors pop and really brightens up a room. Best of luck with the move!

Mama Dean said...

Seems insignificant, but pay attention to placement of HVAC vents in the room so they're not somewhere it would make sense to put furniture. Also placement of outlets and have lights in each closet.

Marcy Gloeckler said...

Look at magazines for inspiration and communicate with your builder. Good luck! :)

Emma said...

Hi Shay(: That's very exciting! My biggest tip would be to fill your house/room with COLOR! Bright, colorful colors look awesome in bathrooms and kitchens. And getting cool appliances&decorations that match, make the room look very sophisticated and cute. Happy Designing!
xo
Emma LeMay

Tabitha Brown said...

The best thing I ever done adding on to my house was making my closet the size of a bedroom and put my washer and dryer in there. Wash, fold and put up all in the same room!!! I LOVE my closet!!!

Tabitha B

nicole_perkins@msn.com said...

My two favorite features when we built are: (1) lockers that we put when you enter from the garage. Even my young kids know to put their stuff there and (2) garbage/ recycling station that we put in the island. My kids don't think twice about recycling. Its so convenient.

When you do your electrical and are deciding outlets, not only think about where you want lighting but also other things you will use them for like vacuuming. I wish I had an outlet on the landing of my slingback stairs, it would make it so much easier. I also wish I wouldve put one on the floor instead of wall in my living room. Agree with a prior outlet around phone jacks...you just never know and I wish I had a few more also because I work from home and prefer not to use my cell.

Good luck!
Nicole

Brittany L said...

Make sure when you build your pantry the space between your shelves is enough to fit large items. Cereal boxes are really tall so make sure you have enough room to store them! Good luck!

Brittany L said...

Make sure there is plenty of room between your shelves in a pantry. Cereal boxes can be really tall along with other things so be sure all your items can fit!

Good luck!

Brittany

Mindy said...

Hey Shay!
Love both of your blogs. We just finished our Kitchen Renovation. Took 6 weeks and totally gutted the entire kitchen down to the studs. We created extra 12 inch cabinets on the back side of the island for kid storage (school papers, art supplies etc). So, we have doors on both sides of the island. 4 Total cabinets for the island. Two are for pots/pans etc and the other are the Kids STuff. LOVE it and best thing I did. Here is the link so you can see the entire project. I would LOVE to get some more new accessories for the kitchen with the gift cards. Thank you so much!
Link - http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.4784473416670.2192867.1440803419&type=1&l=6c2af944c3

Thanks again!
Mindy Tierney

Aubrey Seely said...

A double oven is a must in the kitchen! I love mine and it makes getting ready for amily parties that much easier :) We also love the island with barstools on one side, my daughter does her homework while I prepare dinner and we talk for over an hour in the afternoon. It gives you an extra space to spend productive time without a TV! Meranda

Rachael Stout said...

Be sure to save extra paints/finishes... because you will need them and nothing is worse than not being able to match up paint colors when your toddler has decided to run his/her toy into your newly painted walls! Also, storage, you can never have enough! Last but not least, for your children, design their rooms for them to grow into... you dont want to be re-doing a room in a few years, so keep the colors/designs simple and then you can change out items in the coming years as needed. :-) Love your blog!

Kitten said...

Neutral on the backsplash, countertops should be the "fashion statement". Choose what you love, not necessarily what's popular now. Make sure you can get the dishwasher out if necessary - its the one appliance that does seem to require replacing.

Anonymous said...

My best advice for buliding is to go ahead and add in all of those structual changes you want. We held off on some when we were building to save money, and now I regret it!
Kristen
Kristen_bartek@yahoo.com

Leah said...

I would say to have lots of counter space in the kitchen. I don't have any experience building a house but I would love more counter space in mine along with a double oven!

Kitten said...

Neutral on the backsplash, countertops should be the "fashion statement". Choose what you love, not necessarily what's popular now. Make sure you can get the dishwasher out if necessary - its the one appliance that does seem to require replacing.

Anonymous said...

I've just recently found your blogs and love reading!
My advice on building, is pay attention to some little thing that you might not think of....outlets and placement of them!
I wish I had put an outlet just above my mantle, for plugging in those Christmas lights on the mantle. Also, consider putting an outlet in your bathroom cabinet to plug in things that need charging (electric razor, etc) so they don't have to sit out to charge.
Good luck! Can't wait to see Pics of the new house! please share!!
Jan Fisher
jan.fisher@comcast.net

Kimberly said...

The best tip I can give you is to order things you want for your house EARLY! Give yourself double the time you think you will need for something. Delays happen all the time and this is the best way to ensure the building of the house will go smoothly.

-Kimberly

Skoglund5 said...

Make sure you keep a list of every paint color and finish used on walls, doors, baseboards and so on. It will be easier to handle touch ups later on. Don't close until the builder has done everything on your list.

Anonymous said...

Pull out shelves in all kitchen cabinets! I never thought about it until my parents moved into a house that came with them. It's the most convenient thing in the world!
-Becky W.

Sammy said...

My biggest recommendation is focus on your kitchen. So much time is spent in there, it should be accessible and large enough for you and your kids to help. Get a double oven!

Anonymous said...

Check out cstyle blog's awesome closet with tons of drawers! Love! We love having built ins in bedrooms. As for the packing, I buy a pack of multi colored paper and dedicate one color for each room printing the room name, a table to list out contents and whether it is short or long term storage (we've moved in stages). I print out the 8-1/2 x 11 sheets and tape them to the outside of the moving box (check Craigslist for gently used professional moving boxes). Then fill out contents as I go with the sharpie. Love the quick visual cue when moving in and others are distributing boxes. Oh, have family take the kids so you can get the majority of it set up without them! Have so much fun! Barbra S.

Taylor said...

My tip is to truly be happy with your decisions when building, especially the things that aren't easily changed. It's your home, your memories. It's all about what you want and what conveniences you need.

Taylor M.

Renn said...

PURGE! My best tip is get rid of the stuff you no longer use NOW. Don't pack and move that stuff.

I'm excited about seeing the new house. How fun!!
Thanks for offering such a fun give away
Renn McMurray

Jan said...

Shay- Build your closets bigger than you think you'll need. You know how us girls are. Lol. And make your pantry bigger. Hope everything turns out the way you want.

Amanda said...

I wish I could move our kitchen outlets to underneath the cabinet, that way our back splash on the wall would not be interrupted by an electrical outlet plate!

Amanda

Amanda said...

I wish I could move our kitchen outlets to underneath the cabinet, that way our back splash on the wall would not be interrupted by an electrical outlet plate!

Amanda

Missy said...

We remodeled our kitchen last year and I have 2 favorite features that I'm not sure how I ever lived without.

The first is a extra deep single basin sink. It was actually my hubby's idea to get a single sink instead of the double and I love it! You don't have to worry about cookie sheets and large pots & pans fitting awkwardly in the sink. The sink is so deep that my large stock pot can sit in it & you can't see it.

The second feature that I love is roll-out shelves. All of our cabinets have shelves that pull out so that you can easily reach that pot or pan that got pushed to the back. So convienent!

Jenni said...

If I ever build a home, I would have two master closets!

Momma Morris said...

We just recently bought our first, already built, custom home and we are so thankful for the amount of light switches and outlets they first owners thought of. There are plugs that you wouldn't even think to have them. Love reading your blog, too!

Sarah Henke said...

1.Have a Double Oven
2. Make your garage larger. We have a 3 stall garage and on the two door side where we park our vehicles, it's a very tight squeeze- apparently this is standard and you need to ask for larger. I would highly recommend this.
3. TONS of light switches and outlets. You can never have too many - If you know what headboard and size of bed you and your husband will have, put light switches on either side of the headboard for your main light, fan, etc so you don't have to get out of bed to turn the lights on and off.
4. Add a broom closet in your kitchen. We found our idea off pinterest (like I found many of our ideas) and everyone who comes in our house has never seen anyting like it. The top part has a few shelves for all your cleaning supplies, and the bottom has hooks or even room for a vacuum. That way everything is right where you need it, but hidden nicely. Here is the picture we had shown our builder :http://pinterest.com/pin/24347654206039411/
5. Soft close toliets, cabinets and drawers. This was a somewhat expensive upgrade in our home but TOTALLY worth it. My husband claims I am a "cabinet and toliet slammer" so this was on our must have list. You just touch the toliet lid and it goes down, and for the drawers and cabinets you push it to close and it does the rest on its on.
6. Don't get dark/espresso colored cabinets. They are absolutely beautiful and it's what we have, but they show everything- they need to be dusted almost every other day and they show water marks, hand prints, etc. Same goes for our dark hardwood- it's also an espresso and very pretty but I need to clean it almost daily for it to look nice (and we have no pets/kids).
7. Make all of your under cabinets have drawers that roll out. When you need someone it's so much easier than reaching far back to find it when the drawer can just roll out. Here is the picture we used for inspiration: http://pinterest.com/pin/24347654205156041/
8. If your laundry is downstairs and your bedrooms are upstairs, put a laundry chute in our closet. It's one of our favorite things we have in our custom closet.

I could go on and on- these are my favorites of our newly built house!
Sarah Henke
sarahjhenke@gmail.com

Sarah PH said...

Dimmer switches for the kitchen and bathroom - for when you need a drink or need to potty in the middle of the night. Plugs & switches everywhere. And having one of these in the kitchen and master bedroom is a good idea - http://www.geekalerts.com/u-socket-usb-wall-plug/

Joy said...

My best advice on building a house is expect setbacks. Don't be disappointed at the process or how long it takes. Think of it like a marriage. Your focus should not be on the actual house (the ceremony) but on making the house a home (the marriage) once you are in it.

Also make sure the painters leave the leftover paint they use indoors. Trust me you will need it for touchup through the years. And don't store it in the garage. The heat can destroy. Best place is in the pantry or linen closet.

Joy said...

My best advice on building a house is expect setbacks. Don't be disappointed at the process or how long it takes. Think of it like a marriage. Your focus should not be on the actual house (the ceremony) but on making the house a home (the marriage) once you are in it.

Also make sure the painters leave the leftover paint they use indoors. Trust me you will need it for touchup through the years. And don't store it in the garage. The heat can destroy. Best place is in the pantry or linen closet.

kristyo15 said...

We built our home, and if I had it to do over again, I backed down on some things the builder said they 'couldn't do...even though I knew they could. Make sure you get everything you want! :)
Kristy Owens

Rita said...

Build the cabinets all the way up to the ceiling. If there is a gap between the top of the cabinets and the ceiling it will just be a dust collector and a headache to clean!

Ashley said...

Walk-in pantry! The MMM needs a walk-in pantry!
Plus think about all the k-cups you could fit in there ;)!

Jayne K said...

My number one suggestion for building a house has to do with windows... Do NOT get the "crank out" windows. They are a pain in the you no what to clean and our handles are constantly getting tight and hard to use... they are beautiful but you will have to have a lifetime supply of WD-40!

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Rachel Johnson said...

I think the tile or mosaic backsplashes are so cute! One of my favorite bloggers, Edie, has a beautiful kitchen that I would recommend checking out! http://www.lifeingraceblog.com/

Stephanie Steed said...

When I build a house, I want a BIG laundry room!

Kristen said...

I have never built a house so i am totally clueless...but I love your blog!! The meatloaf recipe was soooo yummy!! Made it last night and my 9 year old son ate 3 servings!!!! Thanks for a great blog:)

Rachel Johnson said...

I'd recommend checking out these two blogs for great kitchen inspiration: http://www.lifeingraceblog.com/

http://www.younghouselove.com/

-rachel :)

the Barringtons said...

Make your master bedroom your sanctuary. Big bath tub, maybe a fireplace in between bathroom and bedroom, tv in bathroom.. Think long term if you plan to be in this house for a long time. What would still be useful when you're 60? :)

Tracy said...

If I were to build a house I would want a mud room when you walk in from the garage with built in cubbies for coats, purses, etc. A tub with jets is a must and my husband would say a 3 car garage is a necessity! Oh and don't forget a huge walk-in closet! :)

Jessica Loftin said...

I recommend writing all your paint colors down and putting them in a safe place, you will need them for touch ups in the near future! I also recommend a drawer for all pots and pan cabinets, so you don't have to lay on the floor to get something out of the back!

Jessica Loftin

Tony and Ashley said...

Build a playroom under your stairs (with windows cut out of the walls and if its tall enough you can do 2 stories with a ladder connecting them! Your kids will love it!

Ashley

Shawnda said...

Couple of things to always make sure you have.
Make sure there is an outlet on your mantle. Love to plug in lamps and christmas lights on the mantle!
and number two....make sure you have a can light in the ceiling with the light focused on your mantle. Will give you a nice overhead light and also spotlight your mantle decor!

Kristin said...

I would def want a TV in my bathroom for nice relaxing bath and good TV watching.

Kitchen...hideaway garbage can.

Kristin Meeks

Jessica Loftin said...

I recommend writing down all your paint colors and brands and storing them in a safe place, you will need them for touch ups in the years to come!
Also, i recommend drawers in all kitchen cabinets so you dont have to get on your hands and knees to get something out of the back!!!
And as momma of twins, make sure all unused space is walled up as a closet... you can never have to much storage!!!

Good Luck on the whole process!

Jessica Loftin

Anonymous said...

If I ever have the opportunity to build a new home, I want to write scripture on the walls, studs, etc. before the carpet goes down and the paint goes on.
Cristal Goings

Charity said...

Make sure you have plenty of storage space- even hidden storage space is good, but just plently of it!

Anonymous said...

I have never built a brand new house, but I have friends that have designed and built. One idea I love is the open concept. My friend has her eat in kitchen with a living room/tv area on each side of the kitchen. While I am sure it can get noisy, the kids can be on one side with their toys and tv shows and adults can be on the other side while still keeping an eye on the kiddos! Can't wait to see y'all's home once finished! -Sarah (sarahrchandler@gmail.com)

Lauren said...

Plenty of hanging and folding space in the laundry room!

Memphis Bridges said...

I love the idea of built ins in each room for extra storage, including recessed bookshelves.

Tara G. said...

First, don't count this; it's just another thought. Our last house was provided by the embassy and my kitchen had some fantastic features- I had no bottom cabinets, but huge, long drawers and they were amazing. If I ever have the chance to design a kitchen, I would absolutely spend the $ on something like this. I believe I posted photos on my blog once. Anyway, if it's something you're interested in, I can dig them out. :)

cthompson said...

I haven't built a house myself but we recently moved into a new house and here are a couple of things I desparately wish I had:

-The Christmas Electrical Package: this is where there is an outlet under each window in the house so at Christmas when we put candles in the windows, you just keep them plugged in and flip a light switch everyday when you want them to come on

-Outlets in bathroom drawers. This way, you can keep your hair dryer and other hair products plugged up and hidden instead of on the counter. I don't know that I would keep a hair straightener or curling iron plugged in but I love the concept of not junking up the bathroom counter.

Congrats on your new home!

Anonymous said...

Make the pantry door a "pocket" door so when you have it open the door isn't taking up space and getting in the way. You can just slide it open.

Jessica
jcamichelle@hotmail.com

Claire said...

If I were building a house, my main focus would definitely be the kitchen! Since I can't stand clutter and having much on my counters, I would have a pantry big enough for items like microwave, mixer, and anything else that you use regularly but don't necessary want it on the counter!- Claire Hood

Deborah Rapose said...

I would suggest with little ones to include a mini fridge that holds their drinks and maybe some healthy snacks so it is at their level and you do not have to wait on them for it Deborah

Shelli said...

Storage! Use every inch of space for storage! And get those special drawers in the kitchen that don't slam! And if you can swing it, a warming drawer! I could go on and on... :) Good luck!

Karen said...

Still much too young (in college) but what Ive learned from HGTV is budget, budget, budget!! And include "unexpected costs" in your budget!

Mary Elizabeth Stewart said...

My tip for house building... Make sure that you put your laundry room in a convenient place. There's nothing more aggravating than having all your closets upstairs and having to carry baskets of laundry up and down stairs every day. If you have a 2 story house put your washer and dryer on the floor with your rooms.
Hope it works out great!

Jenni said...

Be sure to put outlets in the slab - will really help when you need to plug in a lamp and don't want a cord in the walkway where everyone will trip! Wished I had done that before the subfloors were laid for our hardwoods...:(

Lauren Ball said...

My name is Lauren Ball.
I would say to make sure you have a lot of plug-ins and light switches!
And expect delays :) because most likely, they will happen.
Good luck! Thanks for all of your AMAZING recipes you give us!

Kelly said...

Two of my favorite things I love about our house is that our laundry room is upstairs. Would highly recommend that. And my other tip is in your bathrooms, install outlets behind the drawers. That way you can leave your hair dryer etc. plugged in all the time and just open the drawer and pull out whatever you need. Love this feature in our bathroom! Good luck with all the planning!

Sarah-R said...

I grew up with 3 brothers and 2 sister. We only had 1 (yes 1!) bathroom upstairs. We had 2 1/2 total bathrooms but only 1 for all of us girls to get ready/ shower. I would suggest having a bathroom for girls and a separate bathroom for boys. That way everyone has there own space and it's way more manageable to clean.

Anonymous said...

Have a bless your house party. After the frame is up, invite friends and family over to pray over your new house and write scriptures on the frames. Then take pictures so you can always remember what is written under your walls.
Jenny T

Callie said...

Best building tip...washer and dryer IN the masterbedroom closet. How amazing is that? I saw it on pinterest and instantly knew that when I build a house this has to happen! Callie

Leigh said...

I haven't personally had a house built but one thing friends & family have mentioned is to check on the progress daily so you can make sure any changes are done correctly. One friend wanted an extra window but it didn't get framed in so the builder had to go back & add it.

Anonymous said...

Don't take any shortcuts, do everything the right way from the beginning so you won't have to go and fix mistakes later down the road.

Oh and make it super gorgeous for us all to see!

Melissa Lewis at MLewis2185@hotmail.com

monteaddis said...

If you have an island in your kitchen make sure to include a plug-in outlet on it! Mine doesn't have one and I always want to mix/prepare foods on it! Also, garbage disposals are heaven sent!

-monte powell

Tina Cole said...

My tip for packing to move would be: Place screws, bolts and other loose items into a labeled ziploc bag. Example: Queen bed. Tape the bag to the furniture. This will ensure easy assembly. Good luck with your move! Love your blog!

Jen said...

Phrased lighting under your upper cabinets. I don't have that but wish I did!!

Mike and Molly Spivey said...

Make sure you have enough electrical plugs put in in places you will need them! Our house has them few and far between so it is a pain to get lamps in rooms, etc. And in our kitchen there is a whole counter space that has no plugs - for a chef/baker it is tough!!!

Molly Spivey

Stacy said...

I've never built or designed my dream home, but if I get a chance to, my main "musts" will be for my husband and I to have our own walk0in closets, and for me to have a walk-in kitchen pantry. I also would like these:http://smg.photobucket.com/albums/v499/jengrantmorris/Inspiration%20pics%202/?action=view&current=Kitchen873finishedkitchensblogspot.jpg

April said...

I am no designer but I love your blog! You are sweet and classy!

April W.

Anonymous said...

If you're going to have stairs, I recommend you put an electrical outlet close to either the top or bottom (preferably someplace inconspicuous). Vacuum cords and Christmas lights on a garland will be much easier to plug in.

I enjoy your blog! I'm much older than you - and entertain a lot - your comment "cooking is not entertaining" really spoke to my heart. I've passed that wisdom on to my daughter and several friends. Thanks! Leslie

JeanCaroline said...

My best advice, coming from nannying for a family who is remodeling, heated floors are awesome. They are putting them in the bathrooms and the entryway from the garage. It's awesome. Granted we are in frigid Minnesota and you are in Texas, but they are great.

Abbie

Rebecca from Baltimore said...

Dream big, be patient...and take lots of pictures! Obviously you like to take lots of photos already...and as a scrapbooker, that was my original purpose for taking weekly pictures as we were building our house, but since then we have found those pictures helpful when we were doing other projects. Essentially, we can see behind our walls and above our ceilings, with out needing to open the walls. Plus it is awesome to look at the evolution from an empty lot to our perfect home!

Enjoy,
Rebecca from Baltimore

Kara Beam said...

Go for the three car garage option. You can always fill the extra space with random stuff that needs to be stored in the garage (i.e. Christmas decor, gym equipment, dog food, emergency stockpile) and will love being able to completely open your doors to get the kids out of their carseats.

Laura said...

The one thing I wish that I had in my house was a washer and dryer upstairs with the bedrooms. It sure would have saved me endless trips carrying laundry baskets up and down stairs.

Laura

Carissa said...

A desk in the kitchen or just off the kitchen! Our builder called it the 'planning area' I didn't think it would be very useful, but now I can't live without it. I pay bills there, write birthday cards, keep our family calendar, etc.

Kama said...

We have a fireplace in our bedroom and it's really cool and homey looking (although we haven't used it yet). :) I really like the way it looks. We also have a big clawfoot tub in the middle of our bathroom. It definitely gets your attention and looks great. :)

rebekah. grace. said...

I've never built a house, but I hope to someday!

Two suggestions:

1. Pray over each room as you are building. You can also write scripture or quotes on the frames. My mission team did this while building a home in Mexico. It was pretty neat and pretty powerful! :)

2. Saw this on pinterest - use recessed outlets so that the plugs don't stick out from the wall. It allows for the furniture to be flat agains the wall!

Best of luck!

JenetFuller said...

I personally have never built a house but my parents built 2 while I was growing up. So from a kids point of view, it can be a little hectic not being in a permanent place, especially if the new house gets delayed. My tip would be to let them be a part of the process - maybe help with a design feature or even just the paint color in their new room or playroom. It was also really cool for us to see the process of our house being built, from when it was just the frame, to the drywall, etc. If you go to check on your houses's progress, let them explore a little (as long as it's safe).

Jenny Fuller
http://livingourfullerlife.blogspot.com/

kmrobinson1 said...

When I moved I went to grocery stores and others to see if they had any extra boxes they were going to through away...Petsmart had the best ones! They fold out where you don't have to use any tape on them (but of course you can to help secure them more) and the best part of them was they had inserts for handles, which made it a lot easier to carry. I would definitely recommend writing on the outside of each box what is inside or which room it goes in. It makes the moving process go much smoother! Best of luck to you guys with the move coming up!! I know you guys will have plenty of help from all your family & friends! :-) - Kara

Brooke said...

We have built two homes and I would have to say the best piece of advice would be to a lot have patience! Nothing seems to run on schedule, but in the end it will be beautiful and sooo worth it!!

Congrats!

Spencer and Michelle said...

If your house is already being built, it might be too late for this now, but install electrical outlets INSIDE some of the closets. Here you can plug in all kinds of things, a night light, your electric vacuum or dustbuster, your iron. They surprisingly come in VERY handy.

Have your pantry door open to reveal sliding drawers. I LOVE this. Easy to see your spices and canned foods all laid out before you.

Michelle Smid

Angie and Clay Campbell said...

Big closets and attic storage!!! I love the look of my big glass shower, but it is a pain to keep clean!

Joann said...

My advice is to start early and use this as an opportunity to get rid of everything that you no longer love or use. You don't want to move that stuff...especially twice. And a brand new home should be filled with things you love! Good luck!

April said...

We just finished building our dream home. Its such an exciting process. One thing I am so thankful we did and is so random is in the master bath we put a recessed light above the shower. Its something so little but I love having it. Another thing is don't go cheap on carpet (if u do any). I know its so overwhelming and expensive but with 1 little one and one on the way I see how durable the carpet needs to be. Good luck with everything!

megan m said...

My best advise is to go to a lot of real estate open houses and take pictures of rooms, paint colors, etc that you like. Also make a list of "must haves" for the new house!!! Good luck!

Katie D said...

To save space in your bathroom, you could put in corner toilet. It looks great and saves a lot of space! :)

Katie Drake

Mindie said...

My advice...you can never have enough closets and cupboards. Also, have a shoe rack built in you closet. That is one thing I wish I would have thought to do.

Mindie

mindiepack@gmail.com

emilyanne said...

We built the house we are in now and love it, however I wish we had included phone jacks in every room. We only have one in the kitchen and it just became an issue when we changed our Internet service. Also...closets, make sure they are in each room. Especially one you might plan on using for an office which typically don't have closets...add it! Have fun and good luck.

Karen said...

Lots of Plugs....as we use so many for all our 'powered' gadgets!

NO to dark colored bathroom sinks....toothpaste is white my friend and it's always showing on my dark sink....Big mistake...never again!

Watch what the builders are doing. We knocked out our bathroom wall 3x times cause it was framed crooked.

Pre-wire sound system, etc.

We bribed our builders (Pulte) to leave the attic open (ie. no tresses (I think that was the name)...so we could floor it later.

Also verify the brick before they put it on the house...(Yes, they bricked ours with the wrong brick even though we told them it was the wrong one) the day before our wedding.
SO verify EVERYTHING!

Be Patient!! Stressful but fun!

Lucia said...

Built in nightlights in the hallways and on the stairs are so great for guests and little ones. "Layers of light" (i.e, above and under counter lighting, dimmers, etc) in the kitchen are super helpful - as is built ins/custom shelving. Lazy susans for corner cabinets help you to utilize what could be wasted space. I can't wait to see the finished product - I am sure your new home will be AMAZING!!

Betsy said...

Though it is absolutely unnecessary I really love the look and convenience of a pot filler over the stove! Comes in handy when you need to boil a large pot of water or add a little water to something already on the stove.

Sara said...

I've never built a home, just dreamt of it :) but Pinterest helps add to my obsession of dreaming for one and gives me ideas for the future. Some musts that I want are a big mud room off of the garage. In the kitchen, a "vertical silverware drawer", huge pantry with lots of built-ins, and drawers in the cupboards with organization for pots/pans/lids. And of course lots of fun things for the kids, dream backyard play area,pool, toy room, and fun things in their own bedrooms (I saw an idea of an indoor treehouse in a bedroom!). Happy building!

Dicky and Sarah Smith said...

Very exciting! Two little things...
-Make sure that you have everything in writing for you plans. Sometimes builders are busy and may not remember all of your conversations.
-Also, sounds little, but try to think ahead of about possible furniture placement and make sure that you have outlets for lamps based on where furniture may be. You have even have them on the floor by where you think you may have a coffee table.

Good Luck! -Sarah SMith

Betsy said...

Though it is totally unnecessary, I really like the look and convenience of having a pot filler over the stove. Comes in handy when you need to fill a large pot with water or add a little water to something you already have on the stove! :)

Jessica Diaz said...

My favorite thing for a kitchen is organization! Including sliding wire drawers for your pots and pans, tupperware, etc. I have a 2 & 4 yr old little girls (and a boy on the way!) and they are all about helping with the dishes. Having pull our drawers makes it much easier! Good luck!
A giftcard would be a blessing, thanks for having a drawing!

Jessica L. Diaz

Over-Ambitious Misses said...

If you know you want something, then ask for it and incorporate it now! Its a lot easier/less costly to incorporate the littler details while everyone is already there doing the work and making the mess building, so you might as well get what you REALLY want (like a space just for your crafty stuff/baking stuff/built-ins/a window seat, etc.) and even though it might feel like you're just adding to an already costly build, you'll be happier in the long run and it will cost less than having them come back another time to put something in/rearrange something previously done!

Mallory said...

One thing my sister and my aunt both have that I covet is built in trash can cabinet in the kitchen near your work space. It slides out and conceals not one but TWO trash cans! The front just looks like the regular cabinets. Keeps the smell out and allows for a lot of trash before it needs dumped :)

Ashley said...

We have never built a home, but my dream home would have a very large mudroom/ laundry room! So many great ideas on Pinterest that I'm sure you've seen! Can't wait to see your final product! How fun!

Paula said...

Storage! Storage! Storage! Walk in pantry shelved top to bottom!!! Lots of patience.

Kimi Golden said...

Kitchen advice (and sadly I speak from experience):
Be VERY careful when designing what goes in the corners of the design. In one corner, our dishwasher was put in at the end and then the counter turns left and has a bank of drawers. After the knobs were put on the drawers, we could not open the dishwasher because it hit the knobs on the drawers. Let me tell you how fun that wasn't to deal with, But clearly corners weren't our builder's specialty, because on the other corner, we have a drawer that you can't open even halfway because it hits the knob from the pull-out trash can that's up against the corner. We since learned that anything being put in a corner should have at least 8 inches between it and the true corner, to allow plenty of room so the crazy things that happened to us don't happen!!! :)

Anonymous said...

If you're building a two story, put the laundry room upstairs with the bedrooms. I've had both and this makes things so much more convenient!
Stephanie

Krystal said...

I haven't built a house, but my husband I have completely update our existing house. I would say scourer the web for inspiration before hand and write down things you love in your house now. I think sometimes we forget what is important during the process. If I get the opportunity to build, I want it to be functional and warm with lots of room for entertaining like our current house! Good luck!

Melissa Gibbs said...

Storage, storage, storage! If I were building my own home I would include very large closets in every room and plenty of storage in each bathroom. Also, a laundry chute upstairs so you don't have to drag the laundry down to the laundry room. (assuming it is 2 story and the laundry room is downstairs, of course)

Good luck! How exciting for you all!

Melissa Gibbs

Allikaye's Mama said...

One thing I would want to incorporate into a house I was building is a laundry shoot! I also think it would be so cool to put in a slide next to the stairs going to the basement...if you have a basement. I've seen it on pinterest..of course!
- Ashley in Colorado

Holly said...

Lighting under the kitchen cabinets is super helpful, and I always loved having a cut-out near the kitchen sink where I I could drop my trash down and into the trash can below. Also lazy Susan's in corner cabinets are very helpful and keep things neatly organized. Happy building! :)

Anonymous said...

Hi Shay,
I just finished building my dream home last year. My first tip for building is to have a wonderful contractor. Ours did EVERYTHING & followed my directions wonderfully! Second, pick out the things that you will need in advance. If you know you will have a hard time picking things like cabinets, spend time in advance so you will not have to make quick decisions that you may regret.
Good luck!
Andrea Boggs

Michelle Morphis said...

My best house building advice comes from me hearing my mom talk after she had built her "dream house." If there is something you really want, such as a specific backsplash or tile, do it now so you don't regret it later. If you think "we'll save money now & redo it later" 1) it usually doesn't happen 2) it's more expensive to do later 3) you'll regret it in the long run. XOXO Praying for you guys! Michelle

Terri Tobias said...

I would install a central vacuuming unit! I know it's not really a necessity , but it sure makes life easier.

Anonymous said...

I love a nice big deep kitchen sink!

Catherine
Csm824(at)gmail.com

Jillian said...

Build in LOTS of storage, especially in the kitchen!

Shannon Cook said...

When we built our house, we put power switches under the rain gutters. Then when we hung Christmas lights, there was power right there.

In the wall between the studs in the bathroom, we placed a cabinet that set into the wall. It was a tall cabinet that the plunger, and toilet bowl cleaning items go into.

My name is Shannon Cook

Kristen said...

Make sure you plan ahead for your electrical needs in the kitchen! I have plenty of outlets in mine...but none where I actually need them! Also, squeeze in extra storage wherever you can, don't waste space! You will eventually be really glad its there!

Anonymous said...

Make sure you are involved in every aspect. Both times we were remodeling our home I was pregnant and I made quick decisions or handed the decision off to someone else. When I had the babies and I was sitting down breastfeeding... I would look at the house and say, "What was I thinking?" such as choosing carpet over hardwood in the new addition. WRONG. It's been a nightmare with spills and already looks terrible. So, take your time and don't do major remodels when pregnant. hehe :)

Jerandnessa@gmail.com

Liz B. said...

I haven't built a house but we have remodeled 85 % of ours in the last 2 years. I biggest piece of advice is that things will go wrong. I'm somewhat of a perfectionist and you can get ulcers from mistakes that contractors make, the paint color isn't what you thought, it costs more than you had budgeted, etc. So my piece of advice is to choose the things that are most important to you and make sure those things happen just as want but you will have to let some things go or you will make yourself crazy trying to make it "perfect" because not everything will be perfect.

Kaylee said...

One idea I've seen is to put outlets inside drawers in the bathroom. You can store your straightener and blow dryer always plugged in!

Hannah Heres said...

I would put a ice maker that makes shaved ice in your pantry. I have a friend who had one put into their walk in pantry and it's awesome. She also has a little bin next to it with shaved ice flavors for snow cones. It's perfect for kids, a fun summer treat, and just normal drinks too! :)

Anonymous said...

We have built three homes, so I have lots of advice. I would definately recommend having a walk-in attic. This is so nice and so much easier than having to pull down stairs to get to an attic. Also, a laundry sink is a must, especially with little ones- this makes life so much easier for spot cleaning their clothes. I would definately have a large island in the center of your kitchen with an additional sink in the island. Another great help is a pottery barn style entry system built in with hooks and drawers or baskets for the bottom. This is wonderful with kids!
Meg W.

Mel Tales said...

Outlets!!! Picture your house decorated and where you would want lamps, etc....I have several places in our home that I really wish we had an outlet put in.

And I am sure you are already doing this, but take pictures throughout all of the building phases! Good luck! How fun!!

Anonymous said...

Pray over the whole house before moving in.

Jennifer

megan said...

We've been in our the house we built for just over a year now.

Some regrets we have: light switch and eletrical outlet placing. Really think that over. Also, if you're doing tile flooring, our grout colors turned out several shades lighter. Not sure if it was our installer or the brand, but get a good idea on what it will look like so you're happy with it in the end!

Some things we are glad we did: Pocket door on the mud room. We're in an out so much that having a regular open door would be in the way. Instead we leave our pocket door tucked away most of the time and out of sight. I also love my tub sink in the laundry room!

Good luck! It's an exciting time to build a house and then make it your home!

Jess :) said...

My friend did this and I LOVED it!! As a family, right before all of the floors were carpeted/wood was laid/etc., they went and wrote Bible verses in each room. Their kids were a little older, so they chose some of their favorites to write, but I just thought that was the coolest idea!! :)

Also, have a HUGE walk-in pantry!!! ;) I'm sure you will though!

Crystal said...

Take your time and make sure everything is exactly how you want it to be.

Sasha said...

I have never built a house, but it seems to me you can never have too much storage, so build more closets/storage places than you think you'll need!

The Bryan Family said...

I've never built a house but my siblings and parents have and so I've lived through their dos and donts.

Make sure you have plenty of storage and closet space!

Don't do dark granite - my mom says it shows dust like crazy!!

GOod luck!!!

Emily said...

I definitely suggest packing non-essentials and essentials separately. that way, you only unpack half of your stuff at the rental and don't have to do EVERYTHING twice. Saves so much time (learned this one from experience!).

Tricia C said...

extra outlets in every room, ceiling fan wiring in every room and don't settle! Get what you want and stand your ground! Congrats!!!! Tricia C

Anonymous said...

Don't be shy and tell the builder exactly where you want everything, down to the electrical outlets. This is your one time to get it exactly how you want it!

Karen
spilk10 at yahoo dot com

Julie said...

I saw this thing on Pinterest where you have circular holders in deep drawers so you can organize all your large utensils. I love this because mine are in a messy drawer and can never find what I need.

I also love another thing I found on Pinterest was to have a small veggie/fruit fridge at the end of an island. A dream come true!!!!

Julie Ann

Jessica said...

Make sure you build with lots of storage in mind!!!! You can never have enough places to put your stuff!!! Pinterest is amazing, under home decor, the ideas are just endless! Oh, and ask your mom!! She seems to be an expert : )
Keep a journal because I may have the same questions in a few years I we decide to build ourselves!!! So exciting!!
Jessica winne

Anonymous said...

If your master and laundry are adjacent...have a door that connects them. Makes doing laundry fun...haha...just easier. -Cindy

Emily R. said...

I have zero advice in this department, but after living in my small, two bedroom, one bath home... I would say lots of cabinet space is a MUST, in both the kitche and the bathroom(s). I am constantly trying to declutter or rearrange things in my cabinets and it seems like there just isn't enough room for everything! Very frustrating. Another necessity for my next house will be three- prong outlets! The house my boyfriend and I live in now only has two prong, and it makes things really difficult! Some cords (my Keurig or plug-in wall Scentsy burners to be exact) are too heavy for adapters. I know pretty much all homes come with three- prong outlets, but you don't realize what a blessing they are until you are stuck with old fashioned ones! :)

Amy Beward said...

A mud room is a must. Ours is located between our garage and our kitchen and is the perfect spot for those small, dirty shoes to come off before entering the house. Ours is large enough to serve as a laundry room and also houses some of our pantry cupboards as well.

How exciting to build your own home - we loved building ours, but at times, it was definitely a stressful experience! However, my husband and I are so glad that this house is ours, designed from the ground up.

Amy Beward

Jamie said...

For the kitchen: A double oven, LOTS of cabinets, great lighting, and an island.

God bless you as go through the building process!

Jamie

Beesmama said...

We renovated our kitchen and put in tile flooring. While pretty, I would NEVER do it again. It is cold under your feet (I am in Boston, much colder than Dallas) even in the summer. Grout is very hard to keep clean/look clean-if I could do over I would do hardwoods throughout. We also did a dark granite counter-which shows all the crumbs...go with a light color!Also- a mudroom would be AMAZING!! Good luck and please keep us posted on the process!!

SA said...

My tip is to have a mudroom as you come in from the garage. My sister just build a house and didn't build a mudroom and she is so sad about it. They walk in from the garage straight into her kitchen. We love having a mud room!:)

throuthehaze said...

someone beat me to it lol but my suggestion is phone jacks in every bedroom. It annoyed me to no end that growing up I didn't have a phone jack in my room. I was the only person in the house without a phone in their bedroom...very inconvenient for a teenager. These days it might not be as important but I think it is still a good thing to have. Also, make sure you have plenty of outlets in each room and that they are located in places that would be convenient for you.

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