How to Redesign a Home

Does your home need a new look? Here are some things to consider.


  1. Image titled Redesign a Home Step 1
    Determine why you want to make a change. Do so because of the latent assets of the neighborhood, specific lot, community and region, and the price of the residence.The shape, mass or bulk of your home is almost irrelevant.
  2. Image titled Redesign a Home Step 2
    Consider hiring an architect. An architect can be consulted on an hourly basis. They provide an overview of your efforts.
  3. Image titled Redesign a Home Step 3
    Hire a kitchen designer. A kitchen designer is cheap and effective and has a breadth of experience and knowledge.
  4. Image titled Redesign a Home Step 4
    Talk with a qualified contractor at an early stage. Obtain his suggestions and preliminary pricing so that there is no sticker shock later when you desire work to commence.
  5. Image titled Redesign a Home Step 5
    Contact your lender or mortgage advisor at an early stage. This will allow you to determine your qualifications for mortgage financing. Avoid refinancing complexities, and have legal counsel available.
  6. Image titled Redesign a Home Step 6
    Focus on reducing your energy costs. Most older housing offers poor insulation in the walls, attic and foundation. Confirm the International Building Code standards for your area by contacting Building Code or Inspection Department of local government. Superior windows with improved infiltration resistance, insulated glass and Solar Heat Gain Coefficients are mandatory. Older wooden or steel windows may appear charming but are costly to retain in the house envelope. Hi-efficiency heat pumps or furnaces are absolutely essential to any purposeful transformation; air conditioning may not be as essential everywhere as previously assumed. Intelligent shade tree placement, new overhangs and improved insulation will not lower the humidity discomfort but may make high humidity somewhat tolerable; air movement certainly should be encouraged with improved ceiling heights, transom windows(above the shoulder height) and proportioned openings. There are many subtle, design techniques to make homes livable and comfortable and you may need the diagnostic-design service of a professional Architect. A builder may not possess the arsenal to undertake a technological transformation of this modest but desirable older home.
  7. Image titled Redesign a Home Step 7
    Consider room additions. Older homes rarely had common rooms or gathering places. They were expensive, and most families tolerated intrusions of each on the other because that is what families did; there simply wasn't any other option. Probably your older house needs this common space addition.
  8. Image titled Redesign a Home Step 8
    Design your kitchen for maximum storage at minimum cost. Get a sharp kitchen designer to work with you; stay within the envelope of the original Kitchen and avoid the cabinet disease by creating 1 or several storage closets and buy, use, pay for, fewer cabinets. Old appliances you may use temporarily but plan for new ones and avoid Euro-slick Willie stuff. Great food depends not on the mechanical perfection of the range ,microwave or refrigerator but on the cook's knowledge and command of the tools and ingredients at his/her disposal. Adequate counter area is essential; the materials available offer wide choices all of which are excellent. Laminated plastic tops are colorful, varied and inexpensive; quartz, limestones and granites superb and your wallet shall determine what they shall be.
  9. Image titled Redesign a Home Step 9
    Modernize your bathroom. Probably you will opt to install a Master Bath, especially if you are undertaking an addition. Be aware a Master Bath requires a Master Closet-both large spaces.Master Closets are rather simple and inexpensive. Use double rod hanging wherever possible and plan a bank of sweater drawers. A well planned closet will enable you to reduce dresser type furniture to some extent and by all means have the carpenter install a vertical shoe rack; keeps stuff off the floor. Think about a laundry near the Bedrooms. This is locus of most dirty linen on a daily basis. If space is not available, then plan for the laundry chute to a 1st floor or Basement location. Toilet fixtures are inexpensive; plan for new fixtures and brass or faucets,showers, traps, shutoffs and vents. There is simply no easy way to preserve old plumbing but if accessible during the transformation, insulate hot and cold water lines. A new water heater is also a must--examine the cost of new flash or instant water heaters. Although expensive (upward of USD $2000) they shall save fuel costs every year of use.


  • Examine the possibility of staying within the envelope of the existent structure. That is the cheapest alternative in undertaking a transformation. Use basement space and make it livable and comfortable. Bump out the foundation wall; waterproof the foundations (don't even consider damp proofing); insulate the perimeter (by excavating) with 2–3 inches (5.1–7.6 cm) of acceptable insulation; install a French drain at the base of the footing; regrade the lot to channel the surface water away from the foundation walls and landscape with native species.Explore the possibility of modified porches or screened living areas adjacent to the main structure. These design solutions shall make the transformation complete and appealing.


  • Contact legal counsel before making any commitments for anything.
  • Contact your insurance agent for advice on liability, type of coverage and insurance structure for you and family,
  • Engage a qualified architect to discuss scope of work desired and suitability of the real estate for your purposes.

Article Info

Categories: Build Design & Remodel Own Home