In the excitement of starting a new project, I find myself forgetting about the basic requirements for a home and when I do remember, I have to fight for every square inch to squeeze them in. So, I made myself a special project with just the basics in it. Now I put all of these items into the project first, then add the fun stuff. It’s a quick reality check when starting a complex project like the one below. I hope it will help you too!
Whether you’re redoing your apartment, planning an addition or building a whole house, there is nothing more basic than being able to get in and out, so remember your door – and try to have a second way to get out in an emergency. One way out is through a window big enough for you to squeeze through and not too high off the ground.
Water is at the top of the list. Learn where your water source is and work from there. In new construction, bathrooms and the kitchen can be kept closer together to save on costs. A hot water heater is also a necessity. The bathroom probably uses the most water. The toilet, bidet, sink and tub or shower all need to be hooked up to water. Make sure you have toilet paper, towels and a mirror too! Cooking and cleaning up are the next biggest users of water. If you have a choice, keep your water-using items close together.
Gas is usually available and if you use it for your cooking, hot water and/or heat, knowing where your gas source is will help you place your key elements as close as you can. Make sure you have ventilation for your stove.
Electricity is next on the priority list. I add a circuit breaker box to remind me that being able to get to it in an emergency is really important. Distributing the power to properly placed outlets reminds me not to add outlets behind the couch or bed where they’ll be hard to reach. Moving an outlet in Homebyme is a lot easier than moving it once it’s in the wall. Switches to control the power also need to be in practical places.
Other items on the really important list are smoke and carbon monoxide detectors (the round things). Your comfort level is usually moderated by a thermostat that tells the heaters, radiators, fans and air conditioning what to do. I include a refrigerator as one of the first items in my projects because they’re big and hard to move. Besides, I’m going to need food even during the planning stages!
Storage is usually forgotten because I’ve filled up all the space with other fun things. I’ll need at least some counter space in my kitchen, shelves for my food, shelves for towels and even storage for my trash and recyclables. A mobile temporary storage space is helpful too. My family moved all over the country when I was a kid and I still remember my mother’s first questions were about how much counter space and storage space was included. Having the right amount of storage space helps me keep my life organized.
Beds take up a lot of space too. I make sure that this basic requirement is taken care of right away. And after all this planning work, I may just take a refreshing nap!
Keep these requirements in your planning mind from start to finish on your project and you’ll be a lot happier. Now, about that nap…
It’s your turn!