The perfect family home means something different to everyone.
But there are things most families are looking for, like a great location, space to grow, affordability, access to good schools, local amenities and a quiet safe area.
But beyond these considerations how can you make your home as family friendly as possible? Here are some tips you might not have considered.
Regardless of whether you’ve got a young growing family or teenagers, you’ll benefit from some separation. By this we mean paying attention to the layout of your home – is there a separation between the living and sleeping areas of your home? In an ideal world you probably don’t want your bedrooms coming straight off the living area for instance.
Similarly, can you design or reorganise your spaces so there are separate zones or living areas for adults and kids? Does the property allow you all to do different things at the same time without interrupting each other? Can you get away from each other?
Make sure there’s separation between the living & sleeping areas of your home.
Often clever design can override size, and you might need one space to serve many functions (eg: a study in a corner of a living room).
Families tend to collect stuff as they grow, and lots of it. Toys, sporting equipment, school stuff, craft, hobbies, and even basic things like clothes, toiletries, linen and towels, tools, kitchen supplies or even groceries for several people. It all takes up space.
Life with multiple people and all their many belongings under the same roof can become cluttered and unpleasant if you don’t have enough storage. Factor storage into any decorating or renovating decisions you make. Use your space wisely. And always make sure you have room for expansion.
Clutter tends to multiply and breed when you least expect it so regular cleanouts can help, but good storage is key. Everything in its place and a place for everything, as the saying goes.
White carpets and delicate fragile decorative features are probably a no-no with young kids and teenagers alike. If you’ve got multiple people living under the same roof you need durable surfaces, fixtures and fittings.
From sturdy light switches to wipe-clean paint choices, and fixtures like taps, benchtops and doors and doorknobs: strength, longevity and functionality are important.
The perfect family home should be a safe environment for everyone – and we’re not just talking about the essentials like door and window locks for personal safety, or smoke detectors and adequate fire safety.
Common home features & fixtures can be a hazard to young kids.
Many common home features and fixtures can be a hazard and pose a serious risk to young kids. For instance, pools and garden ponds need fencing, staircases need adequate railings or protection, blind cords need to be properly secured, and elevated windows or balconies should be off limits or monitored for small kids.
The little things
Some things that are hidden from sight can make a huge difference to your everyday life as a family and how your home functions.
For instance, a hot water tank that doesn’t run out and can cope with multiple showers or baths.
And there are little luxuries, like access direct from a garage to your home to make the logistics of unpacking everyone and everything easier. Or a kitchen big enough to cope with a growing family. Even an extra toilet can make life more pleasant when everyone is trying to get ready in the morning.
Families tend to grow, so make sure you have room for, or plans for how to deal with, the inevitable expansion of people, things, and the space they consume.
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