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Design to grow as you do

To make sure your home adapts as you and your family evolve over time, there are multiple design factors to take into consideration.

Each young, growing family is different, so a large part of it comes down to what will work for you as individuals.

Homebuyers Centre General Manager Simon Birkhead said the first step was to think about what you valued most in your home.

“Once you decide what you most value, it is easier to find the floor plan that’s unique to you and your family,” he said.

“Be open-minded when looking at floor plans, have your non-negotiables but be open to designs you may not have thought would work for you before.

“Once you have chosen a design, be sure to consider how the sunlight will move across your home and ensure you have enough light streaming in for winter and enough breeze on those hot summer days.”

Mr Birkhead said the kitchen and living area was the heart of the home, making recommendations on how to make the most of this space over time.

“You really want to plan out this space, so it can grow with your family,” he said.

“We recommend having an open-plan kitchen, living and dining to make the space more flexible.”

Dale Alcock Homes Design and Drafting Manager John Care said flexible, multi-purpose spaces had been a growing trend in recent years, allowing young family homes to adapt to changing needs.

“What might start off as a playroom, later becomes a study area or teenage retreat, for example,” he said.

“A study near the master suite could also become a nursery for the next new arrival.

Young, growing families should consider the size of the bedrooms and their position in the home, according to Mr Care.

“You’ll find that most floor plans are zoned so kids and grown-ups have their own space,” he said, adding it was now rare to find minor bedrooms that aren’t double.

“Also think about how the living, entertaining and activity areas relate to the bedrooms, so everyday noise and busyness won’t disturb quiet areas.

“Positioning the kids’ bedrooms away from the street is usually preferable. Zoning is important, with many young families opting to have the master suite at the front and the minor bedrooms at the back.

“With two-storey designs, it’s usually a question of who gets the upstairs wing – the kids or the parents.”

Mr Birkhead said to consider where the bedrooms were placed in relation to one another, as it could also provide convenience.

“If you have young kids, or are planning on having kids in the near future, having a master bedroom close to their bedrooms is great for convenience with night-time waking,” he said.

“On the flipside, creating a parents’ retreat away from the kiddies’ bedrooms where you can go to unwind and relax away from the rest of the house is also a great option.

“Having the master bedroom at the rear of the home is currently trending. It’s a great way to create your own little oasis that can open out to your alfresco.”

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