Many of us learned in the past year that our homes really weren’t ready to accommodate the 24/7 routine of working, studying, and playing together and trying to get things done with the whole family stuck at home. We all did the best we could and made adjustments, but we also found out that there are some home updates that could make our lives easier in the future, even when the sharing of space isn’t so constant.

The Family’s “Most Wanted”

The areas of the home that are remodeled most often are the kitchen and bathrooms. We certainly found out why these rooms are incredibly important for keeping family schedules running smoothly.

Bathroom with double vanity

Bathroom with double vanity by Merrill Contracting & Remodeling

When multiple family members have to share a bathroom, it can make getting ready in the morning more hectic than it needs to be. A more user-friendly bathroom has a double vanity cabinet with two sinks instead of one. Another feature that is popular in newly built homes is a “water closet” ─ a toilet area that’s closed in with a door. This adds another layer of privacy so more than one person can use the bathroom at once.

White kitchen with large island

Custom kitchen by Merrill Contracting & Remodeling

In the kitchen, an island is the perfect feature to add that lets you control kitchen traffic. Create “zones” for food prep, cooking, and clean-up tasks by equipping the island with an accessible microwave, undercounter fridge, and an extra prep sink. Several family members can be at the island preparing drinks, snacks, and lunches while someone else is working at the stove or sink.

Flexible Space

You may have noticed that having a quiet place to work or have a video conference (or just to think) might be a necessity rather than a luxury. If you’re not sure you need a room dedicated to being a home office, a Flex Room might just be the perfect solution.

home office and flex room

Photo courtesy Wellborn Cabinets

A Flex Room addition can be anything you want it to be and can evolve as your needs change and your family grows or leaves the nest. When it’s not an office, an addition that’s flexible could be used as a playroom, den, study, entertainment room, game room, hobby room, guest room, home gym, or any combination of these.

Keep It Clean

Do yourself a favor and add a transitional space where everyone can clean up before dragging dirt through the house. A laundry/mudroom combination on the first floor does the trick. It’s a convenient spot to put a drop zone for keys, coats, boots, hats, gloves, and backpacks.

mud rooms with pet washing station and drop zone

Photos courtesy Wellborn Cabinets

The addition of bins and cubbies will help encourage family members to stow their own stuff (instead of leaving it on the floor). If muddy sports gear finds its way into your house, an easy-to-clean tile floor and a big deep sink with a pull-down faucet make it much easier to deal with. Make sure you add plenty of counter space for sorting and folding clothes and some closed storage cabinets for cleaning and pet supplies.

Lessons Learned

Now that we know where our homes need improvements to keep up with our busy lives, let’s get to work on how to accomplish them beautifully! We have the experience to take on any challenge your family can hand us. Just give us a call and we’ll start the conversation going.

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