Empty Nest Remodeling Creates Homes with Grownups in Mind.
Through the years, our lives, circumstances, and needs change, and so does what we want to get out of our homes.
Chances are you bought your current home while your children were small or in school. Maybe before you had children. But now, your kids are grown and living on their own. Your home is now an empty nest. The home you needed when your kids lived at home is no longer the ideal home for you now and going forward.
So congratulations, an empty nest is a great time to remodel your and it can be great fun. You may have already noticed you’re not using many of the rooms in your home you used to and other rooms were designed for how your kids used them but not for what you need now. Remodeling your empty nest allows your home to be reconfigured and redesigned to suit your life going forward. It allows you to more fully enjoy the home and neighborhood you love for much longer.
You can now turn those unused bedrooms and play areas into a home office, a study, a home gym, hobby rooms or a guest suite for when the kids visit.
You can transform your kitchen, aka your family’s HQ, into a kitchen where you can relax with your morning coffee, learn to cook those gourmet meals you always wanted to try out, entertain or whatever you want.
Bottom line, when your home becomes an empty nest, you can remodel your kitchen or remodel your whole house to be exactly what you want. So maybe now is the time to turn your home into the “grownup” space that you’ve always dreamed about.
Here are some things to think about…
Universal Design and Living in Place Design
Universal design (making stylish living areas that are accessible to all ages – young, old, and in-between) is a smart idea if you plan on living in your house for a while and want your home to be easier for you to use and for those who visit. Universal design, when done well, is virtually invisible. It’s just a home designed best for those who live in it and visit.
If you would like to live in your empty nest for as long as possible, Living in Place design, sometimes called aging in place design, is also an option. Like universal design, much of Living in Place design is not obvious like ADA design may be.
For example, for both universal and Living in Place design consider lever-type handles for doors and cabinets. Have at least one no-step entry into your home, and wider doorways and halls. In the kitchen, Lazy Susans, pullout shelves, varying counter heights, and a wall-mounted oven make life easier. Lever-style faucet handles in the bathroom, as well as a detachable hand-held showerhead, and curbless walk-in shower with a bench are luxurious touches that are also practical.
Other general features throughout the home may include rocker-style light switches and more accessible electrical outlets, adequate task lighting and increased lighting on stairways, and hard-surface flooring materials or low-pile carpeting.
One common Living in Place feature many empty-nesters like is a first floor master suite.
Unless fixing up the house is your favorite hobby, probably by now you would love the thought of a low-maintenance home. Fiber-cement siding is guaranteed for years, insects can’t bore into it, and it serves as an extra layer of insulation for your home — which can lower your heating and cooling costs.
Decking materials have come a long way and there is no reason to build a deck now that requires lots of maintenance. Composite and engineered materials such as TREX® Decking and AZEK® Deck Boards not only eliminate annual maintenance like staining, sealing and checking for rot or loose nails, they also provide long-lasting freedom from warping, rotting, splinters, stains from spills, and damage from the elements. Adding a porch, a patio with an outdoor kitchen, or a sunroom home addition you can use throughout the year can reduce the time and money spent maintaining the yard, by replacing some of that lawn with something you might enjoy more.
The Kitchen of Your Dreams
The way you use your kitchen is probably much different than in years past. No longer the hub for organizing car pools and soccer schedules, it’s now a place for relaxing with your morning coffee or for casual entertaining. Pick the style you love and make the kitchen your own: sleek and sophisticated, farmhouse cozy, or as efficient as a commercial kitchen for gourmet cooking.
An open floor plan will allow kitchen traffic to flow easily, make it easier for more than one person to cook at a time, and provide a flexible space for hosting family and friends for holiday gatherings. An island can include bar-height seating at stools, a nook with a bench and upholstered chairs, or a convenient spot to serve food buffet-style.
Add a butler’s pantry with extra cabinets, counters, sink and perhaps an extra dishwasher or small refrigerator, providing a perfect area to stage foods for serving or for extra counter space to clear dirty dishes.
That Empty Room…
For empty-nesters whose children have moved out, there almost certainly will be unused rooms that could be transformed into welcome new spaces. Would you love a home office and library where you can shut the door and not worry about grandchildren getting into your books and papers? Maybe you can finally have a real exercise room instead of a treadmill in the corner of the master bedroom.
The basement can become the perfect spot for a wine cellar, a computer desk with 3 monitors, cabinets for displaying a prized memorabilia collection, or a closet fitted for storing golf clubs, photography equipment or fishing gear. You can finally have a roomy space for sewing or crafting with built-in shelves and cubbies for neat, organized storage of your craft supplies.
Instead of uprooting yourselves and all your stuff, consider remodeling your home. It can be a great solution, allowing you to stay in the house and community that you love, while keeping your house up to date with your life. Contact us today and we can work with you to design the changes that will turn your empty house into a home with grownups in mind.