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Optimized Living: 5 Ways to Improve the Layout of your Home

Last modified: 2020-06-16 | Approximate reading time 5 mins

Amanda Harvey

There are plenty of reasons why the layout of your home may not feel right for you anymore. Perhaps you’ve outgrown the number of rooms or maybe you’d like to incorporate a home office, a gym or a basement apartment.

Currently, as we deal with the ramifications of the Covid-19 pandemic, and with plenty of time on our hands, many are wondering how to make the most out of their interiors. Improving the layout of your home can be a project big or small, and will come down to the needs of yourself and your loved ones. 

So, if you find yourself in a situation hoping to take on a renovation project to optimize how you’re living and move in the direction of your choosing, then you’ve come to the right place. Read on for our suggestions on ways to improve the layout of your home.

Optimized living: How to refine the layout of your home

1- Set up a home office

When it comes to restructuring and refining the interior of your home, it needs to be conducive to various modes of living, and this includes both work and play. Working from home can be a serious luxury in some cases, but when you’re feeling confined it could come across as a burden. This is why it’s essential to create a dedicated workspace or home office that offers a way for you to continue to feel comfortable and have a productive workflow. 

Creating the perfect home office is dependent on a few variables, such as the amount of space you’re working with as well as the amount of privacy needed. Even if your home or apartment is quite small, there are still ways to make the most of it. Consider investing in some hidden furniture, such as a retractable desk that can be tucked away when it’s not in use or even a small office that is hidden in a large closet.

Alternatively, you may consider a multi-purpose piece to compliment a room, such as a shelving unit that has a desk attachment at the lowest level. If you don’t have a dedicated room in your home for an office, choose a spacious nook by a window or a private corner that can be partitioned off for video-chat meetings. 

If you’re looking for a little bit more inspiration on this subject, you should check out our article with some home office design ideas.

home office

source: Brit Morin

2- Create open interior spaces

If you’re living in a home that currently has many small rooms, and you’re feeling as if you’ve outgrown this stuffy layout, don’t fret. There are some home renovation strategies that will offer a chance for you to open up your interior spaces, such as removing walls. Even in the smallest of homes, an open floor plan will create a spacious atmosphere that enhances interactions between loved ones. Not only this, but removing walls can offer a way for natural light to expand into other areas of the home. 

There are a few considerations that need to happen if you’re planning to take on an open floor plan. This is because removing walls from the interior of your home has to be carefully done. You may need to think about the following:

  • Apply for a permit before completing any major work in the interior of your home;
  • Hire an architect who can determine which interior walls are loadbearing and which ones are not;
  • Make sure to hire an electrician or plumber if the walls you’re removing incorporate either of these elements;
  • Consider installing new flooring alongside the removal of interior walls, as this project has the potential to damage your floors.

Of course, this isn’t a DIY project that can be completed in the course of a few hours. In fact, a lot of attention to detail must be kept in mind. However, if you’re simply knocking down a wall or two, costs will be fairly low while this project will have a huge impact on the feel of your home. Not to mention, if you’re looking to sell in the future, a home with an open floor plan is appealing to the buyers market.

open concept kitchen

source: Est Living

3- Create closed off, smaller spaces

In the opposite case, maybe your home has one large, open space and you’re hoping to create several smaller rooms; this could further include a small addition for the purpose of a home office, gym, laundry room and so on. Whatever the case, you’re likely interested in adding an extra room to make the most of your square footage. As with the removal of a wall, a few necessary considerations need to take place before moving forward with this renovation project:

  • Determine the scale of the work and apply for the necessary permit
  • Hire an electrician to determine if a new circuit is necessary or what wiring work will need to have it outfitted
  • If the new wall is blocking natural light, consider installing a window to allow light to flow

If you’re adding a small side addition or separate space like a home office, you may need to add a door within your interior or to connect this space to the outside. If the addition ends up being on the larger side of things, we’d suggest consulting an architect.

4- Install a new bathroom 

If spending all your time at home has drawn attention to the fact that your single bathroom is feeling crowded, you might be thinking about installing a second (or even a third) one. Adding a bathroom can do a world of wonders, but is a fairly involved renovation project. Nonetheless, it will make all the difference and will possibly increase the resale value of your home. 

Aiming to put your new bathroom near the bedrooms is the most effective method. Of course, if you already have one close, you could carve out a space for the bathroom in a back hall, laundry room, or even a large closet off the side of a bedroom. Do be certain that plumbing can find its way to whichever space you choose.

Keep in mind that a washroom with a toilet will require much less room, and less work, than a full bathroom with a shower or bathtub. In almost all cases, you will need to hire a general contractor to take on this job with you. 

bathroom

source: Rue Magazine

5- Finishing a basement renovation

For those needing an additional living space, or a leisure space for both young and old, the basement proves promising. Many of us move into homes with the intention of making the most of our basement. But often, a full-on overhaul of this space is the forgotten piece of the puzzle. Now, with all of this extra time on our hands, it could be the time to finally move forward with finishing the basement renovation.

This project can go in many directions and will depend on your needs. Some homeowners choose to turn this space into a separate apartment or a bedroom for guests. Others may outfit it with an entertainment system, pool table, game center and so forth. Those more focused on the mind and body may turn it into a gym, yoga studio or meditation space. Whichever you choose, all of these projects require time, research, and of course, inspiration. 

If you choose to create a basement apartment, do reach out to a trusted contractor. They’ll help you map out exactly what’s required to maintain a self-sufficient space. This is especially true if walls, floors and additional amenities haven’t been completed or installed.

basement

source: The Spruce

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