Every home is unique. Home designs have traditionally been as diverse as the people who inhabit them. From log cabins of the frontier to stucco villas of the southwest, houses were usually influenced in style and design by the building materials readily available in the environment. A few features, however, were universal. Efficiency, room usability, and utilization of outdoor space were a few concepts instinctively considered when building a home.
Today, a home is often built en masse along with dozens of others. Developers are business people whom have contributed positively to the home experience by providing affordable and available homes, but their priority is cost-effective quantity. Even custom built homes are subject to influence from the neighborhoods and homes already in existence. Property owners take cues from existing homes, thereby perpetuating home features which may not even meet their needs.
Certain home features of the last few decades have served their purpose but are outdated, while others from the past need to be resurrected. There are mid-century suburban homes, for example, that often look too common or too “new” to get a make-over. Or they could simply just be brushed aside as too kitsch for historic consideration. Because of these, they rarely get the treatment they deserve and fall prey to careless renovations. These quick treatments leave the houses looking worse than they started.
Home improvement projects don’t just mean removing original house details, ripping up the hardwood and replacing laminates. It’s more than just giving it a fresh new coat of paint. A renovation must be respectful to the home’s original ethos, but updating it enough to look more contemporary and in harmony with the elements and architecture.
With these topics in mind, let’s explore some of the possibilities for improving homes.