Custom designing your own home
With over 300 designs to choose from, Hickinbotham has the largest home collection in the State. Yet we understand that sometimes, people just want to put their own stamp on a plan or they may have a difficult block that requires an individual approach.
The most economical solution is to work with an experienced building consultant who knows the design collection like the back of their hand. They will work with you to tailor an existing design and, if keeping costs down is important, they will suggest clever cost saving ideas and set out to avoid as many structural changes as possible. If an individual custom approach is preferred, we offer a specialised service in which we arrange for you to see an associated architect who can help create your custom designed home.Knowing what you want will be the difference between a good and a really great home.
Get the brief right
Ask yourself lots of questions. The basics - How many bedrooms and bathrooms? Do you need a study? How big should the kitchen be? Also consider the way your rooms are zoned to ensure areas for privacy and flexible areas for entertaining. Think about the outside of your home, what kind of garden, low or high maintenance? Do you want an alfresco area? Remember to consider what you might need in the future, thinking about all of this now could save you money later!
How do I want my home to look?
If you cannot define the style you want, you will never be able to create one. Do you want your style to be minimal, contemporary, classic or traditional? Remember, if you opt for trendy ideas, these can go out of fashion quickly. Make a visual diary with pictures from magazines and take photos of any housing elevations that appeal. Visit display homes to gain inspiration.
Always consider what your home will feel like throughout all the seasons. This will help you to decide where to place windows, doors and skylights in order to optimise sunshine and light.
Get accurate floorplans to scale
Use your floorplans for furniture selection and placement - you don’t want to end up with a sofa that is too large for the room. Decide if you want an extra big fridge, a walk-in pantry and what size oven and cooktop. These need to be considered before your kitchen layout is finalised as this will affect the overall design of the benches and cupboards. Display homes can give you an idea of space.
Develop colour schemes
Colour is one of the most fundamental elements of design. Colour schemes can make or break the design - as can room layouts - so consider them carefully. Get inspiration from home magazines and display homes.
Less is usually more
Many people will go overboard when designing. Once you have your ideas and plans on paper, take a step back and consider them over a few days.
Lock in the design before building
A good building consultant knows about the practicalities of implementing your design and can save you money by achieving similar outcomes in smarter ways. Be willing to make adjustments and avoid making changes after building has begun because this is costly and will significantly delay the completion date.
Sarah built with the Hickinbotham Group in 2012. She based her custom design on an exisiting floorplan and modified it to suit her lifestyle and needs.