Congratulations! You’ve saved for the down payment, looked at dozens of properties, survived negotiations and have finally moved into your first home. Buying a first home is so exciting. Decorating your first home can be both daunting and overwhelming. Where do you even start? Check out these 5 Tips For Decorating Your First Home.
1. Start with a plan
Before you buy a single thing, sit down and make a plan. Make a list of what items you will bring from your apartment and any furnishings that friends and relatives will gift you.
Next, measure your rooms and make a floor plan. It doesn’t have to be anything elaborate. You can simply draw it out on paper or use one of the free online tools.
This will be your guide for choosing not only what you need to buy, but also the best size. Unfortunately, I have been to too many homes where the client bought something based on how it looked in the showroom, only to find out after delivery, that the piece was too big for the room.
Once you have a plan and a clear vision of how you want to use each room then you can make a list of what to buy.
2. Resist the urge to decorate all at once
When decorating your first home, chances are you will need to decorate as budget allows. Rather than scattering your decorating dollars throughout the house, choose one room to fully decorate. For some, that might be the primary bedroom. For others, the family room or dining room.
Attempting to decorate the whole house at once usually results in a house full of partially finished rooms. Better to get one room fully decorated that you will love spending time in. Then as budget allows you can move on to decorating the next room.
3. Choose a color palette that flows
If you have purchased an open concept home then think carefully about the color palette. You want the room colors to flow room to room and relate to one another. Think of the whole house when choosing wall colors. If you paint each room a different color then you might end up feeling like you are living in a box of crayola crayons.
4. Decorate using the high/low principle
One of the best pieces of advice I ever received was to decorate using the high-low principle. In other words, spend the most money on the hardest working furnishings and then fill in with lower priced items. A good quality mattress, a well made sofa and comfortable, sturdy dining chairs are all items I recommend splurging on.
Lighting, side tables and accessories can be from Target, Homegoods or FB Marketplace. These lower priced items can be replaced in a few years, whereas good quality furniture and mattresses will last.
Follow this advice when decorating your first home.
5. Be flexible with your room functions
Most likely your first home is not a huge mansion. Space might be tight so every square foot must work FOR you. This is when you can get creative. There is no rule that a dining room has to function only as a place to eat on holidays. Nor does a guest bedroom need to sit empty until a visitor arrives.
Dining rooms can function as work from home spaces, libraries, or children’s playrooms. Guest bedrooms can be podcasting rooms, work out rooms, or craft rooms. This is your house so ditch the “rules” and make your spaces fit your lifestyle rather than the opposite.
I promise you, there are no Decorating Police that will come knocking at your door because you choose to break the rules of how a room should be used.
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Want more decorating tips? Check out this post about Ten Common Decorating Mistakes