Updating the Home as Your Family Changes

Blog entry by ReubenD posted 09-23-2014 01:53 PM 17153 reads 0 times favorited 8 comments Add to Favorites Watch

While the years of four kids and the wife and I trying to all fit through the one bathroom and still make it to school and work on time in our first 3 bedroom 1200 square foot starter house are many years gone, it seems the problems with space and efficient use of space never goes away. Now, it is the opposite situation as the oldest daughters have gone on to their own homes and our house is suddenly much larger than what we needed. While having too much room really does not seem a problem , when heating that much home and planning the upkeep is an issue.

While I suppose it is the natural progression of things as children move, we looked at many options on how to make our home that had been carefully selected and expanded to fit 6 plus guests comfortably into something more practical for my wife and I and our youngest that still has a few more years of high school. The obvious answer of selling this house and moving to a smaller home does not appeal for many reasons, but we did decide to change around the layout to make it into something that actually fits.

What we ended up with looks very different but it fits our lifestyle now and hopefully was done in a way that decreases neither overall value nor ability to sell for when the year comes that the wife can fully retire and we can move to warmer and gentler climates.

The “spare” guest room was next to the master bedroom with its half bath. That has been combined with our bedroom and converted to a master bedroom suite with dressing area, walk-in closet, and full bath and sliding glass doors to a small sitting area outside. Basically we took the design inspiration from a comfortable hotel bedroom suite. Since 5 bedrooms is really over-sized in today’s day and age for the typical family , aside from being more comfortable for us, it will hopefully be an attractive feature to future potential buyers (plus it is a really nice luxury after the years of sharing a single bathroom with the whole family).

The basement bar and recreation room is still there in spirit for use, but we added a full bathroom down stairs, and kitchenette behind the bar. The addition of a wall between that and the laundry room upstairs (the basement has an exterior door to the driveway already) and we actually have a reasonable efficiency apartment with private entrance. This will be offered up on either short visits or extended stays to the kids that have outgrown a “bedroom” and hopefully will give them the privacy they want as young adults while still allowing them to save up towards their own house at some point. Yes, admittedly, it is bait to keep the youngest daughter closer to home in some way as well as she heads off to college.

In the bigger scheme however a mother-in-law apartment may be a little more unique and draw better price and interest at a future date than simply another finished basement. The furnishing of this was kept very reasonable by looking at furniture packages designed for rentals and student housing as opposed to trying to select individual pieces.

The remaining 3 bedrooms are our son’s bedroom, a home office, and the still convenient spare bedroom for when all manage to make it home at the holidays. After the renovations though we can shut off the entire basement for as long as we wish with minimal utility cost, and the upstairs can be used as a more typical 3 bedroom house layout with ample room but space allocated toward our current lifestyle. When deciding how to utilize space as the nest empties, some time spent looking at what things add value in the future when the time finally comes to sell your home will make the changes far more cost effective and worthwhile.

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View MarcioWilges's profile


28 posts in 3253 days

posted 12-15-2014 09:38 AM

I can totally relate making so many changes because moving out requires a lot of variations every now and then. However, sometimes change is really essential to accommodate to everyone’s needs. Hence, it is highly necessary for families with children who are constantly growing. As parents, we need to always provide them with the best we possibly can and going through changes and adapting and adopting are just some of the things we can do for them.

-- Marcio Wilges @ http://www.platinumremovals.com.au/

View AmandaCarr's profile


1 post in 3042 days

posted 05-27-2015 01:38 PM

I would not suggest to move out of the house, simply because it’s stupid (no offense). All of the memories and time spent to make it look like this so.. do not do it! Yes, it could be challenging to prioritize the current structure of the house, but it is a way more practical if you ask me. A separate heating system could come in handy, simply for the most used rooms.

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38 posts in 1689 days

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38 posts in 1689 days

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105 posts in 632 days

posted 03-23-2023 05:40 PM

Making changes to your home to accommodate your ever-evolving family can be a daunting task. However, it doesn’t have to be! With the right planning and preparation, you can create a home that works for everyone. find home Allen From establishing clear guidelines to considering the different needs of each family member, this guide will help you make the most of the changes you need to make. You’ll be able to make modifications that are both practical and aesthetically pleasing, so that your home is a place of comfort and joy for your family.

View cathyA's profile


128 posts in 193 days

posted 03-31-2023 07:49 AM

As our family has gone through changes over the years, so too has our home. What once was a 3 bedroom, 1200 square foot starter house, has become much larger than real estate services Downtown Austin necessary as our daughters have gone on to create their own homes. Having too much room isn’t a problem in itself, though heating and maintaining such a large space can prove to be a challenge. Nonetheless, it is a reminder of how quickly time passes and how important it is to make the most of it while we can.

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