You’ve moved on up. You made apartment living a thing of the past. Or you found a way to trade that small, starter home for a larger model.
Finally, room to stretch! But also, more space to fill.
All those fabulous Pinterest finds and that living room of your dreams take time, and money, to assemble. Follow these tips to keep your sanity and your budget in line when sizing up:
Don’t Buy Until You’ve Bought
Make sure the ink has dried on your closing papers before whipping out your plastic at a favorite home store. It’s hard, especially when you’ve waited a long time for a place to call your own. But you don’t want to be left holding the bag (or a very, very large furniture purchase) if a deal unravels.
Live First, Buy Later
Your new home is a longterm investment. There’s no need to rush into anything. Give yourself time to acclimate to the new space, create new living habits, and get a feel for the types of appliances, furniture and colors that will work with your newly expanded lifestyle. A little patience is better than a large piece of furniture you’ll come to regret.
Budget, Budget, Budget
Resist the urge to splurge just because you have the space to do so now. There’s no need to take on more debt for the sake of a sofa, especially when you’ve just taken on so much debt with a new mortgage. A thoughtful approach matching needs, wants and finances will ensure you’ll have a space you truly love at a pricepoint you can live with.
Invest in Basic Tools
If you had been a renter, remember that you no longer have a landlord or property manager to call when things go wrong. If you sold a home to move into another, there may be differences in plumbing, electrical fixtures or landscaping that require different tools to adjust. The mauve kitchen may drive you batty, but a gushing, midnight leak you can’t turn off could end up causing costly damage.
Hit the Most-Used Rooms First
As glorious as that dining-room-set of your dreams might be, a table and chairs that will get occasional use aren’t as vital as a place in the kitchen to sit for breakfast and dinner. And consider putting up bedroom curtains to fend off early morning jolts of sunshine before you get started on painting the future basement rec room.
Keep Things Moving
You may have envisioned a sofa by that window and the TV in the corner, but flipping them could provide a better flow to the room. You won’t always know what works until you try new arrangements, and since you now have plenty of time and space, why not experiment?
Retain Those Small-Space Habits
You’ve lived for so long without under-the-stair storage, do you really need to rush to fill it? Or those painfully organized kitchen cabinets — a necessity in your former galley space — what if you kept those systems and used the new space to indulge in that roaster you’ll finally have room for? Living the organized life of a small space in a large abode gives you room to play with as time progresses.
Don’t Fear the Footage
While creating a cohesive look and investing in the right furnishings can feel like a daunting challenge when you have only two bedrooms, adding two more bedrooms and a playroom could easily make the task seem overwhelming. So, take a deep breath. This is supposed to be fun. Make a budget. Attack each room one by one. Give yourself plenty of time. Soon you’ll marvel at how much your larger house feels like a home.
Originally published by Anne Miller of Realtor.com. To see the original article, click here.