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For Long-term Success in Home Improvements, Get a Firm Grip on Your Design Influences

When people decide to settle down and own some property, they invariably end up making various changes to their homes. Even if you fall in love with a place upon inspection, the experience of navigating the property daily will reveal some areas for improvement.

The good news is that home upgrades are a sound investment. Done right, they are sure to provide returns in the form of a better quality of living over the years. But a major remodel is no small undertaking. Besides the costs involved, it can disrupt your everyday routines for some time; you might even need to move out temporarily while the contractors do their work.

If you end up dissatisfied with the result of a remodel, you can end up having to do it all over again. Mistakes on this scale are both impractical and unpleasant. So before you commit, have an honest evaluation of your design inspiration. What are your influences, and how do you use them to get the desired outcome?

Aesthetic influences

Information about trends in interior design is everywhere. The slightest interest in home improvements can send you down a rabbit hole of great visual ideas. Over the years, HGTV shows have been joined by social media, YouTube DIY guides, and even Netflix productions as popular sources of inspiration.

But in any field of design, various are bound to come and go. Occasionally they will even make a comeback in some reimagined form. Current events influence popular trends in design. A new material becomes available, and it suddenly pops up everywhere. An uncertain climate makes people think about sustainability and timeless materials; who knows how that will change when the economy booms?

No one can predict trends with any certainty because they are intertwined with many ongoing developments in the bigger picture. So while you can look to existing trends for inspiration, you should seek to curtail their influence. Dig deeper and figure out what it is you like in a particular aesthetic; that way, you can separate those elements and not be committed to the rest.

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DIY guides

There are DIY guides out there to almost anything around the house. But it would help if you still watched out for aspects that could benefit from an insider’s knowledge and experience.

In family law, lawyers work on smoothing out issues that prove too delicate for members to confront directly. Likewise, when it comes to your home, there are structural elements best left to experienced professionals. A local contractor can ensure stability in the long term because they are familiar with common issues in the area, such as flooding, freezing, or storms.

Expert research gives you a good insight into expected costs and the amount you can recoup should you eventually decide to sell the property in the future. Realtors in the area will know what buyers are looking for and what factors affect the local housing market.

Thus, if you want your remodeling to be guided by concrete numbers, feasibility, or concerns about long-term durability and value, put those Internet guides aside. Give an ear to the local pros who know what will work best.

Psychological factors

Design professionals are well-aware that our environments exert a strong and subtle influence on our behavior. And this effect is continuously at work, no matter where you go. From the office to public spaces and your own home, you’re being guided by the considerations and choices of designers who worked years ago.

When you plan on remodeling your home, you might not be aware of these influences. Or you might only be conscious of their effects on some aspects. For instance, most people know that choosing the color of your walls and accents will influence your mood.

But what about considerations such as spatial perception? You might not think much of adjusting your ceiling, for example. But a higher ceiling promotes greater freedom and abstraction of thought. A lower ceiling is more conducive to detail-oriented thinking. This can be a particularly significant influence in the age of remote work and home offices.

By understanding the different competing influences, you won’t be blindly following someone else’s template or guide. No matter how good it looks, or how well things worked out for them, outcomes can vary.

In a project that can have such a significant impact on your quality of life, you shouldn’t be constrained by groupthink. Prune away what’s trendy or doesn’t apply to your situation, and align what’s left with your needs. You might not end up with a home that looks exactly like your Pinterest board inspiration, but it will be the home that works for you each day.

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