If you’re a parent looking to buy a house in the GTA, it can be tough. The list of needs and wants that you have as a parent, no matter your kids’ ages, is long. That’s where building a custom home has an advantage. You can add any and every feature you need to run your life, your kids’ life’s, and your home smoothly. As custom home builders, here are the most commonly requested features that parents love.
1. Open Floor Plan
An open floor plan is a request that almost everyone makes nowadays. But this layout is particularly important to parents with young children. It allows them to prep meals or wash dishes, all while keeping an eye on the kids. As kids get older, an open floor plan still works, allowing parents to make sure homework gets done or having more room for entertaining when friends come over.
2. Play Space
Any parent knows that kids come with a lot of stuff. Having a dedicated play space helps cut down on noise and clutter in the main living spaces. Architects recommend creating a playroom with French doors, that way you can open and close them as needed. They allow a parent to look in all while keeping the noise out. As the children get old this space can easily transform into a more age appropriate place.
3. Mud Room
A coat closet is great but most kids aren’t going to take the time to hang their stuff up on hangers. A mudroom allows parents to keep all the entering/leaving clutter hidden. Put in hooks, a bench, shoe cubbies, and baskets for items. A mudroom will give your kids a single place to put their backpacks, jackets, and shoes. This definitely helps save parents the headache of a lost item during the morning rush.
4. Laundry Room
No matter how old a kid is, they go through a lot of clothing. That means tons of laundry. Where a laundry room is placed is all about personally preference. Some prefer it attached to the mudroom. Others like it near the bedrooms. Talk to your home builder to see where would make the most sense to you and your family. Consider adding a foldable drying rack, a sink to get out stains, and counter space for folding.
5. Separate Living Space
Having separate living spaces is important, especially as kids get older and enter their teenage years. This allows kids to feel like they have their own room and also keeps them from bothering you. The basement is a great spot for a teen hangout. It’s out of the way, semi-private, and noise won’t travel through the house. Try including your teenager in designing this space so that they actually want to spend time in it.
6. Fenced Yard
Yard space is hard to come by in the GTA but that’s a bonus of building a custom home. No matter how large your yard is, consider getting it fenced in. A fenced in yard will ease stress about having to keep an eye on kids when they’re playing back there. Not to mention, it will keep the mess and noise hidden from your neighbors.
7. Built-In Storage
As custom home builders, we have never met a family that claimed to have too much storage space. Built-in storage is a must for families with kids. From sports equipment, toys, clothing, appliances, and other paraphernalia, storage is a necessity. Make sure you have plenty of closets, bookcases, and shelves. Utilize hidden nooks like under the stairs to maximize your space.
8. Attached Garage
No one wants to make a mad dash to the garage in the freezing Toronto winters. An attached garage is easier, safer, and more convenient for a family. It makes getting kids into the car, getting out groceries, and getting off to work so much simpler when the garage connects to your house. Consider having your garage open up to the mudroom.
9. Charging Station
Kids these days spend more time on electronic devices than ever before. Consider putting in a designated charging station. This will help you keep track of devices and cords. As kids get older and need a computer you can also put one in here. This allows you to monitor their Internet usage in a safe way.
Every family is different. Talk about your needs and wants with your home builder to make sure your custom Toronto home meets your family’s needs. It’s important to think about your family as it grows and ages. Make sure you have enough space and that rooms can transition as the kid’s age.