There’s no denying that for many people looking to build a home, group housing is the only option available to them. When funds are limited, and families are happy to accept a pre-drawn plan, group housing can be wonderful. However, when I heard of three separate couples – all of whom had a reasonably generous budget – opting to go down the group housing route earlier today, I wanted to scream, Where are your own identities, people?!
For those who aren’t familiar with the term “group housing”, I am referring to nationwide companies with franchises around the country, that provide those looking to build a home with a package deal: Simply pay a deposit and you get to choose a design from their ready drawn house plans. With extras such as vanities, taps etc. all inclusive, these packages are very competitively priced. However, this can also mean that people may be given very few options, and their new house might end up looking just like every other house that company has built.
Quite a number of years ago now, when my husband and I moved to Tauranga, we were dismayed at the homes for sale in the area. It seemed as though every single house had been built with only one aim: appeal to the masses in order to flick it off to the buyer with the deepest pocket. We really, really struggled to find a home with any personality or charm.
Unfortunately, I am still seeing a lot of these houses being built here today, and it saddens me to think how many people are choosing to go with group housing when there are other options available to them. In my experience, the true cost of moving incessantly is often underestimated. Marketing, lawyers, insurance and shifting costs add up incredibly quickly, and when you consider the emotional toll an inevitably stressful move takes, I believe the little profit made on flicking off a quick build is very rarely worth it.
If you have a home you love, a home that works for you and your lifestyle, then why would you move? If you have a career you enjoy and a well-settled family, then why would you move? Instead of building a stepping stone, why not build a home? A home that feels like your haven, your comfort place, your one spot in the world that you always feel happy to come back to at the end of the day or after a perfect holiday.
We made the decision to build our own architecturally designed home, and couldn’t be happier with the end result.
Your home should reflect who you are as a person, and should be made to fit in with your way of living; this is where the professionals step in. Even if you have difficulty in visualising an end result, designers and architects can help you create a home you don’t want to leave, working with you as an individual rather than doling out the exact same look over and over again.
Architects do much more than simply consider the physical requirements to come up with a design. Though they’re on your side every step of the way, architects are able to see the full picture, and will think about important factors such as how much sun and light a home will get once it is built. They will then be able to give you an effective design full of style and flair, that will suit you perfectly while still appealing to a wide range of people should you have to move on at some point.
Interior designers will give you an individual design. We can offer looks and ideas you may have never seen or considered, always knowing for certain whether or not they will work for you. Designers will also take into consideration your budget and your lifestyle, and our ability to make sure even the most individual looks are well put together means that your interior will be admired by the majority.
A house is a huge investment, so it stands to reason that as much time as possible should be invested in ensuring every cent is spent wisely. If you’re looking to build, I would encourage you to consider exactly what you want and need from your future home. Investigate every option available to you, interview a number of professionals, and be sure to compare a range of housing companies (like most things in life, not all businesses are created equal – some companies can give you wonderful options). Taking the time to make true comparative costs, and to ensure reasonable allowances have been made on each and every thing, can and will be the difference between building a house and creating a home.
Interior Designer, Tauranga