Custom home

How to Design a Modern Cottage Home

Modern cottage home
Modern cottage living space

Designing your dream home should feel like crafting your cozy haven, a retreat from the world’s chaos. Imagine stepping into your modern cottage– where every corner whispers tranquility and every detail oozes warmth. In this 5-minute read, you will learn how to design a modern cottage home.

What is a modern cottage home? 

The modern cottage home style has modernized its prior modern farmhouse design and taken it up a notch. With this design, you still get rustic and cozy vibes and experience the benefits of modern home designs.

How do I get started in the design?

The modern cottage design is simple. below are some of the main components you should look out for.

Start with a color scheme:

When you decide on a color scheme neutral colors should be the primary bases. The goal is light and airy:

  • Whites and creams
  • Black
  • Beige
  • grays
  • Calming Blues
  • Gentle greens

Follow up with finishes:  

Assuming you are building custom, semi-custom, or just remodeling your finishes can make or break the design. This is the meat and potatoes in my opinion

  • Rustic wood for a natural feel 
  • Cute nooks in the kitchen or den
  • Barn doors to keep it cozy
  • Exposed lighting for a slightly industrial look
  • large windows for lots of natural light
  • Hardwood flooring
  • Picture quartz countertops
  • White tile backsplash (for the kitchen) 
  • Stone fireplaces for cozy cuddling or reading
  • You could also decide on a wrap-around porch when you plan to build a modern cottage-style home.
  • Brass metal accents in furniture and appliances

Time to decorate:

When designing a modern cottage home the decor gives you a cozy rustic vibe, without straying from the modern look.

  • Super cozy furniture: slipcovers and wicker chairs are great to start
  • Vintage decor: Rugs and Cotton throw pillows
  • All Natural textiles: Cotton, linen, and straw to name a few
  • Reading nooks near the near in a warm corner for peaceful reading.
  • Greenery (inside and outside): gardens, succulent plants, vines, and other standard house plants will do
  • Vases and collected pottery are great additions
  • You can add some subtle floral patterns

What is the Modern cottage design style for?

When building or designing any home, the layout should reflect you! If you have a taste for modern cottage homes and an eye for rustic and warm environments this design is for you. Are you a warm, kind, hospitable bookworm who enjoys wine and friends? Want to maximize coziness as an empty nester? No matter who you are if you like warm natural lighting, cozy nooks, and all the greenery you can get your hands on, this design is for you. 

Want some assistance?

If you are anything like me you don’t like to do the heavy lifting alone. So I always seek a professional opinion. GJ Gardner offers full-service custom home-building services. If you need help visualizing or planing Contact us here. If you are just browsing check out our home designs and download a floor plan you like. 

How to Build a Custom Home: Our 8-Step Guide

Person holds new house keys

There’s nothing like the feeling of coming home to a space completely customized to your liking. From choosing land to designing home plans and watching the build take shape, a custom home build is a rewarding process.

For those lucky enough to be considering a custom home build, it’s a MUST to fully understand the building process and the steps to make your dream a reality.  Here are some general steps you can expect on your custom home-building journey. 

Step One: Preparation

preparation is the most important step of the custom home-building process. Before contacting a home builder, it is important to break down your budget and building time frames to determine if building a home is right for you.

Things to consider include:

  • Land cost
  • Local taxes, permits, and fees
  • Home builder and construction costs
  • Landscaping costs
  • Home furnishing costs
  • Mortgage and loan payments
  • Initial down payment
  • Padding (money set aside for unexpected costs during the build)

This budget breakdown can assist in deciding the size, locations, and land you can afford for your new home. Also, you should note the build timeframe and if you have specific needs for your family. Which means finding and buying your land, end-of-home leases, schools, new family members, and more.

If you are still looking for the type of custom home build you want, our Custom Home Designs page is a recommended resource for guiding your home build process. 

Step Two: Choosing A Custom Home Builder

Before starting your custom home building journey and rushing into a decision, it is important to research home builders and find one that meets your needs. 

Research online by looking for the home builder’s experience, custom home expertise, and previously completed projects to get an idea of their capabilities and expected outcomes for your custom home build. This helps set your expectations for your future home with this builder. 

For example, at G.J. Gardner Homes, our expert custom home builders and new home consultants are readily available at our showrooms. This saves you the trouble of gathering a custom home-building team with a group of third-party contractors. Just attend an initial consultation to find out what you want. We can help create design plans, get permits, and find land. 

Step Three: Design Your Dream Home

Great, you now have a home builder and secured your land. It is time to start drawing up your dream home design and future floor plan. For your first consultation with your home builder, it is important to bring to the meeting a list of wants and needs with a level of importance in mind.

Consider the following:

  • Number of bedrooms and bathrooms
  • Garage size
  • Room arrangements and preferred floor plan layouts
  • Overall size of the home
  • How many stories are in the home
  • Budget
  • Architectural and interior design style
  • Negotiable inclusions (e.g. pool, covered patio, fireplaces, wine cellar, media room)

Alternatively, if you don’t want to start your home design from scratch, Your builder should have existing home design plans to choose from and further customize.

After the first meeting, your home builder will draw up custom home design plans into a floor plan with an estimated price for a custom home build. We call this a purchase agreement. Once you review the documents, you can provide feedback and make any changes you want.  

Step Four: Obtain Financing

You’ve completed the home floor plan and cost estimations, it is time to talk about how you will finance your home build. You can finance with a construction loan, cash, or a combination. 

This is only a suggestion, but if you plan to get financing through a third party, speak to your local lender or mortgage broker to find the best options available.

Step Five: Finishes & Fixtures

Arguably the best part of the design process, it’s now time to select your preferred finishes and fixtures. Meaning,  countertops, flooring, hardware, lighting, windows, trim, cabinetry, and more. Your builder should walk you through depending on how much you want to customize. 

Step Six: Construction Starts

The construction and building phase can begin once the final floor plan and purchase agreement are signed and settled. You can expect the following:

  • Site clearing and preparation
  • Foundations, framing, and roof
  • Utility installation
  • Insulation and drywall
  • Flooring, lighting, paint and millwork
  • Fixtures and appliances
  • Finish work such as final paint, wall coverings, trim
  • Landscaping

This is such an exciting time in your custom home build journey as you can see your plans come to life physically!

Step Seven: Final Walk-Through

After we complete the home, you will do a final walk-through. It is your opportunity to inspect and ask questions before the official closing of your home. 

Step Eight: Closing The Home

Following your final walk-through and closing, your home builder will hand over the keys to your new home.

At G.J. Gardner Homes, we specialize in custom home builds with extensive experience in creating tailored home solutions nationwide. If you are thinking about a custom home build, a semi-custom, or just looking to learn more our team is here to help you experience the joy of home building.

Want to learn more? Contact our home design experts today by visiting our website or calling our team.

9 Reasons To Build a Custom Home

Custom Home Design

Building a custom home can be rewarding, eye-opening, and transformational. At G.J. Gardner we believe building custom is the best way to get your dream home. From design choices to eco-friendly Builds, these are our 9 Best reasons for building a custom home. If you read to the end we’ve. tacked on bonus reasons that not all home builders will share with you.

1. Choose from lots of designs.

Most custom home builders offer a wide range of customizable home designs to suit different needs and preferences. Whether you’re looking for a small cozy home or a large luxurious mansion, there’s a design tailored to your liking.

2. Get expert guidance from a local builder.

There are a lot of little details in building a home. Working with an expert in your local market makes making decision-making simple. This way you make fewer decisions along the way. You get room to focus on getting exactly what you want. 

3. Quality of materials and fixtures. 

building a custom home allows you to choose from the best materials on the market, or the highest quality materials in your budget. Getting your dream home design becomes a lot less stressful when you know you’re getting the best outcome with any budget or constraints you may have.

4. Existing designs or craft an original. 

If you need inspiration you can start with an existing design and change details as you see fit. You can also bring your imagination to life and work with a designer to craft your custom dream home. Either way, your dreams become reality. 

5. Flexible floor plans.

Changing floor plans is a game changer for those who choose a preset design! You can add or remove rooms, adjust layouts based on your family’s needs, and plan for the future to fit your family’s needs.

6. Vast network of trusted suppliers and contractors.

Finding contractors, electricians, plumbers, etc. on your own is a huge pain.  Like a few builders G.J. Gardner gives you access to a large network of seasoned verified suppliers/contractors. This is how you problem-proof your new home construction. For you, this means fewer mistakes and a quality home that elevates your comfort.

7. Energy-efficient and Eco-friendly building.

G.J. Building your home custom gives you a lot of freedom. It also makes it super easy to go green. Builders can use eco-friendly build practices that reduce your carbon footprint and save you money on energy bills in the long run. 

8. Build with the latest technology.

Building a Custom Home offers the ability to build with the latest smart home technologies making life easier and efficient. Utilizing tech like lighting, temperature control, and security systems to enhance comfort and ease in your home.

9. Creative Freedom.

Working directly with a builder puts you in every step of the process. Allowing you to be in control of the design and finishes. Often this allows for a more unique design that fits your style and personality making your home glow with a personal touch.

10. (Bonus Reason) Complete warranty and after-sales service satisfaction with your new home: 

Here is a bonus reason for you! Not all builders do this but G.J. Gardner Homes offers a complete warranty and after-sales service to ensure you are satisfied with your new home. We want to give every home buyer peace of mind and that starts by making sure your home build is covered from the start. 

With the help of an experienced builder like G.J. Gardner Homes, you can confidently create the home of your dreams.

Need help getting started?

We could not pack all the information you need into one blog. So, if you have more questions we have a team of professionals who can guide you. We aim to give families joy in a home that meets their style and needs. 

Contact us today: Learn more about how we can help you build the custom home of your dreams.

5 Myths About Custom Homes

A partially constructed home against a blue sky backdrop

Building a custom home is a dream that some individuals and families feel is out of reach. The opportunity to design a living space that perfectly suits your lifestyle and preferences. Although attractive to most people, assumptions surrounding certain aspects make it hard to choose custom.

several misconceptions surround the process of building a custom home that often scare potential homeowners from choosing this option. In this blog, we will debunk the five myths about custom homes. We aim to give you valuable expert advice so you make informed decisions on your custom home construction project.

1: Building a Custom Home is More Expensive than Buying an Existing Home

A common misconception when it comes to custom home building is that it’s more expensive than buying an existing home. While it is true that building a custom home involves upfront costs, it is important to consider the long-term benefits.

Custom homes are built with energy-efficient materials and modern construction techniques. Which can result in lower utility bills and maintenance costs in the long run. Additionally, customizing the design and choosing the materials allows you to control the budget. This means you choose what is most important in your home design.

2: Building a Custom Home is a Lengthy and Complicated Process

Another custom home-buying myth is that the process is excessively lengthy and complicated. B When you build a custom home planning will be very important. This is why we suggest most people work with a great builder and architect to make the process easier.

As soon as you decide to build you should have a professional walking you through the process. They will assist you with keeping the build process efficient and on time.

With proper planning and communication, the construction of a custom home can be a smooth and enjoyable experience.

3: Custom Homes Lack Resale Value

Some individuals believe that custom homes have limited resale value due to their unique designs and features.

However, this is a misconception. Custom homes are highly desirable in the real estate market, as they are often built with high-quality materials and tailored to meet the needs of the homeowner.

A well-designed custom home can attract potential buyers who appreciate the attention to detail and unique elements. Additionally, custom homes tend to age well, as they are built with modern construction standards and are often equipped with the latest technologies and energy-efficient features.

4: Custom Homes are Only for the Wealthy

It is easy to assume that building a custom home is only a luxury for the wealthy. There are certainly high-end custom homes, and the cost of building a custom home can be tailored to fit various budgets.

By working closely with your architect and builders, you can prioritize your needs and allocate your budget accordingly. Moreover, there are financing options available specifically for custom home construction, allowing more individuals and families to turn their dream homes into a reality.

5: Custom Homes Take Away Flexibility in the Future

A prevalent misconception is that building a custom home limits flexibility in the future. Some worry that they will be stuck with a design that may not suit their changing needs or preferences over time. However, custom homes offer ample flexibility when it comes to future modifications and renovations.

With careful planning and a forward-thinking approach, you can design your custom home to accommodate potential changes or expansions in the future. By incorporating adaptable spaces or leaving room for future additions, you can ensure that your home remains flexible and can evolve as your needs evolve.

Get in Touch

Building a custom home is an exciting and rewarding process, but it is also a route that many homeowners don’t consider due to the myths and misconceptions surrounding it. Contrary to popular belief, custom homes can be a cost-effective option, offer a streamlined construction process, have excellent resale value, accommodate various budgets, and provide flexibility for the future.  

If you’re considering building a custom home and want expert advice throughout the process, contact your local G.J. Gardner Homes store. With their experience in custom home building, they can address any concerns you have surrounding costs and processes.  Stop letting myths and misconceptions hold you back from creating your dream custom home, work with the G.J. Gardner Homes professionals for a successful and fulfilling custom home-building experience today.  

The Ultimate Guide To Creating a Luxury Bathroom

How to Create a Modern Bathroom Design

Your bathroom is more than just a functional space— it’s a place to unwind, rejuvenate, and indulge in pure comfort. Today we invite you to explore creating a bathroom retreat that exudes luxury, sophistication, and tranquillity.

we’ll guide you through transforming your bathroom into a haven of indulgence. Seeking a spa-like ambiance, a glamorous retreat, or a minimalist oasis? Our expert tips and advice will help you curate a bathroom experience that transcends the ordinary and elevates your everyday rituals.

Why design a luxury bathroom

When designing your dream home, you should include a luxury bathroom as it elevates your overall living experience. A luxury bathroom provides a private place where you can escape the daily hustle and indulge in moments of comfort and self-care.

It becomes a haven of calmness, offering a spa-like retreat within the comfort of your own home. From elegant fixtures and materials to details like soothing lighting and advanced technology, a luxurious bathroom creates a peaceful atmosphere.

It not only enhances your well-being but also adds value to your property. Design your home with a luxurious bathroom and transform your daily routine into a luxurious escape.

Benefits of Luxurious Bathroom Designs

Luxurious bathroom ideas offer a range of benefits beyond aesthetics, providing many advantages for your well-being and home value. Let’s explore the key benefits of incorporating luxurious bathroom ideas:

  • Relaxation and Stress Relief: A luxurious bathroom creates a serene ambiance, offering a space to unwind, relax, and refresh. It becomes a personal retreat where you can indulge in soothing baths and showers or tranquil moments of solitude. 
  • Enhanced Comfort: Luxurious features like heated floors, spacious showers, deep soaking tubs, and soft ambient lighting elevate your comfort.
  • Increased Property Value: A well-designed and lavish bathroom is a desired feature for potential buyers, making your property more attractive and competitive in the real estate market. 
  • Personalization and Style: Luxurious bathroom ideas allow you to express your unique style and taste.
  • Daily Retreat: Having a luxurious bathroom at your disposal transforms your daily routine into a pampering experience. It becomes a haven where you can start and end your day positively, fostering a sense of well-being and self-care. 

By including these bathroom ideas in your home, you create a stunning and functional space that enhances your lifestyle and elevates your overall living experience.

Luxurious Bathroom Design Ideas

When you design your luxury bathroom, several features and elements can elevate the space and create an indulgent retreat. Consider incorporating the following features:

  • High-quality Materials: Opt for premium materials like marble, granite, or natural stone for countertops, floors, and walls.
  • Spa-like Fixtures: Install features like a rainfall showerhead, a freestanding soaking tub, or a steam shower.
  • Intelligent Lighting: Incorporate ambient lighting options, such as dimmers, LED strips, or backlit mirrors. 
  • Ample Storage: Include well-designed storage solutions like built-in cabinets, floating shelves, or vanity organizers.
  • Smart Technology: Integrate smart features like voice-controlled lighting, temperature control, or Bluetooth speakers for a high-tech and convenient bathroom experience. 
  • Luxurious Textures: Introduce plush towels, soft bath rugs, and luxurious bathrobes to enhance comfort and add a touch of luxury to the space. 
  • Thoughtful Details: Pay attention to the finer details such as decorative hardware, stylish faucets, designer fixtures, and unique accents.

By incorporating these features into your luxurious bathroom design, you can create a space that exudes sophistication, indulgence, and relaxation, transforming your daily routine into a luxurious retreat.

Get in Touch

Designing a luxurious bathroom is an opportunity to create a personal haven of relaxation and indulgence. By incorporating high-quality materials, thoughtful lighting, and stylish fixtures, you can elevate your bathroom to a new level of luxury. If you’re ready to transform your bathroom into a luxury retreat, contact G.J. Gardner Homes today to explore their expertise in creating custom homes with sophistication in every detail. Your dream bathroom awaits, and their team is ready to bring it to life. 

How to be a good host: Creating a Welcoming Home for Guests

Family enjoys a meal together

When hosting your family and friends, there is something special about making others feel comfortable. The warmth of your home can set the tone for their entire experience from as soon as they step through the door.

Here are a few tips and tactics to create an inviting home that leaves a lasting impression. From cozy guest bedrooms to thoughtful touches in common areas.

we’ll guide you in creating hospitality and share insights on how to make your guests feel at home. This is how to be a good host.

Why create an inviting home?

Designing an inviting home goes beyond mere aesthetics – it’s about creating a space that nurtures relationships, fosters connection, and leaves a lasting impression on guests. An inviting home makes sure family, friends, and even strangers feel welcomed, comfortable, and at ease. It sets the stage for memorable gatherings, meaningful conversations, and shared experiences.

By prioritizing an inviting design, you create an environment that encourages relaxation, fosters positive energy, and promotes a sense of belonging. An inviting home positively impacts your well-being, providing a haven where you can recharge, unwind, and find solace.

It reflects your hospitality and generosity, leaving a lasting impression on all who enter. Designing an inviting home is an investment in creating a warm, inviting, and joyful space where relationships can flourish, and memories can be made.

The Power of First Impressions: Creating an Inviting Entryway

The entryway is the gateway to your home, and it sets the tone for your guests’ entire visit. Make a memorable first impression by focusing on creating an inviting entryway. Well-maintained landscaping, a fresh coat of paint on the front door, and warm lighting can elevate your home from the offset. Inside, declutter the space and consider adding a stylish console table or a welcoming bench where guests can take off their shoes.

Don’t forget to incorporate elements of your personality to make sure it feels like you, such as family photos or artwork, to add a touch of warmth and personality.

Crafting Comfort: Designing Cozy and Welcoming Guest Bedrooms

Ensure your guests feel at home by providing them with a comfortable and inviting bedroom retreat. Opt for a neutral color palette, soft bedding, and plush pillows to create a cozy ambiance. Consider adding a bedside lamp, extra blankets, and a seating area to enhance comfort.

Don’t overlook the importance of ample storage space and thoughtful touches like fresh flowers or a basket of essentials. By prioritizing their comfort and needs, you’ll create a haven where guests can relax and recharge.

Warmth in the Details: Thoughtful Touches for Common Areas

Infuse warmth and hospitality into the shared spaces of your home by focusing on the thoughtful details. Arrange comfortable seating areas that encourage conversation and connection, incorporating soft cushions and throws for added comfort. Display books, magazines, or board games to provide entertainment options for your guests. Scented candles or diffusers can fill the air with inviting fragrances, creating a cozy and welcoming atmosphere.

Don’t underestimate the power of lighting as well. Warm and inviting lighting, enhanced by your personal touches such as family photos or artwork make the space feel cozy.

Culinary Delights: Nurturing Guests with a Welcoming Kitchen and Dining Space

The heart of any home is the kitchen. Keep your kitchen and dining space welcoming by keeping them clean, organized, and well-stocked. Create an inviting atmosphere with soft lighting, comfortable seating, and a well-dressed dining table.

Always have a variety of refreshments and snacks that cater to different tastes and dietary preferences on hand. You create a warm and inviting environment that fosters connection and cherished memories by nurturing your guests through culinary delights.

Get in Touch

An inviting and welcoming home is an art that brings joy, warmth, and lasting memories. Ready to transform your home into a cherished space? The experienced team at G.J. Gardner Homes is here to help. Contact our local office today and let us guide you in designing a home that embraces the spirit of welcoming

How Much Automation is Too Much Automation in Your Home?

As a major part of our everyday life, automation is the new normal. From smart heating to our voice-controlled assistants, technology has made our homes more convenient and efficient than ever before. Despite all the great benefits of automation, our builders think it’s always important to consider: how much automation is too much?

While automation can streamline tasks and enhance our lifestyles, striking the right balance is crucial. From the potential pitfalls of excessive automation to finding the sweet spot that aligns with our needs and preferences, let’s navigate the world of home automation together.

What is home automation?

Home automation has transformed our living spaces, offering endless opportunities to enhance your convenience, comfort, and efficiency. From simple tasks to complex systems, automation can streamline daily routines and transform our homes into smart, intuitive environments.

Imagine controlling lights, thermostats, and appliances with a voice command or remotely managing security systems and surveillance cameras from your smartphone. Automated blinds, music systems, and smart home assistants are just a few examples of how automation can elevate your living experience.

More importantly, integrating automation with energy-efficient solutions like with smart thermostats and lighting will help reduce utility bills and minimize environmental impact. The possibilities are endless, from creating custom lighting scenes to automating your morning routine.

Automation lets you create a personalized and technologically advanced home that adapts to your needs and enhances your lifestyle.

The Pros and Cons of Home Automation: Finding the Right Balance

An automated home comes with many advantages, from convenience and energy efficiency to improved safety and security. With automated systems controlling lighting, temperature, and security, you can enhance your lifestyle and simplify daily tasks. But we shouldn’t forget the potential downsides of an overreliance on automation.

Over-automation can lead to a loss of personal connection and even an increased vulnerability to cyber threats. Striking the right balance is key – embracing automation where it adds value while preserving the human touch that makes a house a home.

Assessing Your Needs: Determining the Ideal Level of Automation

When considering home automation, it’s crucial to assess your specific needs and lifestyle. What tasks do you want to streamline? Are you seeking convenience, energy savings, or enhanced security?

Understanding your priorities will help determine the ideal level of automation for your home. By focusing on the areas that truly enhance your daily life, you can avoid unnecessary complexities and tailor your automation to suit your unique requirements.

A selection of smart home devices

Maintaining Privacy and Security in an Automated Home

While home automation brings convenience, it also raises concerns about privacy and security. Connected devices and systems can potentially collect personal data or become vulnerable to hacking. It’s important to prioritize privacy safeguards, such as strong passwords, regular software updates, and secure networks.

Additionally, consider the data-sharing policies of automation providers and choose reputable brands that prioritize privacy. By implementing robust security measures and staying informed about potential risks, you can enjoy the benefits of home automation without compromising your privacy.

Striking a Balance: Creating a Home that Combines Automation and Human Touch

Finding the perfect balance between automation and human touch is essential in creating a harmonious home environment. While automation simplifies tasks and enhances convenience, it’s important to preserve the warmth and personal connection that comes from human interaction. Incorporating design elements that reflect your personality, adding personal touches, and maintaining spaces for socializing and quality time with loved ones can counterbalance the technology-driven aspects of an automated home.

By creating a space that seamlessly blends automation with the human touch, you can enjoy the benefits of modern technology while nurturing a welcoming and inviting atmosphere for all who enter.

Get in Touch

The right balance of home automation is crucial in maximizing its benefits while maintaining a sense of human connection and comfort. By carefully assessing your needs, prioritizing privacy and security, and infusing personal touches into your automated home, you can create a harmonious living environment.

Remember, home automation should enhance your lifestyle without overshadowing the importance of human interaction and the unique qualities that make a house truly feel like a home.

So, embark on this journey of automation with a mindful approach, and enjoy the convenience and comfort it brings while preserving the essence of what makes your home special.

How to Choose the Perfect Floor Plan

Building a custom home is an exciting project, as it allows you to create a space perfectly tailored to your and your family’s needs and preferences. One of the most important decisions you will face in your home-building journey is choosing the right floor plan. The floor plan of your home influences the flow, functionality, and overall aesthetic of the space.  

Many aspects of custom building your home can be daunting, but this blog aims to assist with at least one of these, floor plans! Where do you start the process of choosing the perfect floor plan for your new dream home? This blog will discuss open floor plans, where you can find floor plan inspiration, what a floor plan looks like, and how, with the right help, you can create your floor plan. 

What is a floor plan?

A floor plan is a visual representation of a home’s layout. It showcases the arrangement and dimensions of rooms, doors, windows, and other architectural features. Floor plans provide a bird’s eye view of a property, allowing you to envision how each space connects and flows. They are essential tools for architects, builders, and homeowners, serving as a blueprint for construction and interior design decisions. 

An example floor plan from our G.J. Gardner Homes home designs

Understanding the open floor plan 

When it comes to modern home design, open floor plans have gained immense popularity. An open floor plan eliminates unnecessary walls, creating a seamless flow between spaces. It can be the sole difference between feeling closed-in versus comfortable. This layout allows for better natural light distribution, increased interaction between family members and guests, and a sense of spaciousness.  

If you’re looking at building a family home that encourages togetherness and versatility, consider choosing an open floor plan.  

Finding a floor plan 

Browsing through architectural design books, magazines, or the various home floor plans available on the G.J. Gardner Homes website (check out the inspiration page), is one of the most common methods to find the right floor plan for you. These sources provide various floor plan ideas and inspiration.  

You can also visit display homes or attend home shows to see various floor plans in person (check out G.J. Gardner homes for sale near you). Additionally, there are numerous websites and real estate platforms that offer searchable databases of floor plans, which can be filtered based on your desired specifications. 

Factors to consider

When choosing the perfect floor plan, it’s crucial to consider several key factors. Start by assessing your lifestyle and the needs of your household. Do you require spacious common areas for entertaining or do you value more private, secluded spaces? Consider the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, and the desired square footage. Evaluate the flow and ensure it aligns with your preferences and daily activities.  

Additionally, consider your future needs. Will the floor plan accommodate potential family growth or changing mobility requirements? 

Making your floor plan 

If you can’t find an existing floor plan that matches your vision, opt to create your own. Numerous online tools and software applications offer user-friendly interfaces to design floor plans. These tools allow you to experiment with different room layouts, sizes, and configurations. However, it’s essential to have a basic understanding of architectural principles and building codes to ensure your self-made floor plan is structurally sound and meets safety standards.  

Seek professional help 

Building a custom home is a complex process and seeking professional assistance is highly recommended. Architects and designers possess the expertise to understand your requirements and translate them into functional floor plans.  

These professionals can offer valuable insights, creative solutions, and industry knowledge that will help you make informed decisions. Collaborating with professionals ensures that your floor plan is optimized for both aesthetics and functionality.  

Get in touch 

Deciding on the floor plan for your new home is arguably the most important step in the custom home-building process. By understanding the concept of an open floor plan, knowing where to find floor plan inspiration, comprehending what a floor plan entails, and considering important factors, you can make an informed decision.  

Whether you find an existing plan or decide to create your own, you’re not alone, working with the professionals at G.J. Gardner Homes will help you bring your dream home to life. With their experience in custom home building and commitment to delivering high-quality results, they can help you find a floor plan that suits your needs.  

The ideal floor plan caters to your unique lifestyle, preferences, and future needs. It should provide the perfect balance between practicality, aesthetics, and comfort, creating a space where you and your loved ones can make memories for years to come. 

10 Modern Cottagecore Decor Ideas

You may have noticed a recent design trend across the internet lately called cottagecore. First coined by Gen Z on TikTok, cottagecore has become a leading design style across generations.

This aesthetic tends to focus on natural motifs, vintage design, artisan details, and a focus on sustainability. Don’t be fooled by the more extreme expression you’ll find on Gen Z social media, the general premise of cottagecore aesthetics is convenient and versatile to adopt. Whilst it might not be realistic to dedicate your whole home look to rustic and antique furniture, lace curtains, and wicker details, there are plenty of ways to achieve the cottagecore look throughout your home and embody the themes of this design into your future home.

Here are our top 10 modern cottagecore decor ideas.

What is cottagecore?

Cottagecore is centered on the idea of a slower pace of life that’s connected to the earth and the community. It encourages a return to traditional activities like baking, gardening, and crafting and celebrates the lost arts of self-sufficiency, creativity, and simple living.

It wants to make the cozy lifestyle of a woodside cabin an everyday experience and overall, calls for a more wholesome approach to living that most of us crave in today’s busy world.

10 decor ideas for your modern cottagecore design

Here are ten cottage-core decor ideas that the average American could introduce into their home:

Sunroom or Conservatory:

Design a sunroom or conservatory with large windows to bring in plenty of natural light and create a seamless connection between indoor and outdoor spaces. This space can be used for relaxation, reading, or housing potted plants.

Wraparound Porch:

Incorporate a wraparound porch or veranda, providing a cozy outdoor seating area and a welcoming entrance to your home. Decorate it with wicker furniture, floral cushions, and hanging baskets of flowers.

Cottage Garden:

Plan a cottage garden filled with a variety of flowers, herbs, and vegetables. Create winding paths, trellises for climbing plants, and cozy seating nooks amidst the blooms.

Kitchen Herb Garden:

Design a dedicated space in your kitchen or near a window for growing fresh herbs. Use vintage pots or repurposed containers for a rustic touch, making it convenient to gather herbs while cooking.

Window Seat Nook:

Create a window seat nook with plush cushions and soft throws. It’s the perfect spot to curl up with a book, enjoy a cup of tea, and admire the views outside.

Rustic Barn Doors:

Incorporate rustic barn doors in your home, adding a touch of farmhouse charm. They can be used for closets, pantries, or as room dividers, enhancing the cottagecore aesthetic.

Exposed Beams:

If possible, expose the structural beams of your home to showcase the natural beauty of the wood. This adds a rustic and authentic element to the overall design.

An example of exposed ceiling beams.

Cozy Fireplace:

Install a traditional fireplace with a stone or brick surround to create a warm and inviting gathering spot. Adorn the mantel with antique candlesticks, dried flower arrangements, or vintage-inspired artwork.

Vegetable Patch:

Allocate space in your backyard for a vegetable patch. Incorporate raised garden beds or wooden crates for planting a variety of vegetables, allowing you to enjoy the rewards of homegrown produce.

Outdoor Dining Area:

Set up an outdoor dining area with a wooden table and chairs surrounded by lush greenery. Decorate the table with floral tablecloths, vintage crockery, and mason jar lanterns for intimate gatherings and al fresco meals.

A G.J. Gardner outdoor dining area.

Remember, cottagecore decor is all about embracing simplicity, nature, and vintage-inspired elements. Feel free to mix and match these ideas to create a personalized cottagecore style that suits your taste and home.

Get in touch

Incorporating cottagecore elements into your home can create a cozy and enchanting retreat. Embrace the nostalgia and simplicity of this aesthetic by connecting with nature, using vintage decor, and enjoying the charm of handmade crafts. For personalized guidance, reach out to your local office today and embark on your cottagecore journey.

10 Common Mistakes to Avoid When Building a Custom Home

Man working on a new home build

Building a custom home is an exciting opportunity to bring your home vision to life. So, you can get the most out of this experience, it’s important to know the common pitfalls that can turn building your dream home into a nightmare. Discover our top 10 common mistakes to avoid when building a custom home so you know what to avoid.

From budgeting and planning to selecting the right materials and working with contractors, we’ll cover key areas where mistakes are commonly made. By learning from the experiences of others, you can sidestep these pitfalls for a seamless construction process from start to finish. 

Whether you’re a first-time homebuilder or have previous experience, we want to help you avoid the most common mistakes of custom building for a smooth and successful journey. 

Inadequate planning

Proper planning is the foundation of a successful custom home build. Rushing through the planning phase or neglecting to create a detailed plan can lead to design flaws, budget overruns, and construction delays.

Take the time to carefully consider every aspect of your home before breaking ground. Work closely with architects and designers to ensure your vision aligns with practicality and functionality. Consider factors like room layouts, traffic flow, and future expansion possibilities. Careful planning will help you avoid costly changes or rework later on.

Ignoring the budget

Establishing a realistic budget and sticking to it is crucial when building a custom home. Failing to track expenses or underestimating costs can result in financial strain and compromises on the quality of materials and finishes.

Take the time to research and obtain accurate estimates from contractors and suppliers. Include contingency funds for unexpected expenses. Regularly review your budget throughout the construction process and make adjustments as necessary.

Effective budget management will help you stay on track and ensure that your dream home remains within your financial reach.

Irregular communication

Open and consistent communication with your builder, architects, and subcontractors is vital for a successful custom home build. Poor communication tends to lead to misunderstandings, errors, and delays.

Through regular meetings and check-ins with your construction team, you can both stay across progress, address concerns, and make decisions. Be proactive in asking questions and seeking clarification when needed. Keep documentation of all conversations and agreements to avoid any miscommunication down the line.

Effective communication fosters a collaborative environment and ensures that everyone is on the same page, leading to a smoother construction process.

Overlooking future needs

When building a custom home, it’s essential to consider your future needs, not just your current requirements. Failing to do so can result in a home that becomes impractical or inadequate over time. Think about potential lifestyle changes, such as growing family needs, aging in place, or incorporating a home office.

Plan for these future needs during the design phase. This could involve adding flexible spaces that can adapt to different uses or incorporating universal design principles for accessibility.

We recommend envisioning your long-term needs in the initial planning stages so you can create a home ready for the years to come.

Choosing the wrong builder

The right builder is one of the most important choices you’ll make during the custom home building process. Choosing an inexperienced or unreliable builder can lead to subpar workmanship, cost overruns, and project delays.

Consider their communication style, attention to detail, and ability to meet deadlines. Reputable builders will have a collaborative approach, guiding you through the construction process while ensuring your vision comes to life within budget and on schedule.

Neglecting energy efficiency

Neglecting energy-efficient features during the custom home build can result in higher utility bills and a less environmentally friendly home. Energy-efficient design elements and materials not only reduces your carbon footprint but saves you money in the long run.

Consider features such as proper insulation, energy-efficient windows and doors, LED lighting, and high-efficiency appliances. Explore options for renewable energy sources like solar panels or geothermal systems. Engage with your builder and design team to identify energy-saving opportunities specific to your location and climate.

Create a home that is comfortable, sustainable, and cost-effective by incorporating energy efficiency into your initial planning.

Forgetting storage space

Insufficient storage can quickly lead to cluttered and disorganized living areas, hindering the functionality and enjoyment of your custom home. It’s crucial to plan for ample storage space during the design phase. Consider your storage needs for items like clothing, kitchenware, and household essentials. Walk-in closets, built-in cabinets, and well-designed kitchen pantries can help keep your spaces tidy and organized.

Think beyond traditional storage solutions and explore creative options. Utilize under-stair storage, built-in bookshelves, or multi-purpose furniture with hidden storage compartments. Customized storage solutions tailored to your specific needs can optimize space utilization and streamline your daily routines.

Sacrificing functionality for aesthetics

While aesthetics are undoubtedly important when building a custom home, it’s crucial not to prioritize them at the expense of functionality. It’s easy to get swept away by the allure of trendy designs or extravagant features that may not serve your practical needs. Your home should balance comfort and functionality with the unique requirements of your lifestyle.

When making design decisions, don’t forget to put functionality of your home first. Think about traffic flow, accessibility, and the specific needs of your household members. Optimize layouts to enhance functionality, such as placing the laundry room near bedrooms or creating a dedicated home office space.

Neglecting permits and regulations

Obtaining the necessary permits and adhering to building codes and regulations is a critical aspect of constructing a custom home. Neglecting these requirements can result in legal issues, construction delays, and costly fines.

Before any construction work begins, familiarize yourself with the local building regulations and any permit requirements. Stay informed about any zoning restrictions or architectural guidelines that may affect your design plans. By following the proper procedures and complying with regulations, you can ensure a smooth and lawful construction process.

Get in touch

If you’re considering building a custom home and want expert guidance throughout the process, don’t hesitate to contact your local G.J. Gardner Homes office. With their experience in custom home building and commitment to delivering high-quality results, we can help you navigate the complexities, offer valuable insights, and bring your vision to life.