Design Adds Meaning and Value

Design Adds Meaning and Value

Everything is designed. Look around you. Everything you see was designed. The ceiling, lighting, your chair, the wastebasket, the door. Design can make or break a business – just look at Apple’s outstanding designs and now defunct Oldsmobile for lack of design innovation. The jeans you’re wearing – are they Wrangler jeans that set you back $20 from Walmart or a $100 pair of fashion jeans? They mean different things to you and have different “value” for you.

Not everything gets noticed. And that’s okay, because sometimes thoughtful design blends right in. We might not appreciate good home design because it already resolved potential issues. It’s kind of like how we don’t necessarily appreciate feeling good until we’re recovering from being sick. But as with chronic pain, bad design – such as doors that open into each other – calls attention to itself and definitely gets noticed!

Remarkable design is “whole brained.” You might be familiar with left-brain/right-brain theory wherein left-brain thinking is associated with logic and analytics. FUNCTION. It’s an essential part of design. Does it do what it is supposed to do; does it do it well; and does it do it reliably? The right-brain is associated with creativity. FORM. Is this attractive? Does it stir your heartstrings? Lean too heavy to left-brain thinking and you end up with homes that look like plain, boring boxes. With too much right-brain thinking, you may sacrifice both livability and cost. The SOCIAL side of design resides in the right brain as well, which asks “What does this design say about me?” And, “How does this design make me feel about myself?”

Design can revolutionize our thinking, or leave us wondering “What were they thinking?” Design solves problems – existing and new. Suitcase always in the way in your closet? The Travel Center is an elegant solution that also provides a place, so you don’t have to pack your suitcase on your clean bedspread. Conversely, there’s the random linen closet, nowhere near the bedrooms or bathrooms. Go figure.

Design is a reflection of who we are – and who we want to be. Design lets your personality come through. Design reveals your values. Claire is looking for the WOW! factor in her front entry views. Elise feels good about the walk-in closets for her kids’ bedrooms. Maggie dreams of a home that’s casual, fun, perhaps even a bit whimsical. And Margo’s home has the contemporary touches that make it unique – and uniquely hers. Yes, design tells us and others who we are and can even help us understand ourselves better. A window to our soul.

Finally About Me® - discover your new home personality (click any profile silhouette below to learn more).

Design is about freedom. Freedom to express our true selves. Freedom and the autonomy to make our own choices rather than settling for someone else’s. Design tells stories without using words. Chamfer drywall corners, 32-inch wide interior doors, no-step entries, and an oversize doorless shower all “speak” safety while welcoming everyone into your home.

Hy-Lite Bath

Photo courtesy: Hy-Lite®

Design is emotional. Pleasant Saturday morning solitude as you greet the sunrise on your private rear deck. The joy in Saturday night with a few close friends enjoying tasty barbecue on that same covered deck. You love how sunlight streams in through your bedroom’s transom windows. And the artistic glass block windows in your spa-inspired bathroom. Rather than “settling for,” you find inspiration in some of your design choices.

Design connects us. As humans, we were designed to live in community, and our homes are where that happens most. Design can bring us together, such as an expandable dining area for big family meals. Home plan design actually takes connection a step further, as the home design connects buyer and builder, sub-contractors and vendors, lender and building officials. Like a bicycle wheel hub whose spokes connect to every aspect of building your home.

Yes, design adds tremendous meaning and value. And cost. It must be expensive, particularly remarkable home design, right? Custom home plans typically range from $2.00 to $10.00 per square foot and will take from several weeks to months to complete. Pre-drawn home plans from leading residential designers average around $.50 per square foot and often can be delivered the same day. Customizing a pre-drawn plan to your specific desires can be significantly less costly and faster than starting from scratch. Your designer may also be able to suggest ways you could potentially reduce your new home’s cost. Scouring the internet, there may even be cheaper home plans, but do they provide good value? Design Basics’ talented residential designers solve design issues with creativity and innovation. Less experienced drafts people may resort to simply adding expensive square footage.

Good design can be the difference between elation and regret. Unfortunately, poor home design is a gift that keeps on giving too, as you experience the daily disappointments of the design shortcomings you learn to put up with. Living in a home that achieves your needs and wants is our designer’s gift to you – No Regrets!

For more resources on thoughtful design and products:

If Your Suitcase is Always in the Way!

If Your Suitcase is Always in the Way!

Always on the go? Then you're sure to appreciate our Travel Center option, designed to keep everything handy and make packing a snap!

You know where your suitcase has you're probably not going to want to pack it on the clean bedspread! Our travel center was inspired by customers who wanted storage plus convenience when it came to preparing to leave town.

Zirkel Gables #35092FB ml

Zirkel Gables - #35092FB

"I know where that suitcase has been, and it's not getting packed on my clean bedspread!"

"I live for spontaneous travel. I need a place to keep overnight essentials."

"Finding a place to store the suitcase is a pain."

The Travel Center addresses all of these issues and more. Situated in the owner's suite walk-in closet, packing the suitcase couldn't be easier as everything you need is conveniently within reach. You don't have to run up or down stairs to fetch the suitcase, and it's stored where it doesn't need to be constantly moved out of the way.

View more plans with a Travel Center already designed; or, talk with a plan specialist about adding one to a different plan: 800.947.7526

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From Features to Benefits to Emotions

From Features to Benefits to Emotions

Eureka! You’ve just stumbled upon one of the most obvious advantages your homes offer that’s not found in other builders’ homes. Once they know, customers will beat a path to your door! But before you commit to that advertising campaign, let’s see what we can learn from Apple.

In the age of Sony Walkman personal CD players, Apple introduced the iPod, which could hold a lot more music than a single CD-Rom. Apple capitalized on that benefit with their slogan, “1000 songs in your pocket.” The advantage was obvious…and enormous!

Yet, according to marketing/branding guru Alessandra Ghini who was working for Apple on the iPod at that time, “the tagline failed to take the iPod mainstream.” Apparently, storage space wasn’t the point. As reported in Fast Company, Ghini’s team asked owners, “Why do you enjoy the iPod?” Consumer feedback centered around the emotions music can evoke from each listener. Ghini’s team refocused iPod advertising on the now ubiquitous human silhouettes enjoying their music, and another chapter in the annals of Apple’s success was written.

Holding 1000 songs was a factual benefit of the iPod. Yet, in that context, the appeal was limited. Apple’s home run came with tapping into buyers’ emotions surrounding using the product, specifically music’s ability to affect/enhance our mood.

Now, let’s return to that new amenity offered in your homes. We’ll use the Travel Center in the owner’s suite closet as an example. Properly staged, a Travel Center is obvious and easily understood by your model home visitors. But will it actually sell more homes? That depends on how those model home visitors feel.

Stories are a powerful way to tap into buyer’s emotions. “You know, I nearly broke my ankle when I tripped over the suitcase in my closet.” Or, “I love the travel center because everything’s ready, right there, for an unexpected trip.” Asking, “How do you see yourself using the Travel Center?” or to the frequent traveler “How would it make you feel to have everything for your next trip right here at your fingertips?” can help prospects envision living in the home and using the travel center.

Remember, buyers buy on emotion!

Most any plans with a walk-in closet can incorporate a Travel Center into the design, but here is a selection of plans with Travel Centers already designed:

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