This week I have a guest post from the lovely Leanne from ‘Lime and Mortar’. Leanne blogs about decorating her new home, her love of organising and kids parties, which look fantastic! Please take some time to pop by Leanne’s blog and explore for yourself. Enjoy this insight into Leanne 🙂
Tell us a little about yourself?
I am a mum and wife. My husband works FIFO (fly in and fly out). Together we have a 5 year old boy and 3 year old girl. I am fortunate to be able to be a stay at home mum. I find a creative outlet in almost everything I do which works perfectly with my home, my blog and our lifestyle.
What prompted you to build your own home?
We built our first home in 2011. We were on quite a tight budget and didn’t know much about building at all. I would call our first home build a lesson. It taught us all about building – the admin and build side of things.
In 2013 we had a opportunity to build again so we went for it. Knowing so much more and having a bigger budget we decided to build our ‘forever’ home. We had a list of ‘must haves’ for our home so went on search for floor plans. After not being able to find one to suit I redesigned an floor plan that came close to what we wanted.
What were the best and worst parts of building from your experience?
The worst part for me was admin. I was unfortunate to have people who had no attention to detail so paperwork always had mistakes which caused many delays. It was a very stressful for me as hubby was away more often than not so I dealt with everything myself.
I would say the best part was choosing the design and colours. I knew what I wanted this time around so I just had to find choices to match the image in my mind. Absolute best part was getting the keys and getting all my own trades in to do all the finishing touches to make it our home.
Do you have any tips for others building perhaps their first home?
Research! Look on pinterest for ideas you like, write yourself a list of must haves, do not compromise on floor plan as you have to live in this home so make sure it suits your needs and lifestyle. For example we have the kids rooms at the front of the house as we love to cook and entertain so this means we can do so in the kitchen, alfresco, dining room and not disturb the kids.
Read! Make sure you read all paperwork. Do not assume everything is correct and sign it. No one knows your home and choices better than you. So read to make sure everything is correct as once its signed you’ve agreed to what is written. My gorgeous merbau door would have been painted white if i didn’t notice the wording was wrong.
Solar Aspect – Make sure your home suits your blocks solar aspect. Our first build did not suit the solar aspect. We had living spaces on the west and our master room on north. Ideally you want living spaces on the north and minimum windows on the west. Our current home we have fantastic solar aspect and our house stays cool and the lighting is nice.
Was there any part of the process you didn’t understand?
When we first built there was so much I did not understand and I would go searching for the answers. For example the builder kept mentioning ‘prestart’… like ‘oh that gets chosen at prestart’. I had no idea what prestart was and what could/couldn’t be changed at prestart. This ment we missed out on some structural changes as they could only be made at the start.
In WA all ceiling and window heights are done in ‘courses’ which was so confusing. I still don’t know today how many centimetres are in a course.
I also didn’t and still don’t know why I can be told ‘no’ when came to building our homes. Being told ‘no’ we can’t have something drove me insane. It often made me think we should have gone we custom builder rather than a big known builder. This is one of reasons where possible we got our own trades in at handover so I wasn’t limited to ‘builders choice’.
Would you do it again?
No. I love my home too much to even consider building another house. I do enjoy helping others with their floor plans and colour choices though.
Tell us about your decorating style?
I like to keep things simple. I choose good furniture, couple of feature items and then add a few touches. In my home the base colours are white and grey with lots of pops of Lime. I love to add pops of colour in each room. I prefer greens, blues and yellow. I do not use red and tend to stay away from those warmer colours.
Lighting can make a big difference to have the room feels. In my entrance and my dining I have use feature lighting to decorate and add interest to the room. Often rooms can feel incomplete until you add a light shade or pendant.
If you could change one part of your home, which would it be and what would you do?
I would change the tiling in the ensuite and bathroom. I would have loved large tiles but this is something our builders said ‘no’ too as they were not in builders range and they refused to lay them. Whilst I still love my bathrooms I have major tile envy when I watch shows like The Block.
Have you ever built your own home? Do you have a story about your house you would like to share?