Save money and stay warm with these winter energy efficiency tips
Create new holiday traditions
Pete and Vicki: Coming home again
What’s trending in new homes?
From chaos to calm: Decluttering kids spaces
A new start on the farm
Why you need a second refrigerator
Fall home maintenance checklist
Building a home for the first time
A home office and a home school: The future of home design
Back in March, we thought that working remotely and attending school online was a short-term challenge. The new school year is starting and parents are still uncertain about sending their children into a classroom. Meanwhile, many of these parents continue to work from home. The future of home design is shifting to accommodate both a home office and a home school space—and with the productivity each space demands.
Rethink your home office space
Now that working from home is a long-term reality—whether full- or part-time—your office might need adjustment. How have you managed over the past months? Has your productivity kept up with your plans? Are you perhaps working harder but not smarter because your space just isn’t a good fit?
The popular open concept floor plan is great for entertaining, but doesn’t translate to work productivity. You need a dedicated home office where you can focus, uninterrupted by household distractions. Some homeowners are converting a flex space to an office, often the under-utilized formal dining room. Install a door and you’re ready to go.
But what if you’re in a business where you conduct business meetings in person? An interior designer, architect, therapist, and budding small business for example, would benefit from not just an office, but a meeting space. Kettler Forlines Homes has made adjustments to our Kenwood floor plan to solve this home office space problem. The plan with the deluxe office includes a spacious office, conference room, copy room, kitchenette, storage, and powder room. The conference center—which is large enough to also serve as a showroom—has its own entry, so you can bring your business visitors right into the meeting area.
This home design presents a creative hybrid of residential and business space. The family living spaces on the first floor are separated from the home office suite. The owner’s suite and 3 more bedrooms are situated on the second floor.
Kids are working, too
Did you scramble in March to adjust to switching your child to online learning? It was a massive adjustment for families across the country. Between setting up the technology, establishing a schedule, providing an impromptu classroom, and taking on more teaching responsibilities, parents faced a tough challenge.
At the time, it seemed like a temporary situation. With COVID yet to be managed, families have had to look at whether or not to stay with the remote learning option. The home classroom is no longer a short-term issue but a much-needed transformation.
You already know that distractions are plentiful at home. Your kids have even more temptation—and a lot less discipline to withstand it. Giving them a home classroom, not just a corner of the family room, is the best solution to creating an effective learning environment at home.
Going back to the Kenwood floor plan, we can convert the conference space to a learning center (while you keep the office for yourself). We can build in workstations with desks, cabinets, and cubbies. Set up a large monitor for Zoom meetings with teachers and classmates. In the center of the room, create a library/resource center where kids can get away from their desks, just as they would in a traditional classroom. Keep the focus of this dedicated home classroom to learning. Keep play spaces (both indoors and outside) and the “cafeteria” outside this home school area. The classroom isn’t a place for kids to kick back and get too comfortable. You’ll help them to stay focused when you design a learning center that is based on a conventional classroom. After all, that’s what the kids are already used to, and it sparks their minds to shift into “school mode”.
Finding harmony in the working home
Not so long ago, you went off to work and the kids headed off to school. That travel is now limited to the pathways within your home. You’re putting more demands on your home than ever before. In addition to the space requirements, you might need to update your home’s wiring and technology. More users and devices at one time put a lot of strain on a finite amount of bandwidth—which, in turn, puts strain on the people trying to work and study online.
In addition, with everyone now spending even more time at home, you might look at your home’s energy efficiency. You’re consuming more electricity and water, driving up your utility bills.
Is your home still the right fit for you? When you add up the limited space, outdated wiring, and inefficient systems that are costing you more money, maybe now is the time to move. A new home delivers the solutions to the woes of your current residence. And you can take advantage of the incredibly low interest rates right now to get that dream home you and your family deserve.
Kettler Forlines Homes builds homes for the way you live now. Our ENERGY STAR and Indoor airPLUS-certified homes are more efficient and healthier. We include a long list of luxury features as standards, including a smart home automation package. We are building in The Reserve at Brightwell Crossing in Poolesville, MD, and can also build a home on your lot. Your home, your way—with OUR expertise. Let George Neill get you started on a new home that gives you what you want and need.