I’ve been really quite over here for the past month and for that I apologize! I’ve started a new job and I have been taking the time to settle in, and well, change my entire life! In the past few months the trajectory of my families future has changed, and for the better! A new home + a new job causes a catalyst of change in many ways. I could only image if I was moving across the country too! To say the least, by the end of the day, I am mentally exhausted so writing my blog has not been high on my “to-do” list. As I adjust more; more blogs will come! This one is on the lengthy side so grab a cup of coffee and settle in.
Today, I want to dive into the choices we made for all the base elements for our home. I want to walk you through the design center experience we encountered through Mungo Homes and why we choose what we choose. Once we get into our home and we live with all the choices we made, I am sure I will readdress whether all those choices panned out for us, or if we would make any changes! But, for right now this is what we choose and why.
The design center we visited is like a large showroom filled with home elements, finishes, and fixtures. A designer walks you through the whole process from picking out a mantel to the placement of recessed lighting. It can be a long process if you go in unsure of what you may want and can take a better part of the day. If you know me AT ALL, you know I went in with a full plan of what I wanted our home to look like, and it was more about if and what we wanted to spend extra money on. Every portion of the design center has a basic “base” offering that comes at no additional charge but then there are a plethora of enticing upgrades to choose from. So if you don’t stick with a budget or a game plan going in, it can get a bit out of control. Before entering Ben and I decided on a budget to stick to and I had a pretty good idea where I would be upgrading.
The floor plan that we ended up choosing is an open style floor plan. The entry hallway flows into the living, dining, and kitchen areas. The base option of our home had carpet starting in the entrance hallway and continuing through the living room. It then stopped and offered a hardwood option for the kitchen and dining. This was the first area we decided to upgrade. We knew the likelihood of finding a good match to continue the flooring throughout the open concept at a later date would be slim to none. So if we wanted a flow in the flooring, we would have to spend the money now or replace it all later. We landed on a Luxury Vinyl Plank for the first floor open areas that has a natural light oak look and then a carpet for the bedrooms + bonus room upstairs. We were hoping to find a carpet option that had a variation in texture and was soft to the touch; but in all honesty we didn’t like any of the carpet choices. Therefore, we decided to not spend any extra money here and go with a base choice.
Kitchen, Bathroom, + Laundry Cabinets
Another area that we decided to go ahead and upgrade (in some cases) were the cabinets in the kitchen as well as the bathrooms. I had a specific look I wanted to achieve in those areas and of course that meant spending some extra dough. The cabinets I choose throughout the home are the clean lined shaker style cabinets. It’s a door front without any extra molding or details. Ben and I enjoy a modern aesthetic so anytime we are given the choice between molding or no molding; we go the no molding route.
Believe it or not, cabinet hardware is an upgrade. They even state in the design center packet that the cabinets are hard to open without hardware but they charge you extra to add it on. This was another area that we decided to go ahead and upgrade. I was impressed with the hardware choices the design center had. Now, it wasn’t like I was looking through the Restoration Hardware catalogue, but I did think they had something that fit into a lot of different styles. I decided on a very streamline and modern look in a nickel finish. I am not in LOVE with the nickel finish but I do like to mix metals so I am going to live with the hardware and see if I like it before spending the money to make a change. The main reason we added the hardware, besides its obvious functionality, was because I didn’t want to drill holes in all our cabinets later on to add it. This way, if I just don’t like the look, I’ll find something to replace it at a later date.
One area I chose not to make an upgrade in cabinets was the laundry room. The base for the laundry room doesn’t include any cabinets. You read that correctly, no storage at all in the laundry room unless you want to pay extra. We just shelled out more for the cabinets through the rest of the house so I decided to hold back here. My plans are to find unfinished cabinets to fit the space, paint them a bold + fun color, and create the laundry room how we see fit. Besides, the design center didn’t offer any bold colors besides navy in the cabinet choices so I would be repainting something I just spent extra money on to upgrade; so no thanks! This will be a fun project to look forward to when we move in!
We also chose to upgrade on the cabinet colors, the bathroom cabinet height (we opted for taller vanities), and the counter tops (two different quartz styles). So at the end of the day a lot of our extra upgrades was placed into our flooring as well as the cabinetry + counters. It can be a bit overwhelming to go into a design center with no plan or budget in mind. You’ll get carried away with all the options and be way out of your price range when you’re done! So be sure to take the time to draw out a game plan and set a price point before you go!
Where we upgraded:
- Added a fireplace to the Living Room
- LVP flooring throughout first floor open concept areas
- Cabinet style + colors in kitchen and bathrooms
- Counter tops in kitchen + baths
- Kitchen + bathroom hardware
- Bathroom vanity heights
- Pendant lights over the kitchen island
- Recessed lighting in the living room
- Front door with windows for natural light
Have you been somewhere recently and they were going to charge you extra for something that seems like such a necessity?? Like hardware on a cabinets? Let me know in the comments!