We’ve written often about Universal Design principals when remodeling for home healthcare, but here are some thoughts about design elements to avoid. Although the design found in a home is a matter of personal taste, there are a some design elements that professionals think are overused in our homes. eLocal.com polled its panel of experts to find out what elements in home improvement need to be put to rest. Their responses and the reasons for them might not be what you expected. Curious to see what they thought? We present the top 5 design mistakes homeowners make…
1. Marble, especially in the bathroom.
Not only is natural marble very expensive, but it is actually not as durable as people think it is. The downsides to having marble for your countertops are that it chips and stains easily (even water stains it!), and it can be extremely expensive to rebuff and shine. There are other alternatives, such as composite marble or corian, that are just as beautiful and more durable.
Granite has the same problems as marble, including the fact that it is usually imported, so it’s not a very environmentally-friendly material. On top of that, it often needs to be resealed annually.
“Builders and real estate agents promote granite like it is the ‘end all, be all’ of a fine home. It is a shame because there are so many great alternatives that need far less maintenance and are a lot better for the environment. Besides, aren’t there any homeowners out there who want to be a little different?” — Trish Holder, Greenspiration Home
3. Using a dull color palette.
Beiges and browns are a fallback for people who feel unsure about how to use colors in their homes. But while a little of it doesn’t hurt, too much of these dull colors can feel both boring and oppressive. It’s much better (and more cheerful) to take a risk with some brights and whites than to stay safe with such outdated hues.
4. Disregarding the style and period of your home.
Choosing inappropriate design elements to update your home is definitely one of the worst offenders. Unless it is done very carefully, ignoring the style of your home when you decorate or renovate will destroy the integrity of the original design.
“What really rubs me the wrong way is for a client to insist on a trend that is completely juxtaposed to the architecture style of their home.” — Nancy Keenholts Dalton, Baywolf Dalton remodeling.
5. Water features.
Although there is a lot to be said for attractive and sophisticated water features, they can quickly get out of hand. For example, although pools can be fun, they are often underused, difficult to maintain, and a bad return on investment. Even more doubtful are interior water features like wall waterfalls and jetted tubs, which suffer from the same problems.
What are your own design pet peeves? Reply below.
Related Universal Design articles:
- Aging as an Extreme Sport: Inventing Life Tomorrow
- Health Care Comes Home: The Human Factors
- Need to Redo your Loo?
- Ageless Design
- Bathroom Solutions for the Ages
- Household Tips for Aging in Place
- Center for Universal Design