Downsize Your Home and Enjoy an Easier Lifestyle

In green and sustainable design, architects, interior designers and engineers are always planning for the future in order to create a better quality of life for the world. They want sustainable, efficient, and healthy housing and workplaces for everyone and acknowledge that we can’t continue to live or work in the same ways of the past.

The trend of downsizing and moving to the city will continue for many years, especially for baby boomers. Living in inner-city residences, near transportation lines is a big convenience factor for everyone and is in demand. Our attitude towards property ownership has changed. People today want an easier lifestyle rather than living and maintaining the traditional, high-maintenance home in the suburbs that was so highly valued by previous generations.

When considering the future, planning to downsize and move to a smaller, sustainable new home you should have a list of ideal requirements to help guide you. Having a list of requirements will help keep you focused, so you can make the best decisions in selecting a new home that will provide beauty, comfort, and joy, all while promoting long-term good health.

The following are musts that will help guide you in making wise a decision about your future home selection:

Location.  Location, location still applies when selecting a new home. The street, neighborhood, town or city, and country, which you move to, are very significant because they reflect what is important to you.

Walkable Communities. With increasing energy costs and climate considerations, the ability to walk to basic services is a key. Walkable communities allow easy access to the bank, grocery, dental, restaurants, commercial offices, community centers, and public transportation access. Walkable communities help increase physical exercise and offer mental and social benefits.

Low or No-Maintenance Landscaping. No yard work is best. Let a homeowner’s association take care of lawn and snow removal.

Green Building Techniques.  Invest only in homes that incorporate green building techniques and materials making them energy and water efficient, providing a healthy environment and reducing the environmental impact over a lifetime of the home.

Healthy Ventilation.  Natural ventilation, energy efficient heating and cooling systems are a must. Up-to-date ventilation systems provide an even flow of fresh air continuously.

Healthy Building Materials and Finishes. Make sure your new home has utilized recycled and environmentally friendly building products. A home that contains healthy materials and finishes with low and no-VOCs ensures good indoor air quality

Energy and Water Efficiency.  Your new home should minimize the use of energy and water by using efficient materials and products. Using water saving strategies and energy efficient appliances in the kitchen, laundry room, and bathrooms significantly improves water and energy consumption.

Appliances and Other Products. Think of the future and make sure user-friendly, energy efficient appliances, lighting fixtures and other products are part of the deal.

Daylighting. Good natural light is essential because it lifts the spirits and lessens demands on electricity.  The integration of natural lighting helps an interior to feel more spacious and offers spaces of all sizes a visual element.

Space Plan. The floor plan should be flexible with spaces that allow the indoors and outdoors to connect. Look for features that will allow future comfort, such as extra-wide doors with flared door handles and wide hallways, bathrooms with walls prepared for grab bars, and flexible spaces allowing the living room, dining kitchen area to flow into one.

Lynn Hoffman Design, LLC can help you plan for your future home or workplace. We are experts in planning, downsizing and designing healthy interiors. To learn more about our range of Sustainable Interior Design, Universal Design and Consulting services available in Connecticut, Manhattan and Westchester Counties, New York and areas beyond contact us at 203.984.4695 or email us at site@lynnhoffmandesign.com

Image: istockphoto.com/hikesterson

Lynn Hoffman

203.984.4695 | lynn@lynnhoffmandesign.com