Why your house isn’t your dream home. Yet.

Pinterest_title Remember when you bought your home, and it was gonna be the home of your dreams. You were going to channel your inner ‘interior designer’ and create a stunning space that would make your friends and family jealous. You were going to throw the most epic games nights (a covert excuse to show it off). You weren’t going to care that you had to stay in most weekends to offset that new mortgage payment, because you were going to be in love with your new home.

Remember that? Except, that didn’t happen, did it?

There are lots of reasons why your house is in limbo and not progressing into your dream-home. Here are the five most common and a few simple tips to help overcome them.

Dream Home Roadblock 1:
You Don’t Have the Time.

Most of us don’t have enough time to do the essentials each week (work, make dinner, do laundry, and of course, catch up on last weeks episode of The Bachelor), let alone find time to design or decorate our home.

So how the heck do you find the time?

It’s simple really. Schedule it.

Easier said than done. I know. But creating the home of your dreams is like anything, if you want it bad enough, you’ve gotta make time for it. Schedule an hour or two each week to start planning your dream home (don’t worry, I’m sure you can find time that’s not already dedicated to catching up on The Bachelor).

Dream Home Roadblock 2: You Don’t Know Where to Start.

Dream Home Roadblock 2:
You Don’t Know Where to Start.

Do you have a case of Pinterest-paralysis?

Are you terrified of making the wrong decisions?

Maybe you’re just plain overwhelmed.

I get it. I was there too, I decided they best thing to do was to create an action plan that helped make it feel less overwhelming. Approach it as you would a project at work (but I promise this won’t feel like work!). Break down what you need to do into phases, with bite-sized-actionable chunks that you can accomplish each week. And remember, you can always change your décor, so don’t be afraid to make mistakes.

Dream Home Roadblock 3:
You Don’t Have the Money.

Money is the root of all evil. Seriously, if it’s holding you back from getting the home you want, than it doesn’t get any more evil than that!

This one is a bit more difficult to overcome, but not impossible. Think about how important a home you love is to you. If you’re reading this, I’m guessing it’s pretty important, so start planning how you can transform your home on a budget (and trust me you can).

Here are a few quick tips to help you transform your home, affordably:

  1. Create a plan. Yes, creating a plan has numerous benefits, including managing the budget. Prioritize the rooms you need to decorate, the furniture required and the décor. Establish a budget for each room and item, then stick to it or change it as you go when needed (aka when you spent a bit more than budgeted on that amazing Moroccan-style rug…whoops!).
  2. Take it one room at a time. Don’t get overwhelmed by trying to design or decorate your entire house, go one room at a time (hint: select the rooms that make the most impact…like your living room).
  3. Re-use what you have. Take inventory of what you have and see what you can repurpose or reuse. Don’t forget that you can transform pieces you already own with a bit of paint. Pinterest is full of amazing DIY ideas to transform your furniture.
  4. Shop second-hand. Kijiji, Craiglist and Varagesale are great sources for quality used furniture, for a fraction of the price! Plus, as a bonus you can find one-of-a-kind pieces that can make a huge statement in your home.
  5. Prioritize your purchases. Establish the most important elements of your space. For example, if it’s the living room and you plan to entertain often, then maybe you want to spend a bit more on a couch and seating.
  6. Get real with yourself. Money is rarely something you’ll have excess of, it’s one thing to give yourself a year or two to get financially stable, but if you don’t think you can create a home you love for another 10 years, then you might want to consider getting more realistic with what you want to do to make your home beautiful. Something that doesn’t involve waiting a decade!

Dream Home Roadblock 4: You've Decorated, but it Doesn’t Feel Pulled-Together.

Dream Home Roadblock 4:
You’ve Decorated, But it Doesn’t Feel Pulled-Together.

I don’t know how many times I’ve walked into a home (especially when I was house-hunting), and felt like the space fell flat, even though it seemed “finished” on the surface. I mentally redesign the space and think about what I would do different to transform it from ok, to ah-may-zing.

It’s common to start designing a space and then never take it to completion. Maybe you’re looking around your home right now, comparing it to the cover of House & Home and you can’t figure out why your space falls short. Don’t worry, I’ve got the perfect tool to help…download your free ‘Decorate with Intention Checklist’. This checklist will help transform your space and give it that finished, dream home look.

Dream Home Roadblock 5:
You Can’t Get Your Partner to Agree on Anything.

Ughhhh, I so get you. I don’t know how many times I’ve shown my partner furniture I like and he just flat out says “no”. Seriously, it can be heartbreaking at times. But, what’s interesting is that there have been numerous times, where it has forced me to keep looking and I find an even better option.

While it does suck that you can’t have that *insert whatever your partner nixed here*, I’m guessing you don’t want to design a home that you don’t both love, and reflects both your personalities? Right?

Here are a few quick tips to dealing with differences in taste:

  1. Establish a budget for the room together. And by that I mean a budget for every element in the room, this will eliminate budget as a reason to hear “no”. Another tip regarding budget is to remind your partner that when budget is a concern, you do have to make some small compromises and keep an open mind.
  2. Separately write down words that describe how you want your home to look. Review those words together and find a way to incorporate both your style into your home.
  3. Learn to compromise. Let your spouse make the call on some decisions and you make the call on others.
  4. Give each other the right to veto. Compromise is great, but also allow each other the opportunity to flat out say “no”, because maybe you don’t want ninja turtle paintings in the guest bedroom anywhere in your house (and yes, if you’re wondering this was actually something I had to say no to…like I said, I get it).
  5. Just buy it. Ok, this one is risky, but this has worked wonders for me. I have noticed that if I show my partner something online or in a magazine, he’s more likely to say no. But if I purchase an item, and bring it home, he’s much more open-minded. Only you can know whether this is a good idea in your relationship, but if you go this route, just be sure that the item is refundable.

So what now?

These barriers didn’t happen overnight, and you won’t overcome them overnight. Take some time to think about what reasons that are preventing you from creating the home of your dreams, and how important having the home of your dreams is to you. Last week I heard someone say “everything is figureoutable” and I couldn’t agree more.

I know that you deserve to have a home you love. A home you are proud of. Seriously, you do. So, figure out a way to make it happen!

I would love to hear from you, leave a comment below.

  1. Have you had to deal with any of the barriers in this post? How did/do you overcome it?
  2. Has something else prevented you from creating the home of your dreams? How did you overcome that?

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Gigantic thanks for taking the time to read,