How Far Should You Go With Built-In Options?

Posted on: 15 March 2023

When you have a custom home built, your builder will likely have options for built-in cabinets, pantries, garage storage, and more. At first, you may be thrilled and want everything built-in and fitted perfectly. But be sure that what you choose is what you'll really want for the long term. The built-ins, their configurations, and their materials will affect how you go about your days in the home. If you're careful in your choices, your home will remain comfortable for a very long time.

They Can Be Worth It if Made Right

Any built-in you get has to be made with materials of good quality. Your home builder likely has a lot of options already, so if there's a third-party built-in that's caught your eye, see if your builder has a version of it first, and choose the best quality materials for it. Make sure shelves can hold a lot of weight, for example, by using strong wood from a species known for lasting a long time.

You Can't Move Built-in Fixtures

Keep in mind that you can't move built-ins. Whatever you choose needs to be in a place where you will be happy keeping it for decades. Sometimes that's easy, such as with basic built-ins in the kitchen or bathroom, but you do need to put thought into this. A built-in bookcase that takes up the middle of a wall and that doesn't run to the floor allows for some furniture to be placed there without blocking the shelves, for example. A pantry cabinet that is right next to other kitchen cabinets doesn't take over other parts of the house, but a pantry cabinet in the dining area means you have to be careful where you put your table. When you choose your built-ins, be sure you take your furnishings and lifestyle into account.

Focus on Utility Rather Than "Perfection"

One of the selling points of built-ins is that they are so helpful and make the home look comforting. Instead of a bare wall, you have these lovely cabinets or shelves. While a few built-in fixtures in the home can be very helpful, such as a bookcase here and a pantry cabinet there, you run the risk of tipping over to the unhelpful side if you add in too many or make the configurations and layouts too specific. For example, having a walk-in pantry with built-in shelving is very helpful. But having a walk-in pantry with shelves of varying heights and depths that force whoever is using the pantry to organize it in a way that might not work for them is not helpful.

You may be building a custom home for your use, and that concern may not be an issue for you. But if you plan to sell the home later, or you plan to have other family members like your adult children take over the home later on when you retire, they may not find the layouts very helpful. If you add built-ins to your custom home, let them be functional rather than exactly perfect for what you want in your life right now. Even you could decide in a few years that you'd prefer the built-ins to be different.

Custom home builders want you to have a home that fits your needs. You want to have a home that you can use long-term and potentially sell years down the road for a profit. With the right built-ins, your custom home can be the star of the block.

To get started on your project, contact a custom home builder in your area.


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