House to Home with Rachel Smith: Time to make changes if you no longer love your house

Your home is like a relationship, you need to nurture it and spend some time with it to understand it and ensure that there is two-way communication.

By Jane Chippindale
Thursday, 7th April 2022, 2:35 pm
Updated Thursday, 7th April 2022, 2:36 pm

One of my clients refuses to sit at her kitchen table to eat. Another one refuses to go into her lounge. And one often gets in his car to go for a drive because he doesn’t want to be in his flat. What do all these people have in common?

Their homes have taken control of them.

When you think about it, all three of the above situations are absurd. How can a house have control over a person?

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Photo: Adobe

It’s the person that bought/rented that space, it’s the person that decorated it and filled it with their things…

So what went wrong?

Somewhere along the line there was a disconnect and that person fell out of love with that space.

Your home is like a relationship, you need to nurture it and spend some time with it to understand it and ensure that there is two-way communication.

Photo: Adobe

So how do you take back control? How do you reconnect with your home?

You need to look inwards first and ask yourself “Who am I now?”

The ‘now’ is important because people change and our spaces need to change with us to fulfil our wants and needs.

If you haven’t changed anything in your home for ten plus years, how can you expect it to serve you well and make you feel like the best version of yourself? You’re not the same person you were 10 years ago.

Photo: Adobe

People change, relationships change and what we need from a home changes, but quite often our homes don’t change with us.

I’m not talking about following trends.

I’m talking about evaluating the needs of the household and whether the home works for those people.

For a home to work, first and foremost it has to function correctly. This can be a tricky one because you need to evaluate what happens there on a day-to-day basis versus what you actually want to happen there in an ideal world.

For example, if you are a family that never eats together because of differing schedules do you really need a big dining table that can seat all of you? Could you make do with a smaller table and use the extra space for something else?

Or, do you want a big dining table to encourage more of you to eat together, at least at weekends, or because you want to start entertaining again?

Do you need living spaces where you can all be together, or do you need separate spaces where you can all pursue your own interests.

Open plan living is great pre-kids or when the kids are small, but broken plan (putting doors back on spaces so that you have the choice) can be better as the family grows and evolves.

And don’t forget the garden. Do you really need a big expanse of lawn or could you use the space better to create different zones where different members of the family can be together or do their own thing.

The garden should be an extension of your home so if you’re in need of additional living spaces, don’t overlook the outside.

Your home should be your happy place, your sanctuary, the place where you can just be you. If it isn’t, then maybe it’s time for a change.