If you’ve just bought your forever home, your mind is likely filled with ideas to reinvent the space into your perfect house. But before diving in and quickly falling into issues, it’s much better to take your time in the planning process to ensure everything is right before you start kicking down walls and painting the floors bright yellow.

As with any big house project, the design phase can be pretty overwhelming, and there is a lot to consider before you actually get to bring your ideas to life. However, to get you started, and to help you along the way, here are two useful tips to help you design your dream home.

Kitchens and bathrooms come first

Renovating the bathroom or kitchen takes a lot more thought, time, and money than other rooms of the house. With a bedroom, a fresh lick of paint will do the job, but for the kitchen you’ll need to consider flooring, colors, cabinets, and durable materials.

If the kitchen is the communal hub of your home, it’s best to start your renovations here. In traditional homes, the kitchen was in the back, with the dining room and lounge at the front. It was merely a place to cook and store food, rather than spend quality time in. Now, with more of us looking for a multifunctional or open-plan space, the kitchen tends to have some of the highest foot traffic in the house.

Similarly, busy days are filled with constant sharing of the bathroom for showers, teeth brushing, doing make-up, etc. But the bathroom is also a place of serenity and calmness on those chilly winter evenings. After a stressful work day, they can be our total sanctuary, meaning that the design needs to be carefully thought out to create a balance between function and peace.

If you’re not too sure where to start with these core rooms of the house, looking up kitchen manufacturers Bolton is a good way to get inspiration and advice.

Know your budget

Renovations have a sneaky way of costing way more than you first think. Whether it’s hidden service fees, additional materials, or deciding to splash out on the more expensive cabinet handles, there’s always an element you haven’t accounted for.

That’s why knowing your budget—and where that money maxes—out is integral. You need to get everything you actually need into your budget, before running away with everything else you want to include. While you definitely need a fridge, do you actually need that all-singing, all-dancing coffee machine? Although you might have always dreamt of dual basins in the bathroom, could that additional space be used in another way? You get the idea.

It’s a good idea to write down everything that is a necessity and non-negotiable. Then, have a list of dreamy extras you’d love to incorporate if the price is right.

So, with your budget in hand and your first two rooms to think about, it’s time to think aesthetics: and that’s the fun part! It’s all about finding the materials, colors, and styles that suit you.