Update on our house journey

Well friends, we are finally at the design stage, the next step in our house journey! And holy moly am I ever excited. As I expressed before, interior design is one of my true loves. Being able to be design our entire house is so exciting, but it is SO scary as well. What if what we choose looks horrible? What if we change our minds? How are we going to afford all of the upgrades we want?

As some of you may already know, two weeks ago I announced that Rob & I are building a house. If you didn’t know, head on over to the first post of our house journey, here!

Well friends, we are finally at the design stage! And holy moly am I ever excited. As I expressed before, interior design is one of my true loves. Being able to be design our entire house is so exciting, but it is SO scary as well. What if what we choose looks horrible? What if we change our minds? How are we going to afford all of the upgrades we want?

Note: this isn’t the exact drawing of our house, as we made a few structural changes. I’ll post an updated exterior drawing once we receive it!


Our builder does things a little bit different. Typically, when you’re building a house, you choose your interiors as the build moves along. With our builder, we have to choose everything BEFORE they even dig. Yes, everything. Paint, flooring, backsplashes, countertops, cabinets, handles, you name it. So understandably, we’re a bit stressed out.

This past Thursday we had our exterior meeting. Unfortunately, it didn’t go as perfect as we had pictured. The community we’re building in has very strict exterior requirements (which for the most part is a fantastic thing). The downfall, no two houses on the same street can have anything the same. That means if one house on the street already has (or has already claimed) white trim, then no one else on that street can use it. Luckily in this case, white trim wasn’t something we wanted. But dark grey vinyl siding and the very dark stone were.

We’re building our house in a cul-de-sac so we have more houses affecting these limits than normal. Thankfully, only one house in the cul-de-sac is fully built. But, they used the dark grey siding and the dark stone that we had been hoping for. Bummer. The house to the right of our lot is half built, but their exteriors were all green colours, which Rob and I weren’t wanting anyways.

So that was a bit of a set back. Obviously there was nothing we could do about this, other than be thankful that we were next in line for calling dibs. We went with the second grey vinyl (there were only TWO grey vinyl options, so we snagged the last one), and the next darkest stone we could get. These two aren’t as dark as we were hoping, but we will take what we can get!

The next choices were pretty simple in the sense that no one else had these colours (dark trim, light grey siding) but Rob and I didn’t agree with each other at first. I wanted black trim with black shingles, Rob wanted grey shingles with dark grey trim. Oh, and depending on what shade of trim or shingle you put with the vinyl siding, it made the siding look green.

My biggest argument was we have to be SO careful with which tones we put together, because yes, the vinyl did have an underlay of green in it. And no, I did not want a green house. The problem with the grey shingles was that some of the tones in it were green, and it really brought out the green in the vinyl. Also, with having so much grey on the exterior already and having no other option but to go with the lighter grey vinyl, there wouldn’t be enough contrast if we went with grey shingles (we have a peak above our garage that will break up the grey). Which, this point in the end is what drove us to agree to the black shingles. And because I won the shingle battle, and didn’t hate the dark grey trim, I gave that win to Rob.

It’s alllll about compromise, people (I’m going to have to remember this for Wednesday).

Looking back at the pictures, all I see is green in the vinyl. But our interior designer showed us houses that used the same vinyl and they didn’t look green at all! Also, the lighting in the design meeting room was horrible, so really who knows what colour it’s going to turn out to be.

We chose the colour of our composite deck (easy choice, between grey and brown), and then we walked through some interior finishing options. There was a lot to choose from, and Rob started getting a bit overwhelmed, so we’re saving those decisions for Wednesday! I like to think that I know exactly what I want for the interior, but I’m starting to get a bit nervous.

The Interior

What I’m thinking for the interior is light, light, light. I am incredibly affected by daylight, and since the winter brings very little light, I want our house to be as bright as possible. So for me, that means white. All white everything!

For the floors, Rob and I have (almost) agreed on a lighter hardwood. Not only will it make the space seem brighter, but we have dark floors in our townhouse right now and you can see EVERYTHING. Benson sheds like crazy, and you will never miss a hair or a dust bunny blown out from under the couch when looking at that floor.

I want a really light grey for the walls, but Rob likes a bit darker of a grey. We’re heading over to Cloverdale paints today to pick out some paint colours before hand so that we have that decision made before the meeting.

And for the kitchen, white cabinets, white countertop, and light grey backsplash. This is where Rob and I are still butting heads. He’s worried it’s going to be TOO white, where as I’m worried it’s not going to be bright enough. The kitchen is facing two almost floor to ceiling window-walls, so in the summer we will be getting a ton of natural light, but I’m worried about the winter.

Below are some pictures I’ve pinned on our house inspo Pinterest board for the house so that you can get a better visualization of what we’re thinking.


Let me know what you think! Super excited for the next step in our house journey, and I’ll make sure to keep you all updated!

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I'm Cara O'Donnell, and utilizing my personalized Journey Home Method, I help growing families in Edmonton effortlessly transition from their first to forever home. I'm a mom, real estate investor, and licensed REALTOR® with eXp Realty. I can't wait to help you on your journey home! 



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