Having children live in your home or having grandchildren visit can be a delight, but it is also something to plan for and consider in your home and garden design. How can you make your home fun for children? How can you make it safe? Here are a few ways to make your home and garden child-friendly.
Make It Washable
With kids comes mess, and if you have precious furniture that could get hurt due to a child, this can be difficult for both you and that child. If you have grandchildren who like to visit and you have a lot of special furniture, consider making some rooms child-friendly with furniture that can withstand jammy hands, while other spaces contain the gorgeous antique furniture that you invested in after your own children moved out. Add removable covers to furniture, and choose colors that don’t stain. The children’s needs can help determine what furniture you have and what it looks like. Domino asks, “How much time do you want to spend washing or fluffing something (a sofa) in your living space?”
Create a Multifunctional Space
Open floor plans can be helpful when you’re supervising young children. That way, some people can be in the kitchen or dining area while others can be playing in a living room or family room space. Consider the sight and movement lines between the rooms as you design.
Have a Stash of Engaging Items
Whether you have toddlers who enjoy playing with blocks or older children who love art, having a tucked-away stash of interesting toys makes a room more fun. For your adult eyes, you might want to place the clutter into a container at the end of the day, so design spaces with baskets or drawers where you can hide those toys. The same applies outdoors: garden bins are an excellent space to store a selection of sand toys, for example.
While your home doesn’t need to be a sterile environment, it’s also better to remove or reduce the risk of areas and items that could hurt children. This includes:
- Adding plug covers and other child-proofing devices to outlets and cupboards
- Removing extremely poisonous plants such as foxglove from areas where children would normally play
- Reducing fall or tripping hazards. Adding handles to staircases, fences to patios if they are off the ground, and reducing muddy spots next to the home by investing in new landscaping and gutter replacement if your gutters are leaking.
- If your garden is very sloped, “having it terraced, with safety rails, will give your child areas to enjoy freely,” according to Real Homes.
Add Shade to Your Garden
Children love to play outside, but in the warmer months, in particular, they need shade. Add trees and larger shrubs to your garden, and create a patio space that’s inviting to kids. This could mean adding an awning over top of a splash pool or a sandbox: a perfect space to stay out of the sun and play.
At Harry Helmet, we’re here to help you create a home that works for your family. Talk with us today about the many ways that we can help you with your exterior home design and renovation. Schedule a free estimate today.