10 Heritage Design Tips

Janita Norman
August 2019

Thinking of renovating, creating more space or redecorating your heritage home? To help you on your design journey and have the best chance of making your heritage design project a success, I have put together 10 Heritage Design Tips which you can download free.


Thinking of Renovating, Creating more space or redecorating your Heritage Home?

Are you unsure about the best way to achieve a home that suits your lifestyle, your taste and maintains the important features that defines it’s Heritage character?

When planning to renovate a Heritage Home, the initial excitement, ideas, possibilities and the endless inspiration can quickly be replaced with a state of overwhelm  when it comes time to make important decisions about the project.

Making changes to a home brings up all sorts or questions. Can we demolish parts of the building? Which parts should we preserve to maintain the fundamental character of the place? How do we combine the old and new parts of the house successfully?

To help you on your design journey and have the best chance of making your Heritage Design project a success, I have put together 10 Heritage Design Tips which you can download free.

Want to make sure that your Heritage Home Renovation suits your lifestyle? Is an expression of your style and preserves the important Heritage features?

Want to avoid poor design decisions that impact the Heritage significance of your Home?

Designers who specialise in working with Heritage Buildings have a set of skills that are specific to Heritage work. They understand the key principals of conservation, have a passion for heritage and understand heritage building materials and construction.

Want to know more about the principles of working on a Heritage Home?

It’s time to plan to renovate your Heritage Home. You know what you want to achieve. You know the things that just don’t quite work for you and your family in the house now, but…..what you don’t know is how to pull it all together.

Where to start? How to create the design that will achieve what you need in the home while being considerate of the important details that contribute to its heritage. This is often when the initial excitement, the ideas and inspiration, the direction becomes unclear.  Too many questions, too many what- ifs Making the  reasons you wanted to renovate and live in a heritage home seem like a distant dream.

Find clarity and some of  the answers to frequently asked questions when renovating a Heritage Home in our free guide 10 Heritage Design Tips.

It is sometimes easy to forget why you decided to renovate your Heritage Home when it comes time to make hard and fast decisions.

Heritage homes have heart and soul. They need to be treated with care. Knowledge and understanding of the home is so important to be able to make good design decisions that respect it’s history and the details that make it special.

These are the things that spoke to you. Yet when it comes time to renovating and making changes, it is often difficult to know  the best way to combine the old and the new into a beautiful home.

Renovating your home requires creative design solution that combines the needs of a modern family, your individual style with the heritage elements that make the house special. This can be a challenge when designing for a Heritage Home.

Owners of Heritage Homes act as custodians, occupants only for a time.  In the scheme of things, your occupation, the changes you make contribute to the story of the home and in time will also be part of its unique history.

This makes it all the more important to understand the fundamental principles and how to work in a heritage home to have a positive contribution that is true to the Heritage elements of the house.

When planning to renovation your Heritage Home – Remember why you liked the house in the first place.  

Why you decided to live in a period home?

Hold on to these thoughts and make sure they remain part of your Design Brief.

These are the things that spoke to you. The elements, the heart and soul of the home. The things you connected with.

These are often the things to preserve.

Want to talk with our qualified heritage designer?

I’d love to chat and help you!

Call Janita now……..

Realm Building Design

Phone : 03 5482 2001

10 Heritage Design Tips

Practical tips for designing your next heritage renovation.

Our clients are often surprised when they find out just how much they can do with their heritage listed building. We created this document to dispel some of the most prevalent myths about working with heritage buildings, so that you have a solid foundation on the can-dos, can't-dos, and things to be aware of.

Your guide throughout your heritage design journey.

The Two Single Most Important Things to Consider When Designing a New Home

Janita Norman
November 2022
New Homes

Designing and building your own home is a joy and a privilege; a rare act of creation that leaves a mark on the world long after our time. But in the same breath, it is daunting and overwhelming, with seemingly endless thoughts and ideas fighting for your attention. Today I want to declutter your mind and ask you to focus on these two simple things...

First: what is your story?

Our homes are fundamental to the way we live. They express who we are and play a central role in allowing us to live the way we want to.

Think about your life, your loves, your experiences, and how you live in your home. Every design should capture your essence and reflect who you are and your lifestyle.

“A well designed home that specifically suits you is a pleasure to live in.”
– Janita Norman, Lead Building Designer

From the outset the vision must be clear.

Knowing why you are building directly informs the design. Articulating why you are building and what you want to achieve will ensure that design is aligned with that vision.

Ask yourself:

  • Why am I building?
  • Who will live in our home?
  • How old are our kids and what do they like to do?
  • Do members of our extended family live with us or visit for long periods of time?
  • Is this our “forever home”?
  • Will the home need to adapt to changing life and family circumstances?
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