Showhomes & Tools

Your Ideal Home

Your Ideal Home

When planning the design of your new home or renovation, ensure at the planning stage that your home will meet your family’s needs and wants. There are many aspects to be considered from lifestyle choices to scale and personal taste.

The easiest place to start is with a list. Write down your must haves: these are things like the number of bedrooms, sunny and light, space for a home office. Next write out your wish list: this would include extras that you would enjoy – outdoor entertaining area, swimming pool, a pizza oven. Your lists can help you prioritise your needs, while staying within your budget.

Here are a few considerations to get you started on your list:

  • What style of home do I prefer?
  • How big or small does it need to be?
  • Do I want a multi-level home?
  • What other features are important for our family?
  • Number of bedrooms?
  • Number of bathrooms?
  • Approximate budget?
    A realistic budget must be in place before proceeding into the design process. A preliminary assessment must be done to see if your design ideas are feasible. If they are not, your priority list can help you decide on what to modify or eliminate.

Lifestyle Considerations

The table below highlights some of the things you need to think about when designing your home and deciding what is a must have, what you would like, and what is not necessary:

Formal Dining Room

Living Room

Family Room

Music Room


Trophy Room

Craft/Activity Room

Laundry Room

Wet Room

Formal Entry/Foyer

Home Theatre Room

Exercise Room

Disabled Access

Home Office

Indoor Pool

Lap Pool

Spa Pool


Wine Room



Extensive Storage

Walk-in Wardrobes

Walk-in Pantry

Guest House

Pool House

Exterior Stairway

Wood Working Shop

Games/Rumpus Room

Air Conditioning

Wrap-around Deck

2/3/4 Car Garaging

Attached/Detached Garage

Garage Storage for Boat/Motor-home/Trailers/Farming Equipment



Dreams of a walk-in pantry and in-ground pool aside, it’s important not to over-extend yourself. As a quick rule of thumb, most people can comfortably afford a home that costs three times their annual household income if they have a twenty percent deposit saved and only a moderate amount of other debt. If you have no debt and have a twenty percent deposit, you can probably afford a house that’s worth four times your annual household income.

Different banks have different rules, however, and some lend differently to those building a new home (or require a higher deposit) to those buying a house that has already been built. Speak to your bank to find out their requirements. Most bank websites have mortgage calculator tools. There are also handy, easy to use calculators at and

Inspiration Resources

There are plenty of places to go for home design ideas including magazines, websites, home shows, and showhomes.

  • Visit FPB’s TOMORROW’S SHOWHOMES for examples of Future-Proof Building brought to life
  • The online version of Trends magazine offers design inspiration and articles
  • The Home Ideas Centre (located at 165 The Strand Parnell, Auckland) is a free permanent exhibition of products for building, renovating, decorating, landscaping, architecture and interior design, with over 300 exhitibitors
  • Home shows advises when and where New Zealand’s Home Show’s will be held
  • Style New Zealand is a dedicated building and decorating website
  • A room-by-room guide on what to consider when you’re designing a home or renovation can be found on the smarterhomes website:
  • The GIB Living Solutions New Home Kit also provides you with a comprehensive planning guide to coach you through the building process:

View more guides

The Design Process

The first step in the design process is to gather information and analyse information necessary... Read more.

Selecting Your Design Partner

When you are building a house you can choose to: Use an architect or designer... Read more.

Your Ideal Home

When planning the design of your new home or renovation, ensure at the planning stage... Read more.

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