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Thanks to a variety of restrictions being put in place to help stymie the spread of the coronavirus, most of us suddenly find ourselves spending a lot more time at home. Whether you’re under state mandate to stay put or adhering to social distancing guidelines, chances are you’re seeing your home in a whole new light these days, which makes this the perfect time to rethink design.

Living and working in your home almost round the clock gives you new insight into both its ambience and its functionality. Create a Pinterest board or scrapbook, and use this time to map out a plan for future home improvements and design changes, such as the following:

Build a better home office. If you’re one of the millions around the world now working remotely, you’ve quickly figured out whether or not you’re properly equipped to conduct business from home. If you don’t already have a designated home office, consider converting an unused area in a spare bedroom or finished basement into a work space that’s outfitted with high-speed internet, the necessary technology equipment and a sufficient desk space. Choose a spot that gives you the privacy and light you’ll need.

Modernize the kitchen. For those of us who usually rely on dining out for the majority of our meals, we’re now getting to know our kitchens on a much more intimate level. As you prepare meals at home, consider whether or not your kitchen is up to par and equipped with enough cabinet space and the right appliances. Perhaps it’s time to knock down a wall and expand, or to freshen up your design scheme with paint, new flooring or a fresh backsplash. 

Improve comfort. You may have designed a magazine-worthy home, but now that you’re really living it, perhaps it’s not as comfortable as it should be. Use this time to research new, cozier furniture or treat yourself to a little online shopping and pick out some plush throws and pillows. Don’t forget a comfortable, yet sturdy, office chair for your workspace!

Step up your outdoor game. You don’t have to be a garden enthusiast or landscape pro to create a more liveable outdoor space. Having inviting access to the outdoors, while still within the confines of our home, is essential right now and great for resale value down the line. Whether it’s a high-rise balcony or a sprawling backyard, make it comfortable with the right outdoor furniture, add ambience with solar lights and/or a water feature, and beautify the area with plants and flowers.

Remember, your plans for updating design will not only help you enjoy your home in the present, it will build important equity for the future. Use this time to plan for smart investments and reap the benefits down the line.