The Best Use of Your Time While in Escrow on Your New Home

Design Ideas while in Escrow

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Now that you have an accepted offer to purchase your new home, you are in what is not so lovingly referred to as Escrow Hell.

I know, such a harsh term, but there are so many things happening behind the scenes while you wait for your closing date. The escrow period is usually 30 days, but can be shorter or longer depending on your situation. Why not make the best use of your time designing your new home?

Steps to Buying a House

I wanted to take this opportunity to share with you how I manage to stay motivated and excited during this process! There are a lot of things you can do while waiting in escrow.

In my last post about purchasing a home I went into how you can copy the images off of sites like Zillow.com or Realtor.com as well as when you walked through your home and took your own photos for reference. Now it is time to put those photos to use.

Getting Ideas to Decorate Your New Home

First I copied the image and pasted it into word (set layout to landscape) then resize it so it is in the upper left corner. It will look something like this:

Dining Room Design Ideas

Now you can go on Pinterest or sites like Wayfair, etc. to find pictures of how you would like your room to look. Pick out colors, design, furniture etc.

When in Pinterest I suggest that you create a board with the name of your home. For mine I just used the City name and house. That way I could refer back and add new ideas forever! Here is a link to my Pinterest Board!

When you find the ones you love,  save them to your computer and add them to the word document by pasting and resizing next to your photo as pictured above.

Now you have a page on which you can store important information. I begin mine with a shopping list. Like what I will need to purchase and what I already have. What I will need to renovate, etc.

Getting the Information You Need for Your New Home

That last step was definitely the fun part – wouldn’t you agree? Now to get to work!

You will have the ability to do a walk through before you close. Make sure you do this with your realtor! Set up a time and make sure you let the realtor know that you will be taking measurements so they know to give you enough time to do this. Be prudent though. Come prepared with your photos in hand, tape measure and flashlight.

Get to work immediately so you don’t waste time. If your significant other is with you they can walk with the realtor and ask questions you both have prepared ahead of time (another great reason for taking lot’s of pics when you first started)

On each of your design pages, write down everything you think will be important to you. Most important is to measure everything that you identified in the previous section. Walls, Openings, Doors, Windows, etc. Do this for each sheet.

The more prepared you are before you get there the easier this step will be and you most likely won’t forget to measure something important!

Examples of my design sheets

The photo above is my dining room design sheet. It is the first room when you walk in the front door so I started there. The room has existing bookcases so I went on Pinterest and searched “Dining rooms with libraries”. I found a perfect example of what it would look like as we are an avid book collector this will be an awesome space for us if we design it with the photo as a reference. 

The only thing I really needed to know in this room was the measurements of the little nook by the door. I want to put my buffet there so needed to know if it would fit. We already have a dining set so the only purchase needed in this room is a new ceiling light fixture. I do love the medallion from the inspiration photo so will also be purchasing one of those!

Pantry Design Ideas

The next thing I want to redo is the enormous double closet pantry in the hallway off the kitchen. Right now it is just full of big bulky shelves at varying positions. I know this is not ideal for me and I do have a plan in mind and that will be a future DIY post, but at the time I was contemplating using sliding barn doors. I definitely needed the measurements here so I could determine what size doors and hardware I would need.

Basement Stairs Design Ideas

Our new home has a basement and right now it is a blank canvas. I did a few photo design sheets and am showing you a sheet I made of just the pinterest photo inspirations I was looking at. I failed to take a pic of that area during the initial phase. I’m including this one so you can see the notes I jotted down that I would need to know to be sure I could possibly use these ideas. I needed to know the location of the outlets for electricity, and what was the openings and measurements under the stairs. There is also a post down there and I found this cool little table wrap around that I will be doing!

Basement Design Ideas

We have 3 1/2 baths in this house – Yay! so here is the half batch, which I always find to be challenging because of the limited space. I loved this ides of the wood shelves over the toilet and the Grey color for the walls. So here is my inspiration…

Bathroom Design Ideas

and here is the finished Makeover Step by Step!

Our initial though on the hallways was “those walls have to come down” but after looking for ideas I thought “what an excellent showplace for our art and we have plenty of it! So here is my inspiration.

Hallway Design Ideas

The kitchen area is divided into three spaces, a kitchen nook, the working kitchen and a fireplace area. It is shaped in an L. So this is my design idea or the nook area. I love the simple white table and bench and the colors. Will it stay that way? hint: no it didn’t LOL but you can see it in this post on how it turned out!

Easy DIY Kitchen Makeover

This is not the last design sheet I made, in total I have 20, but it is the last example for this post! It is the master bedroom. My sanctuary. It has to be a place that is restful to me as you enter. Aesthetics, color, accessories, etc. play an important part in making it comfy. We have a very large bathroom/closet/ dressing area there and I want to close it off with a sliding door. I want a mirror on it that will face the bathroom so it was important to get the measurements for that opening. 

Master Bedroom Design Ideas

Already loving the grey feature wall! I have a canopy iron bed that is ivory colored and will certainly pop against this grey!

In conclusion

As you can see I had lots of ideas and went to work on each and every one of them from the get go!  By the time escrow was done, I had completely designed each room, had a list of what I needed to do and to purchase so I had a great head start before we even moved a box!

The nice thing about this home purchase is that we are not moving in right away so I do have the advantage of doing all the painting and reno before we move in, but as you can see, even if we did have to move everything in right away, I am very much prepared to get busy with my plans right away!

I hope this has inspired you to stay motivated and excited about your new home during the escrow process.  Please share with me what you did or would do to stay motivated!

Comment below and ask any related questions you may have!

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