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Building a Home

Custom Home Build Regrets (and Loves) 7 Years Later

Published on:


written by:

Carrie Barker


Is one of your biggest home build fears that you’ll end up with custom home build regrets that are too costly to fix? Or possibly you’re afraid you’ll make decisions that are outdated in just a few short years?

Guess what … I had the same fears as YOU! Keep reading to find out how I feel about my custom home decisions 7 years after building my house.


Fortunately (and unfortunately) I built my home in 2013 … before Pinterest, Instagram, and home design blogs were popular.

I had Houzz and home decor magazines for design inspiration. While these were great resources, the designs were a *little* (ahem, A LOT) unattainable for my budget. So I had to make a lot of design decisions on my own.

The GOOD thing about NOT having access to the latest trends all over Pinterest and Instagram (bc I didn’t know they existed) is that I made design decisions with my GUT.

I made decisions based on design and decor that I loved … not just what was floating around the internet.

I think this is the exact reason why I still LOVE my custom home 7 years after building it. I really have no major regrets about any of the decisions I made.

I chose classic finishes that are timeless and still ‘in style’ today in 2020. Of course, there are some things that I wish were a little different (e.g. my medium-dark wood floors), but the overall blueprint and design of my home will continue to make me happy for the long haul!



There are so many things I LOVE about my home … the ample natural light from our large windows, the extensive trim work throughout my home, my white kitchen, the subtle paint colors, the textured grasscloth wall coverings, my small cozy office with a large window, and my exterior selections.

While I love my choices, there are certain things I would do differently if I were to build this exact house again. These are things I can certainly live without, BUT if I were building this house again, I would want:

  • sloped ceilings in the second-floor bedrooms
  • a larger kitchen island (which = a larger kitchen)
  • to separate my laundry room and mudroom (to divide the mess that is ALWAYS in this room!)
  • to add windows in certain rooms that I didn’t think about when building
  • (probably) light oak floors and a less busy kitchen countertop (however, the light oak floors won’t be the ‘it thing’ forever … the trend will go back to dark floors … trends come and go)
  • two master closets … no more dealing with my hubby’s laundry lying right NEXT to the hamper (as opposed to IN the hamper)
  • a bonus room above our garage (this wasn’t in our budget when we built)

None of the above are exactly ‘regrets’ … they are just things I would do differently if I were building this house/floor plan again with the experience that I have now.

I know how helpful it is to learn from others who have been through the home building experience soooo I’ve created a FREE ‘Custom Home Build Prep Guide’ for YOU! This guide will start you on the right path so you can AVOID making decisions you’ll regret or going over budget once you start building!

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I designed my own custom home from the ground up, inside and out. A home that is cozy, comfy, laid out perfectly for the way my family lives, and makes us happy every single day. Oh, and did I mention I did this all without blowing the budget?! 

Yep, it’s true. I’ve been there, done that, and actually lived through it … and you will too. Pinkie promise!

a.k.a. Caroline on Design

I’m Carrie Barker.

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