It is becoming increasingly documented that women have the greatest influence over the house buying decisions and therefore it makes sense to consider them when planning renovations.
Gender equality is slowly creeping into the domestic world, but it seems that many women still assume most of the responsibility for the day to day running of the home, cooking, cleaning and caring for children
In only the second time ever that the census has looked at the distribution of domestic labour; results showed that one half of all men do less than five hours of housework a week or none at all. While three times as many women as men spend more than 15 hours cleaning the house each week.
It is reasonable to assume that it is a good idea to take more than a passing interest in looking at measures to make the woman’s life easier.
Obviously there are always the constraints of budget and structural elements of the property but here are some tips to give you an idea of some of the measures we employ to tailoring a renovation appeal to women.
Bernadette Janson is a lover of renovating and the director of The School of Renovating. She manages a website offering tips, inspiration and training on renovating. She is an advocate for educating other renovators on how to use their passion to fund a comfortable and prosperous life and retirement.
Tip 1: Firmly establish the kitchen as the nerve centre of the home
Ensure that it is centrally located as the nucleus of the home, open plan if possible and allows for multitasking with easy access to other areas such as the laundry and living areas.
If possible have a clear line of vision over the rear garden so that the children can supervise while working in the kitchen.
Make sure it has a good hang out factor allowing for socializing to be combined with meal preparation.
Create direct access from the garage into the kitchen to make the operation unloading shopping infinitely easier.
Storage is always high on the list of priorities but consider taking the overhead cupboards in the kitchen right up to the ceiling, eliminating the need to clamber up to dust off the tops.
On one hand, the bathroom needs to be functional with enough room for a small gathering when bathing children with adequate bench space, lighting and some high level storage to keep things out of the way of little fingers.
On the other hand, for many women the bathroom is not just a place to get clean but to shut out the world and chill when the day is done.
Consider a generously proportioned bath with a flat surface close by to place candles, a book and a glass or cup of tea.
The shower recess should be generous as well with recesses for storing soaps and shampoos and a shower head that allows for showering without getting your hear wet.
The vanity should have sufficient bench space and storage for cosmetics and hair appliances such as a drier and straightener.
Finally the lighting should be versatile to allow for specialized tasks such as applying makeup. You should also be able vary the ambient lighting level for times when the soothing effects of dimmed lighting is required.
Tip 3: Focus on security
How far you go with security will depend a lot on the area but at the very minimum door and window locks that are keyed alike are a must.
If you are installing a security system, including remote control will mean the system can be easily disarmed while holding a baby or few bags of shopping.
Remote control garage doors negate the need to get out of the car in the rain or the dark and combined with external sensor lights help women to feel safer.
Installing a video intercom with a monitor in the kitchen is a geeky but a very low cost way to add to the homes security.
Obviously how you renovate your property will be governed by where you are located and the price range of your property but there are opportunities in every room in every property to add value both aesthetically and functionally so that it is desirable to your biggest market : women.