Nautilus Architects has been awarded Best of Houzz 2013, a distinction earned by only 3% of all design professionals featured on the Houzz.com website.
When I meet with new clients, I’m interested in learning from them anything and everything that they want and need from their project. Much of this information can best be described through images, and in the past I would often receive a manila folder containing torn-out pictures from shelter magazines. “This is my dream fireplace mantel.” “I don’t know why, but I love the kitchen in this photo.” Well, Houzz takes the concept into the computer age by allowing people to do the same thing, on-line. Free of charge, Houzzers can access literally millions of images (in fact, the largest residential design database in the world), searching by style, room, element, and so on, to find inspiration or visual evidence of their ideas. The chosen images are saved in an “Ideabook,” the electronic version of the manila folder, and that information can be shared with their design professional.
For Nautilus Architects, Houzz has also proven to be a great way to meet new clients. They’ve already seen our work on the site and when they call, it’s because they love what we do: the Match.com of the design community! Last month I attended a presentation hosted by Houzz at the Boston Design Center.
Here’s what I learned:
*Over 15 million people are using Houzz.com every month:
In the next two years, 87% are planning to decorate or redecorate, 43% are planning to remodel or build an addition, 6% are planning to build a custom home
• Top projects? Bathrooms (29% planning in the next 2 years), kitchens (24%) and patio/landscape (17%)
• Also in the next two years, 63% are planning to hire a general contractor, 35% a kitchen & bath professional, 20% an interior designer, 26% an architect, 23% a landscape professional, and 36% a carpet & flooring professional
• 23% of homeowners went over budget on their last renovation project, and 33% had no budget specified at all
• 82% said improving the look/feel/flow/functionality was an important motivation behind their projects, while only 55% cited increasing home value
Creating and referencing Ideabooks on Houzz can be an excellent resource for your
project. Recently I came across an insightful Ideabook on Houzz: 10 Tips to Maximize
Your Whole-House Remodel. Here’s a sample:
Avoid the waterfall noise. Decorative waterfalls are soothing in a backyard, but not
when you hear them running through your walls. Plastic waste pipe in walls — insulated
or not — can create the very audible sound of falling water. This is not an issue when the
pipes run into an unfinished basement, but when you add a second story, those waste
lines come down through one or more main floor walls. Upgrading to cast iron waste
pipes will go a long way toward making them invisible to the ear.