Mapping Out Your Dream Home: 4 Questions to Ask Yourself

Do you have an image in your mind of what your dream house is? Where it's located? What kind of floors it has? What shape it's in? How many cats and dogs will fill its rooms and what you'll name them (oh, maybe that's just me). I stumbled across an old magazine while cleaning my desk out the other day, and it had a great article about mapping out your dream life. But it made me think about questions to ask yourself about your dream home.

In Martha Beck's 7 Steps to Creating the Life You Really Want in the June 2012 issue (told you it was old!) of O, The Oprah Magazine, she outlines how to map out and chart the kind of life you want. She suggests making an actual map — cutting out images in magazines to tape into a collage that will show you the way. If you're not feeling particularly crafty, you don't have to whip out the glue sticks. But her article did spark these questions you could ask yourself to get closer to knowing what your dream home is — and maybe help you map out a path to getting you to your dream home.

Ask yourself these four questions this weekend:

1. What does your future dream home look like?

List out everything it has. From what shape it is, to how many rooms it has to what kind of views the kitchen window looks out to. But also include not-so-physical things, to how it makes you feel, how it motivates you and more. What it smells like when you come home. How often you fill it up with guests or whether or not you're the one doing all the DIY projects or hiring someone. I suggest splitting this question's answers into two columns: (1) what you absolutely can't live without, and (2) the features you'd be willing to budge on.

Thinking about your dream home so fully will help you better envision what you love, and knowing what you're willing to budge on will keep you from missing out on a great dream home just because it isn't "perfect."

2.What does your home have now that fits with your picture of a dream home?

Have you managed to carve out enough room for dinner parties thanks to your serious space maximizing skills? Do you love how your home makes your feel? It's good to take stock of what you love about your home now, and make sure it's on the dream home list. Focus on things that your home has now that you can take with you to another physical location — unless of course the house you're living in now is your dream home.

3.What home/design things have you always been curious about, but haven't yet explored?

Have you always dreamed of having a different bold color on every wall of your home? Or something even simpler like wanting to know how a sectional might change your lounging life? Look back up at that dream home list — are there any things you can try out right now in your current home to see if it's something you'd like in your dream home? You might be able to focus in even closer to your ideal dream home by experimenting and eliminating ideas right now!


4.What habits/personality traits do you need to work on to create your dream home?

If your dream home includes being semi-clean on a regular basis but you still don't put the energy into regularly cleaning in your current home, you know that's a habit you need to work on. Or it could be wanting to entertain more —practice now so you're a seasoned entertainer by the time you find that perfect place to call home. You know what you need to work on, so consider making the list of what to do and chipping away at it one habit at a time.

What's on your dream home list? How are you working on your path to your dream home? Share your ideas and tips below!

(Image credits: Monica Wang; Adrienne Breaux; Rachel & Brett's "Resourcefully Chic" Family Home)