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Tag: #residential
Colour Schemes that Will Completely Transform Your Bedroom

Colour Schemes that Will Completely Transform Your Bedroom

Colours affect many aspects of our existence – how relaxed we are, our concentration level and even our mood. This is why colour psychology is often taken in consideration during the execution of interior design projects. One place in the apartment that will be most heavily impacted by the selection of the right colours is the bedroom.

A bedroom is a place for relaxation, recharging our batteries and finding a refuge from the hectic everyday existence. This is one of the main reasons why professionals offering Singapore interior design services put a lot of emphasis on colour choices for the bedroom.

There are many choices to go for and each one will have its specific impact. If you’re dreaming of the perfect bedroom for your HDB apartment, you may want to think about the following colour choices.

The Psychology of Colour

Before moving on to the best residential interior design tone picks for the bedroom, let’s spend some time on the concept of colour psychology.

Colour psychology is the study of different hues and the manner in which these affect human emotions. Colour does influence our perceptions. Brighter and more aggressive colours can have an uplifting effect while pastels tend to be soothing.

While the effects of colours do vary from one person to the next one, multiple studies have been carried out to determine if the theory of colour psychology is a viable one. Numerous studies confirm similar responses to tones. Colour psychology is so powerful that the packaging decisions major corporations make are influenced by it.

The psychology of colour may have an evolutionary component. Studies suggest that most people tend to pinpoint blue and green as their favourite tones. The simple explanation for this preference is the habitat that our predecessors used to live in.

Since studies show that colours do impact moods and our levels of relaxation, the choice of the right tone for a bedroom becomes an important task.

Aqua and Pastel Blue: Serenity

In residential interior design, blue is perceived as the colour of serenity and tranquillity. This is one of the main reasons why many people prefer blue hues for their bedroom.

The coolness of ocean water and the vastness of the sky are both linked to the colour blue. As a result, most people will feel immediately soothed by it. Blue works especially well in combination with crisp white bedsheets, bedspreads and curtains.

To recreate the feeling of the beach, blue can be combined with golden tones and wooden accessories.

Neutral Colours for a Clutter-Free Bedroom

For most people in Singapore and across the world, the bedroom is a sanctuary. As such, it should be kept clean and free from external influences.

A neutral colour scheme turns the bedroom into a little island of peacefulness and serenity amid intense informational clutter and sensory overload. Some of the best tones include white, beige, brown and soft yellow or orange. These natural colours bring on a peacefulness that most of us would want to enjoy in the end of a hectic day.

Neutral colours in the bedroom do not have to be boring.

Visual appeal can easily be created through the selection of the right textures and patterns. Metallic elements are an excellent example of decorations that can stand out in a neutrally-coloured bedroom without breaking the palette.

Light Red and Pink for a Romantic Bedroom

Bright red is typically not a good choice for the bedroom because the colour is considered to be too aggressive and stimulating. As a result, an experienced interior design company in Singapore will avoid this bold shade in rooms aimed at encouraging relaxation.

Dark, deep and rich red, as well as pink shades, however, can be used to create a truly romantic atmosphere in the bedroom.

The key to making the interior pleasant here is moderation. Too much red and pink will appear garish rather than enjoyable.

These colours are great for accents. They will work really well with neutral choices like white and black. The intensity of the tones can be modified to meet personal preferences and creamier varieties will always look good.

Yellow and Sunny

Yellow and gold tones have already been mentioned as good choices for the bedroom but they can create such a cheerful environment that they deserve an individual entry.

A yellow bedroom is becoming increasingly popular in the world of trendy residential interior design.

Yellow is a colour that you can play around with. It can be bright and cheerful or a bit more subdued. It works incredibly well for people who spend many long and challenging hours at the office. Most offices are known for their sterile appearance – greys, blacks and navy blues are dominant. The bright and cheerful yellow comes in sharp contrast with these tones and it can instantly bring a smile to one’s face.

Purple for Royalty

For many centuries, purple has been recognised as the most regal colour of them own.

If you want a sophisticated and incredibly stylish bedroom, you should opt for purple hues.

Purple is suitable for elegant spaces. It’s not such a great choice for trendy, modernist and minimalist apartments (of course, experienced interior designers can create a sunning exception).

For the best possible bedroom design, combine purple with other regal tones like gold, turquoise and ruby red. Moderation is once again essential. All of these colours are bright and bold. If you overdo it, you will be entering into kitsch territory.

If you’re still hesitant and you can’t make up your mind about one colour, you’ll definitely need to get in touch with an experienced interior design team. Home Guide has decades of experience in the field of Singapore residential interior design. We have an extensive and diversified portfolio that we’re proud of and would love to share with you. Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have questions about the design of your bedroom or you’re ready to begin work on the project.

Completing an HDB Apartment Renovation on a Budget: 6 Inexpensive Ideas

Completing an HDB Apartment Renovation on a Budget: 6 Inexpensive Ideas

Statistics suggest that the average cost of a four-room HDB apartment renovation is set at 55,000 dollars (including demolition, electrical and plumbing repairs, floor changes, painting, carpentry and the purchase of new appliances).  If such extensive work isn’t going to be taking place, a project can be completed for about 15,000 dollars.

For some families, these amounts may be unachievable. Fortunately, home interior design renovation projects can be completed for less. An experienced residential interior design professional can provide suggestions aimed at giving excellent results while still maintaining a tight budget.

Smart Shopping

One and the same thing could come with significant price differences from one store to the other. Whether you’re looking for fixtures, electrical switches or paint, you should always explore the multiple possibilities that the market has to offer.

Smart shopping does require time and research but in the end, it will save a lot of money.

It’s a good idea to look at products side by side and explore their characteristics. Once you pinpoint the one you’re interested in, look at different retailers and compare their prices. While the differences could be insignificant for certain product categories, other home renovation supplies may cost a lot less when you opt for a specific supplier.

You should also look for discounts and promotional deals. Home renovation suppliers may offer such opportunities on occasions and these will be worth waiting for.

Finally, ask your HDB interior design Singapore professional for a recommendation. Interior designers work with various suppliers and they know how the prices compare. You will get information about the items worth purchasing and the amount you should be prepared to spend on those.

Unfinished and Minimalist Interiors

The scope of the home renovation will be the one factor that’s most determining for the overall cost.

Let your designer know what you’re looking for and how much you can spend on it. Based on this information, they will work on a concept that satisfies the criteria.

Unfinished and minimalist executions tend to be less expensive than more ornate interior renovations. Exposed bricks, for example, eliminate the need for painting and hiring people to do such finishing work.

A minimalist or unfinished interior is also going to be trendy and fairly easy to maintain. These are added benefits that have practical appeal and that will also decrease the cost of freshening things up or cleaning the property.

Reuse and Repurpose

So many old items and supplies can be utilised effectively in the execution of a new project.

Reusing and repurposing is good for the environment, as well as for your wallet. Just think about all of the possible old supplies you can turn in your own furniture. A simple crate can become a coffee table. Storage units and shelves are also easy to make from scratch.

If demolition has to take place, old bricks and other construction materials can be preserved and turned into something new.

Be creative and inventive. Older tiles, wood, slates and glass are materials that can be used time and time again without losing any of their durability or integrity. Even if old tiles have lost some of their original impeccable appeal, they can be renovated and restored. Once again – your interior designer will provide suggestions for such materials and the professionals to hire for the restoration project.

Invest in Fixtures and Other Conservation Products

Sometimes, spending a bit more on the renovation can help you save a lot of money in the long run. This is something to keep in mind when making the calculation.

Water conservation features, window panels that maintain a constant temperature and energy efficient appliances will reduce your utility bills. You will save money on water and electricity and the investment will pay itself off in a relatively short period of time.

If you can, do spend a bit more on energy efficient and conservation options. They are more expensive than their regular counterparts but there’s a reason why. Online calculators can be used for the purpose of determining how much money you’re going to save. Do the math and base the final purchase on this calculation.

If You Can’t Replace it – Hide it!

Even when you really want to carry out a thorough HDB apartment renovation, current finances could make such a project impossible to carry out.

Smart design can be used to hide the things you cannot modernise.

An old sofa can easily be covered with cushions or it can be reupholstered. This way, you will eliminate the need for a new purchase and you will still get a pretty fresh item. The same rule applies to all other old items. An old photo frame can be painted or lacquered. Such a modification will preserve the item in good condition and also improve its appearance.

Art and accessories are excellent tools. These, however, should be used sparingly. Otherwise, you’ll end up having a lot of visual clutter that will take away from the cosiness of the overall execution.

Change the Ambiance with Lighting and Fixtures

Adding new lights to rooms can immediately transform their appearance.

Lighting projects rank among the relatively inexpensive renovations. Even if you have to purchase new fixtures, these will cost a fraction of what other supplies are charged for. In addition, there are dozens of possibilities to explore. These make it easy to bring any interior design concept to reality.

Just like in the case of smart appliances, you can shop for energy efficient light bulbs. These are a bit more expensive but they last a longer period of time and they will also reduce your electricity consumption.

HDB interior design can be modified in a few simple steps. To accomplish such a goal, however, you will have to rely on the right professional team.

Home Guide is an interior design company in Singapore committed to understanding your needs, your ideas and the parameters of the project. Based on this information, we will determine a personalised solution that will be just right for your HDB home. Contact us today to find out more.

7 Creative Backsplash Ideas for Your Kitchen

7 Creative Backsplash Ideas for Your Kitchen

The backsplash in the kitchen is highly functional but its aesthetic appeal should also be considered. After all, this is a relatively large surface that will affect the appearance of the whole kitchen. It should fit the interior design concept you’ve chosen for your Singapore HDB apartment and it should also pop on its own.

There are dozens of possibilities when it comes to backsplash design. To choose one option or the other, you should focus on your budget and on the practical considerations linked to the selection of every single material.

Make it Bigger

The traditional backsplash is located behind the kitchen countertop and it reaches the cabinets. To shake things up a little bit, you can have a backsplash that goes up to the ceiling.

In a sense, you will be creating an accent wall that will be different from the others in the kitchen. Making this project happen is all about contrast and choosing colours/textures that are completely different.

The shiny tiled surfaces will be a nice contrast to matte, painted walls. The same applies to metallic shine or ceramics. You can even have an entire backsplash that features a mosaic pattern. A bigger surface will allow you to carry out a more elaborate project. An entire wall in the kitchen can effortlessly be transformed into a work of art by your interior designer.

Exposed Brick

Exposed brick is an essential component of industrial interior design. Its use in the kitchen, however, is not that common.

Having a kitchen backsplash made of exposed bricks or a material that is painted to resemble the appearance of brick will once again enable you to achieve the visual contrast all great interior design solutions need.

You can get a similar result by going for bare, unfinished stone. There’s no need for the addition of varnish or coating on it. A glossy film will take away from the authenticity of the material. Natural stone comes in many colours and the textures will vary. This is a perfect choice for a rustic rather than industrial kitchen.

A Metallic Backsplash

Stainless steel and other metals are preferred in the kitchen. They are easy to clean and maintain in an ideal condition. In addition, metallic surfaces are very long-lived and their appearance will remain unchanged through the years.

Metallic finishes are glossy and bright. They will reflect light if you have recessed bulbs placed underneath the cabinets for the purpose of illuminating the kitchen countertop. The same thing applies to mirrored backsplashes – another popular trend in kitchen design.

If you don’t want actual stainless steel on the countertop, you can opt for kitchen tiles that have a metallic finish. When made from quality materials, these tiles resemble actual metal. They will look expensive and sophisticated, just ask your Singapore interior design service provider for a product recommendation.

Patterns and Shapes

Can you imagine a backsplash made entirely of wine bottle corks? It looks beautiful and elaborate. This, however, isn’t the only option if you want a pattern or an interesting shape behind the countertop.

Tiles in different colours are also a great choice to “paint” on the kitchen wall. The shapes and graphic elements can be simple (geometric shapes) or elaborate. The smaller the tiles, the more you can accomplish in terms of pattern complexity.

Graphic prints on vinyl are also becoming popular. The material is waterproof and durable. It can be wiped clean and it will remain in tip-top condition for many years to come. If you want to be extra-bold in terms of kitchen design, this is the one option to pursue.

Glass Tile Backsplash

Glass tiles are gaining prominence as a material for the creation of kitchen backsplashes. There are several reasons why.

Glass tiles are a great choice for classic black and white kitchens. They will once again create contrast – you already know its importance in the field of interior design.

Just like other materials that make sense for the kitchen, glass tiles are long-lived and easy to maintain. All that you have to do is wipe them clean regularly and you’ll enjoy their unchanged appearance for years.

Be Even More Elaborate

You don’t consider the backsplash the best and most elaborate choice for your kitchen? Luckily, there are other ornate projects you can execute.

You’ve probably seen the penny flooring videos that went viral on almost all social media. The exact same concept can be used for the creation of a one of a kind backsplash.

A backsplash made of coins benefits from the metallic shine and from the small size of every single component. Patterns can be formed, especially if you alternate between different kinds of coins.

The addition of a finishing coat is essential for such projects to seal the coins in place and to simplify the cleaning of the backsplash.

Engraved Marble

This backsplash project is more expensive but it will guarantee you a dazzling outcome.

Engraved marble backsplashes can be personalised as much as you want them to be. A pattern is easy to engrave in the natural material. The same applies to text or even a picture.

Laser etching allows for the carving of patterns into the hard stone. This way, you can have images or slogans of personal significance in your kitchen.

Sky is the limit when it comes to kitchen interior design and countertop selection. You may want to look for inspiration online or talk to your interior designer for the purpose of getting suggestions. A professional in the field will base the recommendations on your budget, preferences and the overall interior design concept you have in mind.

Are you ready to begin transforming your kitchen? If so, don’t hesitate contacting the Home Guide team. We have worked with multiple Singapore apartment owners with their home interior design projects and personalisation is our primary goal. We’ll work hard to learn what your dream home looks like and to bring it to reality.

Can You Extend the Interior Design Renovation to Your Balcony?

Can You Extend the Interior Design Renovation to Your Balcony?

Are you a perfectionist? If so, you want every little element in your apartment to be flawless. The desire will certainly expand to exterior spaces like the balcony. There are things you can do to enhance its appearance and turn it into a pleasant spot for your morning coffee or for a quiet book reading session in the afternoon.

An experienced Singapore interior design company knows what it takes to offer comprehensive residential solutions. The balcony can be transformed into a number of ways and here are a few suggestions that will help you accomplish the transformation you’re looking for.

Make the Railings Functional and Beautiful

The balcony railings are very important because they maximise safety. This is a primary concern and certain standards have to be followed by builders for the purpose of choosing the right railings.

The providers of interior design services can help you transform the standard balcony railings in a couple of great ways. The attachment of flower pots or containers is one of the simplest and most cost-efficient possibilities. Adding greenery to the protective hardware on your balcony will instantly make you feel like you’re spending time in your own little outdoor haven.

If you have young kids and the railings aren’t high or effective enough, you may want to also consider design changes. Some people decide to close off the balcony entirely. It’s up to you to determine whether you’d like to have an additional room-like space or if an open balcony is a better idea.

An Outdoor Bar? A Space with a Purpose?

Most balcony spaces are not utilised for a certain purpose. It really doesn’t have to be this way. If you have an idea for the creation of a certain outdoor space, you should definitely go for it.

A trendy interior design concept right now is the creation of a balcony bar.

All that you have to do is opt for a countertop that’s positioned right next to the railing. Bar stools or comfortable chairs will complete the picture. Obviously, the aim of this creation is to make as much use as possible of the cityscape.

If you are not certain that this is the sole purpose you’d like to use the balcony for, you can have temporary and removable bartending equipment.

Alternatively, turn the balcony into a vegetable and herb garden. The size of the space will obviously be determining for the types of plants you could grow. Make sure that the interior designer is aware of the idea. A professional interior designer will look at the space to think of the best arrangement and making the most of the terrace that your apartment has.

Increasing the Privacy

While balconies can be transformed in so many cool ways, some HDB apartment owners worry about their privacy. After all, everything taking place on the terrace will be visible for the entire neighbourhood to observe.

Interior design choices can be made for the purpose of boosting privacy.

Outdoor plants are once again the easiest and most inexpensive option to go for. An entire curtain can be crafted out of strategically-placed greenery. On top of giving you privacy, plants are also an excellent choice for climate control. They will shade the balcony from the sun and even keep the apartment cooler during the hot summer months.

Balcony shutters may also be chosen as a more practical, year-round solution.

Shutters and screens come in all shapes and sizes. They can be crafted of various materials, which means that they’ll serve a certain purpose and they will also look good. Ask your designer about such an option to gain more insight into the types of shutters and how they’re going to fit in your balcony concept.

Choose the Right Furniture

The perfect apartment outdoor space is equipped with comfortable furniture for relaxation.

You may want to invest in a beautiful coffee table, a couple of chairs or lounges and even a sofa. Once again, the space will be determining for the size and the placement of furniture.

While such pieces will be taken inside or covered for storage, they should still be somewhat weather-resistant. Materials like glass, metal and even rattan are preferred for outdoor furniture because of their durability.

The ease of maintenance of outdoor furniture is another important consideration. It’s best to opt for streamlined pieces that don’t have too many ornaments. Such items will be much easier to wash and maintain clean. Storage will also be simplified when furniture isn’t too bulky. If you can find foldable chairs and tables that you like, you will be even happier when the time comes to bring everything inside.

Don’t Be Afraid to Experiment!

Even if your idea appears to be too out there, you shouldn’t be afraid to pursue it.

Who says you cannot have an outdoor gym on the terrace of your Singapore apartment. All that you have to do is choose a treadmill, a fitness station or a bike that’s conveniently sized. If you think this is the perfect spot to exercise in, you should definitely consider the realisation of the idea.

Picking the right Singapore home interior design company to work on the execution with you will also be important. Look for a team that is creative and forward-thinking. A company’s portfolio can shed a lot of light on whether these professionals can bring your idea to reality.

Take your time to do some research and once you shortlist a few experts, carry out a test consultation and ask all of the questions you have about outdoor space design.

Home Guide is a team that has decades of experience in the field of Singapore residential interior design. We are not afraid to experiment, work hard and perfect the vision our clients have. If you want a modern, unique apartment that also features a beautiful balcony, contact us today to get the process started.

A Functional and Environment-Friendly Bathroom: Here’s How to Accomplish the Goal

A Functional and Environment-Friendly Bathroom: Here’s How to Accomplish the Goal

A green home has pretty much become the norm today. Sustainable remodelling shows that you care about the environment, it gives you a comfortable living space and it can also help you reduce some types of expenditure.

Singapore interior design professionals should have enough knowledge and experience in the field to help you carry out the project you have in mind. When it comes to bathroom remodelling for your HDB apartment, there are several simple tips you can follow in order to get the most sustainable and practical outcome.

Fixtures, Toilets and Water Control Accessories

The first and the most obvious thing to do is to change all fixtures with new pieces that help for the conservation of water.

Did you know that the toilet is the one piece that contributes to approximately 27 per cent of the water consumption in your home? Because of this fact, the selection of the right toilet can make a huge difference.

Low-flow models are becoming quite popular because they deliver a powerful flush while using a smaller amount of water. It’s even better if the low-flow toilet has a dual flusher for the purpose of giving you additional control over the amount of water being used.

Low-flow shower heads, motion sensor faucets and getting rid of the bathtub can also help you conserve water. The interior design company in Singapore you are working with will recommend the right fixtures and accessories on the basis of the bathroom concept you have in mind. There’s no reason to worry – environment-friendly faucets and fixtures come in many shapes and sizes to fit inside every home interior design concept you may have in mind.

A Functional and Environment-Friendly Bathroom with high tech toilet bowl

Choose the Right Tiles

Residential interior design projects do focus a lot on flooring. In terms of bathroom design, the right floor and wall material will deliver both aesthetic and practical benefits (ease of maintenance and cleaning, waterproof characteristics to prevent the accumulation of moisture and the growth of mould, etc.).

An environmentally-conscious bathroom should best feature ceramic tiles.

Ceramic tiles are very long lived. They cannot be damaged by the moisture, they will not fade or crack. As a result, you will postpone the next bathroom remodelling by a couple of years. Needless to say, fewer renovations create less waste.

Some ceramic tile factories do rely on green practices for the purpose of reducing the environmental effect of manufacturing. Experienced interior design service providers in Singapore can recommend such brands if sustainability is one of your biggest priorities.

Reducing Your Energy Bills through Smart Interior Design Right Flooring Like Marble

Environment-Friendly Lights for the Bathroom

Good home interior design aims to minimise electricity consumption. Lights form a large portion of the utility bill, especially if an old-school possibility is used instead of an environment-friendly one.

Bathroom lights can be chosen for the purpose of sustainability. One of the easiest things to do is to opt for energy-efficient light bulbs.

LED lights are a great choice for the bathroom of your apartment. The colour choices have improved over the past few years and today, LEDs are available in warm tones (if this is your option of preference). What’s even more important – LED light bulbs consume approximately 80 per cent less electricity than some old lightbulb varieties.

If you are going for a more extensive remodelling project, you may want to consider ways that will bring more natural light into the bathroom.

The use of lights contributes to approximately 40 per cent of the electricity bill in an average household. The addition of windows, skylights and sun tunnels to the bathroom could give you natural light, rendering the use of lightbulbs during the day obsolete.

A Functional and Environment-Friendly Bathroom - Lighting choices

Natural Materials for the Win

Clients looking for a sustainable design will opt for the services of Singapore interior design companies that choose natural materials and items that can eventually be recycled.

A stainless steel bathtub is one example of a bathroom item made of a sustainable material. These tubs are incredibly resilient and long-lived. Some manufacturers of stainless steel products for the bathroom give their clients a 30-year warranty due to the hardiness and the longevity.

Acrylic and fiberglass accessories that are damaged and thrown away will typically end up in the landfill. Stainless steel and other natural materials can easily be recycled or repurposed. If you want to include long-term considerations in your bathroom remodelling plan, you should definitely pay attention to the materials being used.

A Functional and Environment-Friendly Bathroom - Natural Materials

Don’t Forget to Use Environment-Friendly Products

Having an eco bathroom isn’t just about the right remodelling. The manner in which you use this room will also be determining for its environmental impact.

Once you get your new, trendy and sustainable bathroom, you’ll have to choose the products that you’re going to use on a daily basis. Be smart about the selection.

Bath towels, detergents, soaps, shower gels, shampoos, toothbrushes – all of these bathroom staples could be chosen for the purpose of protecting nature. Here’s a simple example – you don’t need a plastic toothbrush that will be discarded in a few months. Instead, opt for a toothbrush made from bamboo and natural fibres.

Choose the Right Interior Design Team for Your Project

If you believe in nature preservation, you should definitely look for an interior design team that shares similar ethical considerations. This is the best way to make sure that your home remodelling project will be carried out to meet all of your requirements.

Take some time to explore different possibilities and compare them side by side.

Home Guide’s team has been around for decades and we have extensive experience in the execution of a vast array of projects. We believe that extensive communication with clients is of paramount importance for ensuring satisfaction with the outcome. We will listen and we will work hard to bring every single vision to reality.

Are you ready to begin working on your green, functional and comfortable bathroom? Don’t hesitate to contact us today or take a look at our portfolio to get a better idea about our style and the types of work that we do.

Do You Need to Obtain a HDB Permit for the Renovation Work You Plan to do?

Do You Need to Obtain a HDB Permit for the Renovation Work You Plan to do?

Getting started with a home interior design project is really exciting but you have to be careful to refrain from breaking the rules. The Singapore Housing and Development Board has certain requirements as far as apartment remodelling goes. Certified and licensed Singapore interior design professionals are aware of these legislative requirements and they can shed more light on the terms and conditions.

HDB Renovation and Remodelling Rules: An Overview

The most important prerequisite to keep in mind is that you need to hire a HDB Registered Renovation Contractor for all of the remodelling work you plan to do on the apartment. Your interior design company in Singapore can give you recommendations about contractors that can do a good job.

As far as a few specialised remodelling projects go, you may also have to look for licensed and certified experts. Some of these include:

  • A plumber licensed by the Singapore water department if the project will involve change or substation of pipes
  • For sanitary work, you will have to hire plumbers registered with the Singapore Plumbing Society
  • Window replacement contractors should also be HDB-licensed
  • The Energy Market Authority is the one that licenses and certifies electrical installation professionals

Apart from opting for contractors that are certified by the right authority, you may also have to acquire a permit for the remodelling of your HDB apartment. The HDB Guidelines for Building and Sanitary Work provide additional information about the instances in which a permit has to be sought.

Even if a HDB permit is not required to commence the execution, you will still have to adhere to the HDB guidelines for interior design changes and property renovations. Otherwise, work will be counted as unauthorised. Unauthorised projects have to be discontinued and the changes will need to be reverted.

If you carry out unauthorised work or you don’t obtain a permit in cases when such is essential, it’s also possible to face an administrative fine. The sanction will be in the range from 100 to 600 dollars and it will depend both on the nature and the scope of the work.

Types of Work Requiring an HDB Permit

Working with a licensed HDB interior design Singapore professional will be imperative to make sure you’re adhering to all administrative requirements. Your interior designer will take a deeper look at the scope of work you plan to have done. Based on your idea, the designer will let you know whether you will need to apply for a HDB permit.

There are several kinds of interior design and remodelling work necessitating the permission of the Housing and Development Board. Here’s a breakdown:

  • Flooring: the flooring projects that cannot be carried out without HDB approval include taking out the existing flooring and installing new and slightly increasing the height of the floors in the kitchen and the bathroom. There are also guidelines applying to projects that don’t require the HDB permission. The total thickness of the floor finish, for example, cannot exceed 50 millimetres.
  • Changing door locations: you cannot change the position of a door in the apartment without coordinating such remodelling projects with the HDB first. This is essential to ensure the right placement (for example, you cannot tear down a structural pillar for the purpose of changing the position of a door).
  • Archway creation: just like changing the placement of a door, you can’t tear down a wall to create an archway without the approval of the Housing and Development Board. There are also guidelines for the work. The demolition of walls has to begin from the ceiling and the workers should move down afterwards.
  • Railing replacement: to get rid of outdated railing and add something a bit more contemporary to the apartment, you will need to get an HDB permit and you’ll also need the approval of the Building and Construction Authority (BCA).
  • The replacement and installation of windows: the need for a permit applies to all windows in the apartment, except for the internal ones. Apart from needing a permit, you’ll also have to follow replacement guidelines. These refer to the size, the tint and the colour of the glass. The sliding should also be chosen to resemble that of the original window in the HDB apartment.
  • Bathroom expansion: if your bathroom is tiny and you’d like to maximise the area, you will need to get a permit for the expansion.
  • Bathroom walls and floors: if you are moving in a brand new HDB apartment, you do not have the right to change the bathroom finishes in the first three years. New HDB apartments feature some waterproofing in the bathroom. This is the main reason why requests for changing the flooring and the wall tiles will typically be turned down.

How to Comply with HDB Requirements and Carry Out Successful Apartment Remodelling

The restrictions mentioned above are not the only ones imposed by the HDB. In fact, you can easily get lost in the renovation guidelines and requirements. There are standards for every single change that you may want to do. As a result, be prepared to deal with the administrative processes before moving on to the actual work.

It is very important to hire HDB-licensed interior design professionals. These interior designers know the guidelines and the restrictions by heart. They’ll consult you about what’s possible and how certain aspects of the project should be modified for the purpose of ensuring HDB compliance.

The Home Guide team consists of HDB-certified interior designers who have extensive experience in apartment remodelling and upgrades. We know what it takes to meet all requirements and give you a dream home without breaking the rules.

If you have questions about the HDB standards and about freshening up your apartment, contact us right now. We will do our best to answer all of your questions and provide relevant information to enable the initiation of renovation work as soon as possible.

Designing a Beautiful Cinema Room in Your Apartment

Designing a Beautiful Cinema Room in Your Apartment

New technology is making it possible for property owners to get the ultimate multimedia experience at home. If you are a cinema fan, you certainly want to experience big screen quality in your Singapore apartment. The providers of professional interior design services can help you accomplish the goal.

A cinema room can certainly have a positive impact on home interior design. A few essentials will have to be met to increase comfort and ensure the viewing pleasure of occupants.

Choose the Right Room and Materials

The interior design process will begin with the selection of the right room. Both the size and the shape of the space will impact the quality of the audio and the video. Your choice of home cinema equipment will also be dependent on the specifics of the room.

For best results, you will need to set up the home cinema in a square room. Rectangular rooms have been known to distort audio quality. A true audiophile will be bugged by the distortion, so don’t hesitate to allocate a rectangular room for the purpose.

Rooms that don’t have many windows are also a good choice. Windows allow light in, plus the sound will reflect off the hard surfaces. If there are windows in the cinema room, these should definitely be covered with thick curtains.

The wall material is the final essential to examine. Concrete poses problems. Drywall is a much better alternative. There is really no need to invest in special panels created for home cinemas but if you want an impeccable experience, you can certainly do that.

Choosing the right room and materials for a cinema room

Colour and Light

Now that a room is chosen for the upcoming interior design project, it’s time to focus on light and colour.

Since windows are either a few or non-existent, your Singapore interior design company is not going to be bothered with natural light. Bold colour choices will create an atmospheric place in the house that will make it easier for you to be taken to another world each time you watch a movie or listen to a concert.

Dark colours are a good choice. Not only will they affect the ambiance, they will maximise contrast to enhance the viewing experience. Blacks, purples and dark reds are all excellent choices for a home cinema.

Some interior designers will suggest picking wallpaper rather than just painting the rooms. This is a good approach because it will keep the sound from reflecting off the hard surfaces.

As far as light is concerned, you have several choices. Lights are not going to be needed while you are watching the film. If you plan to spend more time in the cinema room before or after viewing a movie, however, you will need lights that will enhance the mood.

Recessed lighting that is custom-made for your project tends to be the best choice.

There will be no large fixtures to stand in the way. In addition, recessed lights allow for dozens of configurations. Recessed lights can be used on the walls, the ceiling and even the floor. The arrangement is limited solely by your imagination.

Choosing the right colours and light for your cinema room

Place the Screen Correctly

One another essential you will have to deal with is the placement of the screen, the audio equipment and the furniture in your Singapore HDB apartment cinema room.

Cinema rooms typically feature a huge screen that replicates the cinema experience. It should, however, be appropriate for the respective space. If the screen is way too big and you are sitting close to it, you will find it impossible to take the big picture in.

There are many guides you can use for the purpose of choosing the right screen size on the basis of the available space. Once you make that choice, you will have to determine where exactly the TV is going to be located.

A general rule of thumb is to make the screen height approximately a third of the distance from the TV to the seats. The optimal vertical viewing angle is considered to be in the range from 15 to 20 degrees. The wall on which a TV screen is mounted should not get any direct light.

If you plan to use a projector, another approach may be getting a matte white wall and using that as a screen. Ask your interior designer whether the apartment’s walls allow for the execution of such a project. This is as authentic as a home cinema can get.

Correct Scrren Placement for a great cinema room

Sound Considerations

Finally, you will have to determine the sound consideration. It will depend on the placement of the speakers, their size and power and even the type of flooring.

Carpets are best for cinema rooms. Once again, they prevent the reflection of sound from hard surfaces – a problem that leads to audio distortion.

As far as placement goes, the standard arrangement is for three speakers and a woofer have to be positioned in the front part of the room. Two more speakers will either be located to the sides or behind the viewers. Such an arrangement creates the best possible surround sound.

All that will be left in the end is doing the right speaker configuration.

Sound setup is important for a cinema room

Interior Design Experience Matters for the Perfect Cinema Room

Cinema rooms pose many challenges. The interior design has to be functional and there is a lot of technology in the picture.

Interior designers that have enough experience and at least some understanding of audio and video equipment will help you create the ultimate cinema space in your home.

Do not underestimate the importance of the right Singapore interior design company. Take your time, do some research and ask questions. The role of the interior designer is even bigger for people who haven’t set up a multimedia room in the past.

The Home Guide Interior design team is here to help you and address all of your concerns. Contact us today and let us know what you’re looking for. We will do our best to come up with a custom solution that meets all of your requirements.

The Perfect Home Office: 5 Design Tips for Your Singapore Apartment

The Perfect Home Office: 5 Design Tips for Your Singapore Apartment

The home office is gaining more and more prominence. Standard employment practices are being revolutionized. The nine to five routine no longer works for many businesses, which is why telecommuting and freelancing opportunities are on the rise.

Interior design in Singapore is becoming increasingly concerned with these new trends. Transforming at least one room in an HDB apartment into a home office turns up as a request to interior design professionals more and more frequently. A good home office is based on a couple of interior design principles. Its primary purpose is to be a functional space that makes it easy to control distractions and to engage in professional activities for a large portion of the day.

Designing the perfect home office is obviously dependent on individual preferences but a few general tips will apply every single time.

A Lot of Natural Light

Multiple studies suggest that exposure to natural light will boost workplace productivity.

The best room for a home office as far as residential HDB interior design in Singapore is concerned happens to be light and it should feature multiple windows. A white or light-coloured interior will maximise brightness. The largest surfaces in the room like the walls and the ceiling should feature light tones and neutrals like white, beige, cream and even light blue.

Contrast can be achieved through the use of dark-tone furniture. A darker wooden desk will stand out in the bright room, creating some visual interest without taking away from the functionality of the light walls.

The Perfect Home Office: 5 Design Tips for Your Singapore Apartment Natural Light

Choose the Right Furniture

Many home owners who want to design a beautiful office commit a key mistake – they opt for furniture that is trendy rather than functional.

A home office is a place where a person will spend a lot of time. Sitting in front of the computer can be physically challenging, especially if a chair and a desk are not picked for the purpose of functionality and ergonomics.

The right height of the desk is the key to maintaining an optimal head and neck position. The right chair should provide enough back support. Going for pieces that look good and please the eye is obviously important. Support, functionality and an ergonomic design, however, happen to be even more crucial.

The same rule should be applied to the selection of shelves, document cabinets, storage units and chairs. Needless to say, a home office can have a beautiful and comfy sofa for relaxation purposes. It can also be equipped with decorative and artistic pieces that give it soul and spirit. This isn’t the typical workplace cubicle and it can be a bit more relaxed in terms of execution. Still, functionality should be guiding and it should be dealt with before you turn to the more creative side of things.

The Perfect Home Office: 5 Design Tips for Your Singapore Apartment - The Right furniture

Privacy is Another Main Concern

Residential interior design typically creates a wonderful shared space that the family will spend wonderful moments in. When a home office is being created, however, privacy should be a primary concern.

The home office should enable a person to distance themselves from family, kids, pets and the typical household distractions. The choice of the right location in the home is one of the biggest essentials when it comes to creating a space that’s conductive of productivity.

A divider wall that doubles as a bookcase and screens placed strategically can be utilised to boost privacy in an apartment that features open spaces. When necessary, an interior designer may also suggest the placement of a door that will isolate the space and shut it off from the rest of the house.

Will Meetings Be Taking Place at the Home Office?

A home interior design professional will also want to know whether professional meetings are going to be taking place in the home office.

A home office that doubles as a conference room will need to be roomier. It will also have to feature furniture like a larger table, comfortable chairs and even a screen or a whiteboard for the purpose of carrying out presentations.

Most self-employed individuals and telecommuters do not have such needs as meetings occur in the office itself. Small business owners and entrepreneurs, however, will definitely have to explore this possibility.

The Perfect Home Office: 5 Design Tips for Your Singapore Apartment - Home Office Meeting

Finishing Touches

Now that the essentials are taken care of, it is time to give the Singapore home office a bit of personality.

The goal can be accomplished in many ways.

The use of art is one of the simplest options when it comes to making a home office brighter and more appealing. Favourite paintings, pictures, posters and prints are all great picks. The same applies to plants that will give the space a bit of a homey feel.

If there is a relaxation corner, it can benefit from a few throw rugs or colourful pillows.

Family photos are another obvious. They can either be organised on the desk or they can be turned into a giant wallpaper that will serve as a source of inspiration.

Your Home Office Could Be Determining for Business Success

You should not leave the design of your home office to chance. Being serious about your workspace is one of the prerequisites for successful engagement in professional activities and business development.

Choosing the right Singapore interior design company for the job is one of the best ways to ensure the quality of the outcome. For this purpose, you will need to look for professionals having a lot of experience who get your idea and who will bring it to reality.

Home Guide has an enthusiastic, knowledgeable team that has worked on dozens of residential and commercial projects throughout Singapore. We know what it takes to make a home office functional while also maintaining the cosy feel of this space. Please do not hesitate to contact us today and let us know what type of project execution you’re looking forward to.

Effective Storage Solutions in a Small HDB Flat

Effective Storage Solutions in a Small HDB Flat

Improving the interior of a small HDB flat without making it look cramped is going to pose certain challenges. This is especially true for individuals who have multiple belongings and who need a significant amount of storage space.

Smart interior design in Singapore is about functionality and overcoming such typical challenges. The right HDB interior design Singapore company will have suggestions that will lead to the effective creation of additional storage space without producing clutter.

Multi-Purpose Furniture

This one is a no-brainer – multi-purpose furniture is an excellent choice for a small HDB flat.

The market features numerous beds that come with a storage drawer underneath, sofas that have the same features and cabinets that double as tables and even beds. Choosing the right smart furniture is entirely dependent on the amount of space.

Under-bed storage can actually provide as much space as a small closet. At the same time, the number of furniture pieces in the bedroom will be reduced to make it appear roomier.

There are even loft beds that transform into walk-in closets. Sky is the limit when it comes to transformative furniture pieces. If you can’t find a certain idea on the market, you can easily have it custom-made. Set the budget in advance and let your interior designer know. This right interior design professional has an extensive knowledge of the furniture market. Based on this information, you’ll get multiple suitable suggestions to pick among.

Effective Storage Solutions in a Small HDB Flat - Bed with Storage

Making Use of Places That Cannot Be Utilised in Any Other Way

Certain spots in the HDB flat cannot be utilised in any way. If you have a staircase, for example, you can turn the space under it into a storage area – that is if you lucky enough to own a HDB executive maisonette. The same applies to the spaces above doors, the corners, the space underneath the bathroom sink.

Spots that typically remain empty can carry shelves and cabinets. These may have to be custom-made but you will get extra storage space without taking away from the roominess of the interior.

For best results, you may want to opt for minimalist bare shelves. While these give you a chance to store certain items, they aren’t as bulky as cabinets. Such simple and minimalist shelves/storage solutions are becoming increasingly trendy.

Effective Storage Solutions in a Small HDB Flat - Storage under the sink

Vertical Rather Than Horizontal Storage

This is another important interior design principle for small apartments. When rooms are relatively tiny, you should look for vertical rather than horizontal storage solutions.

Stacking shelves on top of each other is the simplest example of this approach. Floor space is limited but the wall can be used from top to bottom. Shelves can span the entire height, especially if the wall is not utilised in any other way.

The same applies to cabinets and other storage solutions. You can fill those with items but you can also make use of the space on top of them. Storing something on top of a cabinet or a closet is an easy task (just go for items that you will not need too often because the retrieval may be challenging). Alternatively, a shelf or a cabinet can be put on top of the closet to make use of the full height of the storage area.

Effective Storage Solutions in a Small HDB Flat - Vertical Storage

A Two in One Closet/Room Divider

Interior design professionals know that the use of separators can create more intimate spaces. They can also be utilised to isolate a certain part of the flat from another. If such dividers are to be used, they can double as storage spaces.

A stand-alone closet can be put in the middle of the bedroom to create some privacy, especially if there are multiple occupants. Such custom-made pieces act as movable screens. They can be moved around to an area where they are required and they also have some storage space inside.

In a sense, such pieces are similar to multi-purpose furniture. Instead of having two functions, however, they have one function and they also act as a part of the interior design.

Clever room dividers can be painted in beautiful colours to create visual appeal and they do not have to be intimidatingly large in order to accomplish both goals. Talk to your Singapore interior design company about it and the two of you will determine whether the particular solution is a good one.

Effective Storage Solutions in a Small HDB Flat - Divider and Storage 2 in one

Using the Ceiling for Storage – Is That Even Possible?

There isn’t enough storage space on the floor of your HDB apartment? In such instances, you may want to turn your attention to the ceiling.

Ceiling storage is a real thing. Various companies already manufacture ceiling storage units and these can also be custom-created on order.

Bikes can be ceiling mounted to take up less space. The same applies to floating shelves for document archives and family memorabilia you don’t need to take out too often. Additional bedroom supplies like pillows, sheets and blankets can also be ceiling stored.

Functional Small Apartment Design Has to Be Smart

Working with the right Singapore interior design company on the creation of additional storage space for your small apartment will yield the result you are hoping for.

An interior design professional will take a look at the flat, the number of rooms and the area. The specifics of the interior space will also be taken in consideration to determine which storage solution will produce the best outcome.

In addition, an interior designer can use several approaches alongside each other for the creation of the most additional storage space. These are just some of the reasons why partnering up with an experienced team on the execution of the task makes so much sense.

The Home Guide team understands the specific characteristics of small HDB flats. We have worked on multiple such projects in the past and we’re confident in our ability to transform your living space. Just take a look at our portfolio to find out more about our work and style.

If you are ready to transform your HDB flat, you should get in touch with us today! We’ll be more than happy to get to know you better and to suggest the interior design improvements that will help you meet your goals.

Reducing Your Energy Bills through Smart Interior Design

Reducing Your Energy Bills through Smart Interior Design

Utility bills can easily add up to a large sum. One of the best ways to control the expenditure is to do smart and sustainable home changes. The right interior design company in Singapore will take this goal in consideration and develop a project that will produce a serious reduction in your energy bill.

Accomplishing the goal is possible in a couple of key ways. Here are a few of them.

The Selection of the Right Colours

Something as simple as changing a few colours in your overall interior design colour scheme can lead to serious improvements as far as electricity consumption is concerned.

The colour of the walls and other large surfaces is most important.

Light colours like white, beige and cream reflect light. This way, they make it easier to maintain a cool interior throughout the summer. The need for using air conditioning or another cooling system will be reduced, which will help for a lower utility bill.

Dark colours have the exact opposite property. They absorb heat. If a certain room happens to be colder than the rest of the apartment (for example, it has exterior walls or it’s facing north and there isn’t a lot of light entering), the selection of darker tones may be a good option to reduce heating needs.

Reducing Your Energy Bills through Smart Interior Design Using Right Colours

Choosing the Right Flooring

As already mentioned, the largest surfaces in the home will have the biggest impact on electricity consumption. Once your home interior design team deals with the walls, the right flooring option will have to be considered.

Certain materials used for flooring can help for the minimisation of electricity consumption in the apartment.

Marble and tiles are great materials when it comes to keeping the place cool.

Areas that will benefit from being warmer could use a few rugs or a fluffy carpet. These materials trap heat inside and they also prevent heat from escaping the apartment through the floor. In addition, rugs and carpets can turn into excellent accent pieces that create a bit of visual appeal.

Throw rugs would be best because these could be moved around on the basis of individual needs. These are ideal for placement on hardwood, tile, stone or concrete floors and they will contribute to an almost immediate change in the heat balance of the room.

Reducing Your Energy Bills through Smart Interior Design Right Flooring Like Marble

Energy-Efficient and Smart Lights

The use of lights contributes significantly to your monthly energy bill. Switching from standard bulbs to a smarter, more sustainable solution will have a highly pronounced impact on electricity consumption.

One of the biggest questions we need to address here is whether you can really save a lot by making the switch to energy-efficient lights.

Statistics show that US families that replace regular bulbs with Energy Star-certified bulbs save 75 US dollars (~98 Singaporean dollars) on their electricity bill. About five per cent of the electricity bill of a regular household is the result of using lights. Reducing this amount can produce a nice little saving on an annual basis.

There are various energy-efficient light options out there and your interior designer will recommend the solution that will give you the most comfort and the biggest saving.

LED lights are an excellent choice. Keep in mind that these will necessitate an initial investment that will eventually pay itself off in the form of electricity saving. Compact fluorescent lamp (CFL) lights and halogen bulbs are other options to consider.

Apart from choosing the right bulbs, your designer could also recommend smart features for reducing the unnecessary use of light. Motion sensors, for example, will switch lights on when you’re passing by. The light will go off on its own shortly after if no additional motion is detected.

Reducing Your Energy Bills through Smart Interior Design Using Right Lighting

Kitchen Appliances Also Matter

If you’re carrying out a complete home renovation or you’re furnishing the property for the very first time, consider the choice of efficient appliances for the kitchen.

The fridge, oven, coffee machine, microwave, dishwasher and other appliances used in the kitchen play a serious role in shaping up the electricity bill. Your interior design company in Singapore will recommend brands and models that correspond to your lifestyle without consuming an excessive amount of electricity.

Modern appliances are much more sustainable than older items. While they do cost more, such appliances provide a high return on investment in the form of utility bill reductions.

The energy rating of every single item will have to be examined before a purchase is made. Consult your interior designer because a professional knows the differences between kitchen appliances manufactured by some of the most popular companies out there. Your designer will keep kitchen functionality in mind while also helping you reduce your energy bill through appropriate

Choosing the Right Furniture and Placing it Accordingly

One final thing you can do to control electricity expenditure is choose the right furniture and have it placed strategically.

Heavier pieces of furniture that feature high backs and long skirts can reduce draft within the home. As a result, such pieces are ideal for the rooms that should be kept warmer. Skinny, minimalistic items are better for homes that are to be maintained cooler.

The way in which the furniture is arranged is also important. Circulation should be kept in mind whenever spots are chosen for every single item.

The main pieces of furniture should be kept away from HVAC vents and ducts. There should be some distance between furniture and a radiator, as well. Interior design professionals know these rules and they will recommend a good placement for every single room.

Even the interior design choices that seem to be insignificant at first will matter when it comes to energy efficiency. Don’t leave interior design decisions to chance. If you invest in professional assistance who are also HDB licensed and well-versed in regulations, you will benefit from an energy efficient and easy to maintain home.

Interior design teams like Home Guide can help you accomplish all of your interior design goals. Please don’t hesitate taking a look at our portfolio to get a better idea about what we do. Alternatively, browse through our blog to get a range of practical interior design suggestions.