Building Tips

Items to Splurge on When Building a House

As I’ve mentioned several times, one of the biggest parts of the planning stage is a budget. While a budget is a definite must have, it’s important to know up front what areas you are allowed to splurge on.

The word splurge always excites me! I mean what woman doesn’t want to spend a little extra money on upgrading some important items in the home? The best part is, this is money well spent! I love knowing I can upgrade on a few areas and feel good about it. It is money that will actually play a big part on making your home look more high end. I’m going to discuss five areas that we chose to splurge on in our current home. We will also be doing the same in our upcoming build.

Front Door

In our current farmhouse,  you know that we have double solid mahogany front doors. This is one area I knew upfront I was going to spend some extra money on. The entrance of your home needs to make a statement, and what better way to do so than with your front door.

Henry and I personally love real wood doors. They are warm and inviting, while also offering great curb appeal. Some have issues with real wood doors not being weather resistant, so you may want to consider other options that give the same look.

Whether real wood or not, the appearance of the front door should be dramatic and be a focal point of the home. This will require a little more money spent on this item, but will be well worth it as it is something that can transform the look of your home. Nothing bothers me more than someone spending so much money on a house, then choosing a cheap front door.


Crazy enough, with each house we have sold, no one asked what brand of cabinets we put in, the question is always, “What kind of countertops are those?” Countertops are a great place to spend a little extra money. Not only do people love high end countertops, they are great for the longevity of the kitchen use. If you are one that does lots of cooking, you will want countertops that hold up and will persevere heat and extensive use. Upgrading your countertops will be money you will not regret spending!


Windows are already a big budget item on the list, but it will pay off to splurge and get what you want in this area. Not only should they be aesthetically pleasing, they should also be energy efficient. While they may cost more upfront, keep in mind this is one area where you can recoup your money.

We chose to go with black windows on our farmhouse build and will also be using a dark color window on our current house. The color variation is much more expensive, but will offer a more prominent appearance from the road. We are all about curb appeal! Throughout building, remodeling, and selling several homes the biggest thing we have learned is how important it is to make a house standout from the outside.

Closet Space and Features

Larger closets and closet storage features are another great place to spend a little more money. The closet space itself will need to be planned upfront during the early stages. The space will not actually cost that much more, it is the features inside the closet that will be your upgrade.

After you have the space, you need to make sure you have them decked out with lots of planned storage options that will allow for organization. This will take a little more both time and money, but will be well worth it!


Appliances are a place where I really never knew we would spend so much money, but it can definitely be done. While I think you can still do this reasonably , it is important to spend a little more and get something you will not only be happy with, but also looks great!

Appliances can seriously make a huge difference in the look of a kitchen. What if you spent all this money on beautiful cabinets and countertops, but then put in a builder grade black fridge. That would kill the look of the entire kitchen and it wouldn’t matter how much money you spent on everything else. The appliances need to compliment the design and look of your kitchen. This may mean spending a little more and getting those professional grade appliances that will give the kitchen an upscale finished look.

I could go on and on of things you could splurge on while building, but I just wanted to point out a few. Ideally, it has to be something you and your spouse talk about and feel comfortable with. Your choices may be very different than ours, but I do think it is worth planning a budget on some items you are willing to go above and beyond on. The ones I have pointed out were ones we have noticed to really make a difference in the past. These were particular areas we noticed made a difference in looks, functionality, and resale value. They were also ones that buyers always seemed to love and what attracted them to our home.


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  • Reply Jennifer

    What a great post! We remodeled 8yrs ago & Im so happy we did all these things you mentioned & have never regreted any of them.Although our door is not real wood, it looks it stained! No one can tell the difference and it looks beautiful.I looked at both options ( and your wood doors are gorgeous) but I was a little afraid of real wood & elements,longevity etc..
    We put closet organizers with dressers in all the bedrooms.Have quartz counter tops that we love, easy to clean & not stress so much with children such as with stains. Considering how long you live with all these features, its sooo worth the extra cost in the long run.

    February 13, 2019 at 2:11 am
    • Reply Brooke

      Im so glad you enjoyed reading the article. I can understand you choosing a faux wood door, I feel like its the curb appeal that is important and Im sure this looks great! It sounds like you new what was important for resale later down the road.

      February 19, 2019 at 7:46 pm
  • Reply Sue C.

    Good advice. I am about to start planning my third build (and second farmhouse) and would love more info about what brands/sources you used, especially that front door!

    February 18, 2019 at 8:38 pm
    • Reply Brooke

      Hello Sue! So excited you liked the article. We actually are working on a shop our house section on here. We also may do an article soon on some of our favorite products in our home. We will include sources within this article. Sounds like you are a pro at building!

      February 19, 2019 at 7:49 pm
  • Reply Kera

    Love this article and how true it is. Your home is such an inspiration to me while we build. It’s sataifying knowing that where we have splurged is wht you have recommended 😄. I have been trying to find your flooring details but have had no luck? Any chance you would be able to share them with me or point me in the right direction 👆🏻. Thanks so much 🖤

    February 20, 2019 at 2:44 am
    • Reply Brooke

      Hello Kera! In our current farmhouse we have Padua engineered hardwood by ADM Flooring Company. We love them and will be using ADM Flooring for our build also. You can find more information at They are wonderful to work and make sure you tell them we sent you!

      February 20, 2019 at 7:25 pm
  • Reply Kim Wilson

    I wish we had considered engineered hardwood flooring. At the time we did not have a dog so it wasn’t an issue but having a large dog has done a number on our floors. Live and learn

    March 27, 2019 at 4:20 pm
    • Reply Brooke

      We have never had a dog while having solid hardwood floors, but I have heard it can really damage them. We love our engineered and even with a 13 year old crazy boy, they have with really held up great!

      April 7, 2019 at 2:18 am
  • Reply Marissa

    The picture of the entry doors makes my ❤️ so happy! Where did you find those beauties?

    April 11, 2019 at 4:23 am
    • Reply Brooke

      Hello Marissa! Im so glad you like our doors! We love them so much, we will be going with something very similar on our new build. We purchased them from Builders First Source, but DSA Doors is the company who actually makes them.

      April 11, 2019 at 12:14 pm
  • Reply Kay

    This home is absolutely beautiful! With being at the beginning of building our first home I really feel windows are so very important for curb appeal. I love these windows you have chosen. One spot I have come to a stand still with is deciding the sizes. May I ask what are the size windows you chose to achieve the farm house charm?

    April 29, 2019 at 1:17 am
  • Reply Krystal

    What appliances did you go with for your build? Specifically fridge? I am having a hard time deciding. We selected all thermador appliances and I am stuck on fridge selection. Planning to have it paneled.

    December 29, 2020 at 4:55 pm
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