How to create a design brief for your new home

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You want to build your dream home but how do you explain what you have in mind? Here’s how to work with a Building Designer in Melbourne.

When you decide to build a home and engage the services of a Building Designer, you will need to be able to explain what you want. This way, they can start the process of creating a home that matches your vision. 

A design brief will come in handy during this time. This is basically your concept for what you need and want in your new home design. Your brief lets your designer know what is important to you and the way you want to live in your home. 

Of course, first you need to know what those things are yourself!

Before you have your first meeting with your designer, spend some time on Pinterest, Houzz and other home inspiration sites. Make a list of what you like and what you want. Remember that while style is important, functionality should come first. 

What to include in your brief

Make notes and gather examples so you can be clear on what you have in mind for the following:


No matter how pretty it might be, a home that doesn’t function well will always feel frustrating. Consider what is important to you and your family and how you live. 

Maybe you are very communal and like entertaining so an open plan home will be suitable. Maybe you need private spaces for teens or anybody who is working from home. You may want two storeys so you can have a generous home on a smaller block or you may want a single level home because you plan to stay there well past retirement. 

Think about how you will use each room. If you always gather around the television then you will want your main living space to cater to that. If you tend to gather in the kitchen, this room’s layout and placing in the house is essential.

Along with this, consider climate and natural light. Do you want a breezy, open home or a more cosy home that feels private and has rooms that are easy to heat? With that being said, your home designer should create designs that keep your place warm in summer and cool in winter, no matter what.   

Building materials and technical details

What do you want your home to be made from? Think about cladding and how you will achieve your desired effects. You may like the look of solid timber but keep in mind the ongoing maintenance requirements.

Will you have solar power and energy-saving products to reduce the cost of running your home? If you have specific  or alternative ideas, make sure you present them to your designer. They can include your requests or come up with alternative recommendations.

Creative features

With the other two factors in mind, now you can have a little fun. This is where you can get your dream board out and consider how you might be able to add special features and finishes. 

You may have a great view from your property that should be emphasised, or have some ideas about clever uses of space that you hope to work with. All of these aspects can be nutted out with your designer but if you have already considered them and how they might work you will be a step ahead.

Remember that some ideas may not be possible due to availability and budget constraints. Be clear on what is a must-have and what’s a nice-to-have.

In other respects, your location might have specific requirements that you have to conform to. Keep a sense of community in mind and respect your neighbours’ privacy as well as the character of your suburb.

Putting it all together

Once you have gathered your ideas together, you can work out a checklist of your essentials (number of bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchen location etc.) and your favourite concepts (quirky nooks, interesting design choices, specific design styles etc). 

Armed with your checklist and your budget, you will be ready to brief your building designer so they can pull everything out of your head and create your dream home. 

Ready to get started? If you are in Melbourne and have a clear idea of the type of home you want to build, contact Mesh Design Projects.

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