Skip to Content

The Cost of Bad Design


When discussing the cost of a house design, it’s easy to only consider the monetary cost of the design; however, there are other types of value to consider. Monetary value, functional value, social value, and psychological value are all important factors to deliberate during your home design process. Understanding these different types of values can help break down not only what makes a home design great, but also what a poor home design can cost you in the long run.

The Values

Monetary Value

Simply put, the monetary value of your home is calculated by how much money you are spending on a residential project versus its corresponding increase in property value. There are several ways a bad design or poor construction decisions can cost you in monetary value, including:

  • Using low quality, cheap materials which will need to be replaced after a short period of time. It may be tempting to save money up front, but using less expensive and lower quality materials will end up costing you more money down the line. Instead, invest in superior quality materials, which will last longer, and you will end up saving on irritating repairs and/or replacements.
  • Not utilizing energy efficiently in your home. Insulation, appliances, window placement, ventilation… these are just a few ways to make a home energy efficient. Skimping out on energy efficient methods might not seem like a big deal during the design process, but years down the road when your utility costs are high you will be paying the price for those decisions. Implementing good insulation, tightly sealed windows and energy conscious heating/cooling systems in your home design will save you monthly costs.

A sub-point to monetary value is market value. To put it bluntly, beautifully designed homes are worth a great deal more than unattractive homes. Ask a realtor!

Functional Value

A functional house is one which has an easy flow from room to room, where each room is utilized, and nothing feels missing from the house. These are all huge targets to cover, but missing any of them will result in the functionality of the home being lowered significantly. If a house is awkward to walk through, if rooms are inconvenient and therefore unused, or if it’s missing vital spaces, the cost of that design is the comfort of the homeowner’s day-to-day life.

Social Value

Your home is a way to connect with others – whether it is spending time with your family or inviting guests over for the holidays. A poor design can make it hard to entertain. If your home is designed with no space to socialize or if the public areas are cramped, poorly lit, and poorly ventilated, it can be difficult to utilize those spaces. An architect will consider these aspects of the home to make it as functional as possible for whatever type of socialization the homeowner values.

Psychological Value

A home allows you to express yourself through design choices through the colors and the spaces in which you live. These spaces should enhance the comfort in your life.  If you feel that the design of your home does not match your aesthetic, or if you feel like you live in someone else’s home, that is the result of poor design.

In addition, the use of the house is a daily occurrence, any sort of emotion you feel from the design of the house is therefore recurring. For example, if you enjoy the way a window placement allows for sunshine every morning, you will feel that enjoyment every day. In the opposite way, if you are annoyed at a window placement, that annoyance will also be recurring.

Understanding the multifactorial value of a good home design is important! Engaging an architect who recognizes and integrates all these aspects into the design process will have a significant impact on the success of the design and ultimately the overall “cost” to the Homeowner.





⟵ Return to Blog

Start designing your future.