MAINTAINING A HOME
A room of their own: Creating a private space for everyone in the family
7 September 2021
All members of your family need their own space, which is not always easy. But these simple ideas will make everyone feel they have their own piece of privacy.
As much as we’re enjoying more family togetherness at home, it’s important that each of us also has a spot we can go when we want to reflect, focus or recharge. The good news is that it needn’t be expensive or complicated to create opportunities for privacy at home. “It’s easier than you think to escape without really going anywhere,” says Sydney interior designer Lynne Bradley. Achieving that could be as simple as moving a comfortable armchair by a secluded window to create a reading nook, separating your living room into zones to give a parent or school-aged child a place to work or study, or carving out a corner of the garden for a lover of the outdoors to put their feet up.
Just because we can hear other family members working, talking or playing doesn’t mean we always want to see them. “Use curtains, tall potted plants, screens and bookshelves to create divided zones in a room,” Bradley suggests. Teenagers need more privacy than most, so be sure to put every bit of space in their room to good use. High ceilings? Could a loft bed make the most of the vertical space and create a relaxation zone all their own? If you’re finding it tricky to find a nook you can transform, you may need to get extra creative. Rethinking furniture arrangement can free up a surprising amount of space, and be sure to consider tucked-away areas such as beneath the stairs or even a walk-in wardrobe as potential retreats. “You may be able to reorganise a walk-in-wardrobe to fit a comfy chair and lamp,” Bradley suggests.
Access all areas
While some family members may be able to tune out distractions with ease, others may need to leave the house to find the quiet time they need. If you have a garage or shed, decluttering and reorganising can often create enough space for a desk or a cluster of beanbags. If there’s room, why not transform the garage into a private gym for kids or parents? Hang a punching bag, roll out a yoga mat, and make it a designated exercise zone. Heading outside can also be refreshing when someone needs time out. To create a heavenly escape, string up a hammock between two trees and use a couple of weatherproof screens to zone off the area. A ‘Do Not Disturb’ sign could be a fun optional extra for when the space is in use. If a hammock won’t work in your backyard, create the same atmosphere with garden furniture, set up in a quiet corner. Have younger kids? A teepee is another great idea — fill it with toys and games, and designate it an adult-free zone.
Make it personal
To help ‘ownership’ of your private areas, include personal touches. For a reading nook, add a small side table and let family members who use the space choose their own favourite scented candle. Let everyone create their own playlists for the garden areas, and allocate an inexpensive Bluetooth speaker for private outdoor time. “Have fun with it,” Bradley says.
Get savvy with your makeover budget
Planning private spaces for everyone in the family is one thing, but ensuring you have the budget to create them is another. You can organise your renovation budget with the Everyday Options account¹ – you’ll get a main account with debit card2 access for your everyday spending and can choose to add up to 9 sub-accounts3 to help you plan and save. You might, for example, dedicate a sub-account for home bills and another for those extra household bits and pieces that can help you create your zones, like room dividers, plants, and extra furniture.
And, if you do find that new bookcase at a budget friendly price online, rest easy knowing there are $0 foreign currency conversion fees on Visa Debit2 card purchases made with the Everyday Options account, and no monthly account keeping fees. Less fees means more in the budget for you
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1The Everyday Options Account is issued by Suncorp-Metway Ltd ABN 66 010 831 722 AFSL No 229882 (“Suncorp Bank”). Eligibility criteria, conditions, fees and charges apply and are available on request. Please read the Product Information Document for Personal Deposit Accounts before making any decision about this product. Go to www.suncorp.com.au/everyday for a copy.
2To be eligible for a Suncorp Bank Visa Debit card you must be 16 years of age or older. If not eligible you will receive a Suncorp Bank eftpos card. There is only debit card access on the Everyday Options main account. There is no debit card access with sub-accounts.
3You must hold an Everyday Options main account to open an Everyday Options sub-account (add up to nine).
Information is intended to be of a general nature only and any advice has been prepared without taking into account any person's particular objectives, financial situation or needs. You should make your own enquiries, consider whether advice is appropriate for you and read the relevant Product Disclosure Statement or Product Information Document before making any decisions about whether to acquire a product.
The Reward and Recognition program ("Suncorp Benefits") is being operated by Loyalty Corp Australia Services Pty Ltd ABN 39 615 958 873.