Thursday, January 6, 2011

Build a Dude Den into your New New Jersey Home

We've all read about personalizing the kitchen of your new home for the "little woman" of the house.  How about a Dude Den for the man/men?  Builders in Mercer County and surrounding areas want buyers, so you might take a few ideas from this post and incorporate into a new home this year.

More and more homeowners are converting their finished basements, attic spaces, or spare rooms into masculine refuges.  While "man caves" often revolve around the time-honored rite of male bonding that is spectator sports, there is no single blueprint to a comfortable male refuge. Some guys turn their basements into full-scale game rooms where pool, air hockey, and arcade games rule the space. Movie buffs turn spare rooms into home theaters complete with surround sound and recliners on stadium risers. And many men create their very own pub.

Where to start?  The last thing you want is a room crammed full of everything you can jam into it. Before you begin, start thinking about what kind of activities you want to enjoy there. Is your main goal to have a perfect place to watch the big game? Looking for a permanent home for poker night? A place to work out in comfort, or a workshop?   Decide on a focus, then tailor furniture, décor and space to match.

It may help to pick one element (home theater system, a pool table, jukebox, etc.) as both the centerpiece and inspiration of the room.   Measure all dimensions of the space you have available, and do the same when considering the purchase of any furniture, hardware or stand-alone game systems. Maintain open walking paths throughout the room. If you're centering the room around a home theater system, keep in mind that you'll want to keep clear sightlines for the main seating areas in the room.

Choose granite, laminate, or durable wood surfaces for bar countertops, end and coffee tables. Pick thicker commercial-grade carpet, and stick with darker colors. Thicker carpeting helps with soundproofing, which will help keep the rest of the household happy.

The 3 key elements will be seating, entertainment center, and refreshments.  Wrap-around couches are better space savers than individual recliner chairs, but you may want both.  Large flat screen TVs are commonplace and affordable, and you can incorporate more technology into that wall as your interests change.  You may want a wet bar, and probably at least a dry bar with counter space and mini-refrigerator for snacks and drinks.

Finishing touches could include pool or poker table, game tables, elevated seating, and custom lighting.  Within square foot limits, you can have your Dude Den plus a great kitchen in a new home in Mercer County.

Call or email me for the names of builders and developments here in Central New Jersey and let's look at some homes under construction you can personalize to your tastes.

Joe Giancarli, SA
Real Estate Advisor

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