A fireplace is more than a mere source of heat in your new custom home. It creates a cosy place for the family to gather and allows you to entertain guests in a grand setting. That’s why a fireplace needs to be designed into the plan of your new home.
When custom home-building companies in Vancouver design a new fireplace, they use a design philosophy that makes you look for opportunities to use the feature. While it keeps your home warm in the winter, it acts as a brilliant focal point for the room throughout the year.
Insights from custom home building companies on crafting an exceptional fireplace:
Consider the size of the room
While aesthetics are front and centre, your fireplace also needs to be a functional accessory to the room. It needs to keep you warm on cold winter nights. That’s why you need to account for the size of the room while designing it. The size of the room dictates the amount of warm air that needs to be circulated and the heat output you need to satisfy those requirements. If the heat output is too high, you run the risk of using up more fuel and overheating the room. When the heat output isn’t enough, you need to rely solely on your favourite liquor to stay warm.
In Canada, heat output is measured by British Thermal Units (BTUs) and you need the help of Vancouver home builders or other professionals to calculate it accurately. For a rough estimate, you can use one of the several free tools available online. Enter the heat zone you live in along with the measurements of your room and some other details to get a rough estimate of the BTU output of your new fireplace.
Account for structural changes
Plans change with your preference. You need to account for those changes in your new custom home. For instance, your initial plans may have involved an electric fireplace instead of a traditional one. That’s why it doesn’t have any chimney that’s required to exhaust the smoke and soot from firewood. Consult with the custom home building company to determine the feasibility of incorporating a chimney into the current construction phase.
If your home is already constructed, you’ll need to prepare for steep modification costs to add a chimney. If costs are too high, you can switch to a gas fireplace that doesn’t need a chimney and decorate the fireplace with artificial glowing cinders to mimic the look of a wood fireplace. However, gas fireplaces also require ventilation and you’ll need to build that into the wall. Major remodelling of existing homes also comes with regulatory oversight. You may need to apply for new permits and modify the design of the fireplace several times to bring it up to the local building codes.
Make sure the fireplace fits the decor of the room
It’s tempting to go wild with new aesthetic options and create a stone fireplace straight out of an old western. However, the design of the fireplace needs to belong with the rest of the living room. It shouldn’t just fit in, but enhance the overall look of the room to create a more welcoming atmosphere.
Depending on the style you choose, your fireplace may come with a column, shelves hanging off the wides, a mantel or other such design features. Take advantage of those features and accessorize them appropriately. Consider adding a large mirror, an art piece, a large OLED TV or something else. These large decor pieces become the focal point for other decorative pieces.
Add more light sources
Even a roaring fireplace emits limited light. It creates a dim atmosphere that’s great when you’re trying to spend some quality time with yourself. However, when it’s time for the family to gather around the fire or entertain your guests, a few additional sources of light help to illuminate the space and extend the warm atmosphere. Enhance the ambience of your luxury custom home in Vancouver by incorporating LED candles and sconces that complement the fireplace’s warm glow with soft, matching lighting.
At the end of the day, changing the blueprint of your custom home or modifying new changes in your old home comes with additional expenses. Make sure that you don’t go overboard and blow your entire budget on a luxury fireplace that’s rarely used. Employ the tips mentioned above to fashion a fireplace that strikes the right balance between style and practicality.