6 Design Ideas to Add Luxury to Your New Construction Home

Your dream of living in luxury in the Orlando, Florida area is about to come true when I show you how to take your new construction model from basic cookie cutter to designer with these must-have upgrades, finishes, and options.

Inevitably when you walk through the model homes, you are going to fall in love with more upgrades than your budget can handle. You will become obsessed with things you absolutely must have. And I’m here to tell yes, you can be practical and improve your home for resale (your house is an investment which is always in the forefront of my mind) and design a fabulous home that feels like you’re living in luxury every day.

Choosing the Right High-End Upgrades for Your Home

In a nutshell, here’s the process when buying a new construction home here in Orlando: 

  • You choose the lot you want your house built on
  • Choose the model home you want
  • Decide on structural options (add garage, closet or deck)
  • Then you head to the design center and choose your upgrades

When you head to the builder’s design center you will be presented with literally thousands of choices. Once my clients and I were leaving and the salesperson presented them with design options to explore. Options are great, but it was an actual 300 page book. NOT JOKING! Talk about feeling overwhelmed.

I’ve seen homebuyers spend money on the wrong upgrades unaware of which ones to pass on and which ones to choose to give the luxury feel while getting the biggest bang for their buck. That’s why I accompany my all my new construction clients to the design center.

Here are my top 5 suggestions for upgrades that not only add a sense of luxury but will allow you to recoup your investment:

Baseboards add luxury look to new construction home

1.  Baseboards

I know! The last thing most people think of. Often overlooked this is an architectural feature that frames the room and adds a luxury look. We tend to swoon over crown molding because it makes rooms look polished and like someone paid attention to the details.

It’s the same with baseboards. Imagine those high cathedral ceilings or vaulted ceilings with five ¼” baseboards. Whether you choose to stain it, give it a weathered look or paint it for a monochromatic, this upgrade will give your room a high-end luxury feel.

Use wood floors to add luxury for new construction

2. Interior Doors

Making a grand entrance into your home with stunning high entry doors shouldn’t stop there. when you upgrade your interior doors they tie your rooms together so be sure to pair those 5 ¼” baseboards we just talked about with 8 foot doors.

Paying attention to the scale of your room the right size barn doors, pocket doors, dutch doors, glass framed or panel doors can take your home from looking ordinary to stylish. 

And like the perfect accessory that completes the perfect outfit, choose door hardware like hinges and handles that help elevate the look and make a statement.

Interior Paint Adds Luxury Look in New Construction Home Orlando

3. Interior Paint

The perfect background for your new home is gray or beige flat paint. These colors will always look fresh and on-trend and are an understated elegance that complements any color palette. Then find the perfect home accents to add pops of color with fabrics, textures, and design elements that celebrate your individual style.

The cost to paint using the builder is less than most people think. Call a few painters to check pricing and you’ll see. Remember that if you’re relocating, time is usually not on your side, so I suggest going with the builder because of the convenience.

Add railings instead of drywall for luxury look in new construction home Orlando

4. Railings in Place of Drywall

Transform standard drywall by adding another high end touch. This upgrade is about replacing a half wall, staircase or banister with a railing that immediately feels more open and spacious. Then add the luxury feel with choices like glass, wrought iron, wood, aluminum, stainless steel or copper.

Whether you choose a style that blends seamlessly or makes a statement, this will elevate the look and feel of your home. It might even become a focal point.

Kitchen upgrades to luxury to Orlando New Construction Home

5. Gourmet Kitchen

There’s a reason this room is considered the heart of the home. It’s not just a place you cook and eat, and it’s the place where everyone gathers. Children do their homework. You sort the mail, sit at the counter and chat on your phone. You can have a big gorgeous home, and when guests come over, they make a beeline to the kitchen.

In the Orlando market, you’re looking to bring in that luxury feel in the $3,000 to $5,000 range. Countertops, appliances and pot fillers are a few upgrades for a gourmet kitchen that has luxury written all over it. You might be surprised, but when I ask clients what they LOVE about their new kitchen, it’s an extra oven for those big dinners and holiday get-togethers.

Upgrade your flooring to add luxury for new construction Orlando homes

6. Modern Flooring

This is where you set the stage for luxury living. It’s a big investment, so you want a surface that will last for years. A couple of important factors:

  • Your lifestyle – do you have small children, pets, or an area where wet feet will come in from the pool? 
  • Climatebuying a home in Orlando, Florida, means some solid hardwood flooring can’t handle the humidity and rain.

Obsessed with wood floors and moving to this area? Try an engineered hardwood instead. Dreaming of a Carrera marble entryway or want the look of hardwood floors in your open-concept space? You can have it all with porcelain tiles. With an array of grout colors and tile patterns that mimic most styles, your new construction home will look anything but builder’s grade.

Bottom Line

No matter your budget or sense of style you can create a home that looks like it walked out the pages of a luxury magazine. Whether your style is cozy, elegant, comfortable, eclectic or traditional there are upgrades to bring in that sophisticated look and feel.

By using these tips as a guide, like the designer of high end homes you too can create that sense of luxury with smart choices so you can also recoup your investment.

Take a look at my Instagram http://instagram.com/iorlandorealestate where I highlight Orlando’s new construction builders, model homes and upgrades and see for yourself what’s possible.

Also check out my tips on making a model home unique over at Florida Homes and Living.


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I’m Nicole Mickle, a real estate agent in Orlando, Florida. I’m here to assist you in making the most out of your Florida lifestyle.

In addition, I’m the author behind Florida Homes and Living, a blog dedicated to sharing valuable content about Orlando, interior design, remodeling, and the Florida lifestyle.

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