Advice • Tips • Inspiration


Are you building a new home and you’re curious about what the colour selections process entails and what role an interior design plays in the look and feel of your home? We spoke to Interior Designer and Colour Consultant Cory from Hotondo Homes Ocean Grove to gain a little insight into the whole process!

Tell us about your role?

Being the Interior Design/Colour Consultant for Hotondo Homes Ocean Grove, I liaise closely with clients and staff to complete the colour selection proportion of the build. My role requires me to aid clients with their selections, guiding them through and providing support and advice to create their dream home. My goal is to help clients visualise and consider their selections on a larger scale and as a complete house design, with the various elements all coming together.

What do you do on a day-to-day basis?

Every day is different in my role! On days when I am conducting an appointment, it generally takes the entire day. We start off in the office and work our way through External and Internal selections, as well as the Electrical plan. The day also consists of viewing laminates/timber flooring and carpets, and visiting suppliers to complete the tile selection. Other days generally consist of paperwork, whether that is finalising an appointment or any amendments a client wishes to make afterwards. Part of my role also requires me to liaise with our product representatives on a regular basis to ensure we have all the up to date products on hand for clients to select from. As a business, we conduct checks on jobs prior to contract, so I liaise with staff members to ensure everything on the selections paperwork is correct.


What are your clients asking for?

I’m currently seeing a lot of whites and neutrals requested by clients trying to capture the coastal theme to suit the area in which we build. The popular Hamptons look is also requested from time to time. I find that greys are still prevalent in modern homes, as it is a very versatile colour to work with and acts as a good foundation to build your internal styling from. Every year when The Block is on TV I have clients asking for something they’ve seen on the show! This always makes things a bit tricky as what you see on that show is often either an extremely high-end product or something that is currently “on trend”.

What trends have you seen change over time?

I’ve worked in the industry for a few years now and before it was mainly creams and browns which were very popular with clients. Then greys made more of an impact, maybe a bit of black or charcoal thrown in if they are going for more of a modern, contemporary style. There weren’t as many whites/neutral themes as I see now.

Because I don’t cover soft furnishings as part of the role, some clients like to experiment and introduce some colour into the build. This is usually through tile selection, feature entrance door or a glass splashback. I get very excited when clients start to feel confident in their selections and want to have a play with colour or pattern, however I always stress that it must be based on personal taste, not trying to meet the current trends. Any colours on trend should be introduced later on when decorating the home. Unless you absolutely love it there’s a good chance you will get sick of it very quickly!


What do you think are must haves in modern day homes?

The main selling points of the home are the externals and the kitchen, so I always recommend clients to focus on those areas first as it is easy to build the rest of the house from here. Large island benches to the kitchen are always a worthwhile investment, being the heart of the home and a base for entertaining.

Always consider the lighting throughout the home – you don’t want to have to do it after the build! Remember you are always going to think of things you should’ve added after you’ve moved in, so spend the time early on perfecting the electrical plan. It’s a good idea to ask family and friends what they wish they had in their homes.
Lastly, I’d say lots of storage space! This is one thing that is very difficult to add in afterwards. Consider the kitchen configuration; do you want cupboards or pot drawers? Also the size of the broom cupboard in the laundry – you don’t want to have to store items in the garage!

What’s the best part of your job?

Getting to know and working with different types of people, and knowing that I’ve helped them to create their dream home. At the colour selection appointment, we spend the whole day together and there is a lot of contact and conversation prior to and following the day, so it’s always nice when you can build a good rapport with them. It helps the process and ensures they have fun with it, rather than seeing it as a stressful experience.

Any final advice for those building their new home?

Enjoy the experience! Apart from moving in and seeing the final product, the colour selection should be the fun part of the process. Make sure you research as much as you can before your appointment and prepare by bringing any visuals/inspiration along with you. Remember it is probably the most expensive outlay of your life so you ideally do not want to be making all the decisions on the day! As I mentioned earlier, don’t focus too much on trends, do what you like, it’s your home. And lastly, always consider re-sale; what aspects can you include to add the most value to the property, and what should you try to avoid. It might be time to re-consider that bright orange kitchen!

Thank you so much for chatting to us, Cory! For more home inspiration and interior décor ideas, visit the Hotondo Homes website today!

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