Out the corner of your eye, you see your daughter trying to sneak cans of spray paint into her bedroom. You wonder if she knows that her smuggle-in attempt didn’t just fail but, rather, it informed you that you aren’t going to like whatever it is that she’s about to do.
Moments later, your son yells to you from his bedroom that he can’t find his backpack. Standing in his doorway, you take one look at the mess in his room and it doesn’t surprise you that he’s unable to locate it.
When you think about it, there have been days when your son’s bedroom has gotten so out of control that you’ve barely been able to find him amid the mess. You walk away wondering how your son’s bedroom could ever look like this.
“Teenagers,” you say to yourself.
If you’re the parent of a teen, this scenario probably sounds familiar. You also, then, know that teens spend an enormous amount of time in their bedrooms. In fact, when your child became a teenager, you probably saw them enter their bedroom and haven’t seen them come out from it since—that’s just what teenagers do.
Still, as children transitions into their teens, they expect their surroundings to transition with them. How their bedroom looks is often a form of self-expression that you probably won’t see eye to eye on. However, having said goodbye to Barbie dolls and Hot Wheels, a bedroom redecorating is in order.
Although you may dread the very idea itself, you can trust that FindHomeStores.com has every means necessary for you and your teen to create their dream bedroom together. Just remember, communication is key—that, and the FindHomeStores.com checklist below.
Set a budget and stick to it. While it is not necessary to disclose the actual dollar amount of your budget to your teen, you do want to talk with them about it and set some spending boundaries.
Give up control. Remember, you are not redecorating your child’s room. Rather, your teenager is giving their room a make over while you watch, with an open mind. As a bonus, you’ll learn a lot about your teen by the choices they make for their bedroom. According to The New York Times online article by Jan Hoffman titled “Bedroom as Battlefield,” October 31, 2012, how your teen decorates their room gives insight to their overall general well-being.
Let your teen talk. Allow your teen all the time they need to define their vision for their bedroom. Use this conversation to determine their desired color scheme and if a theme is being incorporated. If your teen is uncertain about what they want, have some fun figuring it out with Seventeen magazine’s “What’s Your Bedroom Décor Style” online quiz. For inspiration, check out these 40 great bedrooms for teen boys or these 55 pretty bedrooms for teen girls.
Confirm and sign. Take notes while your teen talks. Then, organize your notes as you explain back to your teen your understanding of their vision. When finished, ask your teen to sign off on your notes. By getting your teenager’s signature to confirm that your understanding of their vision is accurate, you eliminate potential misunderstandings later.
Take inventory. Brace yourself, your teen and you are going to clean your teen’s bedroom. As you do, have your teen decide what they’ll keep and what they’ll get rid of. Once the two of you have finished, your teen should come up with their own plan of action to keep their room tidy. Allowing them to implement their own method increases the likelihood of them sticking with it.
Make a shopping list. You’ll most definitely want your teenager to sign off on the bedroom décor shopping list. Teens have a habit of changing their mind, followed by informing you of their new decision by insisting nothing changed but that, really, you just forgot. With their signature, the shopping list now serves a written request from them. This eliminates the chances of horrific arguments if they hate something you bought when they were not present. Instead, you’ll have the ability to present the list and remind them that they asked you to purchase that specific item.
Enjoy your time together. Make the most of the time you’ll spend with your teen while redecorating their room. Lighten up a little and have some fun; your teen might decide you’re not so bad after all.
Ask for help. If it does turn out that you and your teen are not able to work together peacefully, you’re probably better off getting some assistance. To enlist the help of a professional interior designer listed in the FindHomeStores.com directory, click here.
Teri Barth, FindHomeStores.com freelancer online editor
First published August 14, 2014 on FindHomeStores.com