Discover The Hidden Value in an Unfinished Basement

Discover The Hidden Value in an Unfinished Basement

Is that unfinished basement holding you back from buying the new home you’ve been dreaming of? Don’t let it!

Much like an underground gold mine, a home’s unfinished basement is just waiting to be tapped and put to the perfect use. Discover the hidden value in buying a home with an unfinished basement.

Often, unfinished basements are seen as a major obstacle for many homebuyers. They see it as another project, something that will take thousands of dollars to finish before they can even enjoy or use the space, or even worse – wasted space that they’ll never make use of. Its time to rethink the unfinished basement! There is serious potential value – and space – just waiting to be put to use! Consider an unfinished basement as a blank canvas, perfect for you to use, adapt and finish based on your specific needs and circumstances. Don’t believe us? Grab a cup of coffee and read on to discover the potential uses for an unfinished basement along with some light DIY finishing ideas that you may not have thought of before.

And if you’re not a DIYer or maybe you’re certain you need a full basement finish, after reading you’ll notice that at the end of the article, we’ve included a link to contractors and home remodeling companies that can help you fully finish the basement the way you want. The benefit of finishing the basement with the help of a contractor, after purchasing and closing on a home is that for the most part, you get to choose where the walls go, what gets finished, and what doesn’t, and more to really make your basement your own, not predetermined by someone else’s plan or vision. 

Now let’s dig in!

Dig into the potential value and opportunities that await you in an unfinished basement!

We’ve broken our list of potential ideas for an unfinished basement into three different categories: Completely Unfinished, Light DIY Finishing, and Full Finishing so that no matter your current square footage needs or future plans, we’ve got you covered. Some of these ideas can overlap, so that if you want, love, or need more than one, you can make room for it! That’s the beauty of blank canvases like unfinished basements, you choose how it’s used, adapted, and adjusted over time and as you need!

Ideas For Your Completely Unfinished Basement

That’s right, from the day you move in, your unfished basement offers automatic instant value.

Use your unfinished basement for storage obviously! Go basic or pretty with bins, baskets, shelves and a label maker!


Pretty obvious and the most common use, but still valuable nonetheless, unfinished basements make a great place to store things – and lots of them! Empty your storage unit and have room to spare. Better yet, install some inexpensive shelving and you can take your storage vertical and easily find what you’re looking for when you need it. If you’re a canner, showcase all your beautifully canned veggies and mixes – like a cellar, but prettier! You can always go super cute and functional with some baskets and bins and a label maker to make a storage haven.

ROOM TO RUNBring your outdoor activities in with an unfinished basement!

Bring your outdoor activities in! Completely unfinished basements make a great space for bringing some of the typical outdoor activities inside. Consider this, on bad weather days, you’ve got a place to let your kids run off some energy and enjoy the things they normally do outside! Chalk on the floor – no biggie! Bubbles – yes, please! Scooters and tricycles zooming around – go! Personal roller rink – yep! Red rover, red rover send the unfinished basement right over! Even just a little light finishing will make it a playroom space your kids will brag about to their buddies! Add some foam mats or soft cushy rugs, build a fort or tent, and leave it up with no pressure to take it down, hang some climbing ropes or even build an indoor obstacle course! The list goes on, and on!

Light DIY Finishing Can Go A Long Way

Depending upon how you choose to use the space, by adding just a few items, your unfinished basement can be transformed into an ultra-functional workspace, art studio, home gym, entertaining space, and more!


Really, without any finishing at all, your unfinished basement can be a home gym. Put your treadmill or weight set down there, add a yoga mat and TV if you like to use workout videos and you’re set. You’ve got a great place to sweat without having to worry about cleaning up or soaking and stinking up carpet! If you want a “prettier” place to exercise, paint the concrete floor or add some foam mats, install some shelves to hold your equipment, hang a motivational poster and bam – you’ve got a home gym your neighbors will want to buy a membership to!

And if you’re into martial arts, boxing, dance, yoga or Pilates, an unfinished basement can make the perfect studio for these activities! Leave it barebones or easily dress it up with mirrors, some paint, foam flooring, and the sport-specific necessities (a punching bag for boxing, a bar for Pilates, etc.) – either way, you’ve got a large space that you can move in without having to worry about knocking anything over or bumping elbows with another.


If you are a crafter, seamstress, photographer, painter, woodworker – whatever your hobby or passion is, an unfinished basement holds the potential to be the perfect workshop or art studio. With little to no finishing, you can set up shop and get to work! Spruce up the space for a cozier, more inviting feeling or leave it as is and create away! Consider this, many basements have windows that open so you’ve got easy ventilation, you won’t hurt the concrete with paint or clay or whatever your medium may be, and you’ve got room for all your supplies plus space left to create! Make a mess without the stress! If paint goes flying, there’s no need to rush and wipe it off. Fabric scraps and wood chips all over the floor, no problem! That’s the beauty in a basement workshop – no one has to see it unless you want them to! If you’re a photographer, you can make an easy-to-adapt photo studio with adjustable lighting and room for multiple sitting options. You could even set up a darkroom to develop your own film and prints.

If you see your passion in the list below, get inventive and think about the seemingly endless possibilities an unfinished basement has to offer your creative needs:

  • Singing or Playing an Instrument
  • Photography
  • Painting or Illustrating
  • Sewing & Quilting
  • Scrapbooking
  • Sculpting
  • Woodworking
  • Mixed Media
  • Chalk Art
  • Indoor Nursery or Gardening
  • Beer Making
  • Textile Art
  • Performing Art
  • Crafting
  • Graphic Design or Computer Art
  • Tattoo Art

Turn your unfinished basement into your personal putting green!PERSONAL PUTTING GREEN

If you’re a golfer, then an unfinished basement could be the ticket to improving your game! That’s right, there’s room to install as simple or complex of an indoor putting green as you want or even a virtual driving range! You can practice your swing all year and in the privacy of your own home! Go fancy and deck out the space, add a bar, a couple of TVs and make a full-out golf haven or go simple with easy-to-install astroturf and a couple of homemade cups, either way, you’ve got the perfect escape right in your own home!



Whatever you enjoy doing to relax and unwind, an unfinished basement may be the ticket to creating your personal escape space or retreat. There’s room to adjust and set up the space nearly any way you need! With a little creativity and ingenuity, and as much finishing as you want, you can have your very own sanctuary space! Here are just a few ideas of things you can create in your unfinished basement with a little light finishing:

  • Wine Cellar
  • Personal Library
  • Home Theater or Entertainment Room
  • Meditation Room
  • Game Room (Video Games, Board Games, Table-Top Games, Pool Table, etc.)
  • Man Cave
  • Playroom (An escape for the kiddos!)
  • See the “Space To Create” ideas above if your relaxation is in creating!


Have you been dying for the perfect space to entertain? With a little work – and we mean just a little – you’ll have a super chic, industrial-styled entertaining space sure to make your guests envious! Paint or stain the concrete floor, add a pop of color to the concrete walls with paint, fabric, stained wood planks – pretty much any material other than drywall, add some creative storage and find the perfect bar-styled furniture, a TV or two, a centerpiece game table and comfortable-chic furniture and you’ve got a one-of-a-kind space perfect for entertaining that’s easy-to-clean and perfect for accommodating multiple guests! Don’t believe us, check out what others have done to create oh-so-cool entertaining spaces in their unfinished basements.


Do you work remotely or for yourself? Needing an office space but the main floor is full – or will be full and you’re holding out for the home with perfect office space? Don’t! If there’s an unfinished basement you’ve got the room to make the office of your dreams! With a very small amount of finishing, you’ll have an office area so perfect you’ll never want to go back upstairs! Even better, you’ll be able to work in peace away from the noise of the main floor. And if you work from home while caring for little ones then an unfinished basement truly is the perfect solution! Create a combination office and playroom – your kids can play while you work away!

If you homeschool your littles, then an unfinished basement can become the perfect school space with very minimal finishing! Add some bright colors with fabric, paint, and foam to the floors and walls, install some shelves and seating, and add some desks or tables and chairs and you’ve got a great place to educate! Even better, you can adapt this space over the years to best fit your children’s education needs over time. Did we mention it’s easy to keep clean? Hello fun – and messy art projects and erupting science experiments!

Unfinished basements can make great guest rooms with a few soft touches!SPACE FOR GUESTS

Surprisingly, it doesn’t take much to create a guest room in an unfinished basement. Of course, you can go all out with a full-on finish and create a room that would make the Hilton jealous or keep it simple – with a few effortless and soft touches you can creative dividers, add a splash of color plus a great area rug and some cute decor, you’ll have an ultra-comfy, shabby-chic space any guest is sure to have sweet dreams in!

Perhaps you’re looking to make a little extra money off that basement space? Maybe you’ve got a friend or family member that needs a place to stay but can’t afford to live on their own. Whatever the case me be, with a little creativity and resourcefulness you can turn your unfinished basement into an apartment! You didn’t hear it from us, though! Take a gander at the examples below and then create your own little money maker!

Convert your unfinished basement into the perfect combination space to fulfill all your square footage needs in a home!COMBINATION SPACE

Because there is so much potential just lurking in that unfinished basement, you’ve probably realized that you can convert it into a “combination space” or “flexible space” with many of these ideas in different areas or sections of the basement to truly meet whatever your needs in a home may be. Whether it’s a combo game room, art studio, home gym, or perhaps it becomes a space to run and play with an area creatively closed off for guests. Whatever the need, with a little light finishing, you can convert an unfinished basement into one, or multiple of these ideas, and even adapt it later as your needs in a home grow and change!

More Expensive, But Worth the Investment Full Finishing

For a full or even mostly finished basement with drywall flooring and shelving you'll want to hire a professional contractor.Not up for DIY? We hope you’ll give it a try! Surprisingly, after you do some light finishing you may find it easier than you thought to lightly finish out the basement completely, or even just a few spaces in the basement. If you’re not up for DIY or you know that you want a finished basement in any capacity, you’ll need to consider hiring a contractor and make sure you’ve done ample planning to ensure that the way you want to finish the basement will not only work for the needs of your family but will add value when it comes time to resell your home. If you want a full-on finished basement or even just part of a space in the basement that requires electrical, plumbing, permanent flooring, or drywall, we highly recommend hiring a professional contractor to perform the basement finish for you.

Light finishing isn’t as serious of a matter as most of what you do can be easily undone, taken down, moved, or covered up by the next homeowner or even yourself if needed. But a full-on finish is much more permanent and requires specific codes and zoning to be met. Once framing and drywall go up, you are kind of stuck with it, unless you plan on doing some major remodeling. The good news is, once a basement is finished, it will add value to your home as it will be adding square feet and most likely additional bedrooms and bathrooms. Again, we highly recommend careful planning prior to finishing your basement, as it is more permanent and will affect your home significantly.

For example, let’s say you know you want the world’s largest man cave in your basement, so you spend the time, money, and effort to finish the basement out as the biggest man cave you’ve ever seen and you love it and enjoy it for years to come. But, as your kids older and you find you need more bedrooms, and you really wished you had the space in the basement to add them, but you can’t because you have the world’s largest man cave, so now your only option is to either do some major remodeling or purchase a new home with more bedrooms. If you had done some light finishing to create your ultra-mancave from the start, you could easily adjust the basement space and/or pay a contractor to finish the basement out with additional bedrooms now. Not only adding value, because of the additional finished square footage but adding more bedrooms thereby upping your resale price if, or when you choose to sell the home. Hence the need for serious planning and saving before you decide how you want to finish your basement.

If you want to fully, or even partially finish the basement there are a couple of options.

  • Get a quote from a contractor to finish all or part of the basement.
  • If you’re handy, determine what it would take to finish the basement (materials, time, etc.) and contact your local building and permitting department to see what’s required. Often, even if you’re skilled and capable of construction work, without a licensed contractor signing off on the work, it won’t pass code or permitting, thereby devaluing your home, rather than increasing it.

Even if you are a home repair aficionado, hiring a professional is still the best way to go for anything to be considered permanent and to add monetary value to the home. Visit the Wichita Area Building Association Remodelers Council here to see a list of licensed, vetted contractors you can contact for a quote regarding a basement finish. Find a contractor here.

Whether you own a home with an unfinished basement or are looking to buy a home with an unfinished basement, we hope that you’re seeing unfinished basements in a whole new way – as a blank canvas – ready and waiting for your clever creativity to convert the space into whatever you need in a home, and maybe even more than you ever thought possible! And if you are home hunting but have been holding out for that perfect basement – don’t! Now you know you can create your perfect basement! Check out our available homes as we have many with unfinished basements – ready for you to make your own!

Check out these other helpful articles and resources for more unfinished basement ideas.

15 Creative Ways to Use Your Unfinished Basement by Kelly Welton on Home Digest

10 Affordable Unfinished Basement Ideas by Linsey Mahoney on Building Bluebird

16 Finishing Touches for Your Unfinished Basement by Jennifer Noonan & Katie Nolan on Bob Vila

25 Unfinished Basement Ideas You Can Actually Afford by Andrew Helling on REthority

22 Amazing Ideas for Unfinished Basement Decor by Joyfully Treasured Vintage & Inspired Living

25 Brilliant Unfinished Basement Ideas You Will Adore by Barry Lane on NordArchitecture.com

82 Beautiful Finished Basement Ideas & Designs by Jordan Lawson on HGTV.com

Unfinished Basement Ideas gallery on Houzz

Our Pinterest board of Unfinished Basement Ideas for links to more resources and ideas!

Local Contractors to Help Finish Your Basement: WABA Remodelers Council

Please note, these are ideas and suggestions for how to use and convert the space in an unfinished basement. Miller Family Homes holds no responsibility or liability for accidents, problems, or issues that may occur from these suggestions. We do not promote or recommend that any dangerous, harmful, or unlawful activities be performed in unfinished basements or in an attempt to finish or lightly finish a basement. Basic safety guidelines and building practices should always be adhered to. Speak with a licensed contractor to ensure safe building practices are followed and the correct and necessary permits are filed. Choosing to follow recommendations or suggestions stated in this article is done so at the reader’s discretion and personal liability.

Celebrating 30 Years in Business!

Celebrating 30 Years in Business!

2023 Marks 30 Years in Business for Miller Family Homes!

And what a journey it has been! Full of highs and lows, it hasn’t always been an easy path, but we are extremely proud of where we are today!

Clint Miller started his new home construction company in 1993Started in 1993 by Clint Miller and his wife Brigitte, their passion for people and knowledge of new home construction fueled the Miller Family Homes of today. (Read more about the beginning of Miller Family Homes in “Our Story” here.) Through the years, the company has grown and expanded and is now comprised of a team of ten and several different companies including Miller Family Properties which owns and operates two different townhome communities, and Miller Family Development which develops the land we build our communities on.

Today, Clint is the President and fearless leader of Miller Family Homes. He also draws up architectural plans and acquires land to build future communities. Brigitte’s legacy lives on through their sons, Derek and Kevin. Derek currently works for Georgia Pacific as an Industrial Estimator while Kevin lives in Minnesota and is the top New Home Specialist for Creative Homes. Both Derek and Kevin plan on returning to the family business in the coming years full of the knowledge and experience they’ve gained during their time with these other companies.

Chief Operating Officer, Mike runs the day-to-day operations here at Miller Family Homes while Controller, Dinah overseas offices, accounts, and financials for all the Miller Family Companies. Project Manager Eric oversees the development, construction, and building of all Miller Family Homes and communities. Interior Designer and Draftswoman Courtney creatively and skillfully plans and picks designs for all our new homes, models, and sales centers. New Home Specialists Scott Darrenkamp and Jenny Castro are who you’ll meet in our communities and both are eager to help you buy or build your brand-new home. Savannah, our Online Sales Consultant, Closing Coordinator, and Digital Marketing Specialist will be glad to answer any questions you may have via a phone call, text, email, or the chat button on our website. After you sign a purchase agreement, you’ll meet Scott Sampson, our Customer Care Specialist who will walk you through your Home Presentation leading up to closing and take care of you through your warranty checkups. At closing on your new home, you’ll meet Savannah in person and receive a little gift and intro to the Miller Family Homes family. Behind the scenes, Marketing Director Astyn designs and manages the website, graphic designs, and marketing efforts for the Miller Family Companies.

This amazing team collaborates, learns and grows together to create everything that you see from Miller Family Homes. As a company, we are so very appreciative and thankful for the team that we have today, along with past team members who helped Miller Family Homes to get to where it is today. Without the whole team, past and present, none of this would have been possible.

Miller Family Homes is helping to bring The House That She Built to WichitaSome of our recent accomplishments include:

  • Donating The House That She Built books and companion The House That She Built Activity Books to L’ Ouverture Career Explorations & Technology Magnet.
  • Participating in the Great Cycle Challenge for 3 years running led by Dinah and raising over $5,000 in that time for Children’s cancer research.
  • Adopting or rather we were the ones being adopted by Sassy, our Office Cat who continually keeps the team on-task, loves to be the center of attention and may require the occasional snuggling or kitty treat.
  • Planting over 5 trees in our customers’ yards in 2022 alone as part of our Spread Your Roots Referral Program (learn more about our referral program here).
  • Winning Pick of the Parade among other awards during the Parade of Homes for multiple different entries and floor plans.
  • Expanding our On Your Land program to our services so that we can build on land you own, whether it’s in one of our communities or not. (Psst, we’ve got 14 different floor plans to choose from! Learn more here.)
  • Creating and curating an impressive list of resources and content for both prospective buyers and current homeowners available completely for free and backed by a team of knowledgeable and skilled professionals. (Check out the Homebuyer’s Guide here.) (Explore the Homeowner Resources here.) (View our Customer Center here to discover all our resources.)
  • Selling nearly completely out of Village Estates and Southern Ridge, moving them into the Grand Closeout phase. (Learn more about the benefits of buying in a Grand Closeout here.)
  • Adding the ability to self-tour some of our homes! Haven’t checked it out yet – now is a perfect time!
  • Expanding hours in our Clear Creek community to be open seven days a week!

We are so very thankful to all our partners; Realtors, lenders, title companies, subcontractors, and vendors – without your continued support we would none of our accomplishments would have been possible! We are truly thankful for each and every one of you and look forward to your continued partnership in the years to come!

The Miller Family Homes Difference Building a Better Home at a Better ValueFinally, we want to thank you, our customers, past, present, and future! If you’ve bought or built with us, we hope that you are enjoying your Miller Family Home and making memories to last a lifetime in your new home. If you haven’t yet bought or built with us, we hope that you will consider doing so. Our goal – our mission, is to build better homes and better communities. We want you to love every step of your pathway to homeownership and beyond. If you haven’t yet, take a moment to discover The Miller Familly Homes Difference and learn more about how we’re different. And if you’re looking to buy or build, don’t miss our great savings opportunities that we’ve got running this month! You can view current savings opportunities here.

Miller Family Homes has exciting things planned for 2023, our 30th year, and beyond!

  • Our snazzy, new Welcome Center and Model will be opening in Clear Creek in April and ready for the Parade of Homes!
  • Arvada, our new community near 119th and 37th in Maize, is having the land developed now! We’ll be releasing the community map and floor plans for this community very soon along with accepting homesite reservations!
  • There will be another exciting new community that we’ll be releasing details about very soon!
  • We’ll be partnering with Girl Scouts of America to host events tied to The House That She Built to continue that initiative and educational opportunities for Wichita’s youth.
  • For Realtors, we’re planning some great collaborative events for Realtors throughout the year, including a boosted Coop Commission for every sale after the second. (Realtors, learn more here!)

And this is just a small, sneak peek of what we’ve got planned for this year alone! Subscribe to our newsletters and emails to stay informed about everything Miller Family Homes and be the first to know when we release new information, communities, floor plans and more! (Subscribe here!)

We are thrilled for 2023, our 30th anniversary year, and so very thankful to our team, past and present, our partners, lenders, realtors, subcontractors, vendors and tradespeople, and especially to all of our customers and prospective customers throughout the last 30 years! We hope you’ll join us on this journey for this year and beyond, and find your home sweet home with Miller Family Homes!

Find Your Home Sweet Home with Miller Family Homes

Tour On Your Own Now Or Later

Tour On Your Own Now Or Later

Now Offering Self-Guided Tours Through NterNow!

You might have noticed the new buttons we’ve added to our website that say “Tour on Your Own Now or Later”. This handy new feature we’re offering allows you to tour homes on your own, or “self-guided”. When you click one of these buttons or scan the QR code in our communities, you’ll be directed to the NterNow platform that allows you to either schedule a tour or tour a home now, if you are physically at the home, ready to explore it.

What is NterNow? NterNow is an easy-to-use platform that works with a variety of companies to allow interested individuals to tour homes on their own, without a real estate agent or salesperson present. You can access this software through the QR codes on the front door of the home, a web browser via the buttons on our website, or through their app, available in the App Store and Google Play. Don’t like apps or technology? No problem, you can always call NterNow at (844) 531.1283 or our Online Sales Consultant at (316) 250.6227 to learn more.


If You Are Physically In One of Our Communities with the Self-Tour Signs:

  1. Scan the QR code to access the app or call the phone number on the orange sign.
  2. If you’re using the app, you’ll have to create an account and scan your driver’s license to verify your identity, but only for the first visit.
    • If you call the phone number on the sign, you’ll have to verify your identity by answering a few questions.
    • Either way, please be reassured that your information is safe and never sold to another party.
  3. The app will geolocate your proximity to the home and after agreeing to the terms and conditions, you’ll receive a 9-digit access code to the home that you’ll enter into the keypad on the door.
    • If you’ve called in, they will tell you the 9-digit code to enter into the door.
  4. After entering the code, you’ll hear the door unlock, you can now open the door and enter the home.
  5. Upon entering the home you’ll want to close the door to enjoy a private tour of the home.
  6. You’ll notice handy marketing materials on the counter from Miller Family Homes about the home and any savings opportunities we may be running – please feel free to take one or some of these with you!
    • If at any point while you’re touring you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to call us at (316) 250.6227.
  7. When you’re done touring, please be sure to relock any doors (other than the front door) that you may have unlocked while touring.
  8. When you leave, the front door just needs to be closed to resecure the home.
  9. Feel free to tour any other homes you see with the orange, “Tour This Home Now” sign.

If You Are On The Website & Want to Schedule a Self-Guided Tour:

  1. Simply click the “Tour On Your Own Now or Later” button.
  2. Follow the on-screen prompts and create an account, again, so that you only have to verify your identity once.
  3. Choose the home you want to tour and select your date and time.
  4. When you’re ready to tour the home, the app will give you the access code to enter into the keypad on the front door.
  5. After entering the code, you’ll hear the door unlock, you can now open the door and enter the home.
  6. Upon entering the home you’ll want to close the door to enjoy a private tour of the home.
  7. You’ll notice handy marketing materials on the counter from Miller Family Homes about the home and any savings opportunities we may be running – please feel free to take one or some of these with you!
    • If at any point while you’re touring you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to call us at (316) 250.6227.
  8. When you’re done touring, please be sure to relock any doors (other than the front door) that you may have unlocked while touring.
  9. When you leave, the front door just needs to be closed to resecure the home.
  10. Feel free to tour any other homes you see with the orange, “Tour This Home Now” sign.

What if you want to talk with a New Home Specialist during the Tour? That’s great, we love to show off our homes! Simply schedule an appointment with one of our New Home Specialists and they will be present to give you a tour of the home and answer any questions you may have. You can schedule a tour by either calling (316) 250.6227 or clicking here to book a tour.

Currently, we’re only offering Self-Guided Tours in two communities, Southern Ridge and Village Estates. Soon, you should be able to self-tour some of the homes in Clear Creek as well. And even though you may not be able to self-tour in Clear Creek, you can now stop by 7 days a week in Clear Creek as we’ve extended the Welcome Center’s hours! Our new Open Hours in Clear Creek are: Mondays & Tuesdays from 11am to 5pm, Wednesdays from 1pm to 5pm, Thursdays through Saturdays from 11am to 5pm and Sundays from 1pm to 5pm or by appointment for nearly anytime outside of these hours.

We hope you love this great feature as much as we do and that you’ll take advantage of it and explore some of our homes on your own schedule! Self-Guided Tours are available 7 days a week from 7am to 9pm, allowing you to tour the home before or after work, at a time that works best for you.

 Now check it out and go tour a home all on your own!

The House That She Built Movement Comes To Wichita

The House That She Built Movement Comes To Wichita

Introducing Young People at L’Ouverture Career Explorations & Technology Magnet to Careers in Home Building

From architect to electrician to interior designer to tile installer to excavator and even marketer, the home building industry offers many fulfilling careers to women and men across the country. To spread this message, we are working with Outhouse, LLC to give away The House That She Built Coloring & Activity Book activity books to all Kindergarten and 1st Grade students at L’Ouverture Career Explorations & Technology Magnet on December 15th at 2:00 PM. This activity book introduces young girls and boys to the many skills involved in construction and is the companion piece to The House That She Built children’s book.

What is The House That SHE Built? The House That SHE Built was a unique undertaking by The Utah Chapter of the NAHB Professional Women in Building whose goal was to “highlight and utilize women professionals, skilled tradeswomen, and women-owned companies for all stages of the project [building a new home]” and is the first home in the nation constructed entirely by women. Throughout the project, it garnered national media attention and inspired a best-selling children’s book, The House That She Built, which has sparked an international movement empowering young people, especially girls to learn more about careers in the home-building industry. The book was written and illustrated by Mollie Elkman and Georgia Castellano of Group Two Advertising. The activity book is a companion piece printed by Outhouse LLC, a provider of online marketing tools, print, and signage for builders.

The House That SHE Built immediately caught the attention of several Miller Family Homes team members. Appreciating the goal of the project and the overall outcome, we are thrilled with the opportunity to bring a little part of this great initiative to the Wichita area, particularly L’Ouverture Career Exploration and Technology Magnet Elementary School. We appreciate their “every student future-ready” approach to education and their goal to empower students to become self-motivated learners as this will serve them well throughout their life, regardless of their chosen career path. We hope that the donation of The House That She Built Coloring & Activity Books will inspire children to learn more about the construction industry and instill an appreciation of and the need for, every tradesperson involved in building and construction.

Miller Family Homes and Outhouse, LLC are honored to be part of a movement encouraging young girls and boys to be courageous, step outside the box, and follow their dreams. Being recognized at the event on December 15th is L’Ouverture teacher Jeni Dickson Atwood. She started her teaching career at age 51, demonstrating you can redefine yourself and succeed at any age.

Available online at thehousethatshebuilt.com, all proceeds from book and merchandise sales go to support women in construction, diversity, and inclusion in construction and housing.

We hope to continue this endeavor with future events and education opportunities for young people in the Wichita area. Please feel free to reach out to us if you have questions or would like to learn more about getting involved.

The House That She Built Coloring And Activity Book

Light Up Your Life with Different Lighting Styles

Light Up Your Life with Different Lighting Styles

Welcome to your new home! We are excited that you are a part of the Miller Family Homes family! So, let’s talk lighting! We want to ensure that you light up your life and the guests you have when they walk into your new beautiful home.

Did you know there are multiple types of lighting? We will give you a brief lesson on three different types of lighting and let you decide what will work best for you and your new home!

Task Light

Task lighting is the essential lighting in your home. The lighting focuses on a specific area, and its purpose is to help you perform your daily tasks. Daily tasks you perform are cooking, reading, putting on makeup, shaving, etc.

If you find that your eyes are straining to focus on everyday tasks and are getting heavy, almost as if you were tired, you need to add more task lighting. Consider the area you are straining your eyes in, the bathroom vanity might need to produce more light, and you can fix this by just changing bulbs or changing the fixtures.

When you increase your task lighting in your home, not only will you increase productivity and safety, but you will also enhance the room’s appearance. If you are in areas where you work a lot on computers or spend time reading, you can add lamps, wall scones, or even track lighting.

Aesthetic Light

Aesthetic lighting can significantly impact the emotional balance for you when you look at the architecture and art that the home displays.

When guests come to your home, you what them to have the optimum experience when they visit your home. You want them to feel that they have stepped into a beautiful masterpiece.

In order to create more aesthetic light in your home, here are a few ideas to help create that “WOW” factor.

If you have any pieces of artwork that would benefit from a glow of light to help bring it to life, do it. Paintings, sculptures, and other art forms can thrive with light from multiple angles to help bring those pieces alive.

If you are looking for more of a dramatic effect, you should consider putting in some chandeliers. Imagine having a chandelier over your soaker tub. Not only will your guests feel like they are bathing in luxury, but the appearance can turn that bathroom from drab to fab. 

Just remember, lamps are your friend when it comes to aesthetic lighting. They are manufactured from several materials, creating an exciting glow and appearance that will flow with any mood you try to make.

One last idea to try for aesthetic lighting is LED strip lighting. These can be used all over your home. A great starting point would be in the kitchen with your cabinets. You can make your cabinets from pleasant to fabulous with up-lighting. If you have cabinets with windows, you can bring your display china to life, creating the halo effect.

Natural Light

When talking about natural lighting, we are talking about the light created by the sun’s source. When our bodies get exposed to natural light, it helps our body produce Vitamin D. We need to get enough Vitamin D, which is the key to our physical and psychological well-being.

Your home is already built, so you are probably wondering how you can increase the natural light of the interior of your home. Here are a few ideas to help you with just that.

You can start with your paint choices. You can use gloss paint with lighter or brighter colors. The best color to use for maximum brightness is white. Do not forget your ceilings. The ceilings also help reflect the light. We recommend you not use glossy on the ceiling to reduce glare but stick with the matte look.

When you are decorating, consider using reflective items. You want to look at shiny, reflective, or glossy features. So if you’re going to add some pop to your home, focus on hardware, tiles, light fixtures, and mirrors for more natural light.

You can always consider painting your soffits a brighter color on the home’s exterior. Once again, white will be your best option, and you do not have to repaint the whole exterior. Painting the soffits will help reflect the natural light into your windows.

The different types of lighting, natural, aesthetic, and task lighting, can change the overall feel of your entire home. When designing your home’s layout, think of what kind of lighting best complement what you are trying to accomplish. Most of all, have fun with your new home, and do not be afraid to try something new and fun!

The Five Zones of a Successful Kitchen

The Five Zones of a Successful Kitchen

Congratulations on moving into your new home! You are probably thinking there are so many boxes that you will start putting items in the cabinets and drawers to get the clutter out of the way. Well, let’s not get into a hurry while unpacking. You just bought a new home, and it is time that you start thinking about a new kitchen system.

The kitchen you had before probably did not have the same layout, and if it did, was your setup practical to the flow of maximum usage? Since you are about to start fresh and clean, you should consider the five zones of the kitchen layout for efficient and maximum use of your new kitchen.

Perishables (Consumables)

This zone is the area where you are going to store your food items. The perishable site can be divided into two sections: refrigerated and pantry items.

When you come home from the market, this zone is where you will put up your groceries. You will need to make sure that you keep this zone organized. This will help when you take inventory for your next trip to the market.

When placing new items into your perishable zones, make sure that you follow the FIFO (first-in-first-out) rotation system to ensure that you are using the older inventory first, so your groceries do not expire.

When you put away your refrigerated perishables, take note of the old inventory and look for mold or aged items. Also, remember to keep your raw products away from your ready-to-eat items to prevent any food-borne illnesses caused by cross-contamination.

Non – Perishables (Non-Consumables)

This zone is for storing your everyday dishes, cutlery, glasses, and cups.

When arranging this zone, keep in mind the cleaning zone and the frequency of the dishes you use the most. These zones go hand in hand since you will have to wash the dishes, cutlery, and glasses you use.

You will also want to consider your preparation zone. While prepping your meals, you will have to use your non-perishables for chopping, stirring, mixing bowls, and more. You want to ensure you do not have to walk across the kitchen to get the cutting board and the other direction for your chef’s knife.


This zone is for storing your cleaning supplies. This zone contains your sink, dishwasher, drying rack, and garbage & recycling bin.

The best advice is to clean as you go. If you currently do not clean as you go, this is a good habit to create. The items you should keep stored in this location are your cleaning chemicals, sponges, dish towels, and all other items needed for cleaning.

You will want to keep all your chemicals together and put them back when you are finished with them. You will not want to have the bleach out while cooking or prepping. You might get the chemicals in your food and make people sick.


This zone is where you will do the prep with your perishables. This could be a kitchen island or a countertop/worktop.

Your preparation zone is next to your cleaning area. You will want to ensure that while you are prepping, you rinse your dirty dishes and add them to the dishwasher as you progress with your cooking. Not only will this save time with your clean-up, but it will also keep you from cross-contaminating any food.


This zone is why your kitchen exists; it is where you will be cooking your delicious creations. This area consists of your oven, microwave, and stovetop or range.

You will want to keep the cooking zone clean and organized. All the appliances in this zone are going to be hot and have the capability to catch items on fire. Since you will be doing your cooking in this area, you will want to make sure that you place your oven mitts, potholders, popular seasonings, pots and pans, and cooking utensils in this region.

Moving into a new home can be overwhelming when unpacking and putting items in their place. If you realize that how you have arranged it does not work, no worries, you can always change your storage to fits your needs. The overall goal of the kitchen zones is to ensure that you create a flow in your kitchen and use the layout to its full potential.