Design Tips for Happy Home Paradise


The first DLC released for Animal Crossing New Horizons gave longtime fans a new boost of inspiration, with many players returning to the game after long hiatus. In Happy Home Paradise, you are entrusted with the job of an interior designer, working with Lottie and her team to build custom vacation homes for the villagers. Showcasing a new smooth interface for decorating homes and exteriors, along with new furniture added alongside Update 2.0, the design has taken on a whole new light in Animal Crossing.

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There are so many new options, features, and customizations to explore in Happy Home Paradise that it can feel overwhelming at times. If you’re looking to improve your designer game, here are some advanced tips and tricks to keep in mind.

ten Return to houses to renovate

Player asks blue hippo Bertha if she wants to talk about renovating her home

Fortunately, this is not a one-and-done type of DLC design. Once you have completed a vacation home, you can return to it at any time using the Happy Home Network app on your phone. However, you will only be able to use the app to visit the homes again during your stay at Happy Home Paradise. You can speak to any villager from any previous house to bring up the subject of remodeling. As you progress through Happy Home Paradise, you will acquire tons of new furniture and special features, which can be added to your early builds with this option.

RELATED: Animal Crossing: Happy Home Paradise – Tips for Beginners

Additionally, using the reshape feature is a valid strategy for grinding Poki. Just grab a handful of villagers on the beach or at the Happy Home Paradise facilities, go to their vacation home site, and drop off the necessary furniture before shutting it down. You will still be paid for that minimal effort, and when you come back to work from home later, you will receive an extra Poki just for the remodel!


9 Customize plants to create variety

A player stands at the foot of a natural ramp next to a red duck, surrounded by trees and flowers

You probably know that you can press “x” to personalize most furniture and choose different colors or aesthetics for that item. But you can also use the same functionality to personalize the plants in your exteriors. If you customize plants such as trees, you can go through different stages of growth. It also works for flowers, crops and shrubs! Having plants in multiple stages of growth in your garden is a great way to add depth and character to your outdoors.

8 Double the pillars to align them with furniture

A player stands in a green paneled room with a village cow, next to a counter that has two pillars

Every Animal Crossing player knows the difficulty of trying to line up or center something perfectly … only to be disappointed every time. Pillars are no exception, as their size can sometimes make it impossible to use them in a perfectly symmetrical design. If you want your pillars to line up “flush” with furniture, such as counters, Doubling them down or even making a group of four to form a “big” pillar is a good trick to get around this problem.

seven Scroll through the hours for different weather effects

An image split from left to right: a player walks through different times of the day with the Time / Weather function, and a player stands in a swampy area surrounded by fog

One of the most interesting features in designing the exterior of your vacation home is the ability to literally manipulate the time of day or the weather. Press “up” on the d-pad to display this option, displaying a bar with different times of the day, as well as two boxes for “sunny” and “rainy” weather. You can actually use these two features together to create some pretty cool effects.

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For example, to create a misty effect, choose the “rain” option and scroll through the hours of the day until you find one where it is not raining but misty. This usually happens early in the morning. You can even use it to change the force of the wind or create a thunderstorm.

A player stands in a dark room in front of a record player, who says he is currently playing the song

As you progress through Happy Home Paradise, you will get to know the Wardell Manatee a bit better. This absolute sweetheart will teach you how to add “soundscapes” to your vacation homes, which will give your constructions ambient sounds such as the sounds of the jungle or the chatter of the crowds. The best part, however, is that you can use soundscapes in combination with music to create an even richer ambience in your home! As you design more houses, you will collect more KK Slider music players and songs to choose from to create the perfect atmosphere.

5 Get creative with lighting

A gamer sits in a green-lit science lab, shaking in fear, as an octopus robot paces the room

If adding pendant lights wasn’t enough, after designing eleven vacation homes, you will unlock the possibility to create special lighting effects. You can adjust both the color and saturation of the light in the room with this feature, which can really amplify the aesthetics of a home. Use it to add a little extra mood or even simulate a “natural light” look.

4 Use custom designs for paths

A player stands in an autumn orchard on a custom-designed stone path

Animal Crossing fans have long relied on custom designs to enhance the aesthetics of their islands. Fortunately, Happy Home Paradise allows you to use custom designs in a number of ways, including custom paths. This is especially useful because many vacation homes do not line up with the decks on their plot. Using custom designs to create “winding” paths is a good way to visually cheat this problem.

3 Vary your Polish effects

A split image from left to right: A player is floored in the toilet as a lion sits on a glittering golden toilet, and a player stands in front of a row of plants with the

A new mechanism entirely unique to Happy Home Paradise is the ability to polish furniture. But polishing isn’t all about giving your furniture a little shine, oh no. Finally, you can unlock a whole bunch of different “polish” effects with funny names like “flutterflap” or “dizzyspin” that will leave an almost comic book style motion effect on furnishing elements. “Flutterflap” is a particularly neat effect to use in homes that have flowers or other animals to add butterflies.

2 Add clutter for depth

A gamer stands in a dark, cluttered room filled with cardboard boxes and boxes of fish

While this may not be perfect for all vacation homes, an easy way to bring a little more ‘life’ to your build is to just add a little more clutter. In real life, our spaces often look more ‘inhabited’ than blank showrooms. Stocking counters with everyday items such as food or kitchen appliances can help with this end. Placing various pieces of furniture like books, papers, or even cans and plastic bottles to simulate “trash cans” can also help things feel more natural.

1 Use partitions to create interior terraces

A player stands in a chic green room with a yellow armadillo villager, with partitions behind framing a deck area

Happy Home Paradise introduced us to “partition” walls, and every gamer who had ever crafted a design purely with custom single panels breathed a sigh of relief. However, room dividers can be used for more than just “walling” part of a room. Using accent walls and rugs, you can use room dividers to create your own deck or patio inside a vacation home. This brings impressive depth to any interior design, especially with the help of live or “3D” wallpapers.

NEXT: Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp Features Added to New Horizons 2.0 and Happy Home Paradise

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