Not much good can come out of a poor floor plan, which is why I like to play safe by standing up to the needs of geometry, privacy, accessibility and so on.
Having a smart plan is equal to getting half the job done. Here are of my fool-proof tips which you may want to consider before selecting floor plans for new homes.
1. Do not tamper with geometry
One reason why the universe never ceases to fascinate me is its geometric precision. Floor plans should also be cut out keeping the sense of geometry alive. There is lot of engineering involved here. Maximising usable space is both an art and a science.
If you are inclined towards cost-effectiveness, ensure that you build your home as close to a square as possible. Talk to your builder and find out if he is calculating living space the way it should be.
For instance, if you have a loft space with low rafters, I would prefer it being calculated as living space (believe me; it makes a lot of difference to the floor plan).
Before drafting any floor plan, you should take into account the location of your property and its surroundings. Think about which rooms you want to face the street and which ones you want to relegate to the back of the house.
If you put your kitchen on the street view level, chances are your home in your location will have a totally different aesthetic, view and therefore feel different. When creating a smart floor plan, make sure that the interiors will fit with your home location.
Are you a nature’s bird or you like living indoors? Your home floor plan should vary based on your propensity towards outdoor living. May be you are keen on a patio or a lanai or a swimming pool but you have got to ask yourself first whether you can look towards its regular upkeep.
If the answer is yes, curve your floor plan towards usable outdoor spaces. If you have young children at home, make sure that the outdoors can be overviewed from either the bedroom or the kitchen.
4. Cater to the privacy-seeker or entertainer in you.
If you are into fair bit of entertaining, I recommend you to be dutiful in choosing your floor plan. You will find that it will (and it should by all means) vary a lot from those plans where homeowners are privacy buffs.
An open floor plan will suit to the tee on such occasions. There is a tendency in privacy-loving homeowners to create a living room juxtaposed to the front door and hide the remaining house from visitors.
People who like to entertain open up their whole area- foyer-leading to dining room-leading to outdoors. You got that right! The floor plan is really crucial here.
5. Make more frequented areas easily accessible.
Accessibility is another key. Your home floor plan should not hinder your daily activities. Let me boot my point home through an instance. Assume that you run into your kitchen straight from the garage, groceries in your hand.
Now, you wouldn’t certainly love the expression on your spouse’s face because of mud on the kitchen floor’s face. The sensible decision then would be to build a mudroom between the garage and the kitchen.
Similar accessibility-related attention is also due for the laundry area, storage space and basements.
Seek a floor plan which maximises entry of sunlight and fresh air into your home. If it means keeping windows aligned to the North, so be it.
You can add in expansive floor to ceiling windows, skylights and other architectural features on your floor plan as these could have an impact on heating and cooling your home when your energy bill arrives.
It is important to take financial capacity into consideration before anyone sits at the drafting board. A lot of homeowners think they have to get all the expensive finishes and innovative house features here and now, without thinking if these things fit well with their budget.
Remember that you can always upgrade your home in the future, when you have more money to spare. Design a floor plan according to your budget so you will feel comfortable living in your home and not feel “financially strained” each month to make payments on your home.
I hope the article sheds ample light on why “floor plans for new homes” is an important chapter in the building manual.