Please Critique My House Plan

cjay27March 23, 2012

I have been a regular reader of this forum for quite a while now. I have been amazed by the wisdom and insight of some of the regular posters on this forum. I would really appreciate any comments or suggestions you might have on this house plan.

First I should give you a bit of background info. We live on a farm on the canadian prairies. We plan to build a rtm (ready to move) home which is why the home is a somewhat narrow . We have 4 kids. Two are married and on their own. One is in college who comes and goes and one is still in high school and lives with us full time. As our kids are all older and will soon (hopefully) all be out on their own. We have designed the house with just the two of us in mind, with the living areas large enough to accomodate everyone when they all come home for Christmas etc. Although I am not posting the basement plans, there will be 4 bedrooms in the basement to accomodate everyone. The dining rm and family rm face south and the house is a total of 2037 sq ft. We wanted the house to be practical and highly functional with lots of natural light especially in the main living areas. I should also mention that the "storage room" is really a laundry/utility room. I plan to put my extra fridge and deep freeze in that room as well. The room I struggled with the most was the family rm and I'm still not sure I got it right!

Although the house seems to have most everything we wanted, I find myself terrified to actually commit to building it. I wish I could wander thru it in real life and live in it a bit first but since I can't I am relying on the good folks here on this forum to give me some feedback, positive or negative including general opinions of rtm homes. Thanks for your time in advance!

Here is a link that might be useful: My House Plan

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    Bookmark   March 23, 2012 at 4:26PM
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Will your kitchen be connected to the rear entry room? I have having a little difficulty seeing there, but it appears there is potential for that connection (except there is a wall)? I would suggest connecting them for easier access to the kitchen from the garage and your storage room.

Also, I think I would consider flip-flopping the stairs and entry. As it is, house guests will walk into a hallway that terminates in a wall. And, with the coat closet placement, really makes this entry feel enclosed and, uninviting?. If you can switch them around, you can close in the bedroom portion of your plan and have the entry more open to the living portion of your plan. I think it might feel more inviting.

I'm never crazy about having to walk through a bathroom to get to a closet, as is the case with your master. Where will your water heater be? I think I might consider making your master closet a walkthough closet (or double reachins) to the bathroom in back.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2012 at 4:33PM
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My apologies. I know that the plan is difficult to see. There is a connection between the kitchen and the rear entry. What looks like a wall is supposed to denote an archway.
I like your idea of flip- flopping the stairs and the entry. I think you may be right about it being more inviting.
I also understand what you saying about the master closet. Originally, on this plan the bathroom and closet were flip-flopped making the closet a walk thru double reach in as you have suggested. However, I got to thinking that a room might be more practical where I could use the back wall for shelving or something. I may need to reconsider this however, as you are not the first person to suggest the walk thru (double reach in) as preferable. I suppose it might get tiresome always walking thru the bathroom to access the closet. Thanks for your comments Kirkhall.

    Bookmark   March 23, 2012 at 6:46PM
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Is there a particular reason to have a full bath on the hall instead of a powder room? If you do not need that tub/shower, you could use the space to make a small vesibule where the master tub is now with access to the bath and closet from there. Our current house is set up in a similar fashion with a 3 x 3 area off the master with one wall being entrance to our closet, one wall with linen closet (deep enough for hampers) and one wall with door to bath. I am always going between the closet and bath, so I don't think it would be a pain to walk through the bath to get to closet (I am designing our new house this way). But the vestibule idea may solve it altogether. Also, if your master closet and storage laundry area back up to one another, I would make sure there was a way to pass laundry through from one room to another - hampers that roll under the counter and into the closet, laundry drop doors so you could do a very short laundry chute of sorts, etc. If it is just you guys 99% of the laundry will originate in your closet. So you would want a way to pass dirty laundry through and pass clean laundry back easily. Perhaps there is some way to do a "walk-through" linen closet of the vestibule that would go to the laundry room. Then sheets and towels would be easily managed, too.

I agree with kirkhall on the entry. You will end up with a ton of room under that stair for the closet and can combine uses with the coat closet as drawn.

When you are designing bannisters for your stairs, you may want to make sure you use some design that will accomodate a spring loaded baby-gate so you don't have to install something more permanent. You didn't mention grandkids, but with four kids, they are certain to come. :)

Best of luck!

    Bookmark   March 23, 2012 at 8:23PM
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The biggest thing I see is the utility room/storage room I can't see what kind of construction it is. If your planing on 2x4 studs upgrade to 2x6. If a washer and drier will be in there running you don't want it to destrube you while you relaxe in the tube. Also the wall that seperates the master bedroom from the rest o the house so noises of hiuse guest wont bother you as much. Also note alittle insulation also helps for sound damping. It may not be that important but down the road it may be useful.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2012 at 5:36AM
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