Floor plan suggestions

khiggins1April 24, 2014

Any advice/suggestions on this floor plan would be greatly appreciated. We are a husband and wife with 2 kids ages 2 and 4. I like everything about the floor plan except the master seems small. I am using the large laundry room as a craft/sewing room also.

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That laundry room is really not large enough for "crafts and sewing" unless it is just storage of a few items. It isn't large enough to have a permanently set up single machine, let alone a machine and a serger and ironing board, etc...imo.

The master is a fine size for this size of home. It will accommodate a king size bed without issue. The master closet is sufficient to hold all adult clothing, so you won't need secondary dresser furniture to be in the bedroom.

The major change I'd make to the floor plan... The door from garage to back hall currently swings "the wrong way"; but swinging it the other way (so it opens to the bench side) also would be the wrong way. If you are not permitted to swing it INTO the garage (removing the door swing space from the hall altogether), then I'd push it into the garage, so when it swings into the hall, it only takes up half the hall with door swing, and not all of it. Does that make sense? In other words, move it so it is even with the back wall of the "bench" and not with the front of the bench.

Some minor things: Master Bath toilet room has the dangerous inswing door. See if you can rearrange to accommodate an outswing door, or plan to install a pivot door (it swings either direction) instead.

Also, the kids' bath--in theory, I like it. But, in real life, I have a very similar set up, it is too narrow, especially to have an inswing door from the hallway, instead of having a pocket door. Because it has an inswing door, the door actually takes up more space and reduces its depth (from counter to back wall) further. So, in real life, if you have children who don't get along or like to pester in the least, the one who chooses to use the front sink, will block the other one in or out. (Can you tell I speak from experience here)?

Finally, I suspect there will be a better arrangement of kitchen appliances/work space/zoning. That counter/cabinetry along the "bottom" wall will rarely get used. If you have only a one story home and can vent the stove up out the roof, I'd think about moving your stove to that wall. It keeps it out of the path of kids (between table, pantry, sink and fridge.) And, I'd probably put your clean up sink and DW where the stove is, and a prep sink in the island. I suspect that is where you'll get the biggest bang for your buck in kitchen space planning... (and the closest locations for DW to dish storage, etc.)

But, the kitchen forum is really the place to get the best advice on kitchens.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2014 at 1:31AM
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Thank you for all the tips. I do think the laundry room will work for what I will be doing. I'm going to eliminate cabinets on one side. Layout will be like picture. Picture is 8 foot wide room ours is only 7'6 so it will b a little narrower

    Bookmark   April 25, 2014 at 7:16AM
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The one thing that sticks out to me in the plan is the proximity of the kids' bath to the kitchen/dining area. I'm always super grossed out by bathrooms that are so close to eating areas.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2014 at 8:52AM
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I think your laundry room will be fine, but the children's bath is problematic. It literally opens up into your kitchen dining area. That will be a big no-no for guests and your teens as they mature.

I would try to add more space in the children's bath and the dining area.

Good luck!

    Bookmark   April 25, 2014 at 8:55AM
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Ditto the bathroom opening off the kitchen. I'd consider moving the bathroom to the space between the kids' bedrooms, where the 3 closets are. Make the top half of the old bathroom space a closet for BR 2 and the bottom half a walk in pantry for the kitchen, opening up the lower right corner of the kitchen for more cabinets and counter space. Put a wide reach-in closet at the bottom wall for BR 3.

As your kids grow you will definitely want mudroom space. You'll need space for backpacks, shoes, sports equipment, etc. I don't think the single bench is going to cut it, even with cubbies above. Can you put your crafts desk/counters in the playroom, and make the whole back hall one combo laundry/mudroom? If your kids are in the playroom, you'll probably want to be in there anyway when you're working on your projects.

You have several jogs and corners on this house, which makes building more expensive because the foundation and roof lines are more complex. It's worth asking the builder what the cost difference would be if you pushed the top wall of the breakfast area to be even with the top wall of BR 2. It might actually be less expensive even though you'd be getting more space (e.g. for a dining area for when you have guests.)

It might be handier to have the playroom doors open toward the LR rather than the front hall. That way you can more easily peek in to check on the kids while you're doing laundry or working in the kitchen.

Also, there's no closet near the front door. Even in a warm climate it's nice to have a space for jackets, umbrellas, etc. for you and guests. If you move the playroom doors to the top wall of that room, the spot where the doors are now could become a foyer closet (bumping into the playroom wall.) Then you could add a closet to the playroom below that bump out (bottom left wall of the playroom.) Yes you'd be stealing a few feet from the playroom but it could be worth it to have some closet space in both places.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2014 at 1:25PM
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The master closet is probably too narrow if you want hanging clothes on both sides. If one side will just be shelves it might be okay.

Make sure you understand how the size of your rooms are measured. Are they from the front of the drywall or from the middle of the stud? The reason I am pointing this out is because if the way your plan is measured is different from the way the laundry room in your inspiration laundry room is measure it could be more than a 6" difference between the rooms.

The laundry room shows the dryer to the left of the washer. Most front loaders work better if the dryer is to the right of the washer. I would suggest moving flip flopping the room so the washer and dryer are on the left as you walk in the room. That way the dryer will be to the right of the washer and will still be near the exterior wall.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2014 at 2:57PM
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The closet in the master hall will suffice for guest coats, etc, I'd think.

The bath location is not an issue for me. There appears to be a wall at then end, opposite the bath location, that kind of makes it the start of a hall. The view from the public spaces would be of the bathroom wall, and not bathroom fixtures. The toilet (and any "noises" that weird people out) are on the exterior of the building... For a compact design, this house accomplished much as drawn.

I still have concern about your laundry room. In a lot of ways, you could solve your bathroom/laundry room connundrum by just switching the location of the 2 (and then sliding the lower bedroom "down" and putting the bathroom between the bedrooms).

Just a thought.

This post was edited by kirkhall on Fri, Apr 25, 14 at 16:01

    Bookmark   April 25, 2014 at 4:00PM
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Overall very neatly laid out and comfortable.

The biggest issue I see is one that's already been pointed out: Your functional /storage areas are skimpy:

- Is the laundry room wide enough for "arts and crafts"? If you mean a place to store things, which you'll then bring out to the kitchen table to work on, then yes. However, if you intend it to be an out-of-the-way work space, then no. The picture (great picture, by the way) that you included looks to me to be wider than 8', but more importantly, that picture shows cabinets on only one side -- you're planning on a more narrow space AND cabinets on both sides. My suggestions: Move the machines to the end wall (so the dryer can vent directly to the outside, which is always better). Use nice big windows above them, which will give you wonderful natural light. Plan floor-to-ceiling cabinets on ONE SIDE ONLY . . . and include a desk in the cabinet run. This'll give you a decent space for one person to sit and work -- though not enough to invite a friend over to work on scrapbooks and expect you can both spread out your materials.

- At 5'10" the master closet is too narrow. 24" for clothes on both sides, that leaves you 22" of walking space in the middle. The reality is that you'll only be able to hang clothes on one side of the closet, so this large space will give you only the storage of a reach-in closet.

I think the master bedroom is a comfortable size -- not tiny, not bloated. I wouldn't change it.

I also am not bothered by the children's bathroom being next to the kitchen /dining area.

The kids' bedrooms and closet space are nicely laid out and will be comfortable.

Your breakfast area is manageable but not generous in size. I'd definitely go with a built-in banquette bench to maximize space. Remember, this is also your hallway to the kids' bedrooms.

If you (or a future owner) ever want a dining room, your playroom is perfectly positioned. You'd want another door opened towards the kitchen, but that's do-able.

I would remove the door in the middle of the kids' bath and would downsize to one sink -- the sinks are smashed up against the walls, which is uncomfortable to use, and the kids will appreciate more drawer space and counter space more than two sinks.

On the subject of bathrooms, I've never really grasped the great danger of inswing bathrooms, but I would eliminate the door to the master bathroom toilet altogether. I'd bring the toilet slightly forward (which would allow you a small closet in the foyer) and just let the toilet sit in a small indent. It'll be hidden from sight, but will be tremendously easier to clean, will be subject to natural light, and -- if you're planning to stay in this house -- will still be usable to you when you're elderly.

I do agree with the poster who points out that the garage entrance and bench are a bit problematic: I'd simply switch the two: Put the garage door nearer the laundry room, keep the door swinging in the direction it is . . . but this'll mean people are forced to walk PAST the bench as they enter the house. They won't have to close the door and back up to get to the bench.

Of course, this creates another problem: I bet you put this door where it is because you didn't want the garage door and the laundry door to "open across one another". I'd solve this problem by going with a pocket door to the laundry. I'm thinking this is a door that'll stay open most of the time anyway. OR, if you do maintain a hinged door into the laundry, I'd consider making it a French door -- or a glass-at-the-top door -- so you'd have some natural light coming in from the laundry room window into what could become a dreary little hallway.

This post was edited by MrsPete on Sun, Apr 27, 14 at 9:42

    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 9:31AM
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Regarding the children's bath off the kitchen - while you may only see a wall from the living area, your teen age children and/or guests will have NO privacy going in and out of the bathroom. My teen daughters would have hated that!

And, frankly, I think it will be off putting for resale, in an otherwise very nice house.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2014 at 7:36AM
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I think the overall of your plan is good. But I have a few things that I would change.
1. The garage entry is far too small. I would turn my kitchen so that the island backs up to the dining, not the living, and then there would a couple more feet to use in the garage entry to the house. The bottom kitchen wall could then be 'even' with the breakfast area. The kitchen will need a little bit more work, with the arrangement of things.
2. I would also move the playroom doors to face the living room and add a coat closet there, with a desk inside the playroom, or a shelving unit.
3. I would definitely swap the kids bathroom with that closet area like the other poster suggested.
4. I would have to consider the master bath/closet. I would hate that little hole for the toilet. Must have window!! I would not like everyone who entered my house to be able to see directly into the master and the 2 doors would be a total pain to move furniture into the master.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2014 at 11:00AM
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