Floor Plan Critique

bennenrkcJune 22, 2014

We are building what we hope and plan to be our forever home. We are a young couple that just started a family (2 month old). We live in rural Iowa and plan to live here for the rest of our lives do to the farm land that my family owns.

We are building this on a walkout lot that overlooks a timber area and river bottom. The driveway will face south. I have attached the floor plan that we have been playing with and trying to get how we like and are now to the point where we would welcome critiques from the people that have been there.

Thanks for your help and time in advance.

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The dimensions aren't readable, making it hard to comment.

I will say - unless your island is 13' long, you won't fit 5 chairs at it. You need 2.5' per chair.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2014 at 7:15PM
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Thanks for pointing out about the stools, and making me aware of the lack of clarity I didn't notice when I put it up.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2014 at 9:35PM
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You might like a front closet for guests, and a little bigger drop zone between the garage and kitchen. And, every time one of you comes in from the garage, you're walking right through the middle of the kitchen. Could be inconvenient for the cook, and too easy to clutter up the counters, just dropping something off on the way through.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2014 at 11:00PM
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If it were me, I'd want to have my bedroom on the corner, and bathroom/closet between bedroom and kitchen.

Where do the stairs lead (basement)? Can you capture any under/over stair storage area?

I believe the way it is lined up, you can see the kid toilet from the foyer...

And, yes, I'd not position the cooking area such that everyone coming in from the garage will be walking through it.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2014 at 11:48PM
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Annie Deighnaugh

I think you are missing a real energy saving opportunity by having the majority of the windows and view face north where the coldest winds come from and that get the least sunlight. I would flip the house around so the house faces south and the garage is to the north.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2014 at 9:27AM
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The view into the river bottom is out the north and the street is right to the south so there is no way to flip it around. Additionally I will never live in another house with a north/east facing driving for snow removal purposes. Actually with the trees that are there the north will likely get less wind overall.

Stairs do lead to a walk out basement with 9 ft ceilings. There will be storage under the stairs.

I have tried to find a way to put the bedroom into the corner but I can't come up with a way that doesn't require me to walk through a bathroom/closet or mudroom to get to my bedroom. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

The mudroom/laundry/pantry will be the intended spot to unload everything. I am going to heat the garage with in floor heat so the garage will actually be the "mudroom" where shoes are taken off and stored and coats hung. This should help with some of the dirt coming into the house.

In a previous house we had to carry the groceries up the stairs to our kitchen and another house we had to carry things through our living room to get to the kitchen. I am trying to avoid it as I can walk in with big bags of groceries and set them on the island to be put away vs. having to carry them through the house to put them away.

Please keep the thoughts coming. It is appreciated.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2014 at 12:34PM
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I would switch the stove and the sink and then add a prep sink in the island as you have the main traffic coming through where the stove is and just consider what happens with hauling a pot of hot water to drain pasta over to the sink.

Plus the island would be better used as prep space on the long side with plenty of room than that little short space across from the stove now.

How much space between the tub and the toilet do you have in the secondary bath? I would try to recess the closets in the bedrooms and use up that space some

I would also put a pocket door to that bedroom wing. We have a very similar setup and it is very nice to be able to close it off at night to reduce the sound further through our childs door. Although we have closets on the walls that face the family areas so they buffer sounds more.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2014 at 1:44PM
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I am going to heat the garage with in floor heat so the garage will actually be the "mudroom" where shoes are taken off and stored and coats hung.

Is that commonly done in your area? I have never heard of it and I would think it would be very expensive because garages are not insulated to the same level as houses and garage doors don't seal as well as house doors.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2014 at 6:23PM
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Yes it is quite common. It won't be 70 degrees but I will try to keep it at 54-56 degrees. That allows for the ice to melt off the vehicles and them to not have such a cold hard start. It is going to be a little more expensive then not heating but an attached garage will naturally stay warmer... so I am not raising the temp from 0-55. Since I am putting in floor heat (hydronic) into the basement of the house it costs about a $1.2 a square foot to have the pipe installed in the garage floor. (I am wondering about hanging pipe from the floor joists between the basement and the main level to heat the main floor this way as well. still looking into cost of that vs electric under the tile)

It also gives me more room to have a work area outside of the house for me to do my tinkering.

All in all it is a little pricy to keep warm but the comfort is worth the expense to me.

How long do pocket doors last and work/look good? I like the idea of putting one there but a lot of the pocket doors that I see that are a few years old look beat up and don't operate the best.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2014 at 7:35PM
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