Critique this plan

petesmomJune 22, 2012

This plan gives me the 'warm fuzzies'. I have been living in our starter home for long enough and want my forever home. Since I am a 1st timer I would like if anyone would chime in with problems they see that I am not.

I have read through most of the other posts and compared the feedback there with this plan and for the most part I think I have a winner.

There are a few things that I have been thinking about

Closet in foyer for guest jackets?

What is a kids nook?

Are vaulted ceilings on main floor optional?-not interested as I already have plenty now

I do not want a box ceiling in the master bedroom. Would it be easy to switch that to a tray ceiling and still have a ceiling fan?

Heating/cooling the great room-Wont having a fireplace heat the room well?

It doesn't appear that the kitchen has windows???

Here is a link that might be useful: Plan

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I think "kids nook" is what they are calling the drop zone. It has a closet as well as built in cubbies in your plan.

I think it is attractive from the front. I bet Renovator might have issue with the roof pitch. But, I am not the person to ask about that, as I am in a Cape Cod, and that has a 12/12 pitch!

I would seriously consider getting rid of the 2 story great room. Put a ceiling on it, and use the space above for a playroom, or... something useable!

I think both of the upstairs closets look like they might have more hanging storage if they were simply reach ins, than as drawn here. But, I think there can be a better solution for them if you like this plan and we work on it.

As drawn, both bedrooms will likely need an unusual (read more) carpet than they would if they were just a couple inches shorter in one dimension. Since carpet comes on 12 foot wide rolls, having rooms with both dimensions just over 12 feet means you'll have to buy extra square footage (and "waste" it) to cover that floor. They will also have a seam. That is, if you do carpet up there (which I like).

The kitchen has no windows. That is remedied if you have the room/view on that left wall. I'd put one in.

How will you use the dining room? It could be a dining room. It could be an office. It could be an away room. It could be study... How will you use it?

I don't like the location of the MW. And, if it were me, I'd figure out how to get it closer to the fridge. Either, right next to it, or in the island, as a MW drawer. and, actually, one way to "fix" that would be to move the corner pantry to the other side (where the oven/MW are now) and put the oven/MW on that wall. The idea is to make sure you don't have kids walking past the stovetop.

Generally, that shape of sink peninsula isn't popular on GW. I'm not really sure why. I'll let someone else comment on its location.

Again, with the guest room study, that would best to be a reach in closet. And, in so doing, you can gain a little more space in the back entry to make that less windy and larger--potentially adding more cubbies.

Master bath toilet--door out unless that is an exceptionally long room (but it is easy to make that an outswing door, so I'd do that, or pocket it).

I think that is all from me for now. :)

    Bookmark   June 22, 2012 at 3:51PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Great plan. If (and when) you fully deceide to move forward with it you can get it customized to meet all of your needs.

Regarding your questions

Closet in foyer for guest jackets?
- Personally this is a must for me and would need to be added

What is a kids nook?
- I think they mean cubbies like you would see in a mudroom. Bascially the mudroom is in the hallway, this is something I'm doing to save space in our own home.

Are vaulted ceilings on main floor optional?
- Personally I think vaulted ceilings are on their way out (others will disagree with me here) but you can have this customized to meet your needs. You could likely even have it made to a more normal height and then add a bonus room above the family room... Just a thought though ;)

I do not want a box ceiling in the master bedroom. Would it be easy to switch that to a tray ceiling and still have a ceiling fan? - unless I'm confused, I think boxed and tray ceilings are the same thing. Either way, this wouldn't be a problem.

Heating/cooling the great room-Wont having a fireplace heat the room well?
- I'll leave this to someone with more experience with two story high rooms and fireplaces.

It doesn't appear that the kitchen has windows???
- you are right, it doesn't appear that the kitchen has windows. You could rearrange everything in the kitchen to give it some windows.

My overall thoughts/changes would be
- find space for hall closet
- widen the left side of the house by a few feet to gain more space in the kitchen/dining rooms.
- remove the garage storage and expand the laundry room
- 9' ceilings throughout
- Move the fireplace to the shared wall with the master bedroom
- Give the living room a flat 9' ceiling and put in an extra bedroom/bonus room or media room above.
- Give each upstairs bedroom their own bath, there is lots of space if you use some of the optional bonus space.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2012 at 4:00PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I like the drop zone. Thanks for the clarification. Duh. And making a reach in closet instead of the walk in in the study is a great idea and makes a lot of sense. I also like an out opening door for the master bath. I will have to add a foyer closet. The plan is better thought out than some others I have seen and yet this was missed.

kirkhall-I know 2 story great rooms aren't favored here, but all my life I've lived in houses that I felt squished into and want it because I have never had anything so airy and open.

I could have sworn that I found 14' foot rolls of carpeting. Not too long ago we were considering replacing our current living room carpet and I found the larger. Maybe it was special order or undesirable. I will have to keep looking into it. I am sure that taking a few inches off the rooms wont be a big deal if I have to.

The dining room admittedly will only be used a few times a year, but I am sick and tired of spending all my holidays driving from home to my family then to DH family. With more room they can all come to us for a while. I may actually be able to spend time in my jammies on Christmas Day!

I never even considered the microwave placement. If the pantry is in the corner, what is the space that is at the opposite end of the kitchen marked PAN.?

Laura12-I did a google search to see what a box ceiling was. The image was of many slats creating a giant tic-tac-toe board the spanned the ceiling and I thought a tray ceiling was when the ceiling height was lower around the perimeter and a little higher in the center? Now I'm really confused.

I thought that the storage area in the garage would be perfect for the breaker box and ladders and such. These are things that DH will deal with and I would be happy to not see.

The bedroom marked #3 is for my step daughter and the bedroom marked #4 is for my sleeping when DH runs me out of bed with his snoring. I think I will spend around half my time sleeping in bedroom 4.

I feel like I don't need the bonus/media room, but I'm afraid this will change the way the front of the house looks too much.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2012 at 7:36PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I think they have the corner pantry, and also a "cabinet" pantry--full height cabinet pantry at that end. It would be a good spot for children's snacks, cereal boxes, etc... where you wouldn't necessarily want the kids traipsing through to the main/big pantry.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2012 at 7:44PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I think that would be a good place for the MW. Kids can come from the living area and heat up that nonsense that teenagers call food and eat in the breakfast area. Thoughts?

    Bookmark   June 22, 2012 at 8:01PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Yup. If it is wide enough.
Though, only the MW. I would not put ovens there.

    Bookmark   June 22, 2012 at 8:40PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Oh, I guess I was wrong abouta box ceiling - it is an easy switch either way.

Regarding the storage area in the garage, I personally need more storage room in the house (especially the laundry room). Also, on another thread I started "small t hings that get forgotten" everyone kept lamenting about bigger laundry rooms. Personally, I'd enlarge the laundry room and add storage cabinets on the back wall of the garage.

Finally, regarding the bonus room, you could leave it unfinished and figure out what to do with it later, if you don't use it then finishing it would still be great for resale way (way) down the road. You do have a study on the first floor, but it might be a nice retreat for you or your DH away from the main living room downstairs. Perhaps he can put a TV up there for watching sports and hanging out? Or you can end up using it as a sewing room, crafts, or just a nice large retreat.

Finally, consider the size of the dining room and how large your table will be (or how large you want it to be).

    Bookmark   June 22, 2012 at 9:30PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Hope I'm not too late to pop in here! I love the way this house looks from the front & side exteriors. It looks very cozy and welcoming to me. If I'm not mistaken, someone else on the forum recently posted this house plan (might have been red_lover, but I'm not positive). I want to say they were looking for advice on the master bath in particular as well as anything else that anyone might see that they would change and why. You may want to see if you can find that thread. Upon looking at the plan tonight, I noticed a few other things in addition to the ones mentioned above...

-The family room size bothers me. The 22'8" is just fine--once you account for the walkway through the left side, you still have a nice size at ~19'. However, the 15'10" measurement is a little too narrow, IMO. By the time you account for a 3-4' walkway along the stair/bathroom wall to access the right wing of the house, you are left with ~13'. It will look very long and skinny and with today's oversized furniture, you may run into some issues. I would definitely take a look at this and do a 'to-scale' layout complete with little furniture cutouts to see if this size will work or if you need to bump the back wall out a little.

-Similar concerns in the master bedroom. If you're putting a Queen or King bed in there on the back wall, with only 13'2", you will have very little to no space for any type of dresser or armoire along the front wall(borders the closet & bath) across from the bed. Same advice on mocking up a to-scale layout with furniture cutouts applies here too.

-The laundry is a nice size, but could bump out into the storage area of the garage.

-The garage is a little too tight. It will be difficult to get 2 cars in there, be able to open the doors of the cars to get in/out and walk space to and from cars is very limited. I would extend the garage out 3-5' to the front to allow for more accessible space in there. I would also trade out the 2 separate doors for a large 18 or 20' single door--it will save $$ and you won't have to worry about accidentally running into that little strip between the doors with the car.

-Both secondary bathrooms (1st floor and 2nd floor) have a similar problem--the inswing door into the toilet area. Inswing doors to toilet/tub areas are a safety no-no. If someone passes out in there, their body will block the door preventing/making it very difficult for anyone to open it to assist the person. Short of removing the door altogether, I haven't come up with a solution for the 2nd level bath. On the first level, you could change the swing of the study closet door to the other direction (or make the closet door an inswing door--more about closets a little further down), slide the study access bathroom door down to the right and make the potty room door an outswing.

-The secondary closets in this plan have very poor layouts. With the size of these closets, you should be able to slide the closet door down to one of the far ends and have hanging space all along the back wall and down one side. The short side could even just be shelves.

-The back porch could really stand to be 10' deep if you plan on doing alot of entertaining out there. If not, 8' will work fine.

-I would delete the door to the porch from the master bedroom. The more exterior doors you have, the greater your home security risk. Most people store their valuable jewelry and their wallet/pocketbook in the master bedroom. By having an exterior door there, you give a would be thief a quick kick entry into the master suite and a quick grab and run exit before the police even think about responding to the alarm company's alert about a break in.

-You mention the dining room hardly ever getting used. That's one of my pet peeves too. Right now, the plan has 3 dining areas--the bar in the kitchen, the breakfast room and the dining room. Do you really need 3 eating spaces? I vote for deleting the breakfast area by either pulling that wall back some and/or extending the kitchen and dining areas into the remaining space. You can eat at the bar for informal meals (i.e.. breakfast & lunch) and use the dining room for dinner or for times when you have more people over for dinner than will fit at the bar.

-Laura12 brings up a great point about the dining room size. Trust me when I say a 12x15 dining room sounds big, but by the time you account for a table, chair & walkway clearances and any other furniture you may want in there (i.e. china cabinet, buffet, etc) the space will get tight very fast. Expanding the dining room possibly with option outlined above would be a very good idea IMO.

-Last but not least (and you will hear all about this if you post your kitchen in the 'Kitchens' forum) the garage and kitchen are a long way apart. Think about schlepping groceries from the car and the long trek with the bags every week. I know there are some very similar exterior plans out there that have the kitchen near the garage entry that you may be able to pull some ideas from on how to combine the two to make that work better for you (i.e. the master suite moves to the left side of the house where the kitchen areas are and the kitchen moves to the old master suite space and dining room moves to study area and the study moves to the old dining room area). Just something to think about. Don Gardner & Frank Betz have alot of plans similar to this that you may want to look at for ideas.

Hope this helps!

    Bookmark   June 22, 2012 at 11:33PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Thank you for all the suggestions thus far. I have been checking in with the things that get forgotten thread and have a list that keeps getting longer and longer. My list has the changes that I want to the floor plan and also suggestions that are very clever and I would have never thought of.

Please keep it coming.

    Bookmark   June 23, 2012 at 9:29PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Putting the images directly here so it's easier for others to add their 2 cents:

    Bookmark   June 23, 2012 at 10:53PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


    Bookmark   June 24, 2012 at 3:40PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Front Entry door
I am totally out of my comfort zone on the one! We...
Is the 'remote' home office worth it?
We need an office for DH that is away from the day-to-day...
Should I add a window in the dining room?
We are going to have a long narrow dining room, husband...
Bridget Howe
Are these doors acceptable to you?
These are walnut interior doors. I understand that...
Sending my floor plan modifications to the architect. Ideas?
I have to have all my structural changes decided by...
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™