Help with floor plan please

prescotthouseJune 10, 2012

I posted about this plan once before, but I think I've finally figured out how to include the plan with the posting, however the measurements are very small...

My husband and I are beginning the building process having just closed on a 1/2 acre steeply sloping lot (not unusual in our area and most builders have experience with these kind of lots). Our chidren are grown, so we have two bedrooms upstairs and the potential for two bedrooms and a bath downstairs in the unfinished walkout basement. Because it is a view lot we want the kitchen, living/dining room and master bedroom on the view side which faces north with the best view to the north/northwest. I'm concerned about the space for the steps and I would also like the laundry room closer to the master bedroom. We don't particularly care how big the master bedroom is - I'd rather have that space in the great room area. Below are two plans I've developed on Floorplanner - your comments would be appreciated.

This second plan is has basically the same measurements as the first, with the bath and steps to the basement rearranged. The house is roughly 1800 square feet and we can go no wider than 70 feet on the lot.

There will be a deck off the north side of the house and a patio on the south side, surrounding the front entry and virtually no yard except for the front patio.

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Here are my thoughts at first glance. I'm not an expert, I just enjoy thinking about processes/flow. :)

1. The family entrance through the garage is through a tight laundry room. There is no where for you to put your coats/shoes/purse/etc, and nowhere for you to sit down while putting on or taking off shoes. The only place I can imagine this working is Phoenix in a home with all ceramic floors where you wear shoes inside the house.

2. When you enter your sanctuary, the first thing you'll see is dirty laundry. You deserve something a little more special. :)

3. Your guest entrance has a closet and no where for guests to sit while putting on/taking off shoes. It's actually a LOT like my current house's entry, which we HATE. I do not like guest coat closets--I think a bench with a wall of hooks are more guest-friendly.

4. I would pick ONE entrance onto the deck (probably the dining room one). Every entry point will be an entry for dirt/debris.

5. I'm not sure I would spend the money having windows on the side of the garage. It depends on where you live, but I have noticed that in my parents garage with windows, flies get in, then bang their heads endlessly on the windows trying to get out. My garage has no windows (not even on the doors) so the flies are able to escape through the same spots of light through which they entered. Kind of a random observation, but it is SO nice to never have flies in the garage (which means we have a lot fewer in the house as well).

6. Is that a fireplace or a TV in the great room? If it's a fireplace, think about where you will put a TV. I don't know anyone who enjoys watching a TV mounted over a fireplace because the angle is so awkward. I do know some people who simply don't watch TV, so they have the furniture arranged to stare at the fireplace. That's charming, but just not realistic for us because we are movie fans. :)

7. I like your kitchen work triangle (prep area, sink, stove). That's how I cook, with just one trip to the fridge/pantry at the beginning of the recipe. I see that you do NOT have a pantry. Will you do a cabinet-focused pantry? I love the look and functionality of those, but they are either inefficient OR you spend a lot of money designing them to use the space efficiently.

    Bookmark   June 10, 2012 at 9:27PM
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Try to take your second one (I think it feels more spacious) and do this rearrangement:

Take out the stairs, and expand the bathroom into that space. Include your laundry in this room.

Move the stairs to the right side of the foyer taking some of the space of the coat closet and the laundry room.

See if that fits for you.

The goal: You still are turning your stairs to under the bathtub. That just simply won't work. A tub bottom is not forgiving when it comes to shaping headroom for the stairs...

    Bookmark   June 10, 2012 at 9:46PM
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Thank you for your comments. Minneapolisite, we are not in Phoenix, but we are in Arizona and will have tile and hardwoods throughout the house. We don't take our shoes off in the house or expect our guests to, so I'm not too concerned about a seating area in the entry, although I might put a stand-alone bench or seat there. Flies aren't a problem here either so I think we'll have windows on one side just because my husband likes to work in the garage occasionally.

Here is a new plan with the stairs moved to the garage and the laundry to the guest bathroom, but I need suggestions on how to arrange that bathroom - I'm not crazy about having the laundry in the bathroom. Could it be sectioned off or maybe enclosed with doors?

Thanks again for your help.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2012 at 2:05PM
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I like this last plan, but you shouldn't have the door to the basement stairs, swinging into the stair area. If you added just a bit more room, you could have a pocket door. I would move the laundry back into this space (where you have the closet) and make this your laundry room, again.

The hall bath could be a bit smaller (keep the door with side looks great!) and put the closet where you hve the toilet now.

I really like the bigger kitchen island, but I'd think about putting the pantry on the other side of the fridge and adding a corner sink to your layout, where you have the pantry. It's nice to have water closer to the fridge and it would be handy to the range, too. Just an idea :)

    Bookmark   June 11, 2012 at 2:41PM
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What is your actual dimension, right now, for the bath/laundry. (and yes, you can easily get them enclosed in a closet.)

Also, your placement for the stairs isn't really what I was thinking. Not sure if it would work, but you can decide that.

I was thinking to have them run "N-S" (top to bottom, in this drawing, assuming N is top here), and put them along the foyer right wall/garage left wall.

Remind me, upstairs? or downstairs only?

    Bookmark   June 11, 2012 at 2:43PM
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Aha! Since you're in Arizona your entry points make more sense. My parents have a vacation home outside of Phoenix and we all wear our shoes inside there. They don't have a good spot for coats/shoes/bench and I've never even noticed. :)

    Bookmark   June 11, 2012 at 5:02PM
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Thanks again for your help. I've changed the stair door to open off the entry, added windows, and rearranged the guest bath with washer and dryer enclosed in bifold doors. The dimensions of the bathroom are approximately 10'8" x 11'5". When people enter the house from the front door I want them to see the sweeping views on the north side of the house - do you think that is accomplished? And Minneapolisite, that is a fireplace in the living room but I need to add it to this version. We'll either have the tv over it, which is what we have in our current house, or we'll mount it on the wall on the right side of the fireplace, using a mounting that will enable us to angle the tv toward the living room to avoid reflections from the windows. There will probably be low cabinets or bookcases around the fireplace. It seems like the garage door is off center and I added a window there but I don't like that solution...

    Bookmark   June 12, 2012 at 1:16PM
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You have room in the bathroom/laundry to put the toilet next to the bath where you have the linen drawn--privatizing it a little. Then, you can have a larger vanity cabinet if you'd like with countertop (a little more room for folding if you want).
Or, keep the linen closet and have that function for some laundry functions (ironing, etc).

Is there a reason you are wanting to use a single double door for the garage instead of 2 single doors? Using 2 single doors might solve your "off center" problem and also be more functional.

    Bookmark   June 12, 2012 at 4:35PM
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Thanks, Kirkhall. I hadn't thought about two garage doors. Do you think the stairs work there with access from the entry? I think 15 feet is allowed, but would need space at the top to start down the stairs.

    Bookmark   June 12, 2012 at 6:01PM
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I'm not a stair length expert, but I do like this general placement better than your others.

    Bookmark   June 13, 2012 at 1:27AM
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