Kitchen living space percentage of house?

kromerokJuly 10, 2007

Im designing a place thats 6100 sqr feet and am trying to figure out if there is a "standard" amount of space thats determined as personal and public. If there is a standard percent of say kitchen size to total sqr footage of house? This may be considered an odd question, I hope not though. I was told the allotment I was giving my kitchen may be too small. Any advice appreciated.

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Well, my kitchen (including eating area) is 15'6"x25', so 387.5 sf. The house is about 3800 sf, so the kitchen is about 11% of the square footage.

I think it is more important that the kitchen work well for you. What are the dimensions, do you have a plan you can post?

    Bookmark   July 10, 2007 at 3:22PM
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I did have a plan that I thought was ok. Until went to a friends place that he is finishing thats about 1500 sqr ft smaller and his kitchen was the same as mine was. When I was in it I realized how small his felt. So I scratched everything and am starting all over. When I get things a little bit more pinned down I will post a pdf of my plans. btw my kitchen was 15x20 with out eating area included with that maybe an additional 100 t0 150 sqr ft (I never really defined that space in my layout it was more open lofty space intergration of kitchen eating to family room all of which took up maybe 800 to 900 sqr feet). I was told home designers normally do 60% personal and 40 % public in home layouts. The problem Im having is my master suite I want to be about 1100 sqr ft so it eats up that "balance" of 60/40.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2007 at 4:05PM
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My kitchen is just under 15% of the square footage, including the breakfast area, but not including the pantry.

My plan is half the size of Sue's.

I don't think it works by percentages. It works by priorities.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2007 at 4:10PM
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Hmmmm, here's my quick mental calculations. Keep in mind I got a C in math.

2500 sf house. Kitchen/Dining/Breakfast area totals 381 thats about 15%

    Bookmark   July 10, 2007 at 4:19PM
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Im curious anyone willing to chime in would be appreciated. What percent of your home is personal living space?

    Bookmark   July 10, 2007 at 4:53PM
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What areas are you defining as public?

    Bookmark   July 10, 2007 at 5:46PM
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Who cares? Build what you want for the way you live. Do you cook a lot? Entertain? Where do you hang out the most in your current home? If you build your big bedroom and a little kitchen so what?

Our kitchen is about 25% of the house and our bedroom is half. That leaves us with a dinky LR which we never use anyway. All of our friends and family hang out in the kitche on or on the deck (which is as big as 1/2 the house!) Go with what works for you and don't be swayed by what "they" say. What do "they" know anyway? ;)

    Bookmark   July 10, 2007 at 10:11PM
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Personal would be bedrooms and baths attached to BR and office. Public would be family, living rm, kitchen, dining and hall half bath possibly hall closet. I would think.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2007 at 12:07AM
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Just because your house is larger does not mean that your kitchen needs to be proportionately larger. You need to determine the function of your kitchen, and the appropriate work triangles for what you have in mind. I remember a friend who bought a spec house. The builder had used a standard plan that he had "stretched" in increase the square footage (and his profit). She complained constantly that her kitchen was so large it was an expedition to get from the refridge to the sink to the stove.
Think about how you are going to use the kitchen. Will there be one cook that rules the roost? Or will two cooks work together and one of them will want their own prep and sink area. Will you be catering large gatherings for charitable events and have to accomodate help, as well as have a smaller triangle for when you and your family are on your own? Will teenagers be running through grabbing their own meals?
Finally, I have to ask you, are you sure that you want to tackle this project on your own? Like you, I thought that I knew what I wanted and could design the space. But our architect was so experienced in how space can be used and how it would feel, and the little details that make such a huge difference in living. I am so happy that we used a professional. That said, you have to find a good professional that you can work with.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2007 at 12:45AM
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Kromerok, though everyone has brought up good points, I will still answer your question.

I calculated our spaces. Our plan is an almost perfect 40/60 split.

I am not sure how or if it wlll help you, but their rule happened to work in our case.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2007 at 1:12AM
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It really does just come down to how you live. I actually made our master bedroom/bath/closet smaller in order to have bigger public spaces. I love to entertain. We have family and friends over all of the time and I wanted wide open spaces so everybody would have a place to sit and eat.

The only entertaining I'll be doing in my br will be for my dh. And I figure 14x17 is plenty big enough for anything I can come up with LOL.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2007 at 10:30AM
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I designed my own house because I only wanted 2 bedrooms and larger public areas. The private area (bed and bath rooms) is 710 sq ft total, the livingroom, dining and kitchen are 1002 sq ft, plus there is an additional 658 sq ft sunroom (entire house 2370). The kitchen is not huge...216 sq ft....but since there are only 2 of us, it is plenty. I guess that works out to a little less than 10%.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2007 at 12:02PM
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charliedawg! LOL!!

Our house is 2900 sq ft per the assessor. We like one-floor living, but have a full-height attic (and walk-up stairs) that can become an additional 3000 sq ft of BRs and baths with the addition of dormers. (Lot is zoned for 6000 sq ft.)

We have 2 BRs, 3 1/2 baths, LR, DR, K, Brkfst Rm., Library, Foyer, Screened Porch, Back Hall/Laundry on our single level. Public = 1900 sq ft (68%); Private = 950 sq ft (32%).

The proportions reverse if you include the second story as BRs and baths. Then it would be Public = 1900 sq ft (32%); Private 3950 sq ft (68%). Probably some of the second story would be family room, however that gets classified, or possibly our present guest room would change to Public space, further changing the proportions.

I just knew that we like to be able to spread out, and that a 6000 sq ft house would need a big Kitchen and other public spaces. Our Kitchen is 17 X 23 + Bkfst Rm of 12.5 X 13. Foyer is 15 X 15.

We once had neighbors who remodeled a 3 BR house, adding two BRs over a new Family Room. Sadly, the kitchen remained a teeny (and interior) 9 X 9. It never worked. The public rooms weren't adequate for a family that needed five BRs.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2007 at 12:03PM
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I agree, it depends on your style of living not the sq ft of your house. If you entertain a lot or have a large family then you need a fairly large kitchen. If you are single and never cook, a tiny kitchen will do. If your concerened about resale then I suggest you put an average kitchen size.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2007 at 12:15PM
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charliedawg, as much as you feel you can know someone from their posts, I really like you. Your posts have been informative, you stick to your guns, call a spade a spade and humor to boot! That was the best laugh I've had on this forum.

Ours breaks down 890sf of great room, breakfast, kitchen, dining. Total of 2400sf space = 37%.

To complicate matters, we consider our two porches living space as well so 890sf + 580sf = 1470sf living, which is 49% of the new total.

And then....the basement is all living space........

Did anyone read that??? I think I smell smoke coming out my ears. hahaha

    Bookmark   July 11, 2007 at 12:18PM
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"btw my kitchen was 15x20 with out eating area included with that maybe an additional 100 t0 150 sqr ft..."

300 sf for a kitchen, not including eating area, is a pretty big kitchen. Before you make it larger ask yourself if you need it larger, of it you'd prefer that square footage somewhere else.

    Bookmark   July 11, 2007 at 1:37PM
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This is an interesting question and thanks to kromerok for posing it. Our house is 2100 sf, the 2 bedroom, 2 bath "private area" (oh, it sounds so Buckingham Palace-like, "Yes, dahling, meet me in the private area") is upstairs and comprises 710 sf, including the 2 bedrooms and baths, closets, a hallway and the laundry area. The public areas downstairs (LR, kitchen, pantry/MR, den, DR, bath) are 1390 sf, which makes our split 66/34 public/private. The kitchen is the largest room in the house and, when combined with the pantry (which houses the fridge, freezer, fish cleaning and plant potting station, MR and food storage), comes in at 610 sf or 29% of the total sf. We also have a 600 sf screened porch, but it's seasonal (hell, it's not even built yet, who am I to call it seasonal?), so I didn't count it.

Our bedrooms and bathrooms aren't tiny, but they ain't grand either, and that was by design. Our closets are good sized cuz there is no basement chez sandyponder (the H20 table is too high, we were lucky to get a 4' crawl space), and we wanted the bulk of our sf to be in the kitchen and LR, cuz that's where we live when we're not outside playing in/on the lake. Again, interesting question, and I was glad that our intentions when designing the house bore out in the numbers.


    Bookmark   July 11, 2007 at 4:26PM
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Thanks for all your inputs. I am still on the fence on certain things. What is messing up the plan is the fact that Im including a enclosed courtyard in the center of the property. I wanted to have a place where my kids can "camp out under the stars and or play outside and I wouldnt have to monitor them as much so the enclosed area is sort of offsetting other things in terms of spacing. granted the inner courtyard will only be about a 400 sqr ft space its 20*20 or so it. Since I have an easier time showing rather than explaining to someone my thoughts I bought Chief Architect and Autodesk products seems like thats what architects/designers use those alot. I will again upload some plans soon to give you guys a visual of my plans. Thanks again for your inputs.

    Bookmark   July 12, 2007 at 6:18PM
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I cook maybe 4 times a year so I chose to have a small, easily managed kitchen with a large pantry for storage. My idea of a large kitchen before was all about the storage anyway. Now I realize all I need is a large pantry, not a large kitchen. I have lots of counter space so everything is cool. I'm not sure how big my kitchen is, but I know I only have to take 6-10 steps to access everything I need and my legs and back like that!!LOL

    Bookmark   July 13, 2007 at 4:35AM
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Trust your own careful work rather than the "rules". I spent the better part of a year designing our house. Then took it to an architect with a long list of requirements (met by our plan). Spent--no, wasted--the next 4 months and an ungodly amount of $ bringing the architect's "rules" back in line with our reality.

She thought our efficient galley kitchen was too narrow; it's 6" wider than the current one and that's the most I'm willing to widen it. I tested it out in real kitchens and hated one even a foot wider.

We only have one eating space, at the end of the kitchen. She moved it so far away I'd need a serving cart to save my arthritic knees. I objected; she said "but your guests will be able to see the food preparation area." We "entertain" once every 2 years, if forced to. Anyone who has to endure my cooking might as well see the operating room. I left wall space at the end of the cabinet runs to add a wall and pocket door for resale purposes. As I said, we thought through everything very carefully in advance.

She thought there wasn't enough counterspace. There's four feet more than we have now and it's mostly in the food prep. area by the sink where I need it; she was happy when she looked at it that way.

I could go on and on. But my point is: if you're designing you own house, then find all the designers' "rules" and the building codes. Incorporate code; incorporate the rules that make sense for your family. Don't be cowed into anything else.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2007 at 6:50AM
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Where would I find info on "designer rules" ??

    Bookmark   July 13, 2007 at 8:18AM
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Have you checked out the kitchen forum? There are tons of threads there about "work triangles" and such. They are also very good (and willing too!!) at providing critiques and suggestions for kitchen designs. There is also information at the link below.

Here is a link that might be useful: NKBA

    Bookmark   July 13, 2007 at 8:38AM
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The kitchen forum is great and everyone is very nice and wlling to help.
I purchased a lot of books on kitchen planning and design to get knowledge on basic rules and guidelines, Then I designed my kitchen on those basics and what works for us.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2007 at 12:56PM
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