Help with production new home floor plan

ScooterZSeptember 4, 2012

Hi all! I have been lurking here for awhile. The people on this forum are amazing with the thought and effort you put to help stranger realize their dreams on the largest purchase the will ever make. My soon to be wife, 2 kids (10 and 12) and probably a baby in the future are looking to build a new home in a development. The development is from a local production builder that you pick from a series of floor plans. They claim they can customize any of their floorplans. The first floor one attached is the one my partner likes the most. I know it has the dreaded two story open great room that many people dont like. I am also switching it to a side entry garage as the lot will allow for that. I am also looking for possible other tweaks to make it more usable. I will post the upstairs and an alternative floorplan in the next two posts. Thank you for all your assistance.

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ScooterZ

The second floor...

    Bookmark   September 4, 2012 at 3:25PM
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ScooterZ

Here is a completely different design with 1st floor master. What we arent crazy about here is the smallish kitchen where we would want a large island.

    Bookmark   September 4, 2012 at 3:28PM
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auroraborelis

Unless you find that you would make use of a living room, then I agree that I the second plan is laid out much better.

I don't know what kind of changes your builder will allow, however to make the first plan more useable I would:
- Remove the two story family room and put a play room/bonus room above it
- Remove the wall between the study and family room and have one large space.
- Change the 1/2 bath to a full bath and have the living room be the study and it can then double as a guest room.

Regarding the second plan
-Could you pull the left wall of the kitchen out so it is in line with the garage?
- The 1/2 bath and dining room space to be redesigned as the dining room doesn't provide enough space for a large dining table.

    Bookmark   September 4, 2012 at 5:07PM
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gaonmymind

1st plan:

-Need windows added to the kitchen.
-Turn powder room into a full bath because that study could be used as a guest room and for resale many like to have a full bath on the main level.
-Reverse the steps. Since most of the time you will be coming in from the garage the kids can go straight up rather than walk through the house to get to their rooms.

2nd plan:
-Again add windows to the kitchen.
-Just me...but I dislike island/peninsulas that curve like that. And I especially dislike two height counters. However some have this and love it.. I think Bevangel does.
-I don't like walking through a laundry area to get in the house, but again this works for some.
-I can't really tell what the door on the steps are for but I like how you can go upstairs from the front or back of the house.
-I like the separate his/ her closets.
-Not a fan of the powder room jetting out like that. If you placed it flat on the wall you could possibly make the dining room bigger as it is a bit tight right now.

    Bookmark   September 4, 2012 at 6:26PM
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ScooterZ

Great suggestions! thank you!

    Bookmark   September 4, 2012 at 6:52PM
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mjlb

I think the first one has a better layout (except maybe second floor noise issue from two-story family room). But only if you have a need for so many distinct small rooms. Many families find the living room to be superfluous, but many families could use a home office, so it's just what you need/want.

For the second plan, on the positive side:
- You could re-do kitchen layout and get a large island
- Nice master bedroom/bath layout -- but do you prefer a first floor master?

But IMO undesirables are:
- Dining room dimensions are odd -- most people don't have a large square dining table
- Powder room placement just creates tons of hallways all the around, including the odd hallway from kitchen to dining room.

    Bookmark   September 4, 2012 at 8:03PM
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kirkhall

You need to figure out how to make the garage larger! This garage is small, if those are the dimensions. Are any of this home built yet, by your builder? Does anybody use the garage with 2 cars?

After that, I like plan 1 if you could get a full bath on that floor (and not the 1/2 only). And, I worry that it is a LONG way from the garage entry to the bathroom if anyone comes home with a need to go, iyknim...

    Bookmark   September 4, 2012 at 8:49PM
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ScooterZ

Thanks again for your comments. We are leaning towards the first plan especially with some of your great suggestions. We would use the study as an office since she will be working out of the house 2 days a week. The living room would become a reading room with a baby grand piano stuck in there for good measure. The full bath is a great idea, altho we might go with a 3/4 bath and just put in a shower. I hate that it's a long walk from the garage too.

By closing off the 2 story family room, we might add a second walkin closet (long and skinny) there for the master. We would expand the laundry room for that small in room closet in the master and it would make a nice wall there too for a tv instead of an entrance to a small closet.

We already requested a larger garage. By turning it to a side entry we want to add 6 feet in width, move to 9 foot wide doors so we dont have to worry about side mirror scrapes. The extra width would make it jut out towards the front of the house. The builders model is the same one. Others have it as well, but since it's a new development, there are still some cars in the driveway, probably still unpacking boxes.

These are all fun decisions to make.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2012 at 7:58AM
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Annie Deighnaugh

You have to decide if you want a 1st floor master or not as that is a huge issue in terms of how the house lives.

I agree kitchen needs window.

DR in both plans is far from the kitchen...do you plan on using it? It looks like there is room for eating in the sun room so will the DR get used at all? If not, then make better use of the space.

When it gets closer, post the kitchen in the kitchen thread for more ideas....I'm not a fan of the sink and dirty dishes overlooking the sun room and the island is small.

Upstairs, I'm not a fan of having to go through the bathroom to get to the closet. I would reverse the laundry and the walk in closet so the laundry can gain a window, and be further from the sleeping area.

I too would close up the ceiling over the family room for looks, additional sq footage and sound abatement.

I'm really not a fan of the kitchen in #2 as it has so many traffic lanes right through it...

Is there any way to gain space over the garage for the upstairs?

    Bookmark   September 5, 2012 at 8:19AM
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ScooterZ

Thanks Annie. We will plan on using the dining room for big get togethers. The actual island will be a lot larger than shown on plan 1. The breakfast/main eating table, will be put in the sunroom so the island takes up all that space like the picture attached. I like the window in the kitchen, but thought maybe the brightness of the sunroom makes up for it. Gotta think about that one ans will move over the kitchen forum as we get more into the details with the builder.

I love your idea of switching the laundry room (with window) with the master walkin. Then we would have to bring our laundry through the bathroom unless we can make access for that from the hallway being back in that area.

We are going to give this builder so many ideas to improve on their plans!

    Bookmark   September 5, 2012 at 9:22AM
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angela12345

What things are making you lean towards plan 1 vs plan 2 ? Trying to get a feel for things you want in your house.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2012 at 6:44PM
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kirkhall

There is definitely the room for a "full bath". Full being a tub/shower combo and sink and toilet. If you shrunk that hall closet by 1/2 and slid toilet and sink to the left, a tub could easily fit on that far wall.

    Bookmark   September 5, 2012 at 11:17PM
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ScooterZ

Annie and Angela,

The main deciding factors are the kitchen and the 1st floor master. We like the kitchen with the sunroom much better in plan 1 since we can have a big island and the bright light from the sunroom with openness. We like the first floor master for convenience, close to laundry (and entertainment while doing laundry), ease of use as we get older or someone gets hurt and having our own space separate from the kids. The big disadvantage of the 1st floor master is if we have another baby (likely) then I don't want the bedrooms to be separated from them by stairs during the first few years. It's a hazard for them at night and groggy when they come looking for mommy and daddy to snuggle with, not to mention when they are really young and the danger that steps provide. The last thing would be us dragging our tired butts up to see them for changing diapers and feeding in the middle of the night.

Those really are the most important features along with an office for her. We do love to entertain as well. We would be increasing the size of the garage in both cases.

kirkhall - good idea for the full bath. I guess it's OK to have a window in the shower, even if it's on the first floor? I hope my guests are exhibitionists :)

    Bookmark   September 6, 2012 at 9:36AM
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kirkhall

You can put the window up high. Windows in bathrooms in old houses had to be operable (no vents). Now vents are required/usual and so a window in a bathroom can be a picture window with the sole purpose of letting light in. The higher the better.

    Bookmark   September 6, 2012 at 10:41AM
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auroraborelis

Yes, you can put a window in the shower/bathtub, and it doesn't have to be up high, I think that is really a matter of personal preference. I prefer a larger window to let in more light and also for how it looks asthetically, though of course a window with frosted/obscured glass!

There are lots of examples where it works really well, though of course it does involve a bit of extra cleaning! In your case I doubt that is much of an issue as the tub/shower portion would not be regularly used.

Eclectic Bathroom design by New York Interior Designer Tara Seawright

Traditional Bathroom design by New York Architect Linda Yowell Architects

(though I wouldn't use the wood window with clear glass here, it still provides a good idea of how it could look.

Contemporary Bathroom design by San Francisco Architect John Lum Architecture, Inc. AIA

    Bookmark   September 6, 2012 at 3:24PM
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