Kitchen/Great Room Layout

h5homeOctober 31, 2012

We are in the early stages of picking out a floor plan for a build we are hoping to start mid next year. After looking at way too many stock floorplans we are coming to the realization that what we end up with will inevitably be a blend of multiple plans. I've found this plan and like the great room/kitchen/hearth room with some modifications. We will be eliminating the breakfast room to try and get rid of square footage and lower costs.

What are thoughts regarding the following changes? Mirroring and moving the kitchen(the appliances won't be as shown, but general cabinet layout will be same) to the exterior wall of the hearth room, turning the current kitchen into the dining area, and removing most of the greatroom/kitchen wall and replacing it with a fireplace that could be seen by both the great room and new dining area? We don't know if the kitchen will then seem too far away or if it would cause an uncomfortable flow.

Thanks in advance! I've been stalking this site for a while now and you guys give some great advice.

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What do you plan to do with the laundry and entry from the garage?

To answer your question, I don't think it will feel too far removed.

Another concern I have is--elimination of the Bkfst nook to save on costs--yes, that will reduce your sq ftage, but at the cost of more complicated roof and foundation. As it is, the house is rather rectangular (which is good for a more inexpensive build). Cut that out, and you aren't looking at much if any savings.

What will you do with the drawn dining room space?

And, finally, how will your guests find your front door? Is your lot large enough to support a second driveway or a circular drive?

    Bookmark   November 1, 2012 at 12:50AM
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We will probably change the layout of the laundry, moving the door to the very end and moving the service door to enter though the garage. I still need to add "lockers" somewhere by the garage for the kids.

My husband will be pouring the foundation. He is in the commercial concrete industry and very qualified so that will be a huge cost savings.

The drawn dining room space at the front door will probably become an office/den. We aren't formal people and have a large family that wouldn't fit in there anyways. We would be much more likely to expand the table and add more if needed in the kitchen eating area.

We have 5 acres so lot space to support driveways is not a concern.

We have 3 plans that we like, so we are trying to take small parts of each to make one that fits with our family. I'm quickly realizing it is much easier said than done. My "just move this here and that there" mindset is getting me in trouble!

Thanks so much for your feedback!

    Bookmark   November 1, 2012 at 1:41PM
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Sophie Wheeler

I would never want a bath on the front of the house. The bath in the lower left needs to be in between the two bedrooms and have hall access, not be exclusive to the study. Or just eliminate it entirely and save 40K. The hall bath is fine to serve 3 bedrooms. I would however add a half bath somewhere in the laundry room pantry complex by the garage entrance. And with 5 acres, there is no excuse to have the garage on the front of the house like a pig snout. It can easily shift more to the side to be less obvious. Or do an entirely separate garage building separated by a breezeway. As long as it doesn't dominate the house like that one does. And if you make the garage at least 25' instead of 21', you have room for storage or a workbench as well as vehicle parking. That can make a difference in having to construct a separate storage shed for all of you lawn and garden stuff.

I would want the dining room to be more enclosed, possibly with french doors so that it could be opened if desired, but as done currently, it is much too open. The master suite is a tad oversized, and that closet wastes a lot of space by not having hanging space in the center. Either cut the size and restructure it to keep the same amount of storage, or create a wall in the center dividing it into his and hers and increase the actual capacity. For the bath, angles look interesting, but they waste a lot of space and make the space you do have cramped, like in that corner shower. That won't be a comfortable shower for a master area. There is a lot of floor space there that isn't pulling it's weight and could be incorporated into the fixture areas to make it work much harder.

    Bookmark   November 1, 2012 at 2:34PM
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This is a typical plan factory house plan, but the overall zoning is good: sleeping areas on one side, living and guests in the middle, with kitchen and ancillary spaces on the other side. Makes good sense, so long as there are no late night parties in the living area, and folks are trying to sleep in the bedrooms!

Your ideas of switching kitchen and relocating dining are good improvements, IMO. A double-sided fireplace would be a good improvement with the changes.

The biggest issue I see with the current plan is that the great room (which isn't very great; just enough for a U-shaped furniture arrangement facing the double sided fireplace) is quite recessed from the rear exterior and may be rather dark, with limited natural light. You don't say where you will build the house, the climate there, and the orientation for the house, but I suggest you look carefully at the relationship of the great room and the exterior so that you don't wind up with the great room located in a "hole".

If it were me, I'd look to push the whole house to align with the exterior wall of the master suite, and add a porch no deeper than 8' if I wanted a covered porch. If you live in Florida or southern Alabama, then this may not be so much an issue, since in those southern areas a deeply screened living area may be a plus!

Good luck on your project!

    Bookmark   November 1, 2012 at 11:15PM
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