Return to the Building a Home Forum | Post a Follow-Up

 o
Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Posted by Harmon (My Page) on
Wed, Feb 12, 14 at 4:13

My fiance and I signed a contract last month for new construction and have selected this floor plan ... well she selected it, but I like it too. :)

The plans have been purchased from the designer, but absolutely no work has been done on the land so it would be possible to change (for a fee I'm sure). Any input would be appreciated. We are meeting with our builder Thursday evening to go over plans.

A couple of changes I am thinking of proposing:

(1) Kitchen - Remove the partial wall between the kitchen and living room. I prefer an open floor plan. I think our floor plan is a little dated in this regard. My fiance is worried that would keep us from having enough upper cabinets. I think we can put enough upper cabinets on the opposite wall. Thoughts?

I also want to move the refrigerator to the other end of the back wall (closer to the dining area). I would like get the Frigidaire Twins (all refrigerator & all freezer combo) but they require a 66" wide opening instead of a normal 36" opening. Fiance doesn't think we have enough room. I'm unsure.

(2) Living ("Great") Room - Concerned the "great" room at 19' x 17' 8" is not so great. Thinking about moving the back wall out into the patio 2 or 3 feet. This would make the room approximately 19' x 20'. Thoughts on whether this change is worthwhile?

We are at the limit of our budget so we would have to make up the square footage somewhere else so I was thinking of moving the back wall of the adjoining bedroom ("bedroom three") in two feet so that the exterior back wall from the bedroom to the living room is straight with no corners. I've read that corners are expensive so thought that would save some money. This would reduce "bedroom three" to 12 x 10.

If we need to knock off more square footage, I thought we could cut off some of the master bedroom that extends out the back of the house. Originally, had thought of widening the master bedroom, but now think I care more about the size of the living room.

FYI - The total sq ft of the floorplan is 2328 which does not include what will be an unfinished upstairs bonus room. The builder has offered to square off the master bedroom where the sitting area is. This would add about 21 sq ft. This is the area I was thinking of reducing. If we made the exterior wall of the MB even with the dining room it would save 49 sq ft but leave our MB at 14 x 16.

Thanks for any & all input!


Follow-Up Postings:

 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Hi Harmon,
I am no expert, but I would take off that sitting area in a heartbeat to add square footage to the great room, or anywhere else you need it. Bedrooms are for sleeping, and I don't think yours is too small.

I don't think you want to shorten bedroom #3--is that really only two feet? On the plans it looks like it is much more.

I like your master closet--interesting shape, and I love that it connects to the laundry. That will be convenient. :-)

It seems like your three car garage sticks out really far on your exterior elevation. Do you know what that will look like?

I would add windows in the bathroom and sink rooms between the bedrooms.
In general, I like it.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Congrats on planning a new home! I always imagine coming home, and how that flow would work. So in this plan, you walk in from the garage, and now what? You have to turn into the kitchen, skirt the island, squeeze out the other end, and head into the master bedroom. Or, make a tight turn through the laundry, into the closet. Just seems like you deserve a nicer welcome home!

Whatever your climate, don't you need a closet for rain jackets or hats? Despite the big master closet, there isn't a lot of other storage. Wwhere will you store seasonal decor, tools, you know, stuff? Is that what the 3rd garage bay or bonus room is for?

Think about how you would arrange furniture in the living room, will it work for you?

What a wonderful patio!


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

I'm no expert either, but seems you won't have a lot of storage. I couldn't see any closet for coats, etc., won't you need any?

I think it would be better to have an out-swing door for the PR, both to make entry easier and prevent any one getting stuck in there, in case they faint or have a heart attack.

For the kitchen you may get better suggestions if you post in the Kitchens forum, but for a start I can say that with 12' an island+cabs on both sides will be too tight. Please include detailed measurements in you post for the kitchen.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Thanks for all the input so far! Two things I would appreciate more comments on are:

(1) Should we nix the half-wall between the kitchen & living room. I say yes but fiance says no due to loss of upper cabinets.

(2) Is it worth cutting square footage elsewhere to extend the living room from 19' x 17' 8" to approximately 19' x 20'?

I'll try to address a few other questions/comments:

"I am no expert, but I would take off that sitting area in a heartbeat to add square footage to the great room, or anywhere else you need it. Bedrooms are for sleeping, and I don't think yours is too small."

I agree here. I think the only question is do we square off the sitting area as the builder offered to do (and as you can see drawn onto the diagram) making the MB 14' x 19' or just take out that area making the MB 14' x 16' and using the square footage somewhere else? I take it that your vote is to use that square footage somewhere else?

"I don't think you want to shorten bedroom #3--is that really only two feet? On the plans it looks like it is much more."

I should have been more clear. Bedroom 3's exterior wall juts out 4.75' farther than the living room's exterior wall does. What I was suggesting was taking two feet off the bedroom and adding 2.75 to the living room so that the two rooms share an exterior wall without corners. Good/bad idea?

We don't have any children so it will be just the two of us for at least another couple of years so the left side of the house will go pretty much unused for awhile and even if we have kids will be used for an infant/small child for a number of years. Of course, we don't want to make the bedrooms to small to negatively affect resale value but 12' x 10' doesn't seem abnormal from what I have seen.

"I like your master closet--interesting shape, and I love that it connects to the laundry. That will be convenient. :-)"

Thank you! That was a big selling point for my fiance.

"It seems like your three car garage sticks out really far on your exterior elevation. Do you know what that will look like?"

I'll attach the front view. Hopefully that gives you a better idea of what it will look like.

"I would add windows in the bathroom and sink rooms between the bedrooms."

Not a bad idea on the windows. Maybe you can't see them but there are sinks between bedrooms 2 & 3. It's a Jack & Jill bathroom (at least I think that's what it's called).

"In general, I like it."

Thank you! I will be back to address more question/comments shortly. Any additional input, especially on the points I raised above, would be greatly appreciated!


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

You may have noticed we can get a little away from the initial questions here LOL! About the kitchen, you'll definitely want to post in Kitchens ( and get more than you Bargained for but a great kitchen in the end). But, if you remove the wall, AND put in the twinset, there won't be much upper cabinet space on that back wall. Also, Where would you put the range?

Here's a thought on that: what if you close off the master bedroom door there so you can extend the kitchen counters and get more upper cabinets. Then, where the stairs start at the other end, that could be the master bedroom entry.

In the great room, lay out some imaginary furniture and see where things would go; that will help you determine how much room you really need.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

"You may have noticed we can get a little away from the initial questions here LOL!"

Yeah, I noticed! Actually though I like all the suggestions even if it's about something I didn't specifically ask. I was hoping forum members would point out potential problem areas that I had not identified and they have!

"About the kitchen, you'll definitely want to post in Kitchens ( and get more than you Bargained for but a great kitchen in the end)."

I will definitely do that. Unfortunately, work has been getting in the way of my forum time this morning. ;)

"But, if you remove the wall, AND put in the twinset, there won't be much upper cabinet space on that back wall. Also, Where would you put the range?"

You sound just like my fiance! Haha! I do realize we might have a space problem, and if I have to choose between the two, will probably give up the twins. I was hoping we could just push the stovetop down the counter about 2 1/2 feet where it is more centered with the island and put the wall oven, microwave, and cabinets in part of the space where the fridge is in the diagram and along the half-wall (slightly more than 3' wide) between the kitchen & utility room, but I don't know if there will be enough space there to fit all that.

"Here's a thought on that: what if you close off the master bedroom door there so you can extend the kitchen counters and get more upper cabinets. Then, where the stairs start at the other end, that could be the master bedroom entry."

Thanks for the idea! Definitely another alternative. I'm mulling it over. For some reason though that I can't quite put my finger on having the door into the MB at the landing of the stairs and against the exterior backwall seems odd to me and more closed off than the existing plans. I'll have to think some more about that.

"In the great room, lay out some imaginary furniture and see where things would go; that will help you determine how much room you really need."

Yeah, I probably do need to do that. Was just hoping to get other people's experience with similar sized living rooms. Thanks!


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

"Congrats on planning a new home!"

Thank you!

"I always imagine coming home, and how that flow would work. So in this plan, you walk in from the garage, and now what? You have to turn into the kitchen, skirt the island, squeeze out the other end, and head into the master bedroom. Or, make a tight turn through the laundry, into the closet. Just seems like you deserve a nicer welcome home!"

Ok, I get what you're saying (I think). Do you have any suggestions on how to make that happen with this plan (short of hiring someone to play the trumpet announcing my arrival)? ;)

"Whatever your climate, don't you need a closet for rain jackets or hats? Despite the big master closet, there isn't a lot of other storage. Wwhere will you store seasonal decor, tools, you know, stuff? Is that what the 3rd garage bay or bonus room is for?"

It's just the two of us so we'll also have the smaller WIC's on the other side of the house. For storage of larger items they probably will go in the attic/unfinished bonus room area for now. I wish there was more room in the garage, but it's on the small side for a 3 car and we have three cars between us so it's going to be pretty full. I guess a separate coat/hat closet would be nice, but just not that much of a priority to us. I think we can use the WIC on the front left side of the house for that purpose. It should have pretty easy access from living area.

"Think about how you would arrange furniture in the living room, will it work for you?"

Yes, I've been thinking about that and also keep going back and forth on placement of the fireplace & television. I realize that's a whole different question, but if anyone has any suggestions on that, I would love to hear them.

"What a wonderful patio!"

Thank you! Hoping to get a lot of use out of it!


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Just some ideas,

If you remove the angled wall on the right side of the GR and use some space from the office you may have a coats closet there (on the office wall). That may also help with the traffic flow.

About the wall b/w the kitchen and GR, why not meet in the middle and remove half of the wall? On the GR side you may have drop zone/charging station and on the kitchen side a tall cab for storage can be considered.

For the GR I think having a corner fireplace would be better in arranging the furniture. Whether you'd need the extra length depends on your furnitures.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Harmon,
I do like that outdoor living patio as well. Lovely.
Speaking as one who regrets not doing this until after it was too late, I highly recommend you use a 3D design program to recreate the layout of your home. We used SweetHome 3D, which may not be the fanciest, but it is free to download and not difficult to use. They have a virtual view where you can "walk" through your floor plan in three dimensions. From someone who has a very hard time imagining how things will be from a picture on a piece of paper, it was extremely helpful.

Again, no expert, but I think that Jack and Jill bathroom setup could be significantly improved. There are a ton of doors and very tight spaces that imo will make that square footage seem very small when it is in fact quite a large area. Why cant it be one lovely huge bathroom? You could still have sinks on separate walls or a nice long double sink. It also seems like you could get some more room in those bedrooms too with a reconfigured space. And definitely add windows on that side!

If you get some more footage on the bottom half of bedroom #3, you could shave some off the top to use for enlarging your family room. For the bedroom, I would try not to go smaller than 12 x 11 if you can.

Just remember that 1) kids might come sooner than you expect, and 2) when you sell, it is very likely it will be purchased by a family, so try to think from a family perspective now, instead of the view "well, it's only the two of us..."

Good luck!


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Harmon,
Do you like all those skewed walls? Maybe you think they are cool? Some persons tend to get tired of them.
Let me know if you would be interested in seeing something with fewer diagonal walls.

Is this going to be a full brick house as shown on the plan? You do not need to add square footage to make the great room bigger. Get rid of the so called gallery.
The master closet space is not as efficient as you might think.
The toilet enclosure is too small (2'-8" wide). You will hate that small shower.
Get rid of the "island". I can not help it, I need to use one of my favorite phrases according to my DH: It's ridiculous :) You only have 2' between the island and refrigerator.
Could I see the link to this floor plan?


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Post in kitchens but be prepared to hear the truth. Most (all) stock plans have bad kitchens. JMHO.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

You're a young couple, you're looking at a fairly expensive house plan (this is a move-up house, not a starter house), and you're already concerned about budget. Therefore, the first thing I'll do is caution you not to make yourselves house-poor. The smartest thing my husband and I did back when we were still fiancé and fiancée was to choose a house that we could afford to buy on JUST his salary. This allowed us to start putting away money for retirement, back when the magic of compound interest was on our side (and 23 years later, we are so glad that we did), and it allowed me the choice of whether to go back to work when our children were born (I did go back to work, but having the choice makes all the difference). Anyway, I caution you NOT to build as much as you can afford to build.

Having said that, I have a couple comments on the house:

- You're looking to cut square footage in places where it won't hurt so much. I'd definitely slice off that sitting area in the master. I'm inclined to say that I'd leave the great room "as is". It's not exactly over-spacious, but it's plenty big for two people; however, if you decide to enlarge the great room, that shouldn't be too expensive -- it's "cheap space" and you're talking about going straight back.

- Do keep in mind that all square footage doesn't cost equally. One thing you could do to improve the plan AND cut costs is to simplify the convoluted jack-and-jill bath. You have too many doors (which will knock against one another) and small spaces that won't be comfortable. Consider: Would you want to stand in that tiny room and use that small sink? Would you want to use the toilet and not have a sink right next to you? Would you want to touch the doorknob to reach the sink before washing your hands? I suggest you go with a simple, straightforward bath (keep all your plumbing in one wall to save money) with a door opening into each bedroom. Removing the doors and obstacles will also allow you larger closets in these rooms.

- Should you ditch the wall between the kitchen and great room? I say the whole kitchen looks like something that . . . almost works. It isn't big enough to support that small island, but if you remove it, the counters are too far apart. You have the space and can do something good here, but I suggest you take it over to the kitchens forum and let them make suggestions. The two things I'd say for sure are 1) eliminate the angled cabinet. 2) allow more walking space between the cabinet and the table -- especially since this is your only path to the master bedroom.

- I like the connection between the master closet and the utility room. And I like that it gives you a "back door connection" between the garage entry and the master.

- I don't like that the pantry isn't convenient to the back door; you'll have to carry groceries all the way through the kitchen to reach it, and then you don't have a good spot to sit your bags down as you put things away.

- Another thing I don't like is that with three doors to the master closet, you have an awful lot of square footage for not so much storage space. I'd close off one of the bathroom-to-closet doors; that probably gives you an extra 3' of hanging space.

- If you don't do the outdoor fireplace, you'll save a significant amount. Probably enough to do the bump-out on the great room.

- The first thing I see when I look at the picture is THE ROOF. That roof will be very, very expensive.

- Why are you doing a 3-car garage? The house will be more attractive if the garage doesn't stick out as far, and if you're talking about storage, it can be had less expensively in an outbuilding (and an outbuilding won't be included in your mortgage).


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

We have a 14x16 master with a king bed and 2 nightstands (no dresser--those are in the closets) and it is very spacious. There would be plenty of room for a dresser if we chose to put one in.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

I have to agree that the 3-car garage is going to stick out well, like a sore thumb. It just doesn't fit. My husband didn't want to accept not getting his three-car, but really, we can organize quite efficiently and our house plan looks much better without a huge garage sticking out the front.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Thanks for all of your input! I greatly appreciate the time people have taken to offer their advice.

We met with our builder tonight for about three hours and tweaked the floor plan. Several of the suggestions from here were integrated in some fashion. Here are some of the choices we made (feel free to comment) and why we made them along with responses to some of your questions:

1. Garage - No way I'm giving up the 3 car garage. I have a car and a truck and fiance has a car so we need the space. (I would actually make the garage a little deeper if it weren't cost prohibitive.) I've seen other houses with a similar setup and did not think it looked awkward. Three car garages are also pretty standard around here on any new construction 1800 sq ft and up. A 2300-2400 sq ft house with a 2 car garage would negatively affect resale.

2. Master Closet & Bath - As suggested we are nixing one of the doors into the master closet. (Builder actually suggested this before I could.) Not only are we gaining hanging space, we will also be able to widen the shower in the master bath to 4' x 4'. (Now I'm thinking should we also lengthen it to say 4' x 5'?)

3. Master Bedroom - We are extending the master bedroom by squaring off the "sitting area" to make it 14' x 19'. (I was ok with 14' x 16' but builder had suggested extending it previously and fiance was set on keeping it that way.)

4. Living Room - We are moving the back wall of the living room out by 2 feet to make the room approximately 19' x 20'. We are also opening up the entry into the living room by removing the part of the wall on the left front side of the living room that (inexplicably) blocks part of the entry into that room.

We are also moving the fireplace to the back wall with large windows on each side. TV will probably be where the fireplace is on the floor plan. (I kind of wanted to put it above the fireplace, but -- you guessed it -- fiance was against it.) Still trying to figure out where to put A/V equipment -- maybe bookshelves, maybe some built-in cabinets below TV.

5. Bedrooms 2 & 3 - To make up for the added square footage in the living room we shaved a foot off of Bedroom 3 to make it 12' x 11' and nixed the desk area in Bedroom 2.

6. Kitchen - We cut down the half wall between the kitchen and living room to just wide enough to house a wall oven and microwave above it. (I forget exactly how wide this is ... maybe 36".) Moved the refrigerator to the other end of the counter. Consequently moved the stove top down. Added counters and cabinets to the wall on the end of the kitchen that adjoins the utility room. Moved and slightly shortened length of island. (As several suggested, I could do without the island but fiance was adamant about it.) By the way, there is 3' clearance on each side of the island. Someone said there was only 2'.

7. Coat closet - Moving hot water heater to the garage and gaining a coat closet in that space.

8. Left Side Bathrooms - I see what people are saying about making the bathroom on the left side of the house one large bathroom. It would be much nicer, but when we have kids I think the separation and privacy of the current design is more practical.

9. Miscellaneous - Forgot to mention a few things:

(a) Outside fireplace and grill are not included. :( We will probably add our own fire pit and grill. (Charcoal or gas? Builder will run gas line to patio.)

(b) One of our few design must-haves for us was a turret incorporated into the exterior design of the house. (Long story on why that was.) Initially, we wanted a turret shaped entry but ultimately decided making the study turret shaped. Coincidentally, our builder is finishing another house with a turret shaped formal dining. (Image attached.) Ours should look similar although we want the turret to be stone and the rest brick. (Luckily we live in Oklahoma City where materials, labor, and land are much cheaper than most of the rest of the country.)

Thanks everyone for their input! I hope you will keep the feedback coming.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

3ft aisles in the kitchen means it is a one person space. I would highly suggest posting the kitchen in the kitchen forum to get a better layout that makes the kitchen functional.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

This is shaping up to be a very expensive house -- it's already moderately large, and you're adding extra square footage and a turret. As a young couple, don't make yourself house poor.

You say the oversized garage is a must-have. I'd ask why now while you're just starting out and are concerned about budget, why you own more cars than you can drive?

The bathroom separation will not be useful with small children. Imagine youre supervising a toddler in the tub -- with these separations, you won't be able to also supervise the older sibling as he brushes his teeth -- not if he's in a separate room. Small children will knock all those doors against each other and will ruin them. One good-sized bathroom between the two secondary bedrooms will be cheaper, more functional, and will allow for larger closets.

Your -- I'm not clear on whether it's fiancé or fiancee, you've said fiancé but have also said she -- may want the island on paper, but he or she will not like it in real life. I suggest you measure off this space and, if possible, create this space with boxes. You'll see that the aisles will be too narrow for practical use as it is currently presented.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Different strokes for different folks, but imo, I would keep looking for a plan. I find the garage a tad overpowering. The turret seems cheesy; I worry your front elevation will appear squished or cramped with it. I agree with mspete the Jack and Jill bath is a horrible idea as drawn. The kitchen seems so awkward and inefficient. As Lyfia, mspete and debrak point out the kitchen won't function in the day to day. If you can handle the truth post for ideas on the kitchen forum.

If you're already at the "top of your budget" why are you adding a turret? Or choosing a plan with so many corners? What happens if the house is 20% over budget do you have the extra money?


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Thanks again for the all the feedback. Let me address a few concerns that have been expressed:

(a) I am not young. I said that I was engaged and that we had no kids so people assumed that I was young. I am 40, an attorney and have been for 15 years. Prior to my current job I have moved to different cities/towns on average every 2 to 3 years so I have always rented.

"Fiancee" (had no idea that was a word) is significantly younger (24). She is a television show host. I make almost 2 1/2 times what she does, but we both have decent paying although not lucrative jobs.

(b) We were going to use another builder who in one of his most popular plans incorporated a turret entry. Unfortunately, he was not on the approved builder list in the subdivision we wanted to live in. This subdivision is exactly where we want to live and will probably stay here 10+ years.,

I know how to negotiate. The builder we are using agreed to incorporate the turret if we used him. Contract price is $277.5k. This is roughly twice our combined annual income. Our monthly payment (including taxes and insurance) is only $250/month more than we pay combined in rent. Even though there will be some additional costs with home ownership (e.g, lawn care, HOA dues, alarm monitoring), by not paying for separate electricity, gas, water, cable, internet, and renter's insurance and the mortgage interest tax savings we should be close to breaking even with what we pay now.

The contract price includes the turret shaped study, a 1/4 acre corner lot, hardwood floors in the living room & study, granite counter tops, stainless steel built in appliances, sprinkler system, alarm, etc. The builder is the one who suggested squaring off the master bedroom. He said building the sitting area would cost him almost as much as squaring it off. (I'm told corners are expensive.) There is zero additional charge for that.

We made up for the additional square footage in the living room by shaving off one foot in one bedroom and eliminating a limited use space in another bedroom. There is zero additional charge for the extra space in the living room.

(c) I said we have a budget. I did not say that was every last dime we had to our names. We want to save some money for upgrades and furniture.

We have found builder grade granite that we like. We have found engineered hardwood that we like within our builder's $8/sq ft allowance. We will probably skimp on carpet to keep it within builder's allowance ($16/ sq yd) because it is fairly easy to replace and we will probably replace some of the carpet with hardwood down the road. We might spend a little more on tile than the builder's allowance ($2.25/ sq ft) since it is more permanent.

We are fine with the builder's included appliance package (GE stainless built-ins) other than we might upgrade the dishwasher to a Bosch since we've heard bad things about GE dishwashers.

(d) In addition to the car & truck we drive, I own a 2006 Porsche Boxster. It needs work, but it is paid for and will be my project car once we move in. I will probably keep it forever, and it needs garage space.

(e) I think those who have suggested making the left side bathrooms into one large bathroom have a point. I am going to suggest that to my gf (fiancee sounds weird).

(f) I agree about the island, but there is necessarily a give & take when two people build a home together, and an island was one of her main wishes from the beginning. I got what I wanted in opening up the living-kitchen area. She gets the island. Worst case -- she hates it and we rip it out and re-tile the kitchen in a couple years. No biggie.

Thanks again for all the input. If anyone has specific positive suggestions (rather than just criticisms), I would love to hear them.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

I made no assumptions on your wealth or jobs merely questioned (because you mentioned you had a hard budget) are you going to be happy ttare allocate your money to pay for overages. 277 seems low for that house. But if you have already picked out low grade finishes and are happy then I suppose there is nothing to worry about.

Compromises are needed true. However maybe that means a bigger kitchen so your fiancée can have a comfortable work space in kitchen with proper island. Ripping out the island isn't the only issue in your kitchen. The pantry requires a long trip from garage with no landing space. The angled sink blocks a walkway. Does your budget allow for all drawer base cabinets? The work areas could be vastly improved. This reminds me of the builder kitchens that get ripped out after 3 years. I strongly encourage you to solicit layout advice from the kitchen forum. I'm not sure what hasn't been constructive about other posters listing their concerns or what they would do differently.

I know you said it's not a priority, but a lack of a coat closet by front door would kill resale for many buyers. If you have 6-8 people over no one wants to pile costs on the bed in the guest room. You may want to reconsider this idea.

This post was edited by NashvilleBuild42 on Sun, Feb 16, 14 at 7:08


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Never mind...

This post was edited by lavender_lass on Sat, Feb 15, 14 at 23:42


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Lavender- no fair! Because of the "nevermind..." I'm more curious about what you had written, than had you deleted the message with no phrasing.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Harmon, while it may feel like criticism people here who take the time to reply and offer suggestions don't do it to criticize but to offer up truly helpful advice based upon home function experience and expertise.
I'm going to reiterate that you use one of the online room planner programs to try to arrange your furniture before you finalize this plan, and that you open up the kitchen for scrutiny in the kitchen forum.
Mistake we made in our last build - the livingroom/great room was 20'x21', and it was a Bear to arrange the furniture in. Too big for intimate conversation areas, tv too far from seating....yet too small for two furniture groupings. I think that in the eventuality you will be really unhappy with adding that space to your great room. When arranging your furniture there are guidelines all over the net for how much space you need for minimum clearances between pieces.
Having raised kids I also want to reiterate what others have said, that Jack and Jill bath won't work well with too many doors. If this is a 10 year house, simplify it, and in your next house worry about kids privacy - they don't need it til they're in their teens anyway.
36" aisles in your kitchen are not enough. Period. What she wants from looking at pictures and seeing in magazines and what she'll want to live with are two different things. If you were buying an old Victorian and had a kitchen that didn't function you'd live with it for awhile for the bones of the house, then figure out how to change it. Since you're starting from scratch with a new build there is no reason to build in bad function.
Lavender Lass always has the best ideas for kitchen layout. If you're willing to listen and bring your financee into the design equation - show her this forum, you'll likely end up with much more functional space.
And IMO there is no reason you have to justify your spending here. Sounds like you're getting a lot for your $ where you're building. It would be nice though if you got a lot of function and good design for whatever $ you want to spend.

Good luck on your build, and congratulations on your upcoming wedding.

Here is a link that might be useful: RoomPlanner

This post was edited by mlweaving_Marji on Sun, Feb 16, 14 at 8:29


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Ml- I never said anything to insinuate the comments were not constructive. I think you have me confused with OP.

I think the pointed criticism is given out of generosity and to help the OP.
I've always foun the criticism constructive. Hence my comment "I'm not sure what hasn't been constructive about other posters listing their concerns or what they would do differently."

This post was edited by NashvilleBuild42 on Sun, Feb 16, 14 at 8:24


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Yeah Nashville, I edited, - mistyped, as your name was immediately above on post - not enough coffee yet!


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

We met with our builder tonight for about three hours and tweaked the floor plan.

You made a number of changes. Can you post the floor plan with your changes? Doesn't matter what it looks like, even the small floor plan you posted above all marked up would be fine.

I might have missed it, but did you mention where you are building? With that roof I am thinking somewhere southern, but I could be wrong.

Also, what direction will the house face?


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

You could reconfigure the kitchen to make it more open and have an island, and it might make the great room feel more open and larger, and you could smooth out the entrance to the master so you don't exit the master and bump right into the counter before you've have your coffee LOL I'm thinking make it an L on what is currently the refrigerator wall, and have an island as a divider to the LR.

You mentioned expanding the shower to 4x5, go for it. It's so nice to have that extra knee and elbow room, and you'll have room for a ledge for shampoo etc.

You said the turret is a long story, I'm imagining the story is about a knight in shining armor? (I'm a hopeless or is it hopeful romantic). Will it give you room for a guest closet? Perhaps you can incorporate an archway made of the same stone as the turret, to lead to the front door.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

OP: kudos to you for not overspending, setting a budget and sticking to it!

I agree with the poster who asked for a revised floor plan so people can continue to give helpful feedback. Until then, I'll just say... if you move the fireplace, it sounds like it will block some of your only interior natural light in the middle of the house. It will be fairly dark in there, and this observation is coming from someone who prefers cave-like castles w/ dark turrets. :) So, just consider if that will bother either of you. Perhaps it is a positive in Okie?


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

"if you move the fireplace, it sounds like it will block some of your only interior natural light in the middle of the house."

This was a concern of mine, too. I like natural light, but we will still have two large windows on that wall (one on either side of the fireplace). Why would that not be enough light?


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Okay, you've clarified your position -- good -- but you're being thin-skinned about suggestions to your house. This isn't a thread filled with yes-men (or yes-women); you'll get real advice.

I've given two pieces of constructive criticism about the kitchen: 1) take the drawing to the kitchens board on this site. 2) measure them off with tape (preferably with boxes) in your own house and see for yourself how much space you'll have. Your plan shows enough space to have a nice kitchen. Your fiancée can ABSOLUTELY have an island kitchen in this space, but you can't (well, can't comfortably) have cabinets around the full perimeter AND also have an island. Not in this space.

Do the math: The kitchen is 12' wide. Standard cabinets are 24" wide. Cabinets on both sides + a minimum sized island = 6' of cabinet and 6' of walking space . . . but wait . . . your countertops will extend past that 24", so you'll actually have less than 30" of walking space on each side of the island. In contrast, if you build it as it is, then later remove the island, you'll have 8' between two cabinets, which is too far for comfort.

The trick with kitchen spacing is to hit "the sweet spot" -- not too much space, not too little space. And a kitchen is too expensive an item not to "get right" the first time.

I wouldn't be upset about the lack of a coat closet, but I live in the South and don't wear a coat most of the time.

I agree that moving the fireplace to the back wall, where it will take away some of the already-limited light to the great room is a questionable choice.

Getting rid of a door in the closet was good, and the expanded shower is a great bonus.

I guarantee that not knowing what Lavendar Lass was going to say is a great loss.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

I was going to suggest that you find a plan you BOTH love, but then I read the later responses more carefully.

Anyway, to answer your question, the kitchen island will be a barrier, but I think you've already responded to that...and the great room could be a bit larger, but too large and you might wish for a 9' or 10' ceiling.

Best of luck to you...


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

"This was a concern of mine, too. I like natural light, but we will still have two large windows on that wall (one on either side of the fireplace). Why would that not be enough light?"

What way is the house oriented? (What direction does the back of the home face?)

I speak from experience since my house is laid out similarly, to an extent. We have a wall of window/doors (12'x8' glass in size) attached to a covered patio, so I imagine it would feel similar to your layout. If I shut the drapes 1/3 of the way (or cover the center like your fireplace would,) it makes the room quite a bit darker. Since you don't get light from the bedroom walls and your living spaces rely largely on that light, it's just something to consider. You could add windows on the solid dining room wall that is currently window-less to try to maximize interior light.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

This was a concern of mine, too. I like natural light, but we will still have two large windows on that wall (one on either side of the fireplace). Why would that not be enough light?

Because you have wings that jut out from the window wall which will cut down on the amount of light coming in from those windows. And if that outdoor living area is covered, the light will be further reduced. Which way does the back face?

There are so many changes and issues with this floor plan. Would you consider selecting another? What drew your fiancee to this plan? If you can tell us that, it might be possible to suggest other plans that meet those goals with a better flow.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

I'd just like to let Harmon know there's no need to worry about "fiancée" sounding weird: it's pronounced exactly like "fiancé."

[The silent "e" is added to nouns and adjectives in French to make them feminine.]


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

"What way is the house oriented? (What direction does the back of the home face?)"

The front of the house faces south so the back faces north.

"You could add windows on the solid dining room wall that is currently window-less to try to maximize interior light.

It may be difficult to see on the plan, but the dining room wall is mostly windows.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

"There are so many changes and issues with this floor plan. Would you consider selecting another?"

Sure.

"What drew your fiancee to this plan? If you can tell us that, it might be possible to suggest other plans that meet those goals with a better flow."

Ok, sounds good. There were quite a few things that we both liked. (1) side facing garage, (2) no formal dining room, (3) 3 bedrooms plus office/study, (4) unfinished upstairs bonus room, (5) efficient use of space (perhaps you disagree it does this), (6) big master closet & bath.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

I meant the wall that is adjacent to the patio area - does that one have windows?


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

"I meant the wall that is adjacent to the patio area - does that one have windows?"

Nope, but it probably should. Thanks for the idea!


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

"You made a number of changes. Can you post the floor plan with your changes?"

We don't have a revised floor plan yet. Builder is going to make a copy for us and hopefully get it to us this week.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

"Anyway, to answer your question, the kitchen island will be a barrier, but I think you've already responded to that..."

If someone has a different kitchen layout that will fit in that space, I would love to see it. Fiancee is starting to become a little more flexible although I know she still really wants an island.

"and the great room could be a bit larger, but too large and you might wish for a 9' or 10' ceiling."

It will be a 10' ceiling in the living room. (Plan shows cathedral but we won't have that.)

"Best of luck to you..."

Thank you!


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Went over floorplan again tonight with gf. In the master bath I think that nixing the third door will allow us, in addition to enlarging the shower to 4 x 4, to extend the vanity to make it adjoin the shower. That space looks pretty useless without the door, and we both prefer a little more personal space while getting ready anyway.

We are undecided on the left side bathrooms. We like the idea of making it one big bathroom but not exactly sure how to accomplish it. The closet in bedroom 3 gets in the way of most of our plans. Also, I do like having the separate, private vanities ... decisions, decisions.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Just a cautionary tale: my friend, who loves entertaining, bought a 700k+ 5000sf house and didn't look at or change the kitchen and now she regrets it big time. Her aisles are bigger than yours and they're still way too small. She trusted the plan and builder and shouldn't have. She really regrets not mocking up the kitchen or visiting a similar one to see how it worked.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

One thing I meant to say yesterday and didn't: I live on a corner lot, and I hate it. If you have the option to choose a better lot, I'd do it.

- The biggest concern is lack of privacy in the back yard. When we have a cookout, it seems that everyone in the world is walking or driving by, and everyone has a great view right into our backyard (and I have about 5Xs the lot size you're planning). When the kids were small-small, I wouldn't let them go out alone. Similarly, people have a "view into our house" on two sides, whereas most houses on small lots offer a view from only the front.

- I'm sure you're reading the above and thinking, "Why don't they have a fence?" We do. It's trouble enough to deserve its own spot. First, it's not a small expense. Second, weed-eating around the fence is a never-ending job. Finally, ours -- because of its design -- doesn't completely keep people from looking in the yard. Of course, you could choose a better, more private fence.

- More street front = more noise.

- These days school busses don't go down small roads; rather, kids who live on cul-de-sacs and so forth are expected to walk to the nearest corner and meet the bus there -- in our case, they wait on our property. This is the school's assigned spot, so there's nothing we can do about it, but the kids do walk through our front yard and occasionally drop candy wrappers or tramp on our flowers. The up-side of this is that when our own kids rode the bus, they didn't have to walk far . . . but in those years, the kids all wanted to wait on our porch (with our girls) rather than at the actual corner.

- Even when kids aren't waiting for the bus, they often "take a short cut" through our front yard, kind of cutting off the corner. We have a permanent "trail", which just encourages more bike riders and walkers. I don't want to discourage these kids, which are my kids' friends, but I do hate the way that corner looks.

- We're in a big "walking neighborhood". We live in a nice climate, and every afternoon and evening LOADS of people are out and about walking with friends and with their dogs. Those dogs poop. People won't let their dogs poop in front of someone's house . . . but on the side seems less . . . noticeable, less of an issue. Regardless, my husband's always fussing about stepping in doggie-do as he mows the side of the yard.

- Which brings me to . . . we don't have sidewalks in our neighborhood, but we do have double the "ditches" to mow, and they're more effort than nice flat ground -- ours are steep enough that they can't be done with the riding mower. The ditches aren't actually our land and we get no use from them, but we have to take care of them.

- We have a fire hydrant literally on our lot. On the plus side, this means our home owners insurance is slightly cheaper, but a couple times a year the fire department comes out to test the water pressure, and they always flood the corner and stomp around enough to tear up our grass.

Admittedly, we do have a few benefits, though they pale in comparison to the negatives:

- We don't have a garage, but if we did, it could open onto the side. This has been an oddity for us: Our house faces the cul-de-sac road, and our address is the cul-de-sac road . . . but our driveway is on the other street, which is the "main drag" through the neighborhood. We have our house number clearly marked on the front and the driveway side, but people always have trouble finding us.

If I were starting fresh, I'd insist that the post office assign us a house number for the driveway side. I think it'd be easier for people as they approach by car.

- More parking space when we have large parties. Our driveway can hold six cars, but twice that many can parallel park on the two sides of our house. However, there's a downside to that too: When our neighbors have parties, their friends parallel park beside our house . . . and it always seems to happen on the days we were planning to mow.

NONE of these things even crossed my mind when we were buying this house, but I cannot say I've liked living on the corner.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

I actually think the 36" in the kitchen is fine. My current house has 36" from the fridge handles to the island counter top. On the other side, I've only got 32" from counter to counter. The dishwasher is in here, and I think I screwed up when we renovated a couple of years ago because it used to be more comfortable walking between the open DW door and the island.

It's a little tight when the husband is in the fridge and I'm trying to pass. But I won't add more than a couple inches in the next house because I find it very comfortable right now. Much bigger, and I'd have to take steps to move something from the island to the sink instead of simply turning around like I do now. I certainly wouldn't give up the island to get more space. Plus, I always welcome the opportunity to rub up against him. ;)

Also, "budget" doesn't mean limited money. We are constrained by budget not because we can't afford bigger, but because there is a limit to how much we could resell the house for if we had to. Anything we spend over that is a loss if we had to sell within the next 5 years. (Not planning to, but things happen.)

I would also lose the "gallery" and the angled walls and bookshelf in the lower left corner of the GR. Adding this space to the GR will allow you to have a bigger GR, and possibly borrow from the GR to get a bigger kitchen.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Just a quick idea...I moved the range/cooktop to the same side of the kitchen as the sink. Slid the fridge down (closer to sink) next to a narrow pull-out pantry (for everyday items) and added an oven/microwave combo at other end of that counter. I also added a few feet to length of LR and DR and then a couple of feet width to kitchen/DR. This made room for the island. Hope this is helpful :)

From Kitchen plans


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

'Okay, you've clarified your position -- good -- but you're being thin-skinned about suggestions to your house.'

No, I am not. I greatly appreciate the positive suggestions and even constructive criticism. We have already incorporated several of the suggestions and may include more, but simply writing 'that won't work' or 'you'll regret doing that' or 'can you really afford a [insert: turret, roof, brick, 3 car garage, third car, etc]?' are not helpful without suggestions on how to improve upon the current design or suggesting a different design that works better.

'One thing I meant to say yesterday and didn't: I live on a corner lot, and I hate it. If you have the option to choose a better lot, I'd do it.'

I'm sorry you have had such a negative experience with a corner lot. Perhaps we will experience some of the same negatives issues too, but I did not hear anything that would dissuade me. The corner lot was more expensive, but it was (and is) important to us primarily because we wanted a side entry garage. Neither one of us like the way the front of most newly built houses in our price range is dominated by the garage doors.

I also just prefer being on the corner. Seems more open without being boxed in by neighbors on three sides. Perhaps it's because the house I grew up in was on the corner ... who knows?

I'll try to include a Google earth link to our lot. If by some miracle I am successful in getting the link to work correctly, we are on the corner where the street intersection is rounded out (reminds me of a cul-de-sac).

Here is a link that might be useful: Our Lot

This post was edited by Harmon on Tue, Feb 18, 14 at 1:05


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

"Just a quick idea...I moved the range/cooktop to the same side of the kitchen as the sink. Slid the fridge down (closer to sink) next to a narrow pull-out pantry (for everyday items) and added an oven/microwave combo at other end of that counter. I also added a few feet to length of LR and DR and then a couple of feet width to kitchen/DR. This made room for the island. Hope this is helpful :)"

Still digesting it, but I think it will be very helpful ... thank you so much for taking the time to suggest this!!!


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Lavender Lass,

Thank you again. I do have a few questions:

(1) By "a couple of feet width to kitchen/DR" do you mean two feet? We are trying very hard not to increase the base price of the house. In order to do that, if we add square footage to an area, we are taking it away somewhere else. Any suggestions?

Maybe we could move the wall between the kitchen and living room to the left a foot or even two. That would take the living room down to either 18' x 19' 8"" or 17' x 19' 8''. I don't think I would would miss one foot in width of the living room but not sure about two. Any thoughts? Would adding one foot width (instead of two) to the kitchen help much? Obviously looking for a balance here.

(2) You must think 13' is too short for the dining area. Now that I think about it that is somewhat snug and limits dining table options. Again though, in order to preserve the current square footage I think I may have a tenable compromise solution.

The master bedroom with the sitting area squared off will be 14' x 19' 6''. That's a pretty long narrow-ish room. We could shorten 1.75' off the bedroom and extend the dining room by 1.75' so that their exterior walls meet. (Might be a small up charge for tile vs carpet but maybe that is offset by elimination of a corner?) That would make the dining area (if that wall is also moved to the left one ft) 13' x 14' 9"". Thoughts?

(3) Kitchen -

(a) We had decided to eliminate one-half of the partial wall between the living room in kitchen to open up the floor plan. With your revision it would need to go back up for the vent hood correct? I'm not a fan of the partial wall, but if we need it, we need it.

(b) I like the idea of the pull-out pantry, but if we don't do that, would you slide the refrigerator over to the end of that counter? That's where I had planned for it to go. Without the pull-out pantry do you think we have room for the Frigidaire twin refrigerator & freezer (66" vs 36" opening)? I really like them but had given up having room for them. (Trying also to decide if I would miss in-door water/ice.)

(c) Would you do anything with the kitchen side of the wall that is between the kitchen & utility room? Seems like unused space but perhaps we need it just for clearance. When we met with builder we had decided to put counters and cabinets there and consequently shorten the island and move it towards the dining room. Will that be too cramped? If we bring back the full 6' wall between the kitchen and dining room, we will gain upper cabinets there and hopefully eliminate the need to do that if you don't think it works.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

"I actually think the 36" in the kitchen is fine."

It is good to hear an alternative opinion ... thanks!

"I would also lose the "gallery" and the angled walls and bookshelf in the lower left corner of the GR. Adding this space to the GR will allow you to have a bigger GR, and possibly borrow from the GR to get a bigger kitchen."

Thank you for the suggestions.

(1) We are going to eliminate the bookshelves in the lower left corner of the GR and corresponding wall. I think that small change will open it up quite a bit, but I'm not sure how to completely eliminate the "gallery" area while keeping the study where it is. Ideas?

(2) Everyone seems to hate the angled walls? Why? (Not saying that I love them just wondering.) So if we nixed the angled walls would you make the living room ("great room" sounds so pretentious) start even with the wall at the end of the kitchen counter? That would shorten the LR a little but not sure it matters much since it would be more open and we are extending it a couple of feet on the other end. (FYI - We are planning on an arched entry into the living room, and the "gallery" will be tiled while the LR will be hardwood.)

Again, thanks for your input & suggestions!

P.S. If anyone has any ideas to clean up the bathroom/closet situation on the left side of the house, would love to hear them!


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!


See attachment.
Hope this helps.

This post was edited by naf_naf on Tue, Feb 18, 14 at 19:54


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

I forgot to mention that I like angled walls but they should be used when they make sense or are beneficial to the project.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Angled walls are more expensive to build, and are not a very efficient use of space.

I would square off the study, and move the doors to foyer wall. Draw a line from the top wall of the study across to the bedrooms, and tile below the line, hardwood above it. If you want the archway, put it here, so all that space is now the living room.

If you left the study with the corner cut off, you lose space in the study, and gain an extra corner of open tiled space between the entry and the living room. What would you ever do with that extra space there? In the study, you can have an extra arm chair for reading, or more cabinetry for books, an extra desk for your GF. A lot more possibility.

On the other side, if you square it off, you get space back in the garage, get more space in the study. I'd remove the wall between the laundry room and hall, so you walk from the garage right into the utility room. Then have only 1 doorway from the utility room into the kitchen. That would require walling off the living room, so you don't hear the washer and dryer. I just feel like wanting to keep all these options open, you can come in from the garage and go to the LR, or the kitchen, or the utility room; is just making the area awkward and taking up space. This change would allow for more cabinetry along the lower wall in the kitchen, and you can open the left side more to the LR.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

I'm trying to avoid being productive today, so I drew some lines on your plan to show you what I mean.

That's a closet to the left of the doorway from garage to the utility room. If it's really important to you to be able to get to the LR without going through the kitchen, you could put a door here.

I'd probably move the powder room door to the angled wall. That would probably require swapping the toilet and sink.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

"I'm trying to avoid being productive today, so I drew some lines on your plan to show you what I mean."

You're still being productive ... you're just being productive helping me out ... thanks!


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

I don't think this is a very good layout. But just doing it to illustrate that if you went to the Kitchen Forum and showed your kitchen plan with dimensions that you may be able to get some help coming up with a better functioning kitchen that looks nothing like what is currently there, but that you will be happy with.

My illustration of looking at it differently - although I wouldn't recommend this as a good kitchen necessarily either. Just meant to make you think in different directions. There are people on the kitchen forum that are really good at that and some will even draw it up for you.

This post was edited by lyfia on Tue, Feb 18, 14 at 15:58


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Too small, sorry.

This post was edited by naf_naf on Tue, Feb 18, 14 at 19:49


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Lyfia,

Thanks ... I actually like something similar to this, but gf isn't crazy about it. It seems to be very popular in new spec homes around here. I'll try to scan the larger plans with dimensions tonight so I can post them here and in the kitchen forum.

I am feeling pretty good about Lavender's Lass suggestions although I think instead of 4' clearance around the island we might have to settle for 42". That seems to be the minimum recommended distance from various online sources. Need to show the gf.

Still trying to figure out what to do with the wall between the kitchen and utility room. We were going to add counters and cabinets but I'm afraid that will add to our clearance problem. Maybe a key rack and/or charging station like someone mentioned for a different area? Any other ideas?


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Here is one with more storage space.

Is she not liking it being so open?


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Lyfia,

I like that last one quite a bit. I'm going to show it to her. When we started she said she liked an open floor plan but now wants more of a barrier between the living room and kitchen than just an island. If I could find the right island though, I might be able to sway her. :)

Thanks!


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

More detailed floor plan. Hopefully it's legible. This is the original without any modifications.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Ok, I played around with Lyfia's concept and, considering it's my first time drawing with MS Paint, I really like the result. Thoughts?


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

You now have a coat closet where the original plan had the hot water tank. Where did you move the hot water tank? Where is the air handler located? Hopefully not in an unconditioned attic.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

Overall, I just don't love this plan. It tries too hard to hit the "cool" features and not hard enough to make the basic functions of the home work. All of the angles and bumpouts etc just make it busy and unworkable. They increase cost, and decrease usability. Not to mention the bulbous garage on the front. What I think proves me correct in that this isn't the plan for you is that you are trying way too hard to make it work. And it still has major flaws. It would be better to just move on and pick something else. If it has angles, move on down the line to something without.


 o
RE: Review Our Floor Plan ... Please?!

A slight change to the kitchen....

From Kitchen plans


 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!


Return to the Building a Home Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.


Learn more about in-text links on this page here