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I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Posted by Snookers1999 (My Page) on
Sat, May 17, 14 at 13:38

Me and my husband are hoping to start building our "Dream Home" this summer and have been working with our Architect to finalize our floor plans. I keep going back and forth on some ideas and my true fear is that something is really wrong with our floor plan that I just haven't figured out yet. Any help or advice you can give us would be greatly appreciated. The house has a main floor and a downstairs walkout basement.

I know the pictures may not be great, I just took a picture with my camera of the paper print outs we were given.

And in advance, thank you for helping me and my headache!

Some specific questions I have are:

1. Should I do pocket or french doors on our Formal living room and if we do french doors, should they swing into the room or out? Also, is the Front door swinging into the entryway the wrong way? And where would you put the light switches for the entry way and formal living room?

2. Should the deck and patio French doors swing in or out? and should they be shifted to the left side of the rooms so they don't conflict with furniture?

3. Do the windows in our dinning area look funky to you, and if so, how would you change them?

Here are some room dimensions if you can't read them on the pictures:

Great Room: 21'8" x 23'4"

Dining Area: 13' x 13'

Kitchen 14'8" x 13 (Island is 9' x 5')

Formal Room: 15' 12'

Master Bedroom: 17' x 14'

Garage: 38' x 26'

Downstairs Family Room: 19'2" x 23'4"

All Bedrooms Downstairs are approximately 14' x 14'

Exercise Room: 17' x 14'

(Also, I know some of you might think the cold room storage area is way to large, but we live on 22 acres and wanted a place under the house to store the lawnmower, ATV's, Snowmobiles, kids toys, etc.)


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Downstairs


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

I am contemplating storing ATVs in the basement somewhere too...maybe even "attached" to the basement, rather than below main living space. Is your cold storage area for the ATVs? If so, could you move the "storage" to the other end of the "cold storage" and make a nice garage type door that's closer to the middle?
If you are able, a small "butlers pantry/cabinet/shelf" would be nice built intowhere the staircase is. Even just an upper cabinet with a shelf for parties . Maybe not something you want, but the location seems really nice.
There are a lot of things I really like about your plan. I could see it working really well for my own family. Do you have young kids/grown kids? The basement seems laid out really well. A lot of people here don't like to see kids rooms in the basement, but these seem nicely done. I have been back and forth (with myself) about a really nice basement or a 1 1/2 story basement.


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

nostalgicfarm - I'm glad you like the floor plan, It's been years in the planning! Yes, our cold storage is for ATV's and other outside toys. We don't really want to move the "storage" area to the other end of the "cold storage" because the cold storage isn't going to be finished inside and will have no heating or cooling. We want the "storage" area insulated and finished. I wish we could move the door to the middle of the cold storage area, but it just isn't going to happen with the grading, however, we probably could do a garage door instead which might work really well! And I like your idea about the small butler's pantry.

And yes, we have two kids ages 8 and 10. They have no problem being in the basement, but I would completely understand why people wouldn't want their really young kids in the basement by themselves. I would of felt the same way if my kids were younger. (And when they get older, I'll find some way so they can't sneak out the basement door!) ;)


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Very nice plan... one of my favorites so far on GW. I especially like the way the Master suite is set up. We would have benefitted greatly from that when both of us were working full time and needing to get ready at various wee hours of the morning.


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Here's an alternate plan for the basement my architect just sent me. Bedroom #4 and bathroom have been changed, as well as the storage areas. Which one do you like?


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

musicgal - That is exactly why we set the Master bedroom and bathroom up the way we did. I can't wait for my husband to stop waking me up at 5 in the morning!


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Snookers, I absolutely love your plan. Wish I had seen it when we were building. Love the master suite especially. Great job!! From a personal perspective, I'm not fond of the kitchen layout. I once had a kitchen where the range and sink were opposite each other, and I disliked it. Especially with two people working in the kitchen. IMHO, you are also lacking adequate counter space for baking. I love the corner in my kitchen for baking, rolling dough, kneading bread etc. But that's a very personal thing with me. We each have our little "quirks" about how we use our kitchens.

Have you considered another front entrance into the mud room area? We did this and it is so handy! When our grandchildren visit, it's so nice to have them enter here and slip out of their shoes, deposit the sports equipment, etc. The mess is always hidden from the living areas then. Another personal preference of mine.

What are the differences in your basement plans?


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Gasoline and vehicles cannot be stored within a dwelling. It has to be in a garage type space with firewall separation. Also, as this only has a single bedroom above grade and is essentially classed as a one bedroom plan, financing may be difficult to come by for it's construction. The engineering to have a suspended slab for your garage can add up to quite a bit of $$.

With that much acreage, do you really want the snout GARAGEhouse look? Garages are the least attractive portion of any home, and that look is only popular in urban environments by necessity due to the small lots. Most suburban environments that have enough space create covenants that mandate side load garages.

There are a heck of a lot of living spaces, but only a single small eating area, and a kitchen with a darn small actual work area. Despite looking like it's gota lot of room, the counter space is all in unusable spots. It's a single person kitchen, not a family kitchen. It needs a complete redesign, hopefully with additional space added to the eating area, and with some form of semi separation between the two spaces added.


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Do you need the door in the hallway between the utility room and mud room? If so, I'd consider moving it to between the powder room and utility room.

If the kids are playing outside, how will they come in to use the bathroom? Would it make sense to add a door next to the garage to come in opposite the mud room?

In the basement, what is that space between bedroom 3 and the exercise room?

Since your cold storage will have ATV's, does it have to be a completely fireproof space? Like a garage is?


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

We have glass pocket doors on our Formal living room and it has worked out well. Our light switch is on the same wall as the front door. It is not the greatest location, but the room is not used that often so it is not a problem. (And the framers did the wall for the pocket door three times, so I didn't really feel like having them do it a fourth time in order to get a better location for the light switch.)

Our French doors from the family room are out swing. The deck is covered, we live in a warmer climate and we don't have to worry about door swing space in the family room. I would take furniture into consideration when determining where they should be placed. And if you have stairs off the deck, you might want to take that into consideration too.

Also, as this only has a single bedroom above grade and is essentially classed as a one bedroom plan, financing may be difficult to come by for it's construction.

Our house has two bedrooms on the main level and two bedrooms in the walk-out basement. It is considered a four bedroom and there was no problem getting financing to built it.

Most suburban environments that have enough space create covenants that mandate side load garages
Since the garage doors face 90 degrees from the way the front door faces, and probably don't face the street, I thought these would be considered side load garages. If they aren't, what are they considered? This type of garage comes up when you search for side load garages.


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Nice floor plan. Would love to see your front and rear elevations. What's your total square footage on each floor?

I would have the front door swing the other way for a couple reasons -- closet access and better views of FR as you walk in. Light switches would be located on same side as door handles (in almost all cases).

I like the idea of being able to view the pretty DR from foyer, but it seems like it'll be a royal pain to haul food and dishes through FR and foyer to reach DR. Imagine guests arriving and there's a bottle neck in foyer and you're trying to still get things set in the DR. I'd have the DR open to the FR (with pocket doors because there's not enough space to have French doors) or perhaps have two openings to DR (no doors).

I'd have inswing French doors in FR and eat-in kitchen, and your placement looks good centered in both rooms. Think about where your grill will be located and accessed easily. I'd consider a little grill porch off of the eat-in kitchen area. Which "funky" windows are you talking about?

Any way to swap the mechanical room with the storage room in basement -- both to reduce noise for bedrooms and also so utilities are situated on an outside wall?


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

dekeoboe, this plan has a courtyard load garage. I agree with hollysprings that side load garages are much more attractive, and Snookers could easily do a side load on 22 acres. We had a side load garage on our last home, which is much more attractive than the courtyard load garage we had to have on our current narrow lake lot.


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

I like the 1st basement floorplan best. I can understand wanting a heated and cooled storage, but if it is in that back corned (underground!) Your stuff should be fine at 50°… I am just thinking if the door wasn't clear at the end of the storage area....we have three kiddos, so with 5 ATVs, some mini-bike, other Gator sized, you still need to be able to get everything in and out. I think your kids will be just fine. Kids sneaking out in the country is not the same issue as in the city...lol. plus daddy has a shotgun if the boys sneak in to visit the girls!
I personally like your garage style, but it is not a popular one on this forum. The preferred is a garage where the garage doors aren't seen from the front of the house or the front door. I think that leads to a lot of driveway...but it is what it is.
Your master bedroom suite is very nice also.


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Thank you for everyone's help and great suggestions.

joycee_6333 - I love your idea of having a door going into our mudroom! This is why I posted my floor plans so I can include great ideas like this into my plan.

holysprings - I'm assuming that any garage that has a room above would also have to have a firewall between the two, as well as any common walls with the house, correct? Is our cold storage area any different than fireproofing a garage like that? Also, why would we have to have our garage on a suspended slab, there is no living area underneath?

Also, a few of you have mentioned lack of counter space in the kitchen. There is 3 feet of counter space on each side of the cooktop. 27 inches of counter space on either side of the oven and a huge 9' x 5' island. I figured that was a huge amount of counter space, am I missing something?

As far as the garage placement. Although we have 22 acres, the part we are building the house on is narrow, only 115 feet wide. We want to build here however because it is closer to the main road. We don't want to plow a huge driveway during the winters. Also this narrow area is up on a hill so it provides better views of the gorgeous mountains that surround our property. The property that we do own that is wider has a river running through it so we were worried about flooding in the future if we built down there. As far as the "Snout" garage look, I've always enjoyed that look. Maybe I'm strange that way. I would like a side load garage, but unfortunately it won't work for us since there is a well on that side of the property that we have to be 10' from.

Please keep the suggestion coming, both the good and the bad. I love people's different perspective on things!


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

jujubean71 - thank you for suggesting to switch the mechanical room and the storage room. I think that's a great idea and I'll talk to my architect about it.


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Although I like that your refrigerator is recessed, I'm not big on its location. You have to pass the cook top to get to it from the dining area, it breaks up that counter run, and the space between the ref and the wall will be kind of small, dark and cave-like. My preference would be to have the ref on the end of that run by the dining area (using more space to the left of where the counter ends now), leaving the rest of the counter as one long expanse.

For really good layout advice from people who know lots more than me, I'd highly recommend posting your first floor layout and a zoom in of the kitchen with dimensions on the kitchens forum. They'll give you great advice.

I love the big pantry!

Can you scootch the garage over (to the right in your picture) to make the mudroom wider? I think with all that outdoors time in the country you'll want lots of space in there, especially if you can add an outdoor door to the mudroom.


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

The master suite is nice. Just some thoughts:

When you walk in the door, you face an edge, the trim between the closet door and the wall. Wouldn't it be in to have the wall, so you could have a nice piece of artwork there? If the bedroom door is left open, it looks less like a dressing room from the rest of the house. By the way, I like that closet. My son's closet is like that, and I wish it was in my room!

In the bathroom, do you use fresh towels every time you shower? Oh, I know it sounds too personal, but I see the linen closet right by the shower, but no place to hang a towel LOL so just checking that's how you live!

Oh, and change the swing of the waters closet door.

I foresee handprints on the wall at the top of the stairs, as little (and not so little) boys use it to ricochet into the kitchen or great room.

I like Joyce's mudroom entry, too, and the resulting outdoor stoop lends itself to all kinds of decorating possibilities. We love having a "service door" like that.


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

As a parent of 3 once young boys, I would have valued making your laundry and mud room one big room and that powder room with a bathtub and adding a door from the front yard right to that area. I would put a hall pocket door at the powder room in the hall to close it off. I would have given anything to have a tub near the kitchen when the kids were little and for other things that needed a large tub for cleaning. Good luck building.


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Garage entryway: My, you like doors! The doors in this area will rarely be closed, and they'll end up bumping into things, covering up walls that could be used for storage. I say do away with a couple of them:

- The closet in the mudroom isn't visible except to people using the mudroom, which is itself a big closet. Skip the door and go with nice shelves /hanging space inside. Kids are more likely to use the space if it's visible, and the open door won't block off access to the room.
- The laundry room is placed far enough "from the action" that its noise isn't going to be a problem, and no one really cares about the laundry being a private space. I'd do away with its door too.
- Then I'd move the hallway door blocking off the mudroom down past the laundry room . . . so that door could be closed, blocking off both the laundry AND the mudroom. This takes care of shielding any mess, and it only requires one door.
- I'm not sure what that tiny closet next to the pantry is.

While we're talking about doors, I'd use a 'specially nice door for the pantry -- a single French door with a pretty fabric on the inside would be my taste. Why? Because when you leave your bedroom and make a rather lengthy trek towards the kitchen /working part of the house, that pantry door is your sightline.

I question whether your dining area is large enough, especially since you indicate you have snow-machines . . . and that makes me think you're not in Florida and won't be hosting outdoor parties often! At 13x13, it's not tiny, but since the porch door is on one side, you'll have to leave space for people to shimmy around the table to reach that door. And this area isn't large enough for a small table that can expaaaaand when necessary.

Great room, formal room, entry -- nice. Sizes look good, etc.

I agree with those who say the master suite's got a great layout for privacy -- what's not so private, however, is the tub! I wouldn't want my tub to face the porch, even with shutters or other privacy features. You'll have to keep your window covered all the time. I also don't like the toilet closet. Well, I never like any toilet closet, but this one looks particularly difficult to navigate -- as it's shown, you'll have to enter the room and scoootch over next to the toilet while you close the door. The toilet is placed in a sheltered location -- I say do away with the door, make one of those walls half-height and let it be sheltered . . . but not closed off behind a door, which makes it difficult to clean and impossible for an elderly person (which, God willing, eventually you will be) to use.

I'm solidly in the camp of "why put the garage, the worst feature of any house, out front". Sometimes no option exists, but that's not the situation here.

Downstairs, do you have space under that large staircase? Could that become a large closet in the exercise room? It'll be a short closet, perhaps good for storing holiday boxes or something else you don't use regularly . . . but that's a whopping big amount of storage under those stairs, and I'd want it.

Near the single bedroom downstairs, you have a hallway, a closet and a storage room. I'm guessing that's a linen closet? If you incorporate the hallway into the bathroom, the linen closet would be IN the bathroom (always nicer), and you could access the storage room through the bathroom. I'm not crazy about either of the layouts for this bathroom -- they're both a bit disjointed. I think either of them could be improved by reversing the door swing -- this bathroom isn't big, and the door is eating up too much of the space.


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

One more thought ;)
Since I am also building on acreage, and still contemplating kiddo rooms downstairs ....
Consider putting a washer/dryer/ shelving mudroom type area in your cold storage. Wouldn't it be nice to have a cabinet with some clean clothes/towels/etc...and a place to put dirty laundry when you all come in from 4-wheeelin?
Plus, while I have 3 kids, I think even with two kids and the country lifestyle, having 2 sets of washer/dryers would be a huge plus. You can get the second set on Craigslist for half or less what it would cost new. So you could get a 3K set for 1000-1500 if you wait ;).

I think we are all anxious to see your exterior too! ;)


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Thank all for your advice. It's helping me consider a lot of things. I agree with a few of you about the placement of things in the basement, especially the 4th bedroom and bath. This area has really been a pain for us and our architect to design so if you have any ideas, please feel free to share. As far as stair storage, we will definitely be incorporating it into the plan. Like someone said, its a lot of waster space if we don't. As far as doors, I'm a weird fanatic when it comes to keeping spaces separated. But I'll reconsider some in my plan that have been mentioned.

Thank you everyone for the time your taking and the great advice you're giving. I truly appreciate it!


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

nightowlrn - I really like your idea of making the mudroom and the laundry room into one big room. This is definitely a great idea to consider.


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

nostalgicfarm - Again, thank your for your help. Putting in a "clean up" area in our cold storage room is a great idea!


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Oh, and to everyone else, the elevation pictures are being worked on this week and I will post them as soon as we get them. I can't wait to see them either!


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Picture-window on front porch to soaking tub qualifies as cray-cray! There has to be a better arrangement.
What is the front porch there for? Could it be just a roofed area over the front door, with some screening to the picture window?
Casey


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Regarding the Laundry Room and Mudroom - please, keep them separate! There are very few things that are as off-putting as walking into a home through the garage and seeing the family's dirty laundry (or even clean laundry!) - even if it's family or close friends!


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

buehl - I'm glad your chiming in here. You always seem to have great suggestions. We have already decided to keep the mudroom and laundry room separate. The more I thought about it the more I realized that I would hate to stare at dirty clothes while putting my coat away. I like to hide my dirty laundry because if I see it, I feel like I have to do it! :)


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Wow, lots of good ideas! The only thing I'm not a fan of, is the little black hole between the garage service door and the window at the staircase. Seems like a little area not serving a good purpose, even if you add a door into the mudroom there. I'm also wondering how your guests will park/enter the front door. If you have a vehicle in the driveway, facing the garage door it belongs in and you have guest drive up, will they park facing the garage or your front door, and then will they have to walk around vehicles to get to the front door? I would consider moving the garage back to open up the staircase window and move that service door to the front of the garage. I also don't see that there will be enough room to open that service door as is, if there is a vehicle parked in that stall. ( I know you said you had size constraints on the lot, but thought I'd throw this out there anyway)

Also on the other side of the garage, will that bump in/out interfere with a vehicle parked in that first stall. Will you have room to park and walk around the car/truck and that jog in the wall?

I think I would put a door out to the deck from the dining for grilling, unless you will grill in the screened in porch?

I would open up the formal dining wall to the great room,

Although I like the master suite, I would have to rearrange the bathroom. I don't like the tub on the front as for reasons already stated by other posters, Love the toilet on an outside wall with a window, but the small area and door swing isn't working for me. I think I would consider scooting the closets into the bedroom more and the doorway into the suite and reconfigure that bathroom.

Overall, I like your plan, just putting in my .02!


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

back2nd - I thought about building a closet or something in that "black hole" area of our house, but my husband is a huge landscaper and really wanted to leave this area outside so that he could landscape a cute little courtyard. It's the one thing I gave him in this house. :)

As far as parking we are going to have a large turn around in front of the house that people can park along. I would love to move the garage back a little further, but our lot won't allow the increased width. I'll ask my architect about the small garage door and the bump out to see if he thinks it will interfere with our cars and doors. Thank you for pointing those out to me.

Also, the formal room isn't a dining room. It's a formal living room. We often have visitors show up unannounced and I wanted a room we could talk to our visitors in if by chance my house is less than presentable, if you know what I mean.

I completely agree with everyone that has mentioned the master bathroom on the front of the house. We just couldn't figure out a better way to work it. I didn't want the bedroom upfront. And I think having the closet/dressing area there is just as bad as having a bathroom there, just personal preference. We are planning on having privacy glass on the window with blinds. My architect is putting in a dormer window on the roof above the bathroom that will allow additional light into the bathroom. If someone else has a better suggestion on how to arrange our master suite, I'm all ears!


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

RE - laundry/mud combo. I totally understand. But, on the upside, laundry would be less likely to pile up... I was envisioning something like this, with large reach-in cabinets for each family member to hold a few coats, boots, back packs. Laundry is done on the other side of the cabinet.

This post was edited by nightowlrn on Mon, May 19, 14 at 22:57


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

I feel like every one is giving me such great ideas! Thank you so much!

Now I just need to figure out how to incorporate some of them.

nightowlrn - that is a nice looking mud room/laundry room. You should of never posted it because now I keep going back and forth and can't decide. :)


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Does anyone see any issues with the site lines from the front door? I'm asking because mine will be similar. You'll see a raised hearth, partial pieces or furniture( that will be placed around the fireplace) and then the back window
. It's one of the only things I'm worried about in our plan.

A few of you mentioned the lack of prep counter space in the kitchen. I don't have a lot on the perimeter of my kitchen either. Is a huge island not considered and used as prep space, especially when it has a sink in it? OP asked this too but no one responded to it.

Having the tub at the front of your house is going to hurt resale on day. My parents built a spec home with the tub and window in front and had a very difficult time selling it. They had to really lower the price for that reason. I'd come up with a way reconfigure the bathroom. What are your concerns about having the bedroom up front? it could possibly be a quieter area away from the family room noise, especially if you have a TV on that wall in the FR.


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Homeblessings - One reason we didn't want to put the bedroom up front is because there are incredible views of the mountains from the back side of the house. We are planning on this being our forever home, so I'm not really worried about resale. I know so people will say that you never know if a house will be your forever home for sure, but trust me when I say that it would take an act of good for us to ever move any where else.

Also, I guess I just don't mind having privacy glass on the bathroom window with blinds closed all the time. Our ceiling are going to be really tall in our bathroom and there will be a large dormer window above the bathtub area that will allow a lot of natural light in. The bathroom arrangement does seem to bug a lot of people though, and if I lived in the city, I would never consider this set up. However, we live out in the country where's it's very secluded so it isn't really going to bother me that much. I know, it's probably still crazy, but, I think we will be okay. It's obviously not a set up most people could live with though.

I'm also just going to count my island as counter space so it's plenty for me. Once again, some people might disagree with me. We just all have our own likes and dislikes.


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Being a country girl, I think that the tub in the front is not a big issue. Privacy is just so much different than a city lot where people may actually be able to see in from the road.


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

I like it. One thought is that it's a long walk from the kitchen into the formal dining room. I'd be inclined to add a second doorway to the formal dining room that is closer to the kitchen.

Another is that I'd look at the difference in cost between adding your cold storage area vs. a separate storage building. I believe having anything by dirt under your garage can be pricey, and a pole shed might be a more flexible option anyhow (although it wouldn't be as convenient).


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Snookers,

I just had to chime in on the combined laundry room/mudroom idea.

We currently have that setup, and it is one of the things I do not EVER want again. Picture your kids coming in to the mud room to take off muddy/dirty/gritty shoes/clothes-- while your clean laundry is sitting in a basket nearby, waiting to be folded... Another scenario-if you drop a wet item of clothing onto the floor while transferring it between the washer and dryer, it then picks up any little bit of dirt. Or when--well, you get the picture!

In my experience, a mushroom/laundry room combines the potentially dirtiest room in the house w/ the room that you want to be (one of) the cleanest. Hope this helps :-)


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

It's not likes and preferences. It's time and motion studies about the kitchen as an actual workspace. That's where the zones concept comes from. It's all about minimizing foot traffic and not having your workflow cross zones or you lose efficiency and work much harder.

The fridge should always be located on the perimeter of a kitchen so that my outside traffic doesn't cut across your wok path. That's both efficient and a safety measure. As is the goal of having no traffic through the space between the sink and range.

Separating the cleanup and prep areas well is the key to having a kitchen serve multiple workers. Your original design muddles the work zones and then complicates things with traffic. It's an accident waiting to happen.


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

FYI, the cold storage room isn't under the garage. It's under the upstairs guest bathroom/laundry room/mudroom.

jbrig - What's a mushroom/laundry room? :)


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Lol, well maybe that's the problem--I've had a mushroom/laundry room all this time!


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Can you post Lisa's kitchen plan? That is such an improvement and would really help your plan overall, IMHO.

You're getting there! :)


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Here is the kitchen plan lisa_a came up with for my kitchen. I too think it's a huge improvement. The thing I'm most excited for is getting the sink off the island and having all that room for prep space.


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Here's my rendition of lisa_a's kitchen. With a few tweaks.


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Do you want people to sit on two sides of the island? The table is right there, but it's nice to have conversation at the island, too.

If so, you'll need the island a little shorter to leave room for a stool and not bump into the dining chair.

I also like the picture Lisa posted with the little 'window' that gave the clean up sink a bit of a view. Even an interior opening allows more sight lines and will let you see the kids on the stairs, without walking around the wall. And it was cute :)


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

How wide is the space opposite the oven? Will you have room to stand in front of it with pans in your hands, with the door open? Is it a double oven? Will you have room to bend down? I know my rear goes back a bit when I use the lower oven lol!


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

lavender_lass - I also liked Lisa's opening above the sink, it's probably a lot better than staring at the wall.

bpathome - I should have about 25" from the opposite counter to the oven door when it's opened. Also, my ovens will be about 19" off the floor so hopefully I won't have to bend as much. And, I don't know about other people, but I don't always stand directly in front of the oven. More often than not, it's a little to the side. (Maybe I'm just not normal!)


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

And here are the elevations, finally!

Front Elevation:


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Right Elevation


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Rear Elevation


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

Left Elevation


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

I knew a lady who had a 'Formal Room'. Her house was known, locally, as "The Castle", and was a Tudor dating from 1925. Anyway, the 'Formal Room' was a large walk-in closet next to the kitchen, where, when the maids weren't doing anything else, they could go and get a 'Formal' (party dress/evening gown), and "iron-on-it" for awhile. The lady's daddy had owned a beer joint, but she'd been Miss-something-or-other, and had snagged the richest boy around. It was real smart of her to have 'The Formals' where the maids could grab one, when the Lady of the House, or her Daughter, called from upstairs, or from the Country Club, and said, "Vinah! Git me thaaayit blue Dior ready. Wuhrrr goin' ta thuh University Club tanite!", or "Git me up some formals, Queen Esther! Tha inlaws are flyin' us up ta thuh KENtucky Derby." That 'Formal Room', now that you've jogged my memory, was probably the house's original Pantry, and is roughly the size of YOUR pantry.

In fact, your house is roughly the same size as 'The Castle'. And its facade seems about as complex and expensive-to-build as 1920s Tudor architecture. Yours is a HUGE, luxurious house, by most people's standards. So, I'm baffled as to why the dining table is relegated to a 13'x13' 'Dining Area' off the Kitchen.

I'm guessing you're in someplace like Northern Michigan, where people are very unpretentious. But still, there seem to be a lot of people in your life, and jamming them all into that little space, when food seems rather important in the scheme of things (the well-developed kitchen... the large pantry....) would seem to potentially make for tense and unpleasant meals, when the whole family is together.

We recently moved back South, when it turned out we'd taken over another corporation (honestly, I didn't mean to...), and someone was offering us too much money on our almost-complete house outside Portland, and somebody else took our lowball offer on a silly, overgrown "Old-South-Style-Dream-Home" (on considerable acreage, with millions in landscaping and embassy-style electric fencing that we were getting basically for-free). As much as I hate Mississippi, all those tempting numbers made the move back home impossible to resist. So, here we sit.

This house had the typical tiny, prissy little Dining Room, just big enough to hold the previous Owner's "Mamaw's (Grandma's) Mahogany Dining Set from Montgomery Ward" (C. 1957). The space was too small. It became my husband's Library. Stretching across the back of "The Gracious Mansion" was some bizarre free-flowing conglomeration of space, that was a den/great room... something... I had that space gutted before I even let my Decorator in the door. Didn't want to give him a cerebral hemorrhage... and it's cheaper to let your design team know the raw dimensions from the get-go. They're going to come in and take measurements, and photograph every stub-up and framing anomaly... So I had studs, sub-floor - tutto - sprayed in white primer, before they arrived.

Well, I had sold our Portland house before I was able to use my custom table built for 30. But that table (and a kitchen designed for caterers) turned out to have made the house irresistible to my Best Friend's Daughter, who ONLY entertains formally, and otherwise has meals across the meadow at her Parents' house. I have a history of selling my houses to pairs of surgeons. These particular surgeons, despite their youth, paid cash. Seems they'd each been letting their trust incomes pile-up while they were in residency. Good kids.

So, here, in my newly-acquired bargain manse, I wanted the same thing: long table, with three big chandeliers overhead... lots of sconces, mulberry silk shades for really soft lighting... but with a big, long buffet, because this IS the South, and we ALL dine buffet-style. In Portland, caterers and rent-a-butlers are fun people. In Mississippi, they're failed actors and musicians, and are bitter, spiteful little bundles of passive aggression. And anyway, everybody at our table here, even when there are 30, are 'family' in some way, and the Caterers really don't need to overhear whatever schemes we're hatching, or whatever dirt we're dishing.

Although we use fancy plates and fancy goblets and Whiting's 'Lily' flatware from 1902, we DON'T DINE FORMALLY. Everybody's too busy, and it's basically an open-house-in-the-Dining-Room: arrive at some approximate hour, grab a plate, leave whenever... But the table seats an easy 30 (three feet for each person), with blazing chandeliers overhead, and my favorite ancestor, a banker from Riga, glowering over everybody, from the center of the longest wall. It's a practical room: brick herringbone floors that can be mopped with strong soaps; fractionally non-parallel walls for better accoustics; embossed velvet 'papering' the walls, for even better accoustics; a tented ceiling where it once 'cathedraled', for soaking-up our family's cacophony; sturdy chairs, and a sturdy table... And "immediate family", for us, can easily fill the room. We totally fill up the room with people, at least once a week.

I'm thinking that you're happy 'Yoopers' (or some sort of Central European/Alpine types, in a snowy part of America) with none of our Southern pretensions or obsessions. But still: wouldn't you be able to use an old-style English 'Long Room', with a long, rugged refectory/trestle table (a long, narrow, rustic table), in a more expansive space? A refectory table can be used for reading, computing, etc., when not used for dining. What I see on those plans just seems like the 'kitchenette' in a 1950s tract house... a tract house that just grew and grew.

Your house is the size of a MANSION, but the dining area is like a breakfast nook in Levittown.


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RE: I have a headache, please help me review my floor plan!

I'm a Southerner from a long line of Southerners, and I can't relate to the above tome.

I do agree, however, that your space is out of proportion and you need a larger dining area.


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