In a previous New Home Inc article, we guided you through the lines and symbols so you could understand How To Read a Floorplan. But there’s more you should think about when you’re making a decision as important as the home where you’re going to live for years to come. We want you to be fully informed about how to read a floor plan so you can read between the lines and symbols.
See it through.
Sightlines in any building are the uninterrupted line of vision. From the moment you walk into a home to every space you wander, you look ahead and see something else, even if it’s a wall. In an open concept floor plan, the sightlines encompass the entire space of the kitchen, living room, and dining area, because there are no walls to break up this line of sight.
But New Home Inc’s architects recognize there’s a lot more to sightlines than the unblocked view of the main living area. What do you see when you walk in the foyer? Are guests greeted with a look at the toilet in your powder room? When you go up the stairs, what vision meets you there? What’s the view from your kitchen window?
Our homes take all this (and more) into consideration. When the owner’s suite is situated on the second floor, it’s typically near the stairway landing. That’s designed purposely so the users of that suite don’t have to walk by the other bedrooms and see piles of clothes or toys on the floor!
If you can envision it, do a mental walk-through of a floor plan to uncover flow and sightlines that are going to nag at you later. Ask yourself in each area, “What can I see from here?” Then decide if your answer makes it to the next round of consideration. A virtual tour, like Matterport, lets you walk virtually through a home, steering your way from place to place, even zooming in on details. It’s a great way to gather more information on the home you’re considering.
There is no symbol on a floor plan for noises. You have to estimate that for yourself. Here’s some sound advice for evaluating a home’s acoustics:
- If the plan has a first-floor owners suite, what is right above it? Will you be hearing other people walk around in their rooms? Did you mistakenly locate the fitness room right over your head, only to hear the thuds and clanks associated with workouts when you’re trying to relax? Our Raleigh plan is an example of a home with a first-floor owners suite that has no livable space above it.
- How far do plumbing sounds travel? The sound of a toilet flushing, faucet running, or washer working can be a distraction. Think about entertaining in the living room and hearing the toilet flush because the powder room is either right above or right next to the main living area.
- Your home office should offer the quiet and privacy you need in order to be productive. Look at the placement of this room on the floor plan. What will you hear during the times you plan to work? When building your home you can even add additional sound dampening measures like extra insulation or sound dampening drywall.
Light it up.
Natural light is a real plus in a home. Sunlight streaming through the windows brightens up the space and makes it appear larger. It also contributes a good dose of vitamin D, the natural mood-booster.
A good floor plan takes advantage of natural light by placing windows where they allow the sun to shine in. Look for a plan that places a window that can be seen straight ahead from the front entrance, a great feature for a sight line.
The main living area should have windows on either side so that as daylight moves, your home gets the best of it. We like to even “borrow” light from other rooms, meaning placing windows in other rooms that have a clear viewpoint of the first room. Borrowing light from one room for the other can really provide a since of openness.
The placement of windows in a floor plan does more than let the light in. When you can look outside, the interior just feels bigger and open. Think about how you feel in a room without the right amount of windows and you’ll appreciate this distinction!
Homes for all of your senses
A floor plan is two-dimensional, but you don’t live that way. Your home is a blended experience that uses all five senses: sight, smell, sound, touch, and feel. As you examine a floor plan, apply your various senses to truly imagine living in the home.
New Home Inc designs and builds new townhomes and single-family homes for sale in the greater Raleigh area. We bring all five senses into the design and add one more: common sense. Our homes represent intelligent, purposeful design. Every detail is measured against what it contributes to the owner’s life there. We invite you to contact us to learn what makes our homes truly unique!