House plan, part four

I will reiterate that creating a house plan entirely from scratch is overwhelming. As well as mind blowing, time stealing, argument invoking and just plain tedious.  However, if you want a house that you will love, it is a necessity to go through the process with a fine-toothed comb to arrive at a plan  you will ultimately love, and a house you will love to live in.

The tediousness of creating a plan means you must know how you live and entertain, what hobbies and tasks need their own space, and how much space to allot to everything. 

It means making a list of the rooms you want (3 or 4 bedrooms, how many full baths and how many powders, luxury laundry or just enough space to manage in, etc.).

It also means being realistic with your budget.  This is the first tedious thing to address because your budget determines everything.  Not only the size of the house, but how elaborate you want all the fixtures and “decorations”, and don’t forget furnishings.  We figured that our dated double ended recliner sofa needed to be replaced, but that our living rooms furniture (still sturdy and a timeless name-brand tuxedo style look) could be reupholstered in new and fresh fabrics.  I hate shopping for furniture and will reupholster a second set of love seats for the second time because they are very sturdy and usable in small places, like guest bedrooms.

We measured every nook and cranny practically of our very livable current house, tweaking spaces to fit our desired square footage.  Combining uses (two hallways have bookshelves recessed in the walls) and using spaces creatively to get more everyday use out of them.  I really don’t like spaces to sit unused (guest bedrooms since we don’t have kids at home now); what a waste.

Plan for future uses, either for yourself or others.  We designed a “public” sitting room/TV room outside the master bedroom.  It is convenient for us to use daily as an additional TV and computer space.  It is actually and open room with walls on 3 sides and a hallway along the fourth “open” side.  However,  we had them frame it so that a wall with a door entry could be easily installed  along that hall if a private bedroom was ever needed, and it could make a fantastic nursery for a future homeowner since it is right off the master bedroom entry.   Just look at all your spaces and see if a multi-function space can be incorporated without taking up much more space.  For instance, our elliptical exercise machine has it’s own corner in the laundry room, right in front of the double French doors that open onto the small back porch and looking out to the pond.  Rather than put it in it’s own space or in a public area, we just bumped out a couple more feet along one wall  to make room for it.

The expense of fixtures like faucets, sinks, door knobs, flooring, etc., can be estimated in advance so you can figure how expensive your tastes are.  We knew we wanted a nice metal roof and we determined we could make up the difference between a shingle style and metal roof by economizing in flooring (a nice looking  economical tile) , appliances (no expensive  “commercial” style anything for us), and hardware and faucet options have some very nice looking ones at reasonable prices (we like “plain and simple”).  I did put some unique “pitcher pump” style faucets in all the bath sinks, but we shopped around to find these.  Some of those brands had prices that seemed unnecessarily high.  I kept looking and found them all at prices in my budget and got them immediately.  They were very hard to find.   Remember to shop online at some of the big box home supply stores.  They have “online only” items that you can’t find in the store, but if you buy and need to return, you can return at the store.  Double check return policies for sale and online only merchandise before ordering, however.


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