If you’re like most other people, you probably don’t spend a lot of time thinking about the logistics of floor plan design. That is, after all, why companies like Houston Plans and Permits exist. The average person has no idea how to design a structure that complies with local building codes, so they leave it in the hands of professionals. In most cases, this is a very wise choice, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be cognizant of certain problems that floor plans always have!
As the owner of the Houston home you’re going to build or remodel, you’re the one that’s going to be spending your time in it, day after day, year after year, so it’s important that you have some say over the final design. With that being said, it’s valuable to know what some of the most common house floor plan mistakes are, so you can work with your home designers to ensure that these issues aren’t present in your layout.
Here are some common mistakes of house floor plans!
Not Considering Your Lifestyle
First, it’s important to note that not all “problems” with house floor plans are objectively bad. One man’s trash is another man’s treasure, and similarly, some home layouts might work better or worse depending on your lifestyle.
There are plenty of factors that go into this. Consider these examples:
Age and Health: Are you no longer the spry young athlete you once were? If your back frequently gives you trouble, you have trouble walking, and so on, you probably don’t want a home where all the good stuff is on the second story. Think of what tasks are physically demanding for you, and design your home with those limitations in mind.
Guests and Family Size: Are you the type of person who frequently hosts family, friends, and various other guests? Do you want to be that kind of person? Think of what your home looks like when you’re entertaining people. Do they congregate in one room? Do they like to split up and do their own things? If you have a family, or intend to have people over on the regular, you’ll want to stay away from more boxy layouts that segregate rooms. Instead, consider a nice open spacious layout!
Hobbies: Some hobbies are innocuous and can be adapted to just about any layout. You don’t need to design your home around your shelf of collectible shot glasses, but you might need to make accommodations for other hobbies. Do you want to have an art studio? Where do you want to watch your movies and play your video games? These questions might dictate whether or not you want extra rooms in your home.
Not Planning for the Future
One thing that people often forget is that you’re generally in a home for the long-haul. Sure, it might not be where you settle down for the rest of your life, but most people are going to spend at least several years in a home if they’re paying a mortgage.
Sure, the layout you choose might be peachy and perfect now, but what about the future? Are you done having kids, or are you just getting started? Is there a realistic possibility that you might need to host your parents or in-laws in the future for health reasons? Are you making any major design decisions based on a lifestyle that may just be a temporary phase?
We urge you to consider the years ahead when you’re planning your home. It’s good to have the possibility in mind that your home will host more people, and it’s also prudent to consider activities that would be a total drag if repeated over and over through the years. Like, do you want to walk up a flight of stairs every time you do laundry? For years and years?
The long-term is important, so be sure to plan for it!
Not Thinking of Logistics
This is something that you might need to ask your home designers about, because it’s unlikely that you’ll be able to grasp all the technicalities of your preferred layout.
But the long and short of it is this — some layouts have logistical ramifications that could end up being burdensome in the long run.
As a simple example, think of a home that has giant windows from floor to ceiling. The view it provides is probably fantastic! But at the same time, it’s much less insulated than a normal wall, and you can bet it’ll have an effect on your home’s temperature. While Houston doesn’t get terribly cold, it’s still important to think about how your home design could affect things such as your air conditioner or furnace use — this will have an impact on your monthly bills!
Aside from that, if you’re remodeling, you may need to be aware of your utility lines. Certain designs could interfere with your plumbing, electric access, and so on. These are things that your home floor plan designers should take care of themselves, but if doesn’t hurt for you to have some knowledge about it too.
Making Educated Guesses
If your house floor plan designer is asking you questions about your home, it’s much better if you’re able to give a firm “yes” or “no” instead of a “Hmmm, I think so.”
Details and specificity are important when you’re planning your floor plan. Variations of just a few centimeters can make a huge impact, so make sure you know your numbers when the time is right!
Think of your furniture. Most homeowners plan to keep most of their stuff during a remodel, and it’s possible that your furniture takes up a lot more space than you thought! Remodels aren’t cheap, and there’s nothing worse than realizing you have to reinvest in a bunch of expensive furniture because you didn’t plan right.
We urge you to get measurements of your current home to have a relative ideas of how big everything is. It’s good to compare your home to the floor plans that are being designed with you. Are you unsure about the square footage? Seek opportunities to spend time in a building or living space that has roughly equal measurements. You don’t just want to assume that everything will be good because it looks fine on paper. Do your research! You won’t regret it.
House Floor Plan Designs in Houston
With these common mistakes considered, it’s time to start planning your new home or remodel! At Houston Plans and Permits, we can design a floor plan that’s custom tailored to your needs, which can then be taken to contractors for construction. We’ve done countless projects in the Greater Houston region such as garage conversions, second story additions, floor plan remodels, and entire home designs. We also handle the permit acquisition process, making the entire experience easier and faster for you. Contact us today!