Category Archives: Tips

Did you know that 33% of potential buyers are less likely to enquire about a property when it doesn’t have an available floor plan? Although photos are helpful, actually seeing the space from a bird’s eye view is easier to understand.

Drawing a floor plan for your own home is also beneficial. This way, you can see elements of your design before anything becomes permanent—and all professionals will require one before construction begins anyway.

So, whether you’re renovating a part of your home or building from the ground up, you’ll need a floor plan to get the ball rolling.

What Is a Floor Plan?

A floor plan is a two-dimensional birdseye drawing of a room or floor of a building. They can be done by hand with engineering paper, or online with planning software.

Floor plans are different from blueprints, which are more technical and intended for engineering teams. Floor plans usually only show the interior spaces and include examples of where furniture would be placed.

Benefits of a Floor Plan

“Floor plans are more of a neutral backdrop for them to see what’s in the apartment and how the rooms relate to one another,” says realty marketing director Gerald Makowski.

Drawing out a floor plan before planning the space is not only helpful to you, but also to the architect and designer. A floor plan helps your professional team maximize the use of the land, plumbing, electricity, and overall design with a single sketch of the floor. Some other major benefits include:

  • Help your professional team layout your ideas
  • Allows for adjustments
  • Displays measurements for features and furniture
  • Creates a better relationship between buyer and seller

Unfortunately, floor plans don’t magically appear—so if you’d like to take a hand at drawing your own, here are some of the most important tips to draw your own floor plan.

Tips to Draw Your Own Floor Plan

Sketching is the easy part, but doing it right is a whole other process. By considering essential tips like measuring correctly, window directions, adding architectural details, and furniture placement, you’re more likely to have an accurate draft.

Tip #1: Essential Measuring Tips

First, begin by gathering measurements of each room in the floor plan. Measure side to side across the base of the wall and then floor to ceiling. When you take the numbers to the drawing board, use each box to represent one foot and round your measurements to the closest ¼ inch.

When mapping out your furniture ideas, keep in mind that the walkway between a piece of furniture and a wall should be 30 to 36 inches in residential spaces and 36 to 42 inches in commercial areas, which can help you determine the size of rooms, furniture, and hallways.

Tip #2: Always Map Out the Windows

Window arrangement might not be high on your priority list, but it should be! Where your windows sit will determine furniture placement, heating and cooling costs, and the types of window treatments you might opt to do.

North-facing windows receive the most sunlight year-round while east and west receive the most during summer. South-facing windows receive little at all, so unless you live in a hot climate, you might want to avoid putting important rooms on this side.

Furniture Placement

It’s always best to place furniture that faces the windows. You’ll also want to point screens away from them to prevent an unwanted glare. So, for example, your living room TV might sit on the same wall as the window while the couch is parallel.

Cooling and Heating Costs

Where your windows are can help determine your home’s cooling and heating costs. Up to 30% of heat gets lost through inefficient windows, so choosing a window treatment for your climate can help reduce high prices in extreme temperatures.

Tip #3: Don’t Forget Architectural Features

One of the worst things to do when you’re in the final stages of your floor plan is realizing you forgot to include architectural features.

Architectural features are parts of the space that won’t be removable, like built-in shelves, staircases, fireplaces, doorways, windows, and sometimes plumbing and electrical details.

Tip #4: Furniture Placement Is Essential

After you’ve added the essential parts of your floor plan, you can add sketches of what furniture pieces could fit. Keep in mind that furniture usually sits between two and three inches from the wall.

If you’re adding furniture that you already own, then take careful measurements of each item. If you plan on buying new pieces, then you have some creative freedom on what kinds of pieces to add to your plan.

Characteristics of a Well-Flowed Room

“When you do one room, you have to think about everything that touches it, all of the spaces that connect,” says designer Stephanie Henley on the importance of room flow.

A room’s flow refers to the natural route and relationship between doors, windows, and furniture. Think of it this way: when you walk into a room, the last thing you want is to bump into a desk or couch.

Some examples of a well-flowed room might refer to feng shui, which is the harmonization of elements. The rules of feng shui translate well to traditional Western design, including:

  • Avoiding clutter
  • Keeping a clear path to the entry door
  • Maximizing natural light
  • Using furniture that fits the space

By utilizing the room’s natural flow, you’ll be able to maximize your furniture and space.

Tip #5: Functioning in Small Spaces
If you’re designing a small or cramped space, then consider the essential aspects of your design. There are several things you can incorporate into your floor plan and design to make use of every inch of space, like:

  • Mirrors
  • Pocket doors
  • Recessed shelving
  • Allowing maximum sunlight by drawing that face north, east, or west
  • Integrating appliances into cabinet space
  • Glass doors in bathrooms

When possible, doubling these pieces’ functions works best. “If you ensure that every piece of furniture in a room has a purpose, it becomes the most used room in the house,” says designer Cari Giannoulias.

Conclusion
When it comes to designing a floor plan, there are several factors you have to take into account, like design, functionality, and practicality. But most importantly, you have convey these critical elements into your floor plan.

So if you plan on drawing your own floor plan, always be sure to:

  • Measure everything
  • Map out the windows
  • Add architectural features
  • Consider furniture placement
  • Maximize small spaces

After you’ve finished, you might wonder what’s next. The good news is that the team at Monster House Plans has architects and designers whose expertise is finalizing floor plans. By consulting with one of our building and designing professionals, you’re one step closer to bringing your floor plan to life.

Contact Monster House Plans today to get started!

Do you feel as though you don’t have enough room for all your belongings? Maybe your home has grown cramped and feels small? Luckily, you don’t have to move or perform significant home renovation to solve these issues. Rethinking the space you already have is a great way to give yourself more storage while creating an inviting and open feel within your home. If you’re unsure where to begin, here are a few ways to maximize the square footage your home has to offer.

Change the Perception

There are a handful of ways to create the illusion that a room is bigger, brighter, and more open. Through color and layout design, you can transform any space in your home to not only utilize the most space possible but also give it the specific feel you’re looking for.

Utilize Color

If your room feels small, there are plenty of ways to open it up. You can try using paint as a means to make a space feel bigger. Soft tones of white, blues and greens, can not only enlarge a room but also give it a more inviting feel.

As an additional tip, ensure your wall trim and moldings are a lighter color than your walls as it will give the illusion that the walls are farther back, making the room feel big and open. If you’re not looking to paint, you can also change up your flooring to give your room a new feel. Wide planks or large tile flooring with a darker tone can also enlarge a space.

Revamp the Design

The layout of your furniture can also make a difference in your living space. If you have large, clunky pieces that close off walkways and the view of the room, it will seem cramped and small. Opt for multi-functional pieces that you can tuck away when you’re not using them.

Corners can be awkward spaces that can sometimes be difficult to fill. You can find desks, cabinets, bookcases, and accent tables that can all tuck away into the empty corner of your room. These are viable options for a home office space, as well as a means to increase your storage capacity. If you’re looking for something more simple, consider an accent piece such as a chair or lamp for you to enjoy.

Rethink the Kitchen

If you have a large room that feels lackluster and not fulfilling its true potential, consider a minor remodel. For a room such as the kitchen, the options are endless. In most cases, you may feel as though you don’t have enough cabinet and counter space, or maybe your kitchen as a whole feels tight and cramped.

An easy solution for these issues is to replace your cabinets. The cost to install new cabinets is, on average, $100 and $500 per cabinet. By installing new cabinets, you’re able to reconfigure the layout of your kitchen, performing a major remodel—such as moving appliances and running new plumbing. Compared to other remodeling costs, replacing your cabinets is a budget-friendly project to help you maximize the space of your kitchen.

You can also choose between options such as rolling islands and kitchen carts. These can provide you with additional workspace, as well as storage for when you need it the most.

Consider Storage Options

Your home can be full of hidden gems that you transform into additional storage space. This is an excellent option if you’re looking for ways to maximize your space without buying new furnishings for your home. A few ways to add storage in your home are:

Implement Storage Benches

Whether you decide to commit to construction and install a built-in or you buy a freestanding bench, this can help you fill empty walls beneath windows and awkward corners. It’s also a versatile piece that combines both style and function. Additionally, you can utilize benches in many rooms of your home as a means for storage, organization, and extra seating.

Check Under the Stairs

Based on the space beneath your stairs, you may find the perfect opportunity to utilize the extra space it has to offer. Based on the location of your stairs, you could use this space as a pantry, a laundry room, and—for any pet lovers out there—a den for your furry friend to relax.

This is a unique space that you can transform into anything you see fit for you and your family. You could also implement cabinets, drawers, and pullouts to create extra storage to hide in plain sight.

Conclusion

Ultimately, maximizing the space you have in your home is all about being creative and working with what you have. By implementing unique storage, design elements, and redesigning your space, you’ll be able to have a more functional and open home.