4 common-sense design considerations

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Visible toiletNo matter what you do, a little common sense can go a long way to making life easier on everyone involved. Designing a home is no different. While we all like to ooh and ah at homes with dramatic features, don’t forget simple design features every home should have. Any smart designer should be aware of these.

1. You shouldn’t be able to see a toilet or the master bedroom from the entrance.

Let’s say you’ve just built a beautiful house and you’re having somebody over for dinner. It’s a new coworker that hasn’t seen your home. You open the door, and immediately that new coworker is staring down your toilet.

You don’t want anybody to be able to see the less appealing (toilet) or the private (your bedroom) simply by opening the front door. In a proper design, the bathroom or bedroom shouldn’t be visible with all of the doors standing open.

2. Remember your stuff when you’re considering open floor plans.

Everyone loves an open floor plan. It’s practically the most often-used phrase on HGTV. But there’s a catch. You have to put stuff in that open floor plan. The TV, furniture, appliances, etc. all need a place in the home. So while you might be impressed with the area of an open floor plan, don’t forget to make sure that you can use all of that space the way that you want to.

3. Save on square footage by building up.

Any time that you can build upwards rather than outwards, you’ll save money on square footage. Think about a one story versus a two story home. The slab and the roof of the two story take care of twice the square footage, so you get twice the bang for your buck on two expensive components. If you can stand the thought of going up a flight of stairs, consider a two story design to save some cash.

4. Cut waste to get what you really want in the home

Let’s say you want granite countertops in the kitchen. There’s a $3,000 expense. You can cut waste in the design to give yourself money to do that. For example, let’s say your home wasn’t designed efficiently, and requires a complicated roof structure. By changing the design to cut the need for that special structure, you’ve got the cash to put in the countertops.

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