How to choose the best floor plan
When it comes to buying a home in one of our communities, you could be faced with the decision of choosing a floor plan. It’s an important decision and it’s not easy to know what to look for and what to consider. We’ve compiled four expert tips to help you make the right decision.
1. Think about the shape of your block
If you’ve found the block of land you love before you’ve picked your floor plan, then the goal will be to pick a house that suits your block. “There are some covenants (like the size or style of the home you can build) and setbacks in place, which are set by the land developer, that determine which house plan can fit on which block,” says Glenn Kennedy, National Marketing Manager at Coral Homes.
But ultimately, the goal is to ensure you’re utilising the land you have. “It’s about maximising the space you have on your block - we have floor plans that suit small and narrow blocks,” says Kennedy.
The size of land and the floor plan should compliment each other. A bigger block might mean you have enough space for a one-story house with everything you need on one level, while a narrow block means you’ll be restricted by the style of house that fits. The trick is finding a narrow floor plan that still has everything you need.
Floor plan for a narrow home to fit a narrow block.
2. Take advantage of design trends
Home design has evolved over the years and nowadays there are some new trends that are worth considering. For instance, seamless interaction between indoor and outdoor spaces is ideal if you love entertaining, or perhaps you want separate living and dining rooms so family members can do different things in different rooms without disturbing each other.
“There’s also a trend towards IT hubs, which are nooks that don’t take up a whole room like a study,” says Kennedy. An IT hub is a great way to make room for an office, and still keep a full spare bedroom. Media rooms are popular too – made for TV viewing, they’re a great way to enjoy a family movie night in, or gather some friends together to watch a big game.
Floor plan with IT Hub and Media room.
3. Plan for future additions, if you need to
When choosing your home, it’s important to consider how your investment will stand the test of time. Ask yourself some questions to help think through any additions you’d like to make in the future:
- Will you want to add a pool in later? From large pools to small plunge pools that double as a water feature, think about the space you’ll need to leave vacant.
- Are you likely to extend in the future? Some floor plans are easier to adapt than others. It’s important to talk to an expert about choosing a plan that’s flexible enough for expansion down the line.
- Will you be working from home more over the coming years? You might need a dedicated office area, rather than an IT hub.
- Do you have older children who might move out in the near future? Consider whether that space will become a burden after they’ve gone, or whether you can use it for another purpose.
- Will you entertain more or have guests to stay often? That might require a guest room.
- Are you planning to have children or could an older parent move in with you? You might need a yard that’s big enough to hold a trampoline or a cubby house, or separate spaces on the floor plan for multi-generational living.
4. Consider your furnishings
Furniture is the key to making your new house feel like a liveable home. A floor plan that’s awkward to furnish is going to impact on that sense of comfort in your new home.
“A home’s ‘furnishability’ is one of the biggest considerations of home design,” says Kennedy. “It’s all good to get a home design that suits the size of the lot, but the big question is: is it furnishable? Floor plans have to properly accommodate furniture, to allow for spaces that are easy to walk through and comfortable to live in.”
For example, if you want to divide an open plan area into two areas – such as a living and dining space – you’ll want to allow at least 800mm between the furniture in each zone, to make the space flow.
Floor plan that divides open plan kitchen/dining room into two spaces.