Congratulations! You’ve decided to build the home of your dreams. Now that you’ve committed to taking the plunge, you get to do all the fun stuff, like working with your architect to design the house exactly the way you want it. Before you go in to meet with the pros, it’s important that you have some specifics figured out. It turns out, a lot of thought goes into building a house! And since you’re making such a big commitment, you’re going to want to do it right. Consider these things when you’re creating your floor plans.
Should I Have Stairs?
Two-story homes are great if you need a lot of square footage but don’t have a ton of land to make it happen. If you can’t build out, build up! Some families don’t like them, though, because they require some effort to climb up and down every day. They may also be unsafe if you have small children or older family members living with you. You should consider whether you’re more suited by one story or two.
Do I Want an Attic or a Basement?
This is related to the stairs issue, but concerns less of your living space and more storage options. Do you want to keep things standard, or do you want to add an attic or a basement to your home? Both can be great places to keep boxes and whatnot, but they also add some extra expense to your budget. If you want one, you’ll also have to decide whether you want it to be finished (functional but expensive) or unfinished (affordable but not as functional).
Is My Family Still Growing?
If you and your spouse aren’t sure whether you want kids (or more than you already have), you won’t know how many bedrooms you’ll need. Chances are, if you’re building a house, this is where your family will live for the rest of the foreseeable future, so you need to make sure there’s space for everyone. We think it’s better to be safe than sorry. If that third or fourth bedroom ends up going unused, you can always turn it into a storage room, a home office, or a gym.
How Will I Landscape?
If you love the idea of lavish manicured lawns with complex flowerbeds and winding pathways, make sure that you leave enough room on your land for those things when you’re building the house. If you have a small plot of land, you’ll be more limited as to your landscaping options. Even if you don’t know exactly how you’d like to decorate just yet, it’s not a bad idea to play around with a few basic ideas (like “do I want a pool or not?” and “Which fence will look best?”) before you build.
Make a checklist of everything you’re sure you want and some things that you know you definitely don’t want. When talking about your floor plans, remember the uses of each room and be sure you’ll love it. And once the house is finished and ready for boxes moved in, consider a fenced-in back yard for the kiddos, a beautiful ornamental fence for safety around the pool, or another one of the several fencing options.