House building plans
The Ancient Egyptians had floor plans and applied building construction methods for their great pyramids and palaces. The Ancient Mayans, Incas and Aztecs had their version of crude floor plans to follow for them to build their ziggurats and temples. It is noteworthy to know structures during ancient times were mostly oriented to rising and setting of the sun. Without instruments and gadgets it is quite amazing how these ancient civilizations were able to orient and build edifices of such grandeur and magnificence.
During the last 2000 years, progress and change were the only two constants. Changes were made in all aspects of living and progress was constantly on its wake to support the change. Style of clothing has evolved. Political set-ups were adapted to what is current and feasible. Technology is unbelievable. The type of kind and methods of preparation have changed too. How we design our homes have changed significantly too. The evolution of homes was in synch with the changes that were happening in the world. Can you imagine living in a draughty 15-foot high ceilinged home, with only a crude fireplace as provision for heating and cooking? Can you imagine walking all the way to the lake just to get a bath? Yes, times have changed and so is the way we plan and build our homes.
The modern floor plans that we could buy ready-made or have custom-made are the product of centuries of building planning evolution. Today, planning a house can be done online. There are free softwares that you can download to basically "draw" whatever it is you want included in your floor plan. The bottom line is, without professional help from a qualified architect, your self-made floor plan would be:
- Badly planned and laid-out - as you are not an architect, what do you know about proper planning?
- Out of scale and proportion
- Improperly oriented in relation to the lot
- Elevation and section are probably not balanced and has no symmetry
- Architectural style is probably non-existent too
Planning a house is not that easy for a person untrained in that area. Basically, every room planned into a house should be relatively related in location, size and function to other spaces in the house. The advent of solar energy and sustainable living brought on another new aspect in planning a house. What then are the basic parts of a house that should be included in floor planning? The basics are: the living room, dining room, kitchen, utility room garage or carport and bedrooms, bathrooms, basement or attic. Parts are being added according to the needs of the would-be-occupants. Such are walk-in closet, family room or den, library or study, family room, pantry and more. Accessories such as balconies, patios, decks and lanais are external added features.
What are the important things to consider when creating a home floor plan?
Doing a floor plan for your new house should not be so difficult. There are two ways you can secure the perfect plan for you. First, you can hire the services of a professional architect. Tell the architect what you want in terms of planning and costing and the architect will do the rest. Second, you can browse for online ready-made plans or pick out one from a floor plan magazine, buy the construction plans and you are done. Some ready-made floor plan companies even do modifications. Whatever you choose here are a few things to consider when creating home building plans.
- What kind of house do you want? Do you want a detached or semi-detached house? If you want a detached house, what type? Do you want a bungalow, split type or two storey houses?
- What architectural style do you prefer? Do you want a period house in Victorian or Tudor? Do you want to settle for more modern lines?
- What do you think should be included in your floor plan aside from the basics? Do you need add- ons like breakfast nook, family room, den, a study and library?
- How many bedrooms do you want included? How many bathrooms?
- What kind of lifestyle do you have? This is an important point of consideration because if you entertain a lot, you would need a living space conducive to entertaining. If you are not keen on entertaining but enjoys quiet moments, then a secluded nook in a patio is favourable.
- How big do you want your house to be? It's important to consider how large you want your garage too.
- How much is your budget? You can plan all the details that you want but if you don't have the finances for it, then your house project might well just be a pipe dream.
Once you have decided on all these aspects, it is time to settle for an architect or contractor. If you want a custom-made floor plan then you need to get an architect to draw your floor plans and construction details. If you bought ready-made plans, then you still need to get a contractor to build your house.
Find out about the local building codes. However, your architect and/or contractor could surely brief you on the local codes.
If you really want to design your own floor plan and later have it revised or modified by an architect, there are also home planning software that you can buy or even download from the internet. Most of these softwares are easy to manipulate and they are nothing as complicated as the CAD (computer aided design) programs used by professionals. You would surely enjoy "hands-on" designing and planning of your new house. Further streamlining and modification of your house plan can be done by an architect.