Tag Archive 'Building Trends'

Feb 02 2012

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Today’s Home Building Trends – The House Plan Shop

House Plan 023H-0102There is no doubt home building trends have changed throughout the years and continue to evolve. Today’s home building trends are influenced by environmental factors, homeowner preferences, the availability of land and other factors. Some of today’s building trends keep the comfort and lifestyle of the homebuyers in mind as well as call each of us to be more environmentally responsible. Check out these home building trends:

 

  1. Gathering spaces are open to one another allowing for easy interaction among family members and guests. For those with an eye on the golden years, open floor plans allow for easy mobility should you one day find yourself using a walker or wheelchair.
  2. Kitchens are becoming larger in size as most families consider the kitchen to be the hub of activity throughout the day.
  3. Master bedrooms and bathrooms have become larger and more spacious serving as a quiet retreat at the end of the day while offering homeowners a place to relax, refresh and pamper themselves.
  4. Plenty or organizational spaces are a must. Floor plans are including built-in shelving, display niches, abundant closet space, built-in desks, drop zones/lockers near the garage entry and convenient linen closets.
  5. Garages have grown in many cases to accommodate over-sized vehicles like trucks and SUVs while others use the extra space to provide a workbench or storage cabinets. Some garages are becoming environmentally-friendly offering a space for a charging station for electric vehicles or leaving room for a charging station in the future.
  6. Use of sustainable and environmentally-friendly building materials is becoming more common.
  7. Energy-saving and eco-friendly features such as low-flow toilets and energy efficient windows are gaining popularity and add vault to the home.
  8. Multi-generational living is trending upward and homeowners are finding a need to include a guest or in-law suite in the home or a mother-in-law cottage or garage apartment located behind or adjacent to the home. This allows aging relatives to continue to live in a home or somewhat independently with assistance nearby if necessary.
  9. Designers and builders are making an effort to take advantage of natural lighting by carefully positioning the home on the lot and the windows in the home to draw natural light inside, thus saving on lighting and energy bills.
  10. Home builders are making an effort to use less toxic materials and incorporate recycled materials when possible.
  11. Many builders are incorporating security systems including alarms and motion lighting around the perimeter of the home.
  12. Home designers are carefully arranging floor plans to have a narrow footprint especially in densely populated areas where land is precious.
  13. Floor plans often include large porches, screened porches, decks, patios, etc., for outdoor living and entertaining.
  14. Designers are including flexible spaces in their floor plans. For example, a full bath might be included in a den or office so the space can easily convert to a guest room with weekend visitors arrive. For those who only have occasional visitors, there is no need to have a designated guest room that is only used a couple times a year. In other cases, the flex space is meant to change and flex as your lifestyle changes. What might serve as a nursery when the kids are young can convert to a home office or hobby room as you move through the various phases of life.

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Mar 11 2011

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7 Good Reasons to Build Carriage House Plans

Filed under Carriage House Plans

Carriage House Plan 027G-0008For many planning to build a garage, there is a growing trend with carriage house plans. These compact floor plans contribute additional functionality to the ordinary garage plan in that they offer a fully functional living area in conjunction with the garage. The finished living quarters can either be on the same floor as the garage or positioned above the garage creating an upper level. Carriage house plans cover a broad range when the living area is considered starting with a studio apartment and stretching to a two or three bedroom design. These floor plans include at least one full bath and a modest kitchen in most cases. Some designs include thoughtful extras such as an eating bar, walk-in closet or a laundry closet. So, why are carriage house plans becoming a popular choice when it comes to building a new garage? The list below addresses some of the reasons why buyers and builder make them their top choice.

 

  1. Added Value – Now only does a carriage house contribute street appeal and functionality to your existing home, but they also add value to your residence. Furthermore, it is easy to find a design to complement your home while adding usable space.
  2. Extra Income – Many home owners build a garage for additional parking and storage space. If you’re going through the trouble to build the garage, you might as well make money too. Home owners are opting to use garage space for personal needs while renting out the living quarters for additional income. Carriage house plans with a private entrance or exterior stairs leading to the living quarters are especially popular for this possibility.
  3. In-Law or Guest Suite – Everyone enjoys out-of-town guests, overnight visitors and short visits from friends and family members. Your kids may especially like long weekend visits from Grandma and Grandpa. With a carriage house plan, your guests will have the privacy and comfort of home while staying with you.
  4. Home Office – For those who run a home-based business, a carriage house is the ideal solution to office needs. The living area can easily serve as an office or meeting room providing a space to work or meet with clients without disturbing the main home. Furthermore, if offers peace and quiet, essential for productivity without ever leaving home.
  5. Flexible Space – Sometimes, as families grow and change, they need a flexible space to change with the many phases of their lives. A carriage house design with an open floor plan allows for this flexibility. Perhaps it can serve as a play area when the kids are small and transform into a recreation room or home theater when they are teenagers providing a place for them to hang out with friends. When they’ve grown and moved away, convert the space into an activity room or meeting area where you can meet with your gardening club or play cards with your friends. The kitchenette and bathroom will be handy no matter what the phase of life.
  6. Work Space – Hobby enthusiasts often benefit from carriage house plans. The living quarters are perfect for use as a hobby room, craft area, etc. Use the living area as a workspace for all your projects. The plus side to this option is that you won’t have to clear the dining room table before every meal. And if that’s not enough, the bedroom and bath will still be available for overnight visitors in most cases.
  7. Secondary Residence/Weekend Retreat – For the people who like to get away from it all, carriage house plans are an economical and practical solution. They are a great alternative to vacation house plans. Whether built on a wooded lot or a in a cozy neighborhood, carriage house plans deliver storage and comfortable living. Use the garage to store your outdoor sporting essentials from a boat or ATV to bikes or hunting gear. The living quarters will provide a comfortable place to kick back and relax after a day of fun on the lake, hiking or exploring town. Some carriage house plans are designed with multiple bedrooms offering room to bring friends, family or the kids along for the weekend.

 

If you are considering building a new garage, take time to think about the additional value and possibilities of choosing a carriage house plan.

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Apr 02 2010

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New Home Building Trend: Less is More with New Houses

020H-0199 Narrow Lot House PlanWith the downturn in the economy and the hard hits the home building industry has suffered, a new building trend has come into the spotlight. Along with building green and energy efficiency, the concept of “Less is More” is quickly growing in popularity. The housing market is turning away from high-end amenities and unnecessary spaces for smaller more practical homes that do not waste space or energy and are more budget conscious.

 

Builders and home buyers are saying goodbye to two-story ceilings, outdoor kitchens, home theaters, and embellished master baths with built-in TVs and fancy showerheads. Instead, home buyers and their builders are focusing on ways to keep costs down and be more earth-friendly. They want to eliminate special features like tall ceilings that cause energy bills to skyrocket. This year’s home builders and buyers plan to cut costs with homes that offer plenty of natural light, usable rooms and gathering spaces, practical storage options, energy efficient appliances and lighting, energy-saving windows and quality insulation.

 

In January, the National Association of Home Builders reported the average size of an American home decreased in size by nearly 100 square feet of living space since last year to approximately 2400 square feet of living area. Furthermore, the required number of bedrooms and baths in the American home has dropped over that last couple years.

 

So what else can we expect with the “Less is More” strategy?

 

1.    Smaller homes with smaller footprints are becoming popular requiring narrow or smaller lots, which saves green space. In addition, families who need more space are building up instead of out doubling their finished living square footage on that same small footprint. House plans with a second floor are an easy way to gain living space.

2.    Energy efficient products of all varieties are in high demand. These products may not have all the bells and whistles that were popular just a few years ago, but if they get the job done while saving energy and cutting utility costs today’s builders and home buyers are interested. Besides, do we really need all of those state-of-the-are features on a dishwasher?

3.    Most families are interested in practical and functional spaces and features. They are skipping the high-tech media room and formal dining room. Instead they are opting for a home office or built-in computer station the whole family can use on a daily basis. Features that make daily activities flow more smoothly are a must. Many homebuyers will forego the wet bar in the family room, but a large kitchen island is a must along with a few large storage closets throughout the home.

4.    While a lavish master bath is still desirable, they are being scaled back a notch or two with most builders and buyers. Some homeowners are trading the separate shower and bathtub option for just a shower with a bit more room. Others are skipping the fanciful His and Her vessel sinks and down grading to a standard double bowl vanity. In either case the less sophisticated option still serves its purpose and cuts costs.

 

There are many other ways builders and new home buyers a scaling back their homes. No matter how they do it or what features and amenities they skip over, the goal is the same for everyone involved – Cut costs, reduce energy consumption and make the most of the finished space. Talk with your builder for more ideas related to the “Less is More” trend.

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