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Jul 26 2016

Profile Image of Curtis Cadenhead

Will My Stock House Plans Be Stamped or Sealed by an Architect or Engineer?

House Plan 062H-0088Are you planning to build a new house using a stock house plan? If so, it is possible that your state or province, city, county, or local building department will require your house plans to be stamped or sealed by an architect or engineer. This is not something that The House Plan Shop can provide with your blueprints. The house plans published on our website are pre-drawn stock plans. This means they were designed to meet the national building codes in place at the time the blueprints were created. Therefore, we do not guarantee the house plans will meet all of the specific requirements and local building codes for the specific location or area where you plan to build. Since our house plans and multi-family designs are sold and built throughout the United States and Canada, it is impossible for our residential designers to ensure the blueprints will meet or exceed all local building codes for every state, province, city, county, municipality, or jurisdiction. If you need an architect’s or an engineer’s stamp or seal on your house plans in or
der to obtain building permits from your local building department, please be aware that the stamp or seal is a local building requirement and we cannot provide it to you. The items required for the architect’s stamp or engineer’s seal in one part of the country are completely different than the requirements for a customer building the same plan in another part of the country. They are commonly influenced by local climate and geography in the area where the house plan will be built making the stamp/seal a local requirement. For example, a home owner building a house along the coast of Florida will need engineering to meet hurricane codes while a customer building the same home in certain parts of California will need engineering for seismic codes. If yoHouse Plan 069H-0027u need your blueprints sealed or stamped, it will be up to you or your builder to hire a local architect or engineer to review the house plans and stamp or seal them before you apply for building permits. The design professional who provides the stamp or seal must be licensed in the state or province where the house will be built. The House Plan Shop strongly recommends that you find a design professional in your area that you can work with before you purchase your blueprints. Sometimes the architect or engineer you hire will have a preference as to which plan package he or she wants to work with when sealing or stamping the house plans. This will influence which blueprint package you purchase. Take some time to discuss your needs with your local design professional before making your blueprint purchase. For additional information, please review our FAQs and Resource page.

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Jun 27 2016

Profile Image of Curtis Cadenhead

6 Commonly Asked Questions about House Plans

House Plan 037H-0234If you are planning to build a new house, chances are that you have quite a few questions about buying house plans. There is a lot to learn and know about house plans before you purchase blueprints for your new home. We’ve listed the six most commonly asked questions about house plans asked by our customers. Take some time to review these popular questions and their answers to ensure you make the right decision when it is time to purchase your house plans.

 

Are there any photos of a particular house plan that has already been built?

If exterior or interior photos are available for a particular house plan, we make every effort to post them our website as soon as we receive them. If there are no photos posted for a specific house plan, we simply do not have any photos to share with our customers at this time. We rely on past customers and builders to share photos of the house plans they’ve built. Often, these people are so happy to be done with construction and busy moving into their new homes that they don’t even think about sharing photos with us. Others choose not to share photos (especially interior photos), because they feel like it is an invasion of privacy knowing that everyone can see what their house looks like when we post the photos online.

 

What is included in a set of house blueprints?

The house plans published on our website are complete sets of blueprints for each home to be built from the ground up. The blueprints typically include a cover page, foundation plan, floor plans, exterior elevations, interior elevations when applicable, cross sections and/or details, basic electrical information and simple plumbing. NOTE: The information included in each set of blueprints varies from one designer to another. Please contact us with a specific plan number for verification regarding the elements included in a particular set of blueprints. From more extensive information, please review our resource article: Everything You Need to Know about Stock House Plans.

 

Can I modify the house plan I like?

Of course you can! When it comes to making modifications to a house plan, our customers have a couple of options. The first option is to submit our modification request form to our modification team and receive a free quote for your proposed changes. It usually takes a couple of business days to receive your quote by email from our modification team. This gives you the opportunity to find out what the extra costs will be for your home building project before you purchase your blueprints. Please take some time to review our home plan modification page to learn about how our modification process works. (For additional information, please see our previous blog post: House Plan Modifications? We Can Help You!)

 

The second option is to purchase either a reproducible master, PDF or CAD file house plan package (depending on availability), and take the plans to a local residential designer to have the plans modified. One of these three blueprint formats will be required for modifications because you’ll need a copyright release granting legal permission for you to make changes to the original copyrighted house plans in order to satisfy your specific needs.

 

Will the house plans meet my local building codes?

Our house plans are considered to be pre-drawn stock plans. This means they are designed to meet the national building codes in place at the time each home plan was created. However, we do not guarantee the plans will meet all local building codes. Our house plans are sold and built all over the US and Canada and even overseas. The local building codes and requirements you have in your area may be completely different than the local building codes and requirements for someone building the same plan you are considering in another part of the country. It will be up to you/your builder to make any adjustments necessary to meet local building codes and requirements. (For example, a person building a house along the Florida coast will need to make adjustments for hurricane code, while someone building the same house plan in the Rocky Mountains will need to make adjustments to wind and snow loads as well as thicker insulation.) It may be necessary to hire a local design professional to add notes to the blueprints regarding some of your local building codes. We recommend that you discuss your local building codes with your builder and your building department to find out what is required in your city, county, etc. to meet local building codes.

 

Will the house plans come sealed by an engineer or stamped by an architect?

The house plans offered on our website do not come with an engineer’s or an architect’s seal or stamp. Our house plans are considered pre-drawn, stock plans. This means they are designed to meet the national building codes in place at the time each home plan is created. However, we do not guarantee the house blueprints will meet all local building codes and requirements for a specific area. Because our house plans are sold and built all over the US and Canada, it is impossible for our designers to ensure the blueprints will meet all local building codes for every location, city, county, municipality, etc. Therefore, our plans do not include a seal or stamp, as the seal or stamp is a local requirement. The items required for the seal/stamp in your area are completely different than the requirements for a customer building the same plan you are considering in another part of the US or Canada. Often the building requirements that coincide with a seal/stamp for a particular state, province, city, etc., are influenced by the geography and climate specific to the area where the house will be built making them local requirements. It will be up to you/your builder to hire a local professional to review and seal/stamp the plans. This design professional must be licensed in the state/province where the structure will be built. This person will review the blueprints and make any necessary adjustments and/or add pertinent notes to the plans for the area where the home will be built before sealing or stamping the blueprints. We recommend finding a local design professional who can review the blueprints and provide a seal or stamp for your house plans before you actually purchase them. Additionally, you should discuss which blueprint format is required by the engineer or architect to seal or stamp the house plans. Sometimes the design professional providing the seal/stamp will have a preference as to which plan package he/she works with, and this will influence which plan package you purchase. Most likely he/she will want the CAD file or PDF because it is much easier to work with the electronic format when it comes to adding extra notes and elements to the plan that are necessary to meet local building codes. The only way to be sure about what plan package to purchase is to ask your local design professional before you make a blueprint purchase.

 

How much does it cost to build a particular house plan?

At TheHousePlanShop, we know the costs for materials and labor can vary greatly from one city to the next and sometimes even within the same city or county. It is impossible for us to know the average rates for labor and materials in all cities, counties, municipalities, etc. Therefore, we do not offer an estimated cost to build or a material estimate for the house plans published on our site. Rather than us guessing and quoting you an estimate that is much too high or much too low for your area, we recommend checking with a few local lumberyards, contractors and/or builders to find out what the average rates are for labor and materials in your area. Most professionals in the building industry will quote a dollar amount per square foot, based on mid-grade materials, but it is best to confirm if they are quoting high-end materials, mid-grade, etc. Additionally, be sure to inquire about what the quote includes. Sometimes ballpark estimates from builders and lumberyards do not include foundation materials, heating and cooling, and a few other things. While this requires a little more research and effort for the future home owner, checking locally will give you a better ballpark estimate than we can provide.

 

Find the answers to more house plan questions like these by visiting our FAQs.

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Dec 17 2013

Profile Image of M.K. Tenney

A Home for the Holidays

House Plan 025H-0124There are so many aspects involved in your decision of choosing a house plan. As the holidays approach, consider whether your home plan will accommodate your needs to host or house your friends and family.  With that in mind, take a look at this Southern two-story house plan. Its stately columns are just begging to be wrapped in garland and holiday lights. Imagine your guests approaching the front door following a walkway lined in luminaries. With the dining room windows in the front of the house, this is a perfect place to display a menorah. Your guests can turn left into the formal dining room with its Kwanzaa feast already on the table, or they can continue straight into the great room. Just think of a grand Christmas tree to fill that great space with its spacious two-story ceiling. While the guests enjoy the view through the multitude of windows or cozy up to the fireplace, the family chef can take command of the kitchen. With plenty of elbow room and work space including a stand-alone island, don’t think twice about recruiting helpers. The walk-in pantry makes it convenient to store snacks for the bowl games. Even if you’re not located in a warm climate, stalwart tailgaters will certainly be willing to step out onto the covered deck and grill up some goodies by game time. Dining options are plentiful. Too many for the dining room? Some traditions separate the younger ones by seating them at the “kids’ table” which works well in the breakfast room. The snack bar provides adequate space for serving buffet style meals whether it’s latkes or the Christmas goose. Informal munching can be accomplished in the great room lap style. Chase the kids upstairs to that bonus room that you’ve converted to a playroom, while you clean up the kitchen and then enjoy visiting with the rest of the guests. When it comes time for that long winter’s nap, you are well equipped to handle all those that sleep over. Convert the study, conveniently located near a full bathroom, into a guest room. Utilize that bonus room on the second floor or double up in the two secondary bedrooms. Once you have settled everyone in, take a moment for yourself. Wash away an exciting but hectic day in your own whirlpool tub in the bathroom of your master suite. Happy holidays to all and to all a good night.

If you’d like to view the details of this design please check out home plan 025H-0124. And if you’d like to see some of the other home plans we’ve features in the past, check out our blogs representing this featured collection of home plans.

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Dec 27 2012

Profile Image of Curtis Cadenhead

Special Promotion: $40.00 OFF House Plan Purchase on New Year’s Day

Filed under Promotions

BlueprintsThe House Plan Shop wants to help you kick off the New Year and your 2013 home building project with terrific savings! We are offering a special promotion for the purchase of house plans on January 1st, 2013. This deal is available to our Facebook friends, Twitter followers and blog readers. Simply order your home plans on January 1st 2013 between 12:00am CST and 11:59pm CST and enter the promotion code below to receive $40.00 OFF your initial order for house blueprints.

Receive $40.00 off your initial house plan order using this promotion code: NYH13

This promotion code is not valid with any other promotion codes. It is not valid for blueprint package upgrades. Valid on January 1st, 2013, only.

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Oct 25 2012

Profile Image of Curtis Cadenhead

Characteristics of Mediterranean House Plans

Mediterranean House Plan 040H-0017Designed to feature the architectural influences of the Mediterranean region, Mediterranean house plans most resemble the homes found in Italy and Spain. Their Tuscan and Spanish influences give them a classy and elegant air of distinction. Some or most of the following features are true of Mediterranean home plans:

  1. Commonly designed for warmer climates, these homes are predominantly found in Florida and California as well as other southern states.
  2. Sometimes referred to as Floridian house plans, Sunbelt home plans or stucco homes.
  3. Usually designed with one level although it is not uncommon to find a two-story Mediterranean house plan.
  4. Designed to maximize energy efficiency in warmer climates and feature a white or pastel color stucco façade and a red clay tile roof that hold up well in warm weather regions.
  5. The exterior features wide overhangs designed to block the sun’s rays from windows and entries keeping the interior as cool as possible.
  6. Floor plans feature generously sized rooms, open gathering spaces and tall ceilings promoting and open and airy feel.
  7. Decorative features include arched entries and windows, wrought iron railings, fences and gates, and stylish columns which define individual spaces while maintaining openness with other areas of the home.
  8. The living areas are often arranged around an open courtyard or pool for entertaining purposes.
  9. Large outdoor living spaces such as verandas, patios, terraces promote relaxation.
  10. Two-story versions often feature balconies.

If you’re looking for a home plan that delivers a masterful blend of comfort and elegance check out our Mediterranean house plan collection and Sunbelt home plans.

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