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  1. #21
    Gold Member gocards1177's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thoughts on our house plans, please?

    I don't feel picked on. *I hear what your saying but its a hard pill to swallow. One of my favorite sayings is a person convinced against their will is of the same opinion still. Usually I'm not on the recipient end though! *

    Eddie I respect your opinions although I think they might be a tad on the harsh side. I get the difference between building for your own tastes versus building a marketable house. Things like the kids on the second floor, the backstairs, and the large kitchen island might not *be for everyone but they are not far afield of what's marketable either. I haven't met with any builders yet and if these things come at an outrageous premium then they may very well end up on the chopping block. *Until then I'm going to focus more on other suggestions like cleaning up the second floor and optimizing space in the kitchen, family room, and study. *

    In my defense, I haven't spent much time at all on the exterior. *It and the roof are automatically generated. *We just picked the color, placed stone in certain areas, and added a chimney.*

    FWIW, giving advice is a two way street. Just as much as you ask for me to not feel picked on, at the same time I would ask for you to not feel frustrated or insulted if we choose not to take every suggestion. *No doubt, there's lots of good comments and thoughts here that I'll consider, but I can't do everything suggested to me. At some point the house is ours. Sure nothing's perfect and I'm sure 1, 5, 20 years from now there will be things we wish we had done differently, but if I keep thinking that I'm going to make it "perfect" it will never get built.*

    Since I'm at the in laws now I can't work on the plans from here but I'll keep everyone in the loop.*

    Thanks again,
    Nathan

  2. #22
    Platinum Member ustmd's Avatar
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    Manor, TX (outside of Austin)
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    Default Re: Thoughts on our house plans, please?

    Good for you for embarking on this project, but also being willing to solicit advice.

    I have to echo what several other people said here about spending some money on a consultation with an architect. My wife and I design our own house and did some remodels on our onw. ON the last one, we consulted with an architect and she came up with 3 or 4 different concept drawings that took us in new and great directions--it ended up costing us only $1200.

    I couple of specific comments on your drawing:

    1. Between the kitchen and the living room, have you considered swapping the location of the opening and the pantry? I would look at sliding the ref. and the pantry down and have the opening next to the stairwell?

    2. In the master bedroom, having the closet on an exterior wall seems to be a waste

    3. The first floor main bathroom, we had a jack/jill bathroom like this (a bathroom with 2 doors and not separate toilet alcove), our guests hated it, especially if they had bashful bladders.

    4.on the second floor, the closets appear to be long and narrow which make them difficult to use.

  3. #23
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    Default Re: Thoughts on our house plans, please?

    I have been married for 32 years, raised 2 children, and have lived in 5 different homes to date. Every home during that process had its purpose and our needs changed tremendously over those years. There is no perfect house plan and if there was everyone would be living in the same home. The bottom line is you need to build a home that not only you love but someday will be sellable to someone else. I would find a house plan online that you like and build off of that so materials and structure works. You can spend a ton of money on finishes and I have seen large homes that went cheap on details and small homes rich in details. I would not recommend anyone trying to draw up there own plans as they will be expensive for some builder to try and figure out how to construct.

  4. #24
    Veteran Member
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    Trivoli, IL
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    Default Re: Thoughts on our house plans, please?

    issues with 3 levels. (basement, main floor, 2nd level) is having "doors" located in good spots. to help keep heat and cool air were you want them between each level. and then relying on kids to make sure the doors stay shut.

    i remember my aunts house long long ago. had a door at bottom of steps and then at top of the steps. and it really did help keep a lot with kids including myself and keep warm or could air were it was wanted.

    having kids rooms over your bedroom is a bad idea! and you may not get much sleep, more so when it is summer vacation and kids are jumping around with there music or video games cranked up.

    ============
    you have multi bathrooms!

    my big grudge, is coming in from the outside, and having to walk clear through the house with mud to snow to other getting on everything. being able to walk from garage, right into a bathroom with a short hall way if that. for me is wanted. when i gotta go, i gotta go. and it tends to be a pain to take muddy boats off, extra cloths, etc... to get through house just, to "GO"

    but it is not the garage but also coming in directly through outside from the back yard, and short distance into a bathroom. and dealing with mud and like.

    getting into the kitchen both from garage and from outside,is also one of them things. and would prefer a door that opens directly from outside into a kitchen. or short hall way. that is either hard wood floor or tile or like. it is from drinks to eats to snacks. and if need be to wash your hands / arms / neck / face off. from swat, grim, dirt.

    as you, i do live on an 80 acre farm. and having the abilty to get to the bath room and get to the kitchen from both garage and directly from outdoors. is a big thing. once i come in for the night that is a different story.

    =====================
    to be honest, i am not a big fan of main front entry door that is centered in front of the house. i use rear door, side doors and most all of the familys/friends do as well on there homes. and the main front entry door is rarely ever used exception of someone wanting to sell something. if you want the look of a central main front door of the home, that is grand, but never really has never been functional, in homes that i have been in.

    driveway to were car/truck gets parked the most, to nearest door into house is what will get used the most. from loading up vehicles with kids and like, to bringing in groceries, to stumbling in form a long day of work.

    on a quick note, the only times front doors i ever do remember being used in any family / friend home has been to move furniture in /out. or when a kid, was forced to use front door. due to parents only gave me key to the front door. and only reason? i think they wanted the front door to be used for something. it was same with other friends parents....

    ====================
    one thing, that has always been high on the list. is having an indoor grill built into a fire place. the current house i live in here on the farm has one. WOW! talk about nice! there is a fire place down stairs, and vents for furnace, hot water heater run into it the brick fire place, and the main level has grill that is in the kitchen. it is just a charcoal grill. but has been used a great deal. vs trying to mess around with outdoor grills.

    to be honest, fire places never really ever get used, in any home i have been in. and the few times they due get used, is when someone forgets to order LP gas for heating, and ran out. and it is a quick jump to get heat back into the house. or wanting to just set back for a night and relax watching a fire. but after that night is over, fire place does not get used for some time there after. and fire place takes up a huge wall space and limits of were you can change furniture around. and to place a TV, and keep sun off the TV to watch it. many times i have seen a fire place get moff balled and some make shift stool or bench is found to be placed in front of fire place. to make room for seating.

    on other hand, i end up more around a camp fire out doors, than dealing with a fire place indoors.

    ===================

    overall outside walls of house and garage. go all over the place. you are going to be paying a hefty price tag, for siding, insulation, heating, cooling.... not to mention extra for shape of the roof to deal with the odd shape of things. then to top it off you will be doing some major weed whacking / weed eater duty. vs being able to use a lawn mower around the house.

    as much as square / rectangle house stink as far as eye candy / looks. they reduce cost, a lot of ways.

    a porch that wraps around the house. always thought they looked cool. but reality, just something more to take care of, and never gets used. the only time a porch the wraps around a house seems to be useful, is for restruants or places that have lines of people waiting in line to get in.

    i rather have a porch area that is wide and long. so i can set a table on it. with chairs and benches. so when there is a party or like, everyone can be outside if it is a good night to do so. and if need be place a grill or "fire pit" into the center of it, and let people set around the fire pit, or to grill and come right into the kitchen.

    ===================
    again with entry way doors into the house, from driveway to main parking area, also garage, and then from back yard into house. being able to get to a kitchen and bathroom easily. been in way to many homes, were the carpet starts right there, and you can tell the door has been heavily used due to carpet is smashed and stained, and torn up and flattened. not to mention once you get shoes off, you end up in "wet spots" on raining days, wet days, snow days....

    for me, being able to have space to set down a couple bags on a bench or like, enough space to walk with fear of walking on carpet and muddy something to bad, to take off coat, and then being able to set down to take off shoes / boots. and then being able to pickup bags and walk into house with getting feet wet or muddy. can be a big thing to some.

    ===================

    at moment i think ya stuck on eye candy, vs function and usability.

    and you also have a basement! not included in diagrams?

    if you are going with basement, main level, and second level. make bigger rooms for the kids, or like. there been a lot of times having a nice large rooms of a house that get taken over for various projects. and by the time you get some shelving, a good desk, lighting, those small rooms. become like cramped little closest. most kid rooms i have been in. seem like a jail cell. get a bed, some shelving, a dresser, a lamp, a small table. and you are walking side ways hoping you do not bump into something. with above put a larger kid room up above, with a guest room and bath room. then put another larger kid room down stairs in the basement.
    Ryan

  5. #25
    Veteran Member
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    Default Re: Thoughts on our house plans, please?

    I think I would...

    Move the DW to the right of the sink leaving
    everything to the left for food prep and storage.
    Also if your right handed.??? Putting the Garbage
    disposal on the same side as the dishwasher is a
    good idea but make SURE the waste stub out is on
    that side as well so when you turn on the disposal
    it blows the trap clear.

    The placement of the refer and island destroys
    the work triangle, plus the distance...I think
    I would move the refer to the right of the Sink
    and make the pantry much larger or make a cabinet
    w/ glass doors there.


    Kill the study closet and make it storage for
    the bathroom shower towels, soaps etc. OR make
    the lower 50% for the study and the upper for the
    bathroom...

    Draw in clothes on the racks in the masterbed closet
    and verify your not to crammed.

    Do you really need a two tray sink in the laundry?
    Do you really need a sink? Think about it, that space.

    Label where you want Hose bibs.

    Perhaps a gas stubout, outside the kitchen slider
    for a BBQ, think smoke and fire for placement.
    A sink next to a BBQ area is nice.

    The upstairs toilet, you want 15" Minimum from finsished
    wall to center of toilet, MINIMUM, 18 is ideal, move window
    to fit as well.

    Eliminate one set of stairs. The set that takes the most
    square footage perhaps.

    When you get older, you will HATE the stairs...I would go
    one story w/ an atic you can store stuff in.

    Pedestal sinks are pretty but now there is no where to
    store stuff under it if it were a pullman.

    The master bath shower is HUGE, I would add a closet
    for vacuum and a place for coats to hang accessible
    from the hallway.

    Put an electrical plug close to the XMAS tree, even if it
    is in the middle of a floor.

    Draw in your hose bibs.

    A sink in the garage w/ a 3" waste line run to it and you
    will tank me forever. Install a mixing faucet w/ male
    hose threads on the end so you can hose
    w/ warm water if wanted.

    Make a hot water recirculating line, from the heater to fizture 1, then 2 then
    three, then 4 etc THEN back to the water heater. No more than 10' of dead
    leg.

    Draw in your dormer vents.

    If that a fireplace? I BIG place to store firewood and a pass thru
    door from the outside would be nice! Or punk it all thru the house.
    Regards,

    Artisan

    Kubota 2012 BX25 (23H.P. / 17.7pto)
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    Fire Extinguisher, ChainSaw Mount, Protective Surround / Enclosure in the works.

    Stayin' Alive (This click could save a life...)

  6. #26
    Gold Member gocards1177's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thoughts on our house plans, please?

    Yep. Totally there on the garage faucet.

  7. #27
    Platinum Member
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    Default Re: Thoughts on our house plans, please?

    You can not build anymore for $100/sf...haven't been able to for 15 years. That my be what your bank will loan on but is not possible. I would figure at a minimum of $150/sf main floor, $75/sf for basement if not higher if you want granite counters, travertine tile etc. Another positive about finishing the basement right away is if doinf later, it is normally filed with "stuff" making construction difficult and labor intensive.

  8. #28
    Super Member dave1949's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thoughts on our house plans, please?

    Quote Originally Posted by sdkubota View Post
    You can not build anymore for $100/sf...haven't been able to for 15 years. That my be what your bank will loan on but is not possible. I would figure at a minimum of $150/sf main floor, $75/sf for basement if not higher if you want granite counters, travertine tile etc. Another positive about finishing the basement right away is if doinf later, it is normally filed with "stuff" making construction difficult and labor intensive.
    A bulkhead entry on a basement is a nice feature, makes it easier to get "stuff" in and out. Basements do need some time to dry out after construction, lots of moisture in the concrete and the drying is slowed (a good thing) when covered by the house.
    "Those were the days my friend, we thought they'd never end ..."
    When there is a huge solar energy spill, it is called a "nice day"!

  9. #29
    Platinum Member LostInTheWoods's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thoughts on our house plans, please?

    Quote Originally Posted by sdkubota View Post
    You can not build anymore for $100/sf...haven't been able to for 15 years. That my be what your bank will loan on but is not possible. I would figure at a minimum of $150/sf main floor, $75/sf for basement if not higher if you want granite counters, travertine tile etc.
    Depends on where you are in the country, I'd imagine. Our house is only six years old and the plan is similar to Nathan's plan in many aspects. Total square footage is very close (ours is 3500). Two bedrooms, one full bath, playroom over the garage on top floor. Main floor has master suite with carpet, walk-in closet, master bath with tile and custom cabinets. Living room with fireplace and custom built-ins. Kithchen is custom cabinets and tile, as is powder room. Hardwood on remainder of main floor. Walk-out basement is finished with tile and custom cabinets in kitchenette/bar, carpet in family room, office, guest room. Laminate in craft room and exercise room. Two-car attached garage. Cost to build very close to the numbers he is getting.

    The key is being selective when shopping. When we went to any place to select items or fixtures for the house, we always listened politely to the salesperson describing their preemo selection. Then we'd very nicely ask them what they had in a similar, but less expensive option. There were significant savings to be had on flooring, particularly, (hardwood, tile, and carpet) with selections we liked every bit as much as the most costly stuff. Same with many fixtures like sinks, toilets, and lighting.
    "I predict future happiness for Americans if they can prevent the government from wasting the labors of the people under the pretense of taking care of them"
    - Thomas Jefferson

    Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work.
    - Thomas Edison

  10. #30
    Epic Contributor MossRoad's Avatar
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    Default Re: Thoughts on our house plans, please?

    One more easy thing to do to see how you like your floorplan and see if it flows....

    Get some surveyor flags and tape and set up the floorplan out in your yard. I do that each time I "tweak" our floorplans for our future house. I quickly found where things worked well and where things were horribly wrong. Its a $25.00 exercise that's well worth the money.
    MossRoad

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