Get That Private Backyard Space and More with an L-Shaped Home
Design is never static. It grows, adapts, and creates great things each day.
As home styles evolve and demands change from generation to generation, architects are faced with challenges when given the task of constructing a potential dream home for their clients. They have to consider several factors when choosing and designing the ideal house plan for a family. First and foremost are the family’s needs and lifestyle . . . then the budget, property size, shape, and location.
Architects play a major role in specific design and style choices. While most buyers usually have vivid ideas of what they want in a house – their “must-haves” and wish lists – a professional’s advice and suggestions can weigh in heavily in their selection of a style and plan that fits – and suits – their needs and expectations.
Today, architects are more likely to recommend L-shaped plans – a layout that homeowners once overlooked. Now, the L-shaped design is emerging as a fashionable and appropriate option for both city and suburban residential neighborhoods. The “L” is so adaptable that it can be used in large or small properties, and whether they are situated on flat ground, a corner or narrow lot, or a sloped site.
Aside from its appeal and versatility, the L-shaped plan addresses privacy and noise concerns in crowded areas, landscaping issues, and the construction of big houses on a sloped or narrow lot.
Here’s a closer look at house plans designed in an L-shape, their advantages, and the solutions they provide to a family’s unique needs.
Top: It doesn’t always have to be the Ranch style! This very charming 2-story, 3,360-sq.-ft., 4-bedroom, 4.5-bath European-style home with French accents is designed in a typical L-shape. Bottom: The floor plan gives a clear picture of the L-shape, with the 3-car garage, powder room, hallway leading to the pantry, and the fourth bedroom set at a 90-degree angle to the main living area, the master suite, and other bedrooms (Plan #142-1140).
Advantages of an L-Shaped House Plan
Why would – should – anyone choose an L-shaped house design? In addition to the captivating and fascinating possibilities that await the homeowner, there are some distinct advantages and attractive features. Along with these are challenging issues that are “solved” by L-shaped house plans.
1. Wide Open Spaces
An open floor concept creates an inviting, bright, and welcoming space with a breezy feel.
Can you imagine yourself relaxing in this stunning Great Room in a 1-story, 3-bedroom Modern home? The L-shape design features an open floor concept, high ceilings, and large glass doors and windows that accentuate the light-filled space (Plan #202-1027).
2. Indoor-Outdoor Harmony
The layout of the L-shape design lends itself to a seamless continuity of the indoors and outdoors.
Here’s how you do outdoor living to the utmost! In a smooth transition from the indoor space to the outdoor living area, tall French doors open to the spectacular rear porch to connect the Great Room of this 2-story, 5-bedroom, 4,501-sq.-ft. Country style home to the outdoors and the natural landscape (Plan #153-1121).
3. Unlimited Possibilities
A dynamic L-shape design allows the homeowner the potential for development and customization – to personalize the space, do some hard landscaping, and add more amenities such as an infinity pool, a meditation or rock garden, or an outdoor kitchen/entertainment area.
What to do if you have plenty of space in your backyard? This 3-bedroom luxury European style home (top) features great landscaping and a pool (bottom) for those summer days of grilling and entertaining on the rear deck (Plan #153-1897).
4. Breathtaking Views
Whether your home is on an expansive property or in a subdivision with nearby neighbors, an L-shape plan allows you to take advantage of the views along one side of your property.
Take in a serene view of blue skies, the sun behind tall trees, and the landscaped backyard from the windows of this 2-story, 5-bedroom, Country-style home, which might be described as a modified L (Plan #153-1121).
Problem Solving, Too
Beyond its visual charm, the L-shape plan resolves some problematic factors related to the property’s location and the family’s specific needs.
There’s the issue of privacy in crowded areas – or even in grand homes built in properties with tons of acreage. Families can achieve their desired privacy and seclusion from neighbors without erecting a wall around their homes. Here’s where the L-shape plan comes in handy. It can be used to box off the backyard or the courtyard so that the family is hidden from street view.
Creating separate physical zones for social spaces and bedrooms also helps with privacy concerns – and tones down the noise coming from loud music, traffic, and other distractions.
In regions of the country with powerful winds, the L-shape design protects the home by providing shelter against these forces of nature, especially if the right angle of the home is oriented to point into the prevailing wind direction.
Here’s an illustration of how an L-shaped design protects this 3-bedroom, 2,282-sq.-ft. Traditional Farmhouse style home (top) from the elements ensures the privacy of its residents in the backyard. The floor plan (bottom) shows that the right rear of the house is completely screened by the master suite/laundry/mudroom wing. And orienting the home with the right front corner of the garage pointing into the prevailing winds allows the strongest portion of the structure – the right angle of the L – to face down potentially damaging forces (Plan #142-1180).
Architectural Styles and the L-Shape Look
The beauty of L-shaped plans is that they afford builders, designers, and homeowners the flexibility to work with various architectural styles. Although Ranch style house plans are the most common design to take up the shape, you can go as traditional or as contemporary as you desire in your home. There’s also the option of building a split-level or two-or-more story L-shape design. No one is ever boxed into a particular style or size. People can even construct something totally different from anything seen before.
So if you want to tap the potential of the L-shape, you can’t go wrong with these house plans.
How can a family not love a classic architectural style with clean lines and all the modern amenities?
Today’s Ranch style home, with its sprawling footprint, open floor plan, spacious kitchen ideal for social activities and entertaining, doors that open to big backyards, and plenty of square footage for outdoor living is the most common and usual style choice for the L-shape design. The charm and popularity of Ranch home plans rest on the style's flexibility and adaptability. You can build Ranch style homes on expansive sites or small lots and custom-design them to add and expand according to a family’s needs.
Top: In this 3-bedroom European style Ranch home, the garage forms the other part of the “L” and shelters the master suite from outside noise in addition to providing more privacy for the occupants. Bottom: The first floor of the 2,200-sq.-ft. house shows a split bedroom plan – the master suite on one end and the other bedrooms on the opposite, with all the social and dining spaces in the center of the home (Plan #142-1097).
For homeowners inclined to have a courtyard area to cultivate lush gardens, install a water feature, or incorporate an outdoor kitchen, the L-shaped design fits perfectly into their plans. This landscaped courtyard area stretching from the “L” to the front or rear of the home becomes a relaxing and calming sight for the family and their friends.
Add large glass-pane windows around the home, and you have the best vantage points for delightful outdoor views.
This 5-bedroom Modern style home with sleek lines and flat roofs features a landscaped front courtyard formed by the “L” of the design. The rear patio and backyard are completely sheltered, protected, and out of view (Plan #202-1027).
The L-shape design works not only for boxy Modern homes with stark wood exteriors and flat roofs but also for colorful European designs with brick and stucco exteriors and arched doors and windows. In fact, these homes, with their hip roofs and dormers, impart a touch of Old World charm to the L-shape plan.
Inside the L-shape floor plan of this stunning 2-story, 4-bedroom European style home, the social and dining spaces take up the center of the home – and the bedrooms are situated on opposite ends (Plan #153-1990).
If your preference is the Farmhouse, with its wrap-around porch, or the Rustic style home, with its exposed wood beams, heavy timber, and stone-based columns, you can still make the L-shape layout work for you. Remember that there are no limitations or restrictions to this plan. You can be as creative as your heart desires in building a warm and comfortable home.
Rustic meets Craftsman in this L-shaped 3-bedroom, 3.5-bath home with a courtyard entry, an open floor plan, and a split bedroom layout (Plan #202-1008).
As you can see, the L-shape design provides many fabulous architectural styles for your dream home. Now that we've given you a glimpse of the “L’s” versatility, are you ready to embrace it – and perhaps, even love it? Let us know what you think!