As We Live Our Lives, We Accumulate “Stuff” – Be Sure You Have Somewhere to Put It!
Building a new house? Or maybe you’re planning on some major renovations for your existing home? While you’re making your wish list of new features and drafting up the specifics of that new ensuite bathroom or the outdoor kitchen you’ve always wanted, make sure you have plenty of storage options in your home plans.
Ample storage area house plans might not sound like the most glamorous or luxurious options, but having enough space to accommodate you and your family (and all of your stuff) is essential to truly enjoying any home. In fact, one of the reasons most homeowners end up moving or renovating is because their current homes just don’t have the necessary storage space.
Read on to learn about the essential areas to focus on when looking for additional storage in house plans, and you’ll ensure that your new home will keep up with you and your growing family for years to come.
First. you need to provide the space – garage area, basement area, bonus room, large laundry room, etc. – then you can outfit it for storage by using cabinets like these or other types of storage systems.
Closets for Arriving – and Staying!
The first thing that probably comes to mind when you think about home storage capacity is closet space, which makes it the best place to start when evaluating ample storage area house plans.
It’s helpful to have closets near the front and rear entryways for use as coat closets for arriving guests and family members. These types of closets are a great way to keep your home more organized, as they provide a convenient and dedicated space to store hats and jackets when coming inside. They’re also wonderful for storing items such as umbrellas and rain boots, sports equipment, or anything bulky that you would need when leaving the house.
Hallway closets are an essential element of home storage, as they are commonly used to store extra linens and towels along with a variety of other household items, including games and other recreation equipment.
If you are considering an open concept house plan, which typically does not include traditional hallways, you’ll need to make sure that there are other closets located somewhere in the house. Don’t rely on just bedroom closets – it should go without saying that each bedroom should have one, preferably a gnenerous one – for all of your storage needs, as they will most likely be filled up with clothing, leaving little additional space for linens and other items.
Closets don’t have to be big in order to give you a lot of storage space. Smart use of shelving can make even narrow spaces incredibly functional.
Master Suite Storage Space – Sweet!
If your new home includes a master suite, and there’s really no reason why it shouldn’t, then you are definitely going to want the closets to be functional and useful. Nothing will diminish the amazing features of a master suite than tiny closets, which means walk-in closets are hands down the way to go, ideally his and her closets. Walk-in closets are wonderful not only because they give you more square footage for storing clothing, but they can allow you more space to organize and simply see the clothing you already own. Standard closets tend to fall into disarray because there’s just so little space to work with, whereas walk-in closets can give you some much needed breathing room.
A well-organized walk-in closet means you have space to see all of your clothing, which helps keep things neat and functional.
However, just because you have a walk-in closet doesn’t mean it’s always going to stay neat and tidy. Consider an organization system to help you segment the space into dedicated areas for particular clothing types (button-down shirts, pants, hats, dresses, etc.) – or between people if you’re sharing the closet with a spouse.
Making the Most of a Garage
Remember, garages can be used for more than just storing a car – they may be one of the most under-used storage areas in a home. The issue is that many homeowners don’t know how to make the most of the large, open space, and they just start filling it up with boxes and bulky items without any real plan. The key is to focus on creating an organizational system before you put anything into the garage, which is easy when you’re looking for storage in home plans.
Installing cabinets and specialized shelving in your garage makes it easy to store bulky items or equipment while still giving you space to store vehicles.
Simple actions like lining the walls with customizable shelving units or sectioning the space off into zones for certain items (such as one wall for garden tools, or a corner that’s just for storing that old motorcycle you’re planning on fixing up) help bring structure to the garage and allow for a better overall use of the space. To really make the most of a garage for storage, look for one that connects to the house so you can have easy access to the items within all year long.
Planning for a Functional Laundry Room
A clean and functional laundry room is one of every homeowner’s dream (especially if he or she is coming from apartment living with shared laundry rooms or public laundromats), and creating a laundry room with abundant storage areas is actually much easier than you might think. The first step is make sure you have enough actual square footage in the laundry room for your washer and dryer as well as a table or set of shelves. Plan for areas to store your cleaning supplies along with a section to sort or fold laundry; that way you’ll have room to design it however you see fit.
Placing cabinets above the washer and dryer gives you additional easy-access storage for detergents and cleaners. The laundry room in a 4-bedrrom, 4-bathroom, 2-half-bath luxury Craftsman style home plan is a good example (House Plan #163-1027).
If you’re considering a home floor plan that combines the laundry room with the kitchen or a mud room (essentially combining the laundry room with a room that already has another purpose), then it’s all about making use of the vertical space. Actions such as by installing cabinets along one wall to hold detergents or using floor space under tables to house laundry bins can give you the extra storage space you need.
The Walk-in Pantry – Epitome of Kitchen Storage
Keeping a kitchen organized is all about storage space, and one of the best ways to ensure you have enough space in your kitchen is by looking at walk-in pantry house plans. Kitchens with walk-in pantries are sometimes more spacious overall compared with other kitchen layouts and provide an amazing amount of storage space that can really make all the difference down the line. Just like a walk-in closet, a walk-in pantry not only allows you room to store canned goods, bulk food items, and large kitchen appliances but affords you the space to see and organize it all easily.
Walk-in pantries like the one in rear right side of this kitchen in a 4-bedroom, 3-bathroom, 2-half-bath Shingle style home plan are great for storing foods and kitchen appliances, freeing up coveted cabinet space in the kitchen proper (House Plan #161-1038).
Some walk-in pantries include built-in shelves and storage options, while others serve as a blank canvas for you to customize and design it as you see fit. Regardless of the storage solutions inside, it’s important to think about the location of the pantry in relation to the rest of the kitchen as well as the living room or dining room, so you can make sure you always have easy access if you need it.
Long-Term Storage: Attic and Basement
All of the areas listed above focus on providing you with storage space for the items you use every day, but what about the items you use only part of the year? Think holiday decorations, pool toys, bulky winter coats, and even outdoor patio furniture. Having a basement or functional attic are both great ways to store those seasonal items when they are not in use.
Attic space can be used to provide a wide array of storage solutions, from shelving systems like this to hanging poles for seasonal clothes; racks for extra lumber or other long, think items; or just floor space for boxes and containers. The space is subject to hot and cold extremes, so you need to be careful about what you store there.
Whether you choose to build out one or both of these long-term home storage areas, you must make sure that you have proper access to them. In terms of a basement, a set of stairs inside the home leading down is a given, but you should also include at lest one outside access point if possible. An attic should have a built-in pull-down ladder or – better yet – stairs for regular access; otherwise you risk damaging the home and your items (not to mention potentially harming yourself) when you enter and exit it.
So as you plan or think about your next home, be sure you pay attention to storage space – and make sure you have enough in all the areas of the home to accommodate your belongings, for both now and the future!