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Best House Plans: Traffic Patterns, Doors and Windows

Published September 12, 2014

Traffic patterns and doorways have been changing as well. And with these more open designs, many people like bigger and less confined windows – such as floor to ceiling glass like in this (house plan # 116-1081) with a spacious kitchen that’s open to the family and dining areas. 


According to the National Association of Realtor’s 2014 Home Buyer and Seller Generational Trends report, some people prefer easy-to-live-in homes with open concept plans that are open house plans. Part of this trend is also being driven by the growing population of baby boomers that are planning to remain in their homes, and knowing they may end up wheelchair bound, which requires wider hallways, open traffic patterns and less confining spaces.


If you are in the process of purchasing a house plan, and are seeking some advice on traffic patterns, here is some information you may want to review. A new home with a family of kids will probably want a different traffic pattern than a home for a retired couple. That’s why it’s best to ask a few questions before jumping into any concreted house plan decisions.


- Do kids go directly to their rooms after school?

- Do you go to the master bedroom or the home office most of the time during the day?

- Do guests have to travel the entire house before they reach the powder room?

- Can you take the groceries to the kitchen without having to cross the living room?


In reality, there should not be any frequent crisscrossing in any one of the rooms in your home. If you have a big family, you may have experienced pileups. Remember that your goal is to avoid house designs requiring occupants to struggle passing from one area to another.


Consider Your Budget. Older homes often have multiple hallways and designated formal and informal rooms. There is also a significant cost to building these formal rooms from construction to property taxes and even heating and cooling. So ask yourself, do you really need that formal living room and a formal dining room? More often than not, the answer is no.  On the other hand, more informal, open spaces means you can say goodbye to dark, narrow hallways. Open spaces make the room feel larger and allow multiple ways to access a kitchen for example. Below is a fine example of a house plan blueprint that lives up this present-day thinking.


- Check your house plans and make sure that stairs are accessible to family rooms and kitchens.

- Are the doorways large enough to accommodate a wheel chair?

- See how convenient the bathrooms are to the bedrooms and their occupants needs.

- Map out your family’s activities for a full day and see where heaviest traffic happens.

- Review the windows.  Do you value you privacy? Or are the views of nature more important?

- Do you have a budget for window treatments to allow privacy if you opt for oversized floor to ceiling windows ?


These details will help you asses if a house plan is right for you and eventually even where to move furniture for an effective traffic pattern. Also remember that investing some time thinking about a home’s traffic pattern may save you years of minor headaches once you move in.


Best House Plans

Traffic Patterns

Doors and Windows

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