Floor Plan Layout – The Importance of Design Consistency

With so many house plans available to view on the web and in print magazine, it’s easy to see why so many take a shot at designing a floor plan layout. There is nothing wrong with the idea. Many of my clients come up with some of their own home design ideas and present them to me. However, in order to make the house design work, you have to design in a consistent manner. Architectural style, floor plans, and room sizes have to work in unison. There has to be a level of design consistency to tie the parts together in a cohesive floor plan layout to achieve the perfect set of house plans to build your dream home.

Architectural Style and Floor Plan Layout

The most overlooked part of putting together a floor plan layout is the elevation. You can spend days working on the perfect floor plan design, but does the architectural style work with the footprint of your plan? My experience with clients suggest less than a 50% possibility. First of all, many of the potential homeowners haven’t even consider what style of architecture they’d like the elevation to be. In essence, that is putting the cart before the horse if you think about it. The two should work in tandem. You have to consider whether your design will be a European style or maybe a Early American style house. After all, you don’t want to have the perfect floor plans only to later design the elevations and realize you hate the elevation design, right?

Twin Oaks first floor
The Twin Oaks floor plan concept developed based on a Greek Revival elevation. Click image for details.

Knowing the type of home style you desire is important. It has a significant impact on how your floor plan layout will come together. For instance, a colonial house style will typically have a boxy shape. In contrast, Victorian architecture may be littered with protruding offsets, in addition to turrets, or wrapped porches. In both cases, you may start with a simple box concept, but the Victorian style by its very design makeup will alter the elevation concept. Keep the style of a home in mind while developing the floor plan. Remaining mindful is necessary to maintain consistency in the home design process.

Room Sizes

Every room in a floor plan layout should be proportional to its own space as well as adjoining spaces. In other words, the scale of each room should be relevant to one another. So for example, let’s say you have a formal dining room and living room. Your dining room is designed to accompany a dining table that seats 6 to 8 people. This would be a medium (average) size space in the range of 12 to 13 feet by 15 to 17 feet in room dimensions. Your living room should also measure similar to remain consistent with size and proportion in relation to the dining room.

Room placement is an important aspect. Moreover, designing room spaces to relate to one another should serve as a barometer in the overall design program. The above room example is not absolute because not all design scenarios will work out perfect. There are cases where the rooms may be a bit larger or a bit smaller and that’s fine. The overall floor plan layout will be fine as long as the discrepancy isn’t distorted so much in either direction that it makes for an obvious difference in appearance.

Doodling in your spare time to come up with home designs and a floor plan layout can be a fun and stress relieving. However, when you are getting near the time to actually build that dream home of yours, make those doodles meaningful. Think home design consistency with a full range of consideration to the plan concept and architectural style. At this point, interviewing building designers for home design services should be a high priority in order to bring these thoughts and ideas together. It is a service we provide for future homeowners who forgo pre-drawn house plans in favor of developing a set of custom home plans to build their dream home.

Last Updated on July 12, 2023

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