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Plan #454-12

Key Specs

  • 2460 sq ft

  • 3 Bedrooms

  • 3 Bathrooms

  • 2 Floors

  • 2 Garage

Plan Description

Libertyville Not So Big Showhouse

This beautiful, thoughtfully-designed, 3 bedroom/3 bath home was built originally in Libertyville, IL, as a showhouse to exemplify Sarah Susanka's Not So Big® design principles. It was open to the public each weekend for six months in 2011-12, allowing over 8,500 people the opportunity to walk through and try on a Not So Big House first hand. An ideal choice for a long, narrow lot (the lot in Libertyville was just 29' wide), the house has no windows on one of its long walls in order to provide privacy for an adjacent house. Side windows can easily be added along the blank facade if desired. This house is designed to be highly energy efficient, to encourage a sense of community, and to allow its owners to age in place. See Sarah's story about the plan: Libertyville

The kitchen and eating area of the Not So Big Showhouse are at the front of the house, adjacent to the comfortably proportioned front porch. This unique configuration allows the readily accessible outdoor space of the porch to become a natural extension of the kitchen's habitable area, increasing the sense of connection to the neighborhood and community beyond. The dining area adjacent to the kitchen is both beautiful and functional, serving many types of dining needs. For bigger gatherings, an alcove off the living room that normally serves as a library/sitting space can be converted into a super-sized dining area, with some rearranging of the living room furniture.

Because the house is narrow, the stairway has been placed in the rear of the house, rather than across from the entry, as is traditional. This allows the main living spaces to connect to each other without the division of a staircase between them. The stairway serves as both a light shaft, and passive cooling system, allowing light from above to penetrate to the main level. When the upper windows are opened, air is pulled up and out. In fact one of the distinguishing features of the house is its energy efficiency. It has been designed to meet the standards of Energy Star 3.0.

Across from the stairway is another space that does double duty--an away room that provides a place of quiet remove for everyday needs, but which can also serve as a guest bedroom and in home office. There's a full bathroom across the hall just off the mudroom, with a sliding door that hides the shower, making it feel more like a powder room on a daily basis. The space has been designed to work for everyday needs right now, but should one level living become necessary, with minor remodeling this bathroom can be made wheelchair accessible, and the mudroom converted into bedroom closet space. Above the second floor laundry/hobby area is another retreat place, a Place Of Your Own, or POYO. Accessed by a ship's ladder that's hidden behind a closet door, it's the perfect place for a hideaway for one, and it's a favorite spot for kids of all ages.

The back yard for the house is located on the garage roof. A thick wall provides the needed separation from the alley as well as a location both for the HVAC equipment and storage. In addition, this backdrop creates a sense of shelter for the garden area. With the lean-to roof over the doorway from the stair landing, the illusion is complete. Sitting here, it really does feel as though you are in the back garden's just one storey further up than usual!

Floor Plans

Main Floor Plan Upper Floor Plan

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Full Specs & Features

Basic Features

Stories : 2
Garage Stalls : 2
Potential Bedrooms : 1
Bedrooms : 3
Baths : 3


Width : 24'
Height : 30'
Depth : 93'


Upper Floor Sq Ft : 1159 sq ft
Total Sq Ft : 2460 sq ft
Basement Sq Ft : 1334 sq ft
Main Floor Sq Ft : 1301 sq ft
Garage Sq Ft : 440 sq ft


Main Ceiling Ft : 9'
Upper Ceiling Ft : 8'
Lower Ceiling Ft : 0"


Roof Framing : Truss
Roof Type : 30 Year Architectural Shingle
Secondary Pitch : 4:12
Primary Pitch : 5:12

Exterior Wall Framing

Framing : 2x6
Exterior Wall Finish : Cement Board
Insulation : R-30 Blown Insulation

Bedroom Features

Upstairs Bedrooms
Walk In Closet
Upstairs Master Bedrooms

Kitchen Features

Kitchen Island
Breakfast Nook

Additional Room Features

Mud Room
Hobby Rec Room Game Room
Storage Area
Great Room Living Room
Upstairs Laundry

Garage Features

Rear Entry Garage
Rear Garage

Lot Characteristics

Suited For Narrow Lot
Zero Lot Lines

Outdoor Spaces

Grill Deck Sundeck
Covered Front Porch

What's included in this plan set

All plans are drawn at ¼” scale or larger and include :

  • Foundation Plan: Drawn to 1/4" scale, this page shows all necessary notations and dimensions including support columns, walls and excavated and unexcavated areas.
  • Exterior Elevations: A blueprint picture of all four sides showing exterior materials and measurements.
  • Floor Plan(s): Detailed plans, drawn to 1/4" scale for each level showing room dimensions, wall partitions, windows, etc. as well as the location of electrical outlets and switches.
  • Cross Section: A vertical cutaway view of the house from roof to foundation showing details of framing, construction, flooring and roofing.
  • Interior Elevations: Detailed drawings of kitchen cabinet elevations and other elements as required.


Plan Set Price

5 Copy Set

Foundation Price


Additional Construction Sets $50.00/each

Additional copies can be ordered at the time of purchase and within 90 days after your original purchase date.

Meet the Designer - Sarah Susanka

null - Houseplans.com
“'Not So Big®' puts the emphasis on quality rather than quantity and is designed to fit the way we really live today. It's a message that's being embraced now more than ever, and it's wonderful to see so many people come to the realization that a house doesn't have to be bigger to be better.”

Award-winning architect and best selling author Sarah Susanka is the J K Rowling of home design. She has brought her practical, less-can-be-more brand of magic to the world of architectural home plans. A member of the College of Fellows of the American Institute of Architects and a Senior Fellow of the Design Futures Council, Sarah was born in Kent, England and lives in North Carolina. Hailed as an innovator by Fast Company, Newsweek, and US News and World Report, she received the Anne Morrow Lindbergh Award from the Lindbergh Foundation for outstanding individual achievement, and Builder Magazine honored Sarah as one of their 30 Top Innovators who have changed the face of residential construction.

Sarah Susanka's influential books include The Not So Big House (Taunton, 1999), Home By Design (Taunton, 2004), The Not So Big Life: Making Room for What Really Matters (Random House, 2007), and Not So Big Remodeling (Taunton, 2009). She has lectured widely and appeared on numerous television and radio programs including Oprah, Charlie Rose, and Diane Rehm. She is showing a new generation of homeowners, builders, and developers how to "build better not bigger."

Important Information

All sales on house plans and customization/modifications are final. No refunds or exchanges can be given once your order has started the fulfillment process.

All house plans from Houseplans are designed to conform to the local codes when and where the original house was constructed.

In addition to the house plans you order, you may also need a site plan that shows where the house is going to be located on the property. You might also need beams sized to accommodate roof loads specific to your region. Your home builder can usually help you with this. You may also need a septic design unless your lot is served by a sanitary sewer system. Many areas now have area-specific energy codes that also have to be followed. This normally involves filling out a simple form providing documentation that your house plans are in compliance.

To find out what documents you should expect with your house plans, see what's included?

In some regions, there is a second step you will need to take to insure your house plans are in compliance with local codes. Some areas of North America have very strict engineering requirements. Examples of this would be, but not limited to, earthquake-prone areas of California and the Pacific Coast, hurricane risk areas of the Florida, Gulf & Carolina Coasts. New York, New Jersey, Nevada, and parts of Illinois require review by a local professional as well. If you are building in these areas, it is most likely you will need to hire a state licensed structural engineer to analyze the design and provide additional drawings and calculations required by your building department. If you aren’t sure, building departments typically have a handout they will give you listing all of the items they require to submit for and obtain a building permit.

Additionally, stock plans do not have a professional stamp attached. If your building department requires one, they will only accept a stamp from a professional licensed in the state where you plan to build. In this case, you will need to take your house plans to a local engineer or architect for review and stamping. In addition, plans which are used to construct homes in Nevada are required to be drawn by a licensed Nevada architect.

Best Price Guaranteed

Plan Price $6500.00

what's included?

Plan Type

5 printed plan sets and a license to build a single home.

8 copies of the basic package, a single build license and a Cost to Build Report.

For use by design professionals to make substantial changes to your house plan.

For making minor changes to your house plans. This is a set of drawings printed on Vellum or Bond, that comes with a copyright release.

Recommended PDF sets are best for fast, electronic delivery and inexpensive, local printing.

One printed set for bidding purposes only. Not a legal building set.

PDF sets are best for fast, electronic delivery. Not for construction.

Foundation Type

Additional Options
or call to order: 1-800-913-2350

How much will this cost to build?

This plan can be modified!

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