status-flaunting McMansions here. Instead, today’s cool house plans take a decidedly
more practical approach to luxury and are designed to be lived in, not merely seen. Gone are the days of the stuffy living room that no one dared enter except during holidays. Now square footage goes where it will be used the most: great rooms, kitchens, and spa-like master bathrooms.Two story house plans
figure prominently in collections of luxury home plans,
but you’ll also find plenty of single story house plans
that work beautifully for aging in place. If you'd like extra room for relaxing, consider a home with a basement
. Plan 895-29
(above) shows off a sloping lot to full advantage, with a
lower level that opens out to a covered patio. This basement also boasts two
bedrooms, two bathrooms, and a rec room with a cozy fireplace.
Busy families need hardworking spaces. Plans with mudrooms
provide plenty of storage on the way in from the garage, so
kids can throw their backpacks into cubbies or lockers, sit down on the bench
to take off their shoes, and hang up coats in a closet (and if needed, use a
powder bath conveniently close by). Since many people come home through the
informal garage entrance, this area acts as the foyer for the family. Laundry
rooms are often located here, but many floor plans move them out of the main thoroughfare.
This provides for a less-stressful homecoming, since you don’t have to face a
pile of laundry upon first entering the home. That can wait until later! Alternatively, a huge mudroom gives you space for folding, sorting, craft projects, wrapping holiday gifts, and much more. Plan 48-642
(above) includes a jaw-dropping mudroom/hobby room.
Kitchen islands are the new gathering spots, so make
sure you choose a plan that provides a big one. Plan 928-13
from Visbeen Architects includes room for five or six people to sit at the island facing each other, much as they would at an actual dining table. Unlike islands that put all the seating in a row, this lets everyone enjoy eye contact as they eat together. If you've got very young children, you'll probably want to move the range against the wall so it's out of the way of little fingers. Older kids? Put them to work cooking at the island.
Don't forget outdoor relaxation. Plan 132-221
encourages everyone to get outside and enjoy fresh air with a multi-season porch. A bit chilly? Time to use the fireplace. Comfy couches and chairs invite friends and family to hang out. Just throw some chicken and hot dogs on the grill, and you've got a fun evening ahead.
Ranch style house plans with open floor plans (like 929-1025
above) put everything within reach on a single level, eliminating the need to trek up and down stairs all the time. Luxury house plans with this layout also make great long-term choices, since you may not want to always traverse staircases, or perhaps an elderly parent will soon come to live with you. For these reasons, plans with master suite on the main floor make everyday living easier, now and for years to come.
If you've got school-aged children, how do you make sure they're doing their homework? An open loft like the one in plan 888-15
lets you keep an eye on what's going on, and can also serve as a home office or charming library.
Don't forget about the master bathroom. After a long day, what could be more relaxing than sinking into a tub like the one in design 430-111
? Or if you prefer showers, choose a plan that includes a big one. Double sinks and lots of counter space keep both partners happy.
Explore home design plans with photos here
, and share with your house builder!