Nearly every homeowner enjoys the idea of having more space, increased functionality and better interior lighting. The challenge is in achieving those attributes in an existing home.
There is a solution, one that works in various forms for many homes.
Open Your Mind (And Your Home)
If your home is more than 40 years old, there is a good chance it has a traditional floorplan, that is, a layout divided into clearly defined small rooms.
These floorplans are effective at dedicating space and rooms to specific functions; dining rooms are set apart from living rooms, and kitchens are walled off from family rooms.
One potential issue with such floorplans is that some rooms can feel limited and cramped; not every room has large windows with abundant natural lighting streaming in from outside. Plus, these layouts restrict flow and can make entertaining groups of guests challenging.
By removing walls and combining rooms, “opening the floorplan” can definitely address those challenges. Removing selected walls and enlarging doorways between rooms can create a perception of more living space and provide better flow for events and increased lighting.
The impact on the perceived size of the home can be amazing – even when the changes do not add a square foot of space to the home.
An Open Floorplan Should Prioritize Function First
But how? This is often achieved by “blurring the lines” between two rooms and sharing their functions to maximize potential.
For example, removing a wall between a kitchen and dining room can involve moving eat-in kitchen seating into part of the dining room (which are rarely used these days), enabling the kitchen’s working space to be expanded while creating a larger, more often-used eating area and in total, a larger space for entertaining.
An Open Floorplan is More than Just “Knocking Out a Wall”
It can be tempting to look at a home and think “you know, we could just knock out that wall and ….” There is more to an open floorplan conversion than just that.
The best open floorplan projects need to be well thought through. After all, load-bearing walls that support the house’s roof or structure need to be removed with care to avoid damage to the home’s construction. A new support beam or columns may need to be included to bear the weight.
An architect and engineer should always be part of the planning for such a renovation. In fact, their involvement is required under the building codes of many cities and municipalities.
Where to move existing electrical wiring, plumbing and heating and cooling ductwork must also be carefully considered.
The end result must be a constant part of the plan. If you are seeking to develop space optimized for entertaining, that goal must be kept in mind from start to finish.
To aid this, a designer should be involved to ensure the overall design is aesthetically pleasing and functional to achieve the homeowner’s objectives.
Get the Help You Need, Get the Results You Want
Agape Construction has designed, developed and executed countless open floorplan renovations over the years. It is one of the most common considerations we discuss when approaching a new renovation project.
And with the input of our architects, project engineers, interior designers and skilled trades professionals, those renovations have been successful in improving the lifestyles of the families involved.
Contact us today for a complimentary consultation on your open floorplan renovation project!