Homebuyers frequently request open floor plans when seeking a house or apartment. This is not a new idea, but it has certainly experienced a dramatic renewal in recent years. Open-concept homes were first introduced in the 1880s, had a revival in the 1960s, and since reappeared around 2000. Why are they so popular, and how do you make them work?
Why Open Floor Plans?
Open floor plan homes do not use walls to distinguish between rooms. Bathrooms and bedrooms are still contained, but most other areas flow together. This trend has caught on again for a number of reasons.
- Entertaining: Open floor plans are perfect for entertaining guests, providing plenty of space to mingle while still accessing food and beverage areas. It is easier to host large numbers of people in these homes while maintaining a sense of intimacy.
- Space: Small apartments and homes feel bigger with an open floor plan. By removing dividers, square footage increases, the space opens up, and each area becomes brighter.
- Cleaning: It is far easier to clean one larger room than many smaller rooms as there won’t be as many corners than your vacuum or robot vacuum cannot reach!
- Child Care: It is easier to look after children when their play area can be seen from the kitchen and living room. This means parents can keep eyes on their children without having to leave the stove.
- Togetherness: With laptops, cell phones, and tablets occupying many people’s time, there is a growing desire to rekindle family ties and togetherness. An open floor plan allows dinner preparation, homework, and play to occur in one area, promoting in-person conversation.
- Multitasking: The digital age has brought with it a hunger for multitasking that an open concept home promotes – a person can keep an eye on a child playing, check email, and make coffee simultaneously with this layout.
Open Designs and Modern Life
Open floor plans are great for modern living. However, they present unique design needs. To begin, make certain you are approaching this large space with a sense of continuity. Choose elements flooring, countertops, and lighting to be consistent throughout, thereby tying the space together. Though choosing varied color palates for each area can help define the space, remember that each look needs to complement the rest.
Furniture makes a great divider in open floor plans. Use couches, tables, lighting elements, and rugs within every room to define each space clearly. When it comes down to any rugs that you place in your desired rooms, you don’t want to go too big, or too small, so looking into having custom made one fitted instead, can help to make sure that your rug fills the intended space without it completely taking over the room. That’s why it is important to remember to take stock of the available space. If square footage is at a premium, use pedestal tables and slimmer chairs to decrease the footprint of each section. Smart storage options are important for any home, but this is particularly true of open floor plans.
Even though the spaces blend, remember to give each its own personality. Many designers suggest placing one featured element, such as a unique table, an interesting bookcase, or statement lighting in each area to keep the home interesting. For example, an ornate chandelier is an excellent way to add character to your living room. Just remember to enlist the help of some of the best chandelier experts houston has to offer or a team of electricians closer to home for the installation process as chandeliers can be difficult to assemble on your own. An open floor plan does not need to have a homogenous or boring design.
Balance continuity and personality in your home, and your designs will shine. Open floor plans can help streamline your life, whether you are a stay-at-home-parent or work remotely. Keep this idea in mind when you’re considering a new home.
If you’re considering having a custom home built, consider Lindal Cedar Homes to help you get this done. See their website for floor plans.