Apr 18, 2018 1:15 pm
Some feedback on my house design appreciated from the clever folks here.
It's a small corner plot 350m2 in a built-up urban area. The front of the house setback is level with the neighbouring house, whilst the garage crossover opens to the other side. We plan to build the garage to the rear boundary, and the ground floor to the side boundary too. There is rear deck instead of a garden (we have no green fingers).
This is the preliminary plan on a program that allows 3D visualisation and walk-through, rather than a standard CAD drawing, so apologies for the random colours and furniture placed everywhere,
Feedback on house design2
Apr 19, 2018 9:22 am
You’re very lucky to have a rear to north facing block! My 2 cents:
- swap pantry and laundry so you can put an extra window in the laundry for ventilation. Even if you’re building to boundary on that side can you have one of those high long windows if privacy is an issue.
- minor BRs upstairs - add windows on second external walls for a cross breeze (again the high ones if privacy needed)
- BR 2 might get quite hot in the evenings with that large west facing window. Maybe reduce the size of this?
- add window in upstairs powder.
Lol just realised all my points are about windows!
Re: Feedback on house design3
Apr 19, 2018 10:42 am
Pretty good for such a tight block!! You've got a lot of circulation space upstairs, the ensuite, study and circulation space could be reconfigured to create a rumpus area or tv nook for kids etc. Upstairs powder room will be pretty narrow with a basin as shown, think about the door swing and squeezing in while you close the door. Western window in bed 2 hopefully not to tall as it is large, perhaps a screen on outside of building will make this ok. Maybe look at switching some of the storage space into the garage rather than opening into house. Laundry blocks view to main areas of house as you enter, depending on what you want, moving laundry into the back of powder room will make the place feel a lot bigger as you enter and see straight into the large open space.
Alvin - Architect
Re: Feedback on house design4
Apr 19, 2018 1:53 pm
Thank you Hillsbuilds and EvokeArchitects for your constructive comments.
I had thought about swapping the laundry with the pantry, it certainly would be quieter there, but it is further from the stairs. I'll see what the wife wants, (not wanting to sound sexist) as she is going to be the one who is using it most of the time! I think we'll be using a heat pump condenser dryer so ventilation shouldn't be such a big issue.
I think the high windows on the minor bedrooms are a good idea. I don't know what happened to the window on the upstairs powder, I realised it had disappeared when I posted the drawing lol. The upstairs powder does look very tight, perhaps we'll get a smaller sink and lengthen the room as much as we can so maybe the door will open the other way.
I'll definitely look into the window in bedroom 2, we haven't decided exactly what it'll be but both your feedback on it is very helpful.
I see what you mean about turning the storage so that it goes into the garage rather into the house. I'll have to have a good think about what I'll be storing in there and if it's best accessed from the garage or the house. Thank you once again for all your feedback.
Re: Feedback on house design5
Apr 19, 2018 3:22 pm
Oh, just another thought- if you leave the laundry where it is, you could have an angled laundry chute from the upstairs linen!
Re: Feedback on house design6
Apr 19, 2018 6:23 pm
Oh the crazy indoor slide! I'm sure my children would love it, but my wife says no, haha.
Re: Feedback on house design7
Apr 23, 2018 7:39 pm
What climate are you in OP? You have an energy efficient home design, with living areas orientated north. This will encourage passive solar heating & cooling.
But to achieve this you need appropriately sized northern eaves. These will allow northern sunshine to stream into the house in winter (when the sun is low in the northern sky), but will shade the home in summer (when the sun is higher in the sky).
It appears that you have a large covered alfresco area on your deck. Is this true? If so, your living areas will be shaded in winter, & won't benifit from the great deal of heat that the sun would provide in winter.
I'd recommend instead, having appropriate length eaves. Your home will be much more comfortable, lighter, & warmer in winter. Horizonal awnings can be used when cover is required on the deck.
Read more about designing a comfortable, energy efficient home at this government website.
I'd echo others thoughts on west facing bedroom windows. Not a good idea, bedrooms can get very hot in the evening. I'd west windows are required, try to minimise their size, use low-e coatings, & possibly vertical awnings, or other shade devices.
I'd also echo the thought that windows on two aspects would promote cross-ventilation, just be careful with any west (& even east) windows.
Re: Feedback on house design8
Apr 23, 2018 8:00 pm
Thinking about orientation, I'd investigate a couple ideas (not sure if it's better though). Swapping the laundry with the stairs (will there be a clothes line on the northern deck?). This means you could swap the upstairs study area with the bathroom. I think it's much better having the study area facing north, instead of a bathroom.
You'd have to investigate plumbing costs though, usually longer plumbing runs cost more. Moving the laundry would increase costs, but moving the bathroom above the kitchen should decrease costs.
Good idea? I don't know, just something to think about.
Re: Feedback on house design9
Apr 23, 2018 10:26 pm
I assume that you'll have a bulkhead over the kitchen containing a steel girder to support the upper floor over that gap?
Where is your hot water system going to be located? Ideally, the distance between the hot water system and the kitchen/bathrooms/ensuite should be as short as possible, to save both energy and water (as you wait for the hot water to arrive). Powder rooms are typically less important in this regard, and laundries even less so.
Personally, I quite like most of your plan, but I'd swap the upstairs bathrooms and study. My reasoning:
But of course, that's me, not you!
Re: Feedback on house design10
Apr 23, 2018 11:02 pm
Thank you ddaroch and algernon for your further constructive feedback.
I'm in Melbourne, so completely random seasons! The deck 'alfresco' is not covered, as it is the house's private open space. Thanks for the advice about the eaves, I'm thinking of having them a decent width like what you describe anyway.
Thanks for the advice about my West facing windows. I'm definitely reducing the overall size of them based on the feedback here. And planning on putting in plantation shutters everywhere.
I had deliberated on swapping the things you mentioned already myself. The laundry did look more logical opening up to a clothes line on the back deck, but then again it also looked equally logical next to the kitchen. In the end we decided that it was better to have the staircase opposite the entry rather than beside it, so the laundry ended up there.
And as for the upstairs bath and study area swap, again I had thought long and hard about it, and I agree with all your points about having a north facing study. And if they were the same size, I would definitely swap, But as it is currently, a swap would lose about a 1/3 of the width of my study area. It's decisions like this that make me wish I had a bigger plot!
As for supporting girders, I do worry about the large expanse in the living area that needs to be spanned, both across the kitchen and front to back of the house. But I thought I'd leave that to the structural engineer when we cross that bridge.
Re: Feedback on house design11
Apr 24, 2018 2:09 am
If you moved the stairs, upstairs it would be bathroom+stairs swapped for the study. Seems to be a similar sized swap, larger if you included the powder room.
Another option for the laundry could be in the NE corner, adjacent to the pantry, rearranging their shapes maybe. Pushing the living & dining to the west, towards the garage.
Or maybe even better, from the entrance heading east, stairs, pantry, kitchen (in the SE corner), laundry in the NE corner, again the living & dining being pushed further west. That way plumbing is closer, & the pantry is close to the garage, to unload groceries.
I don't know what's best, just throwing it out there.
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