Floor Plans for Home Additions

Deciding on the right floor plan for your home addition requires research, planning and careful thought. Many homeowners consider décor and paint more important choices more than the floor plan. But the layout of your room is far more important. It will be with you for a long time and is an expensive undertaking to change.

Will your addition pay off?

A well-designed home addition can pay off in resale value for your house, but before you break new ground, consider your neighborhood. Adding an en-suite bathroom to your master bedroom is likely a good investment in a neighborhood of old homes where that's not commonly found. A finished basement is almost always a good investment as you can practically double the square footage of your home. But a third car garage in a young neighborhood could be limited in its return.

Know what you want

Once you've decided your addition is a good investment, consider what's important to you in a floor plan. If you're adding an office, how much space do you need? Do you want big windows or would you prefer a private space? How much closet space do you require? All these factors affect the layout and should be carefully pre-determined.

Green designs

Consider the environment as you create your design. Remodeling an old home is the ideal opportunity to green up your house. Incorporating natural light to warm your home, installing double-pane glass windows and well-insulated walls will save you money on utility bills and improve your carbon footprint.

Custom or pre-designed plans

There are numerous websites and services listing vast selections of floor plans to choose from, and a pre-designed plan is definitely the cheaper option. But if you have a unique plan in mind, consult an architect to brainstorm ideas. You may realize your plans are more common than you thought, or find out just how helpful a good architect can be.

A well-designed floor plan

A well thought-out floor plan considers the details. Is your light switch on the other side of the room as you enter? Does your plush white carpet back right up to the outdoor patio? Is every foot of space being used to its full advantage? And does your room maximize natural light and free-flowing design?

A carefully considered floor plan should make your home comfortable, enjoyable and reap returns for your investment.

About the Author

Robyn Murray is a journalist based in Omaha, Neb. She has reported for national and international media including National Public Radio, Public Radio International and Business Day in Johannesburg. Murray holds a master's degree from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism.