Building big beautiful homes is fun, don't get me wrong. We have built some very large, exquisite homes for some very phenomenal clients. But I don't want you to think that small can't be fun too. Sometimes you are in a phase of life where you want to downsize, or maybe you just want to keep life simple so you can travel and explore the world. Whatever the case may be small can also be fun!
When building a small home there are two things to remember: 1) Open floor plan 2) Tall ceilings.
Let's talk about the first item, open floor plans. You've probably read a dozen articles that discuss the importance of an open kitchen/living/dining area. So I won't bore you with information you already know, instead I want to talk about hallways. Hallways eat up space. Every once in a while we will have a client who insists on hallways for various reasons but for the most part, hallways tend to be wasted square footage. When going small, you have to think smart to maximize your square footage. This is where an experienced architect comes in. We work hand in hand with an amazing architect who listens to our clients needs and lays out the perfect floor plan to fit those needs. A good architect will work with your lot configuration, your needs, your size preference and can design a space with an effortless flow. An architect is money well spent!
As important as an open floor plan, a very close second is tall ceilings. Older homes often feel cramped, not necessarily because of the layout but because of the plate line. When you walk into a home with soaring ceilings, even if the footprint of the home is small, you don't necessarily feel the size. The height of the ceiling gives the appearance of a larger space.
Other factors to consider are natural light and furniture size. When designing a smaller home I always encourage more windows to help bring in that natural sunlight to the space. Oversized furniture can also make a home feel much smaller then it is. Picking out furniture pieces that are more compact and fit the space will open up the room.