If you bought a house built before 1990, there's a good chance you live in a traditional home with closed off common spaces. I imagine that if you have a family, it's like herding cats to get them to hang out all in the same room together. Or maybe you like to entertain and host, but during the party it's hard to actually 'do the hosting' when you're working 3 different rooms because none of them are big enough to hold everyone.
If your friends are anything like ours, we all hang out in the kitchen, no matter whose house we're in. And if the kitchens full, it's like standing room only at Wrigley Field. People are in the hallways, in the mud room, watching like a hawk to see if someone is giving up their spot in the kitchen. Then there's always that guy who's literally hanging on to the outside of the trim of the doorway, leaning in the kitchen and almost falling into the room, just to be a part of the action.
The fact of the matter is if you have a family with kids or a posse of friends that you like to entertain, you can't have a big enough kitchen or combined common spaces. Common spaces are prime real estate in your home and this article will hopefully convince you of the benefits of having an open floor plan.
The DNA of an Open Floor Plan
It simply means that the common spaces in your home aren't divided by walls. The common spaces include the kitchen, dining room, living room and/or family room. The public rooms in your home jive like an urban flat in Lincoln Park.
Let's Not Repeat History
In homes typically built before 1990, all of these spaces are divided up making the house feel very small and not to mention dark because of the lack of windows and natural light.
Why Open Floor Plans Rock
Versatility. That's really why I promote open floor plans so much. Whether it's just your family or a group of 30, an open floor plan makes for a great space to connect with others.
People can hang out in the kitchen and have a conversation, while at the same time are able to talk to others in the dining area and engage them.
It’s a Family Tradition
Well it's not one yet, but with the open floor plan your home will be the place your whole family has fond memories of get togethers and holidays all because of the functionality and togetherness of the space.
Say you're cooking dinner in the kitchen. An open floor plan let's you help your kids with homework at the dining room table while you keep prepping the meal. Or how about this all too often scenario. You're having extended family over for Sunday dinner. Having an open floor plan allows everyone be in the same room while still doing separate things. Your parents can hang out in the living room and watch the end of the U.S. Open (well, Dad's watching the back of his eyelids and listening to it) while you can still have a conversation with your brother in the kitchen.
The psychology behind designing spaces for people to live life in is so fascinating to me. I love it. And I love that design can make or break how you interact with the people in your life.
Be the Host You Were Born to Be
You know those parties you walk away from and are blown away by just the whole evening? The people, the food, the venue, the music, and the vibe were all on point. Yea, you could be that guy! The awesome party thrower guy (insert self high five)! An open floor plan keeps all the guests in the same room, the atmosphere lively, and the agility for you to work the room while staying connected with the whole group.
Maximize Natural Light
Eliminating walls, ideally eliminating walls that increase natural light exposure from multiple windows, lets natural light pour into your home. The more natural light, the brighter and warmer your home becomes.
- Here's an article on how natural light in your home can boost energy and health
- And here's an article on how natural light boosts productivity in the office. Not as applicable, but definitely an interesting read.
Your Realtor will Hug You
The resale value on an open floor plan is insane. No one wants to live in a small, divided and dark house. So not not only are you creating a great place to live now, but if you ever decide to move, an open floor plan pays off because they're so desired in the marketplace.
It's Not For Everyone
Open floor plans are for people who enjoy a social lifestyle. Whether that's with their friends or family, a house with an open floor plan makes for a great relational space.
Thinking about remodeling your home? We'd love to help. We make building projects easy for homeowners by helping people design and build their vision. First, we'll develop a great design for the space. Then when you're ready, we'll partner with one of the finest local builders and see it through to completion. This gives you the opportunity to work with one company from beginning to end. To learn more about August Development Co., click here.