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Please HELP! me make sense of this design: Shingle Style Split Level?

Would you please help me make sense of these architecture
plans. I think that I like the floor
plans and the look of the house but the house is an odd shape. I am worried about spending money to build
this and later realize that I am unhappy.

We want to build a “shingle style” house on a quarter-acre,
slightly-sloped lot in a residential, commuter area in northern Massachusetts. It
will be for me, my wife and our four children.

We are limited to a 50’ maximum wide house. My wife and I don’t like the look of a
front-loading garage and there is not enough lot coverage zoning area available
to have a rear-loading garage. Our architect
friend came up with this angled side loading garage. It solves the appearance and zoning problems
but it makes the house split level.

The main floor has the foyer entry, living room, dining room
and kitchen. The living room will be
used as a guest bedroom and therefore has a full bath. The foyer opens to a circulation space
between the living room and dining room.
This is all on one level. In the
circulation space off the foyer, there is a down staircase leading to the garage
and mudroom.

The family room is 4 steps up from the kitchen area and is
above the garage. The stairs to the
second floor is accessed through the family room.

The second floor bedrooms are sized for one double with bunk
bed, single room and baby room. They
share a hall bathroom. The master has
full bathroom. Our friend placed the
toilet and shower into a separate room so that these “wet” spaces can be used
while another child uses the vanity.

The front of the house has a turret to fit in with the look
of the other houses on the block. We don’t
have enough building coverage for a real porch, but the zoning rules will allow
a front deck covered by an open roof.
Our architect friend said that this will look like a porch, making the
house look more traditional while saving building coverage for our living

The front of the house faces the street. The back and right-side of the house face a protected
wooded area. The back of the house will
get South sun.

The house design has most of the spaces I wanted in a new
home, but are they connected correctly? How
can we figure this out and have some certainty that we would like living in a
house with this floorplan. Is there something
in the floor plan that you like or don’t like?
Should we continue working with our architect friend? Please help us make sense of this design. Thank

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