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dt516

Floor plan help

dt516
2 months ago
last modified: last month

We are trying to optimize the layout of our house. This is a remodel.

We've swapped the dining room with the sitting room/former living room and are creating a butler's pantry walk thru for access from the kitchen. Curious if anybody had any thoughts on this. We really need a larger dining room for frequent entertaining for large family and friends.

Second, we are struggling with the back of the house if we should get rid of the propsoed banquett and open the wall to the sitting room (and possibly even to the den) to make a more open concept/great room. Or, if we should keep the propose banquett and add a pocket door to close off the space if desired.

Finally, any other thoughts are appreciated. The bedrooms on the bottom left may get converted to a basement like playroom at some point since we have no basement in the home. Alternatively, we can slice a small piece off the top near the kitchen for a walk-in pantry.

Any thoughts are welcome. Thanks.




Original


EDIT: I'm adding onto there an alternate plan which proposes for a larger family room and keeping the kitchen in the current space.



Comments (59)

  • er612
    2 months ago

    Can you post the current layout so we can see what is being modified?

  • dt516
    Original Author
    2 months ago

    WesCoast Hopeful - yes this is a remodel


    er612 - here is the existing floorplan



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  • PRO
    Mark Bischak, Architect
    2 months ago

    Is the dishwasher really planned to be twelve feet away, on the opposite wall, from the sink?

  • dt516
    Original Author
    2 months ago

    HA! No. That is a mislabling on the diagram. There are two sinks with a dishwasher beside each.

  • PRO
    JAN MOYER
    2 months ago

    Get an architect please. Your kitchen is a country mile from the garage entry. You have no dedicated mud. Can the laundry go to second floor? Twelve will sit for dinner, and THEN what?

    GET AN ARCHITECT. This is not the place to plan anything as major as this.

  • lmckuin
    2 months ago

    It looks like you have 24 places for someone to sit and eat (dining+breakfast+counter) and about 3-5 spots for someone to sit on a soft surface like a sofa. That ratio seems off.

  • PRO
    GN Builders L.L.C
    2 months ago

    Both bathrooms should be a bit wider... 4'10 will not work. The hallway bathroom will feel like you are in a coffin, in the other bathroom there is not enough room for the toilet.

  • dt516
    Original Author
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    GN Builders - those are existing bathrooms.


    Jan Moyar - thanks for the comments. I agree the kitchen is far from the garage but that's also how the house was built. The Den is a small spot for a kitchen if we were to move it over there. Also, with the fireplace in that room we lose a whole wall. I'm not entierly sure what your comment about the 12 sitting at the dining room meant. My hope would be to eventually move the utilities and laundry out of the that room and create a side entry mud room there. I agree the kitchen would be ideal over there but I'm not sure it works here. BTW, your kitchen is amazing. I appreciate your insights.


    lmckuin - I hear. But we do have the whole back of the house sitting room + den together as a potential 'hang out' zone.

  • PRO
    JAN MOYER
    2 months ago

    "How the house was built", and the recreation to other than "how it was built" ? That's the why of an architect.

  • PRO
    Mark Bischak, Architect
    2 months ago

    I do not know all the needs, and I do not know all the existing conditions; but looking at the existing and proposed plans in their own little vacuums, the question needs to be asked if it is worth it to pay for all the changes to make the existing to come up with a layout that I do not see as very good?

  • dt516
    Original Author
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    A couple of alternate layouts...






  • emilyam819
    2 months ago

    Another idea to eliminate duplicate functions, if the wall between proposed kitchen and sitting area can completely be removed.

  • dt516
    Original Author
    2 months ago

    emilyam819 - that's a great idea - except we wish to have a formal dining room separate from the kitchen as well. Might be a bit overkill to have such a large dining area just for the kitchen. Good toughts.

  • wsea
    2 months ago
    last modified: 2 months ago

    Id play around with moving the dining room into the den area with the fireplace and then expanding/moving the kitchen into the current dining room and kitchen area.

  • dt516
    Original Author
    last month

    Verbo: Thanks for comments. But we are not spending $500K nor moving out. I am curious what it is you don't like about the renovation proposal? Especially the one which includes a first floor bedroom (+), office (+), kitchen in back of house connected to a decently sized family room (+) and a formal dining room (+). Where are the negatives that I am missing? Thanks

  • PRO
    Mark Bischak, Architect
    last month

    Which walls are bearing walls?

  • dt516
    Original Author
    last month

    The one going from the front to back of the house next to the bedrooms. The wall between kitchen and dining room and living room area. Possibly the wall heading into the den.

  • PRO
    JAN MOYER
    last month
    last modified: last month

    Have you gotten a bid? Time line and price? You're going to be staggered.

    "Which walls are bearing walls?"

    "The one going from the front to back of the house next to the bedrooms. The wall between kitchen and dining room and living room area. Possibly the wall heading into the den.

    Who designed? There should be no "ifs" on load bear. that's a FIRST CONCERN. $$$$$.

    Please get an arch....: ) and a structural engineer

  • WestCoast Hopeful
    last month

    We did a huge gut job on our last house that involved moving walls and redoing all floors and bathrooms etc. We were convinced to move into our basement suite and I’m so glad we did. It would have been awful being upstairs with kids dealing with the renovation. Simply not possible. If you aren’t moving walls and are just moving how you use the home it won’t be $500k but tue moving of the kitchen alone will be far more expansive than I think you would expect.

  • qam999
    last month

    Topic 1: Good for you, for including furniture layout in your proposed plans. That helps us understand some of your intent, and it also helps identify spaces that are impractical.


    One example: The sitting room area with 4 large chairs. They are grouped so that people passing through the room must walk right through the conversational group. That's inconvenient for both the passer-through and the people seated. Try to redo this room so that you can create a seating group where traffic naturally passes AROUND it. Also identify whether you need reading lights here, and if so, where they will be placed and where plugged in. You will see that even this simple seating area needs a lot more thought.


    Topic 2: On the ratio of dining places vs. sofa/lounge chair places: As others have noted, you can seat ~22 for dining simultaneously, and just ~8 for sofa/lounging. Perhaps this makes total sense, as 10 of the people eating are kids who then run off to the playroom, and the remaining 4 are sure to be adults who never sit down or adore lying on the rug. It may be PERFECT for your way of life. However, we don't know that, and do know that in the absence of other info, it's good to have dining and lounge seating at rough parity.


    Topic 3: The existing coat closet should be fixed to have full-width doors in the front.


    The above is certainly not comprehensive.


    I wonder if you have truly identified the things that are a priority, such as the bathrooms. I understand they are existing, but this is the perfect time to really consider whether they work for you and are comfortable and pleasant.

    dt516 thanked qam999
  • dt516
    Original Author
    last month
    last modified: last month

    Thank you marilyncb for your comments. I'm not sure why the huge negativity to the proposal. I do get the concept that there could be more seating. Thank you qam999 and others who pointed that out. The proposal where we take over one bedroom to expand the kitchen and utilize the back of the house as a great room effectively seems like a good flow. But I would appreciate others who expressed more negative sentiments (VRBO, Mark etc.) if there could some more color provided. The existing dining room and den can remain as separate rooms or combined either now or down the line (the goal of THIS project is the kitchen and to do that best we'd like to nail down the first floor layout). Maintaining the first floor master with an office right next to it seems good for both today (4 kids upstairs in 3 bedrooms one being large for 2) and for resale.


    Moving to another home is not so simple with low mortgage rate locked in vs. high current rates and lack of market inventory.


    Also, we've had a structural engineer here.


    Thanks

  • artemis_ma
    last month

    A dining room should be adjacent to a kitchen. Do you want to port food through that sitting room to the dining room all the time? Or clean up that way in reverse?

  • emilyam819
    last month

    Food can go through and be set up in the butler’s pantry. I’m just worried that most often, people would crowd into the nook table.

  • PRO
    Mark Bischak, Architect
    last month

    Unless you have a butler, a butler's pantry is usually a waste of space. Normally food is prepared in the kitchen in the most efficient manner possible, and delivered to the adjacent dining area. If your normal food preparation is to start the food preparation in the kitchen, then transport it to another space to be finished, then deliver to another space to be eaten, a butler's pantry might work. Many time things that are thought to be good ideas on paper, becomes tiresome and gets old quick. The dining room is a long way from the kitchen. This may be a compromise because of existing conditions, but we are not there and we can only assume.


    If you eliminate the butler's pantry, you can apply that money to the labor and materials for the beams needed to replace the bearing walls.

  • David Cary
    last month

    Negative comments - my thoughts are two - in today's building world, in most of the US, getting things done is really hard and costs more and takes longer than originally estimated. So doing a large scale reno while living in a house with 4 kids (some of which use toys still) gives anyone experienced in either (and I only have 1 kid) crushing chest pain. The potential pain is quite large and I think everyone is just interested in your mental health planning such a thing in 2022. The kitchen is the hardest reno to live with.


    Next, this is a building forum where nice plans are made from scratch. So the plans look terrible in so many ways that it is hard to know where to begin. Planning a renovation and trying to keep some elements from an older house is really hard to make a decent plan. In this case, in some opinions, it is impossible.


    I am just seeing this for the first time and I imagine walking into this house to buy. I am having to come up with a Manhattan or oceanfront locale to justify considering making an offer. Something would have to be so spectacular about the house to make me ignore the shortcomings of the floorplan and I don't even know the ceiling heights....


    One can't predict the future but the current state of housing market will change. You will go through a good amount of pain and may be disappointed in the outcome compared to waiting on a better house. You may wait forever of course. But might want to factor in marriage counseling, divorce attorneys, mental health expenses in the overall financial risk.


    I also would think few would undergo such a reno and consider living in the house in a LCOLA area, so the assumption is HCOLA and $500k sounds about right.


    In what world is Foyer spelt Foyar?

  • PRO
    Mark Bischak, Architect
    last month

    "Foyar" is Pirate for a small entrance hall.

  • PRO
  • rockybird
    last month
    last modified: last month

    Have you tried to budget out the materials alone, ie kitchen cabinets? That might help get an idea for price. When you remove the walls, what will you do about the flooring?

    This project could easily go to 500k and above, but I think a lot of it will depend on the materials chosen. Her plan is actually a pretty innovative use of existing spaces. She’s not moving or adding bathrooms. The bedroom and playroom are existing. If she keeps the materials budget low, then she might get a much more reasonable price. Plumbing and electrical will be expensive though. I don’t know if prices will come down, but my pool contractor told me to wait a year, because he thinks they will. I’m not so sure about materal prices, with gas prices likely to go up, so I’m buying materials sooner than later.


    I think it’s good to draw up plans yourself because it helps you to think through how the layouts will work for you and what things are important. You could also engage an architect, but be careful that he doesnt start moving things around too much, because that could really impact the construction pice.


    I think you could camp out upstairs while the construction is being done, but it will be tough. You will need to plastic the stairs off to keep the demo dust from comng into the rooms. You won’t have a kitchen for months. Sometimes the water will be turned off. There will be no privacy, but when the workers are there, progress is being made. I’ve been through this, but I didn’t have kids, so I don’t have that perspective.


    I like the more open floor plan, but I think the kitchen table is in the way of the flow from the living room to the kitchen.

    dt516 thanked rockybird
  • dt516
    Original Author
    last month

    Here is an alternate proposed layout. This creates a closer connection between kitchen and dining room. It also creates what are essentially two sides of the home. The right L (dining, sitting, library) being formal / clean space. And the left L (kitchen, family, playroom/bedroom) being the informal side. This required beam is roughly equal in size.



  • emilyam819
    last month

    I like it

  • dt516
    Original Author
    last month

    Louis, I am not sure what alternative plan you are recommending. Thanks for your thoughts. A large expansion? Surely the home can be improved.


  • latifolia
    last month

    Renovating right now is neither easy nor cheap. We are going into week 5 of what was to have been a six week master bath renovation - quoted at $75k in a LCOL area. We'll be lucky to finish by Thanksgiving and who knows what the final bill will be.


    It took the electrical inspector a full week to get here for the rough-in inspection, and now he is requiring us to install a brand new fire detection system in the whole house, even though those areas weren't touched.


    We don't want the system because the blinking lights keep me awake. Even our old one was set off by the self-cleaning oven. So after the final inspection we will have to hire someone else to come in and disable it.


    Then there are the building hiccups. Our plumber out his foot through our kitchen ceiling! I can't imagine doing this with four small children in the house.

  • Amy Loves Pink Bathrooms
    last month

    What do you actually like about this house? It doesn’t seem like much, if you are wanting to spend hundreds of thousands to ”fix” a lot of things that do not need to be fixed.

  • emilyam819
    last month

    Really??? None of us knows what the original looks like, what dt516’s finances are, or what it would actually cost in his/her area.

  • WestCoast Hopeful
    last month

    Emily I believe this is the original layout.

  • emilyam819
    last month

    That’s about it, but I mean we have no idea about the layout or condition of the original kitchen, for those who claim that there wouldn’t be enough of an improvement.

  • dt516
    Original Author
    last month

    Thansk emily. The entire house has not been updated in probably 30-40 years. The intent on purchase was to ultimately fix it up.

  • WestCoast Hopeful
    last month

    So in our renovation we made the house better than it was but not perfect. We knew we would eventually move and we did. I don’t regret any of it but our project cost $150k all in so it was an easy decision.

    I think your most recent plan is better than the first one. As a family of five it would have worked great for us. Most of our time would have been on the family side and for bigger events we would have spilled into the other side. In this new plan the cost of changing the kitchen and moving it is the big dealbreaker. I would find out what that will cost.

    dt516 thanked WestCoast Hopeful
  • rockybird
    last month
    last modified: last month

    I don’t understand some of the responses. The OP clearly stated she wants a private dining room for entertaiing. I am going to guess she also doesnt like the multitude of rooms and closed spaces.

    In her drawings, she is ONLY moving the kitchen over and removing some walls, some of which may be load bearing. She is otherwise reappropriating existing spaces. That’s all. She is not changing the bathrooms, the play area, garage, mud room, foyer, front door. She is not messing with the upstairs. She is not adding windows. She is merely trying to improve that end of her house. I see nothing wrong with this. This is clearly a large house and she wants to make it better. People renovate to improve their homes all the time! That’s the point of these forums.

    dt516 thanked rockybird
  • PRO
    JAN MOYER
    last month

    Last year, I moved a kitchen forward, by about 15 feet. Some windows changed, the space the kitchen formerly inhabited became new mud, walk in closet, laundry. There was ONE load bearing wall, most of it is gone but we do have a support post I had to design around. The expense to be rid of it wasn't worth it.

    We did one very small master bath. ...........

    The "kaching"? about 400k with all the flooring, cabinets apps, lighting, counters, and allllll included.

    The ugly little 400 k house is now going to command about 850k, due to great location for empty nesters and fabulous kitchen.

    You will never just spend what you think YOU WILL SPEND.

    AND...... we did this with no homeowner living there. No kids, no dog.......all ours. It took sixteen very WELL planned weeks, and it took another nine to get the refrigerator.

    Don't live in a dream world of $$$$.



  • lharpie
    last month

    I like the new layout lots better! kitchen could use tweaking - i’d want a prep sink in island so you have a better work triangle, and i don’t love the oven location. but i like that it has room for a full table not banquet, and connected family area. formal dining is also much closer, and i don’t understand the butlers pantry so happy to see it go.


    i think we can safely assume that OP has done due diligence on cost and worth it for her. While one could spend 500k on this you certainly don’t have to… at least in my vhcol area 600k will buy you a second story. i could not imagine paying 500k for the above plan (assuming not super high end finishings of course).

    dt516 thanked lharpie
  • PRO
    Mark Bischak, Architect
    last month

    I have only gone through two "forever" homes so far, and I am not in one now.

  • PRO
    Mark Bischak, Architect
    last month

    All these floor plan alternative would most likely be easier to evaluate if each one had a realistic construction cost estimate attached to it.

  • dt516
    Original Author
    last month
    last modified: last month

    To Verbo those who are asking about / speculating about costs:


    - Cabinets are 30K - 45K. These were priced in the various layouts and across a multitude and range of suppliers from the 'lower end' to the highest end fully custom. Oh, except the stupid custom that was $169K. Yes, $169K.

    - The beam, steel plated LVL is $3,000 including the required steel support columns.

    - The tile is 600sqft X pick your #, but we intend to spend $4-6sqft.

    - The sliding door we hope to install is $4,000.

    - We own the subzeros, dishwashers, ovens, and faucets.

    - The plumbing in the plan where the kitchen is closer to the dining room requires less plumbing as the sink is at the existing location - thougth we need to split for 2 sinks. So there will be some minor expense on that.

    - The range of quoted pricing for the labor in the second suggested plan which was our original intent ranges from $62K - $109K across half a dozen local contractors. Probably the busiest and most reputable being the $62K estimate.


    So, all in with countertops I'd expect the project to run to $125K give or take $10-20K. Will it be $150K, it's possible of course. If we renovate the rest of the first floor, it would then be mostly cosmetic vs. structural. An upstairs extension, down the line will likely cost $300-350K. So, all in probably $600K to redo the entire first floor and expand the upstairs in our high cost area.


    We are locked into a 2.5% mortgage and current market rates are 7% which makes moving unlikely unless there is a steal of deal. Unlikey. Our block is one of the most desirable in the neighborhood.


    So now the question becomes how to renovate in the best possible way. How to optimize the floor plan etc.

  • PRO
    Floored You: TileDesigners
    last month

    Materials are about 1/3 of the overall costs in a remodel. In a high change remodel, the materials are even less of a fraction of the labor. The materials quotes that you have gotten seem to be low compared to national averages, and standard industry guidelines. I wish you luck, but I don't think you have anyone experienced guiding the project specifications.

  • dt516
    Original Author
    last month
    last modified: last month

    The materials quotes are direct from a plethora of suppliers and contractors. They are correct. Not included was some sheetrock, insulation, some wood for minor framing and paint.

  • Crepe Myrtle
    last month

    125K is pretty optimistic for moving a whole kitchen. Just a plain kitchen remodel can easily spend that. Has your architect actually drawn up any real plans for this, to get hard numbers? You will need plans to file for the permits. If you are trying to crowd source this, instead of having a paid professional, that is going to backfire on you with impractical suggestions.

  • WestCoast Hopeful
    last month

    I absolutely think you can do this. I do think it will cost more it can be done. We hired a structural engineer but it was my lawyer husband who stood there with the engineer and suggested the solution that worked. It was my husband who drew up the plans and the engineer who said yes great idea. Maybe he was actually destined for another job! We did have a GC who managed the trades but we went and chose all the items and sourced everything successfully. I suspect your costs will be a bit higher but I could see it working. I don’t recall where you are located?

  • dt516
    Original Author
    last month
    last modified: last month

    Crepe Myrtle - thanks for the thoughts. If we opt for the second plan which I think I will add to the original post, it is not actually moving the entire kitchen. The kitchen is in the same spot. There would be some additional electical and minor plumbing.