10 Tips for Choosing the Perfect Floor plan

Designing a new home can be an overwhelming process. With so many house styles and different floor plans available, and so many decisions to make, knowing where to start can be a challenge.

However, we believe designing a new home and choosing your floor plan should be fun and enjoyable! After all, it's one of the first steps on the journey to building a new home.

In this blog we share our team's top 10 tips for choosing the perfect floor plan.

1. Set your budget

Before you start looking at specific plans, it is important to determine your budget. This is the amount that you can afford - and sustain. Knowing your costs and budget will help you to avoid any unexpected surprises.

Once you have an idea of what you can afford, you’ll be able to pick and choose your requirements and desires. It’s always worth having some wriggle room in your budget - a few upgrades or variations here and there can quickly and unexpectedly add up.

Check out Ultimate Builders’ range of plans or house and land packages today – with Ultimate Builders you will know exactly how much your new build will cost, with no hidden surprises along the way.

2. Make a wish-list

Get brainstorming to create a wish-list of everything you need in your newhome. Take a look at your current home - ask yourself what works, and what doesn’t. Visit show homes, open homes, scroll Pinterest for ideas, and talk to friends and family (especially those who have recently built!).

Create and compare a list of ‘must-haves’, such as three bedrooms and a double garage and a list of ‘nice to haves’, such as a scullery, extra lounge, or solar panels. Collect your ideas and collate them somewhere you can easily show your new home consultant, architect, or designers.

3. Choose the best home orientation for your site

A design that works well with your site will be  cost effective in the short-term and long-term. If you have already purchased land, it is important to consider the shape, size and slope of the site, and any council requirements and legal conditions of the site.

We recommend designing your living spaces to face north and/or northwest to ensure they receive the best natural light. Good home orientation is crucial for comfort, privacy and reducing energy needs. Visit Smarter Homes to find out more about best home orientation design.

4. Future-proof

It is important to choose a floor plan that has the flexibility to evolve with you through your different life stages. This future planning will help avoid costly extensive renovations or additions down the line.

If you’re considering growing your family, how may bedrooms will you need, or what size living space? Or can kids bedrooms be turned into an office or a home gym in the future? While its not possible to foresee or plan for everything, it is worth having some flexibility in the functionality of your home.

5. Customise as desired

It is rare that a floor plan will deliver exactly what you want. But remember a floor plan can be modified to meet your expectations and desires.

Make your wish-list and checkout Ultimate Builders’ ever-growing range of contemporary house and land packages in Putaruru, Ngaruawahia, and Canterbury. Use the ‘filter’ tool on our website to narrow down your search quickly and talk to us today to how we can make your vision a reality.

6. Consider storage and functional spaces

It is very normal for Kiwis to focus on the details of our living spaces and bathrooms, but the functional spaces are super important to think about too. Consider things like a separate laundry, an entrance or mudroom, a separate toilet, and size of closet and storage spaces you will need. These functional spaces are super important and will need to be incorporated into your floor plan design upfront.

Tip: Don’t become so focused on the exciting rooms that you forget the importance of the smaller, functional spaces!

7. Energy efficiency

Building an energy efficient home is cost effective AND better for the environment. Here are a few ways to incorporate energy efficiency into your floor plan:

  • Open floor plans allow for better air circulation and help increase light throughout the house, both of which lead to lower costs
  • Open floor plans also provide more space within a smaller overall footprint, reducing building costs and utility costs
  • Location of north-facing double glazed, low E windows will help with sun penetration and ventilation
  • High quality insulation in house and garage will help retain heat, and keep you warm and dry
  • Low emission products and material can reduce your overall environmental impact.

Tip: If energy efficiency is important to you, it is crucial to incorporate it into your floor plan and home design.

8. Architectural style

It is important to choose an architectural style that matches your taste. Spend some time researching different styles, and determine if you prefer a traditional-looking home or a more sleek modern home. The exterior style you choose influences the floor plan of your home, i.e. roof pitch, entrance and window placements.

9. Build to suit your lifestyle

When choosing a house design, consider your lifestyle and how your home layout can help you live your dream lifestyle.

Are you looking for great indoor-outdoor flow to allow you to make the most of the outdoors? Or large entertaining areas for those dinner parties and social occasions? Or do you need bedrooms grouped closely together, to make it easier with young kids? Or a quiet spot for a home office?

These are all important aspects when designing your desired floor plan.

Tip: If you are planning on using your current furniture, get out the tape measure and take note of the sizes, and plan where they would best fit in your new home.

10. Incorporate your outdoors during planning

Outdoor living spaces should be located so they are easily accessible from the main areas of the house. The close proximity will make it easier to transfer food and drink and naturally enjoy. Does the outdoor entertaining area catch the afternoon sun? Do you need some sort of shelter i.e. pergola or privacy fence. Do you want decking or a patio? Do you want an extra carpark area? All of the above are important to incorporate into your site plan.  

Taking all of these things into account can be challenging, especially if this is your first time building a new home! That’s where Ultimate Builders can guide you throughout the design and building process. We take the stress out of the unknown.

Check out some of our house and land packages in Putaruru, Ngaruawahua and Christchurch to get you started on your journey.