Thursday, September 18, 2014

Reality vs floor plans

This entire process has been an education that I've welcomed even though I didn't realize I was signing up for such. I'm not sure anyone comprehends what building a custom home involves unless they have actually been through the process. We have previously moved into two brand new homes and chose the flooring, hardware, lighting, etc. It was relatively easy compared to starting from scratch, so it hadn't scared me away from wanting to "build a home".

The other two builders had worked out the floor plan, knew which way doors were to swing, how trim would work with other trim nearby, and so much more. Now we get to work through that with the builder and sub-contractors. If these people secretly wish I would simply not ask so many questions, they haven't expressed as much, but instead have graciously explained why a different idea might work better in a certain situation.

One example was when we realized a computer tower wouldn't fit in the cabinet that was to hold it. (Going back even further, we had originally planned to use a laptop in this space but after consideration had realized that laptops can be a pain when trying to complete certain tasks. Give us the "old fashioned" desktop with large monitors, an actual keyboard and mouse, please!) So, after talking through the space, we decided to delete the drawer at the top of this cabinet and reconfigure the area behind two doors. Now my husband can reach drawer space from his chair and still have his computer wiring hidden inside the cabinets.

Moving to a toilet area in the master bathroom to discover the door swings inside this little room and will hit the toilet.  This conversation reminded me of public restrooms where you almost have to stand on the toilet to open or close the door. WHAT were the space designers thinking? In our situation, there was a simple fix; let the door open out. Since the door hasn't been hung, it's an even easier fix.

There are cabinets in bathrooms that have trim at the top and they are causing us to pause and rethink pediments on the top of doors in that space. Overcrowding with too much trim isn't an answer, so we're taking the "keep it simple" approach to avoid a problem. The never-ending list goes on and on as we work through various ideas to solve these problems. I'm just thankful for the expertise of the builder and trim carpenter who willingly share ideas on how to solve these problems. I've learned that looking at floorplans is a great deal different than reality.

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