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Learning Center

Things to consider when designing a floor plan: 

  • Lifestyle:    Lifestyle is how you and your family lives, your habits and your hobbies. 


  • Traffic Pattern:  A traffic pattern is the way you move through your home.  Where you naturally move creates an invisible walkway. 

  • Walkways or Hallways:  These are passageways of the home.  A way to get from one area to another.

  • Furnishings:  Furnishings are those items you place in the home to store things, to sit on, and decorate with.

  • Habits:   Habits are those consistent or repetitive actions you make in your home and life.  They are those actions that every individual makes each day. 

  • Hobbies:  Hobbies are the fun things you all do when you are not working. Your extra-curricular activities. 

  • Budget:  The amount you are will to spend on constructing the home.

  • Price per square foot:  You often hear people talk about the price per square foot.  This is no way to enter a contract on your home!

  • Views:  A view is a direction in which you want to see or observe.  Views are obtained inside the home with the placement of windows and doors.

  • Traffic Patterns: A traffic pattern is the way you walk through a home. (Marla to draw diagrams and write a brief explanation to go along with them)
  • Furniture: (Short definition needed) (Marla to draw diagrams and write a brief explanation to go along with them)
  • Walkways: (Short definition needed) (Marla to draw diagrams and write a brief explanation to go along with them)
  • Habits: (Short definition needed) (Marla to draw diagrams and write a brief explanation to go along with them)
  • Hobbies: (Short definition needed) (Marla to draw diagrams and write a brief explanation to go along with them)
  • Budget: (Short definition needed) (Marla to draw diagrams and write a brief explanation to go along with them)

Helpful decorating tips:

  • Paint: (Short definition or blurb needed) (if applicable, Marla to draw diagrams and write a brief explanation to go along with them)
    • color
    • think about your light needs: stay away from dark colors that negate/absorb light
    • dark/small -> cozy
  • Flooring: (Short definition or blurb  needed) (if applicable, Marla to draw diagrams and write a brief explanation to go along with them)
    • changing the flooring from room to room makes the house feel smaller: divides. Depends on what you want to accomplish. Make a small house feel bigger: at least keep the color the same, even it material changes. depends on goal/desire.
  • Shopping Tips: (Short definition or blurb  needed) (if applicable, Marla to draw diagrams and write a brief explanation to go along with them)
    • ie most flooring stores offer a whole array of carpets that may not be shown in a showroom - some of the most cost-effective best solutions may not be promoted as heavily
  • Furniture (Short definition or blurb  needed) (if applicable, Marla to draw diagrams and write a brief explanation to go along with them)
    • (sizes, scales, etc.)


If there is a feel that you like, I can make almost any floor plan match that feel - please contact me!


What does it mean to have a home that embraces your lifestyle:

What is your lifestyle?  Lifestyle is the way you live.  Lifestyle is the way you entertain.  Lifestyle is the way you move through your home.  Lifestyle is how you do tasks.  Lifestyle is your family, your friends, your life……..So why would you spend your time looking at plans and seeing if you can make them work for you!  Have you heard of the saying “Form Follows Function”?  Form should never come before function.  So why are you doing that when you are shopping for plans for your new home?  Have you ever asked yourself the question:  Can I make this work?  Can I see us living there?  If you have, then you are putting Form before function!  If you custom design your home, you are doing exactly the opposite!  You are designing to meet your needs, to embrace your lifestyle!

  If Form follows Function and the design is considering your lifestyle from the beginning of your planning, your home will embrace you and you will always love being in your home!  It will fit who you are, it will fit your life.  You will feel it every day. 

So when you shop for home plans, shouldn’t the questions be asked that an Architect or Designer would ask you if you were designing a custom home?  Well that is how this website is designed.  Our advanced search engine asks you the questions Marla asks her custom clients at her design meetings.  All plans she has designed are then sorted with those design features and criteria.


What are some common Things that people overlook when choosing a floor plan, and why do these things matter:

  1. When people shop for plans, they tend to shop based on the exterior look of a house.  They then look at the floor plan.  This is a wrong way to choose your home plans.  Any floor plan can have numerous looks and styles.  The floor plan is actually the first thing you should be looking at, then finding the elevation you desire.  The exterior is like makeup.  They can have many faces.  So choose or design your floor plan first, then decide on your exterior look second! 
  2. When shopping for plans, they tend to overlook the attributes of the property.  Your property tells you many things.  The property tells you the natural location of the garage.  It tells you where the rooms and window locations should be put.  It tells you how many floors naturally fit.  The neighborhood also tells you styles that might be appropriate for the site.  When a home evolves from the land, it will feel like it was always meant to be there!  It just feels right……….  You will love being there when it feels right!
  3. Most people just start scouring plans.  They look through hundreds of not more, Yuck!  It takes hours of your life and the all start to blend.  Save hours of time by doing the following steps:
  1. The first thing you must acknowledge is that no two people live the same!  That includes married couples.  It does not matter how long you have lived together.  You are different people! So begin your planning and designing of your home with your lifestyle in mind.  Start to identify what each room needs to do for you and your family….. make a list.  Select or design your home based on your list.  When you start there, you will resolve more of your issues and be less likely to have regrets!  Take the time to do it!  You will be happy you did.
  2. Identify your habits, good or bad.  When you design or select your home, you can address these issues.  Create a more simplified life for your family. 
  3. Identify your hobbies.  The things you love to do will make it a great place to be.  Surround yourself with the things you love.  When you do, you will enjoy being there. 
  4. Look at your property carefully.  Discover the best views? Where does the property slope? How do I come home from work?  Answer those questions. 
  5. Think about the furniture you wish to have in that space. Think about art or decorations you wish to place in the room.  This will help you discover the wall space necessary.  Think about how you would like to decorate the room. 


Now, use our advanced search to fill in these answers and discover the floor plans that best fit your criteria!  Our search engine will sort the plans and apply your needs to the floor plans for the best fit.  Above each floor plan, you will see elevations(exterior picture) that are available for that plan.  Any of those elevations or styles work with that floor plan.  You can even order a style if you so choose for an extra charge.  You will save hours of searching,  you will receive a more personal design based on your lifestyle and you will get a more custom design more perfectly suited for your needs!

What are some of the pitfalls that can be avoided by making a more educated floor plan selection?

When people purchase on emotion of the exterior look verse focus on the floor plan function, they will get a great looking house that doesn’t work.  You live in the floor plan, you do not live in the look and feel.  The look and feel are created through the makeup and details.  Even though the look is important, it should not be your first or determining factor.  This is a purely emotional choice.  If you can’t find the look you are after with the floor plan you choose, then order the perfect one or design custom.  Remember “Form Follows Function!”

Most people can’t read a floor plan.  There is a great deal of information you can learn by the floor plan.  The problem is it is a two dimensional drawing that is hard for most people to comprehend!   That is pretty common.  Most of my clients have some sort of difficulty early in the design sessions to understand what the plan will be like.  They don’t understand the details on the floor plan.  It is a time where trust in your designer is key.  You have to trust that they understand what you are looking for.  That’s why they frequently focus on the exterior as their main reason for choosing the plan.  They can visualize the outside. 

The importance of the views of the property and how the placement of rooms should be.  These two things work together.  Sometimes corner views can be handled differently.  There are many ways to pick up various views.  Sometimes clients don’t realize the possibilities, so they tend to be very insistent on a particular solution.  Often they don’t realize that is may not be the best solution based on their lot criteria.