Things to Consider When Designing a New House

Things to Consider When Designing a New House

Designing a new house can easily be a super exciting project. Especially, when you are designing and building the first home for your family. It takes a lot of sweat and effort to build a house that you can call home – a sweet home. The expert architects and interior designers also believe that designing a perfect house is not easy. Even a little bit of design error could lead to a badly designed and inefficient house.

The process of designing a house has greatly evolved over the years. In order to design a beautiful home, the architects, the interior designers and the homeowner need to collaborate and think through the whole project, and consider so many things, including:

  1. Choose appropriate land
  2. Consider your construction budget
  3. Lifestyle of the family
  4. Prioritize your requirements
  5. Choose right facing
  6. Open Vs closed floor plan
  7. Presents and future space requirements
  8. Allow natural light
  9. Consider natural ventilation
  10. Proper room size
  11. Create multi functional space
  12. Create a quiet zone
  13. Single storey or duplex
  14. Indoor and outdoor open space
  15. Durability and build quality

When designing a new house you can add or remove many features and amenities. And that makes the process of designing a new house a little more complicated and challenging for professionals and homeowners.

Designing a new house?

Designing a new house for a big joint family can be overwhelming and challenging. Different family members will have different priorities and feature requirements in their rooms.

The growing up kids may need a separate room where they can invite their friends to play and study. The kid’s room may be shared between two siblings or should you build separate rooms for kids to offer some privacy to a growing kid?

The senior members need a peaceful and comforting space to sit, relax and study, the family may need a common space like an open terrace.

There is so much to think about and consider in designing the home of your dream. And that’s what we are going to discuss in this post today.

What are the important things to consider in designing a new home?

Ideally, a beautiful home is one that fulfills all the space requirements for the family. But, Your house should be planned and designed in such a way that it can be constructed within a budget.

So, if you are designing a new house, then you may like to consider some of these essential things and crucial factors.

1. Choose appropriate land

The very first thing that you should take into account when designing your home is the land. Certain site constraints may affect the design of your home and that may lead to additional construction costs.

In particular, the condition of the soil is very important for the construction of slab and footing. If the condition of the soil is not favorable, then it can actually lead to many more difficulties while constructing the home.

If required, don’t hesitate to go for a soil testing to know the properties of the land. If the plot is uneven, then that may lead to extra cost in land preparation. However, if the plot is plain and it’s not rocky, then that kind of land is best to build a house.

2. Consider your construction budget

Given a chance, everyone would love to build a super luxurious dream home. However, luxury comes at a price and that price needs to be paid by you. And therefore, it is very important to consider a tentative construction budget when designing a house.

Designing and building a home is a big financial and emotional decision. You can easily get carried away while planning and that would mean a lot of extra expenses. But, there is no point taking additional financial pressures while building a house. Considering your overall budget will help you stay in budget when designing and building a house.

Carefully assess your finances – like how much money you have already saved. What kind of additional financing you can arrange like an unsecured loan from friends and family or a secured housing loan. Once you have worked it out, you can discuss your budget with the architect who is helping you design your home. The architects can easily figure out the build cost based on the size and features of the house.

3. Lifestyle of the family

It’s important to consider the lifestyle of the family when designing a house, and decorating the interior space. This becomes even more important for a joint family with kids. For instance, if there are kids in the family, you may like to have a separate games room for them. You may like to plan for an outdoor play area near the kitchen or next to the living room from where you can keep an eye on the kids when they are playing outside.

You can also plan for an outdoor sit out area where the elderly members of the family can sit and relax. If there is a fitness freak in the family, then maybe a separate gym room can be made. The idea is to think through the space requirements for each of the family members and then plan what is important and which features can be planned and accommodated when designing a new house.

4. Prioritize your requirements

You may like to add a number of features and amenities in your new family house. For instance, you may like to have a rooftop deck or a swimming pool at the rooftop. You can also install a small generator for power backup and have a games and gym room to play and workout. Or you may like to create an extra storage room or a study room.

While all these features and amenities can be important, the homeowner should get the priorities right. You can spend money in building a swimming pool, or use the same amount to install a power backup system or a solar panel to get almost free electricity for life.

So, it’s important to think through carefully, and get your priorities right while designing a house.

5. Choose right facing

Choosing the right facing and direction for your new home is absolutely important. Not getting the location of the room right is one of the most common mistakes people make when designing a house. For instance, if the directions are not right, then your home may turn too hot in the summer and extremely cold during the winter.

So, if you want to avoid that, it will be good if you orientate your living rooms and bedrooms to face the side where there will be moderate penetration of the sun to as many rooms as possible.

In general, the room alignment should depend on the overall location of your home. So, it’s important to consider the direction correctly when designing your new house.

6. Open Vs closed floor plan

Open floor plan may or may not work for everyone. However, they are in trend and many homeowners prefer open floor plan over closed floor plan. Among many other benefits, it offers better flow of light and air throughout the home. It also allows for free traffic movement and gives the home a much more aesthetically pleasing look.

However, when you are designing a house you also need to think about the lot size. Large open spaces always look great and luxurious. However this should not be the choice when you are building a house on a smaller plot. 

7. Presents and future space requirements

When you are designing a house for your family, then it’s important to not just think about your current space requirements. You should have a long term view and consider your immediate space requirements, like in next 3-4 years. If you have elderly parents who will come and live with you in a few years, then it would be wise for you to consider a separate room for them.

Similarly, if a room is being shared by a sibling, consider another room if they are growing up and getting married in the next couple of years. When you consider these future space requirements at the time of designing your new home, you won’t regret your decision.

8. Allow natural light

Besides considering how hot or cold your home can get, you should also consider proper natural lighting. It is important to design your home in such a way that natural light can enter inside your rooms. If you love the morning sun, make sure you have windows on the east.

Light helps keep the interior air fresh and purified. Moreover, too much moisture can make the spaces all the more prone to pests. Moisture can also increase the chances of having mold and mildew. So, it’s better to go for big windows, from where light will enter and keep your rooms airy and dry.

9. Consider natural ventilation

Cross ventilation is a process that helps free movement of air inside the house and it helps keep the house cooler. Proper ventilation is an important factor that must be considered when designing a house. A house with low or no ventilation can be suffocating and therefore you should consider adding larger doors and windows to allow fresh natural air into the house.

10. Proper room size

When creating the floor plan, you should pay a lot of attention to the size of the space or the rooms. Although it depends on the overall build area and the number of rooms you want. However, you should visualize the space and measure the size of the room i.e. the actual carpet area.

When you are creating a house floor plan, it is much easier to tweak the size of the space on the paper or in the computers. But, once the size is fixed and you start building, you can’t really do much about the size of the rooms, even if you want to increase or decrease the size.

So pay good attention to the size of the space when designing the floor plan of your new house.

11. Create multi functional space

Multi functional rooms are the need of the hour. When designing a house, you should look to create multi functional rooms and spaces. Multi functional space is something that can be used differently, without major changes as per the circumstance.

While planning the layout and interior designs for a room, just think how that room or the space can be used in multiple ways when needed. For instance, the study room can be designed in such a way, that it can easily be converted and used as a home office.

12. Create a quiet zone

I personally believe that every house should have a special room or space in the house called the quiet zone. The space can be used for different purposes like to just sit ideally, have a cup of coffee while enjoying the outside rain or just to relax and do nothing.

This space can be used in different ways like kids can sit and play board games, or seniors can sit and read books and things like that. This whole space should be created with flexibility in mind and thus the space can even be converted into a separate room when needed.

13. Single storey or duplex

Some prefer to design and build a single storey house. Some prefer to build a duplex family house. Whether you should build a single storey house or a duplex house depends on your personal preferences, your space requirements and the size of the plot.

Single storey family houses may work well for aged people who don’t want to climb the stairs every time. However, a duplex becomes the need when the size of the plot is smaller and the homeowner needs more rooms and space.

There is no right or wrong way in choosing the number of floors. It all depends on the space requirements for the family and the total build area available. So take a call on the number of floors you would like to build considering these factors.

14. Indoor and outdoor open space

Indoor open spaces like a balcony, verandah or an open terrace can be used differently. And not just that, when you add these open spaces in your house design, the aesthetic looks and the exterior views of the house will become more appealing.

Consider adding these indoor open spaces and features when designing a house. Even if you are building on a smaller plot, you can consider adding these features on the upper floors of the house.

Leaving some outdoor open space is yet another consideration that experts suggest. Although it depends on the lot size and the total build area you get, you should consider some open space at the front. The outdoor open space is a multi function space that can be used differently e.g. plantation, or sit out area and so on. And therefore it’s totally worth it to leave some open space at the front when designing a house, especially if you are building on a larger size plot.

​15. Durability and build quality

Last but not the list – the durability and build quality of the building. You are not going to build a house in the next couple of decades as it involves a lot of money and effort. Whatever you are planning, whichever feature and amenities you are adding, you should keep the build quality and durability of the building in the highest priority list.

Work closely with the architect and the structural engineer to ensure that the house you’re designing is going to be built with durability and longevity in mind. The house should be built to face all kinds of harsh weather and natural calamities like heavy rain, cyclones​​, floods and earthquakes.

Concluding thoughts on house design considerations

Designing a new house can be exciting or overwhelming and challenging.

It’s going to be exciting because you are working on a new family home that you always wanted to build your way. You can add a number of features, amenities and build it the way you wanted your dream home to be designed and built.

However, it can be overwhelming and challenging because there is so much to consider and think through before meeting an architect. You have to plan for the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, number of floors, construction budget, housing loan requirements and so on.

We have already discussed some of the major things and house design considerations worth knowing. And if you consider these important and crucial things, you will be able to avoid many house design errors and mistakes.

What else do you think one should consider when designing a new house?

Share your major house design considerations by commenting below.

Happy house designing!!

Published by

Pradeep Chaudhary

Pradeep is the co-founder at Servicesutra. Apart from looking at the technical side of the business, he works closely with various service providers like moving and storage companies, interior designing experts, pest control and home improvement companies and shares his experiences here and other relevant blogs.