Right House Plan:
Choosing the right eco house plan
to meet your lifestyle and needs may seem time
consuming or overwhelming, but knowing what to
look for can help lead you to success when
selecting the eco house plan for your new home.
When choosing your eco house plan it's important
to choose one that not only meets your
individual needs but your family. First is to
consider your building lot, natural landscape
and whether it will be marketable to future
buyers in the event that you choose to sell the
house at some point in the future.
It is also important to understand that the
total square footage of your new home refers to
the finished portion of your house plan under
a/c. Finished living area are generally
described as covered with sheetrock and
wallpaper or paint. A heated/cooled area is also
a good indicator of finished space. Areas like
garages, porches and attics are considered
unfinished and are not calculated in the total
square footage of your home plan.
Eco House plan considerations:
Living needs and family lifestyles
Lifestyles and family needs differ from
individuals and families depending on their
cycles, stages and future plans for the home
they want to design. Features that a younger
couples look for in a house plan are vastly
different from the character that a retired
couple might find important.
Before choosing a eco house plan we suggest that
you ask yourself a number of lifestyle and
living needs questions ...
Are you newly married? If so, do you have plans
to start a family? How many children do you plan
to have? Is there adequate room in your eco
house plan for expansion as your family grows?
Will you need guest rooms for overnight guests?
What about additional living space in the future
to possibly care for elderly parents or
you be looking at a one store or a two store.
How do you plan to entertain? Do you want a
formal dinning room and traditional living room
for large formal entertaining, or do you prefer
small relaxed family get-togethers like an open
Study your eco house plan and lot space to see
if it is possible to expand the house plan
living space in the future.
Think about the time you presently spend in
certain rooms in your home, and why. Some
families like to make the kitchen the focal
point for daily family gatherings and would
require a large sunny eat-in kitchen with lots
of space, others prefer a den or family room
with lots of room for large sofas and a
How much privacy do you need and where?
Most new home owners prefer home plans with more
privacy in the master bedroom and personal
living spaces, others might need privacy in a
home office space or backyard.
Another important consideration is how much
privacy would you want and need from other
occupants and neighbors. If privacy is important
to you, consider a house plan with an L or U
shape design. These types of house
provide you with more privacy when building on
an urban or suburban lot.
Check your house plan for placement of windows
to see if they will provide adequate privacy
from your neighbor's windows and yards.
Consider how you plan to use and enjoy your
outdoor yard space to see whether your house
plan features like decks, patios, porches or
pools will meet your needs for privacy.
Landscaping, lot type and location can play an
important factor in how much privacy your
outdoor spaces will have.
Eco House plan work space:
Where would you prefer the laundry room to be
located and how large a space will it need? Do
you have any hobbies or special interests that
might require additional space or rooms to enjoy
Will you have a need for a large workroom for
messy or noisy projects? Do you enjoy gardening?
You may want to include a mud room or utility
room with a half-bath, for quick and easy
cleanup. Are you a packrat who needs lots of
attic or storage space to store your treasures?
Will the floor plan of your new home plan
accommodate your existing or new furniture
arrangements and furniture styles? When planning
room sizes, carefully consider the seating areas
and how furniture placement will affect the
overall feel of the room. Do you want two
separate seating areas or one larger
conversation area? How will the room flow into
Measure your current furniture to determine if
there will be adequate walking space of at least
36 inches around furniture and clearance for
doors to swing. Will the height of your
furniture block windows? Does it provide enough
wall space, nooks and areas for art and personal
effects? Review the natural a traffic flow of
the house plan, the interior views from each
room of the home as well as how natural lighting
can be shared and utilized within the home.
Eco House plans and
The geographical and natural landscaping
features of your lot can have a large impact on
the style of home plan you will need to choose.
Therefore, while choosing a house plan, consider
whether your lot space will provide a lawn area
for outdoor games and sports or if you will need
to reserve enough lot space to include pools,
interesting landscaping or gardens.
If you've already purchased your building lot
you will need to consider these factors and
tailor the house plan that you choose to meet
those needs and requirements.
Choosing a Home Building Lot:
House plans for flat building
lots are less difficult and less expensive to
build, although they are not always as
eye-catching as a sloping lot. A sloping lot
will allow you to tuck the garage under the
house and possibly plan for a daylight basement.
Narrow lots generally
require a house design that rises up instead of
spreading out, whereas, wider shallow lots can
be ideal for broad one-story house plans.
Another important factor to consider when
planning on buying a new house plan is how many
cars you currently own. Will there be adequate
driveway space as your family grows or parking
if you entertain large groups of people?
Scenic lots or sloping lots with
spectacular views will inspire you to choose a
house plan that includes large panoramic windows
and roomy outdoor deck space which will allow
you to enjoy those wonderful sunrises and
If you have already purchased your house plan
you might need to look for building lot that
will complement that design.
Here are some other questions to ask yourself as
you search for a lot, remember, you will
probably have to make a few compromises along
the way, so rank them in the order of
The first thing we recommend is to make a list
of the things that you liked and disliked about
places you have lived and visited in the past.
Once you have prepared a complete
list of the most important attributes that you
are searching for you can begin checking out lot
locations. While searching for you ideal
building lot, evaluate each lot based upon the
qualities that you have identified on your list.
Questions before you purchase
Is the building lot large enough
for the house plan that you want?
Often there are some stumbling blocks or
building code restrictions limiting the precise
location on the lot space upon which the actual
house construction can take place. Therefore,
check with local building department prior to
purchase to determine what restrictions might be
in place for the lot.
If your chosen house plan necessitates a
particular side or location for a driveway or
garage you will need to determine how much space
you will need for clearance and turn space and
allow for adequate distance on one of the sides.
Although you could submit a petition after
purchase to the local zoning board for a change
in variance this can be a lengthy process which
can drag out the completion of your home and
often communities will not consent to any
changes or modifications to the zoning
restrictions for residential areas in the
Check with the developer or local zoning board
for their requirements before you purchase the
What is an
Easements may be considered public or private.
Easements grant rights to persons other than the
owner access and use of a property.
A private easement is limited to a specific
individual such as the owner of an adjoining
land. A public easement is one that grants the
right to a large group of individuals or to the
public in general, such as the easement on
public streets and highways.
Storm drain easements.
Sanitary sewer easements
Electrical power easements.
Driveway easements, also known as easement of
A restrictive easement is a condition placed on
land by its owner or by government that in some
way limits its use, usually regarding the types
of structures which may be built there or what
may be done with the ground itself. Restrictive
easements are also frequently placed on wetlands
to prevent them from being destroyed by
If the zoning of a lot has easement restrictions
it may limit or restrict which areas of the
property can be built and can confine and limit
the construction of your new home to a specific
size and dimension as well as portion of the lot
space. Therefore, prior to purchase it is
advisable to check with the local zoning laws to
determine if any easements or restrictions might
apply to the building lot that you are
Will the lot flood?
Check the drainage after a heavy rain. Make sure
the lot is not in a floodplain. A lot with
standing water or a heavy flow of water during a
rainstorm can lead to wet basements and other
problems down the road. Lots which are situated
on low-lying areas adjacent to streams that
periodically overflow may cause your property to
flood. A landscape architect can suggest some
solutions to bad drainage or flooding concerns.
Check the direction of the sun. Where does it
rise and where does it set? If you are an early
riser you might enjoy those early rays of
sunshine beaming into your bedroom windows, or
you might enjoy watching the sunset from a
backyard deck. Which side will get a southern
exposure making it ideal for growing plants and
flowers, also, you might want to position the
house so the garage and or storage buildings can
be on the north side. This keeps them in shadows
most of the day and allows the living areas to
receive more light.
Another point to consider is the direction of
the wind. By positioning the house to shield the
outdoor living spaces from northwest winter
winds you could extend the seasonal usage of
these spaces by three or four months.