When designing a custom home or an addition, bigger isn’t always better. This is also true for home remodeling that involves reconfiguring spaces. When your home is tailored to your needs, it can be space conscientious, functional, and comfortable. Big spaces are useful for large gatherings, but when used for one or two people they aren’t comfortable. If you entertain very often, more adaptable spaces could facilitate your need to fit a large number of people into a space while still making it functional and usable after they leave. This could be accomplished through movable partitions, the insightful arrangement of the kitchen-eating-living areas, or by incorporating an outdoor area that could used as added living space. Even with large gatherings, people tend to clump into smaller groups for conversation purposes. More intimate, smaller spaces suit this need and don’t leave people feeling like they’re in a cold art gallery instead of your home.
We live in a very informal society with the kitchen and family room making the heart of our homes. This means formal dining and formal living rooms are pretty much obsolete. Eliminating these rooms is one way to reduce your square footage. As you think about your needs, try to identify your priorities.
What rooms or spaces do you use most?
What could be made smaller or adapted for better functionality?
Think about the places you most enjoy--
What characteristics draw you to them? Is it the ceiling height? The type of lighting? Or maybe the windows and walls that define the space? What details make it feel homey?
These are all important consideration that will shape rooms that are meaningful and useful to you, while being intimate and space efficient.
Rethinking the size of your home to better create functionality is a sustainable, green building practice. It conserves materials and reduces the impact on your home’s site. It also reduces the waste of space inside your home which impacts your energy use from lighting and HVAC needs.
Your home is a reflection of you and your lifestyle, and with careful planning and design it can fit your needs like a glove, not a floppy mitten.