February 16, 2017
This is really a play on words. There are two parts to this question. Most obviously the question is, who should be actually making the changes to a house plan. The second part is who needs changes made to a stock house plan.
The first part of that question is easier to answer, so lets tackle that first. When changes are made to a stock home plan, who is most qualified to make those changes? As with most things this is not as simple as some may think.
If you purchase a home plan as a set of printed sheets of paper, your options for changes are extremely limited. The same goes for getting your plans as electronic PDF files. All home plans today are created using some form of Computer Aided Design software (CAD). Because of this, the best option for changes is to purchase the CAD version of the house plan.
Now that you have a set of plans in CAD what do you do with it? Most people have no ability to open such files, or the technical ability to make changes to it. You will need to have access to someone who is knowledgable and experienced with the CAD software.
Just because someone has the CAD software doesn’t mean they have the expertise needed to make changes. It goes beyond just the technical aspects of the CAD file. A home plan is the result of a creative process mixed with detailed knowledge of how a structure should be designed and built.
A home’s flow and overall usefulness can be destroyed by careless or ignorant changes. The result can be very expensive and long lasting. They can even make an impact on your ability to resell your home in the future. Alterations to a home plan need to be done with great care.
It is always best to have the people that developed the house plan make any changes to it. A house plan has character, flow, and distinctiveness that only the original designer can maintain while making changes. It goes beyond just the familiarity the designer has with the house plan. They will have unique insight into the plan that others just will not.
Many home builders have the ability to make small alterations to a plan. In which case giving your builder the CAD files is the best way to go. But if you are considering making extensive changes to a plan it is always best to return to the original source of the home design.
Now that we know who should be doing the work of modifying a home plan, should you have a plan modified? This depends on you and your needs. Either you have specific needs that just can’t be met by a stock house plan, or you want something just a bit different.
A house is a big, long term investment. Why not build something that is unique to you? Well, there are a lot of reasons why not to! While you might have always wanted a bathroom large enough to play baseball in, that might be a negative when it comes time to sell your home.
It is common knowledge that the top three areas of a home to make improvements to are the kitchen, attic/basement, and the bathrooms, in that order. So careful thought should be given to modifying those areas. You need to remember that home designers know this and they have paid a lot of attention to those areas already.
Of course adding a basement, finishing an attic space or adding an extra bathroom is usually beneficial. These things add more usable space to your home while making it more desirable to prospective buyers.
You should always talk to the people selling home plans before you buy a plan. Many times they can help you find that plan that will work just right for you without any modifications. But if that is not possible, they will be the best people to talk to about making changes.
If you are having trouble picking a house plan remember we are here as a resource for you. If you need help picking a stock house plan or need advice on modifying a plan, we will gladly assist you. We can also help you if you want something completely different.
We offer a complete custom home design service. There are unique homes all over the world that we have designed and our clients love living in them. If you want a stunning custom home design please let us know.
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