Is an Open Floor Plan Really the Best Choice?

You've probably heard the term "open floor plan" a hundred times if you're searching for a new home. It has become one of the most desirable features in a home, at least that's what the home shows on TV tell us.

Many homes feature an open floor plan because it was such a huge trend throughout the 1990s, according to The Spruce. However, this type of floor plan isn't right for everybody.

Benefits of Choosing an Open Floor Plan

One of the main reasons people want an open floor plan is how the house feels. This type of floor plan makes a home feel larger and more open, of course.

Another huge benefit of this type of floor plan is the ability to entertain. When the floor plan is open, conversation flows easier as nobody feels shut off in another room. In addition, the host can easily keep an eye on things as the party is going on.

More natural light is let into the space through an open floor plan because all the rooms share the light coming in. It's easier to enjoy natural light when the house has several windows letting light into all the centrally located rooms.

Parents often want an open floor plan to watch their kids while preparing meals. This was one of the main reasons the open floor plan became so popular. Without an open floor plan, you may have to shut a door between you and your children while you're cooking.

A few other benefits of an open floor plan include:

  • More flexibility with the layout
  • Space becomes multifunctional, when necessary
  • Better overall real estate value

Of course, with anything, there are benefits and there are disadvantages. Let's look at a few of the reasons you may not want an open floor plan.

Open Floor Plan Disadvantages

While an open floor plan offers great benefits, especially for parents, it comes with some drawbacks including:

  • Cost More to Heat and Cool - Considering many of the spaces in your home will be in one large room with high ceilings, it will cost more to heat and cool the space.
  • Less Privacy - While it's nice to watch the kids while you cook, an open floor plan doesn't provide much, if any, privacy in the main areas of the home.
  • Very Little Sound Control - Without walls to separate rooms, the sound will travel throughout the entire space.
  • Higher Cost to Build - If you're building a home, an open floor plan will cost more due to the need for laminated beams or steel beams for support.
  • Cluttered Looking Space - With an open floor plan, it's easy to find the space looking far more cluttered since it's not separated.

Before you start hunting for the perfect house, consider the benefits and the drawbacks to an open floor plan. Not every situation will benefit from this type of floor plan.

An open floor plan is very common, so you can expect to see this type of home often. However, there are homes without open floor plans and you may find one of those houses fits better for your overall needs.

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