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Designing an Open, Spacious Floor Plan

This couple shared a childhood dream of living in a log home. When it came time to design their floor plan, they focused on one thing–creating a sense of space.

Written by Griffin Suber

Plan Specs

Square Footage: 2,630
Bedrooms: 2
Baths: 2.5
 
High school sweethearts Tom and Sue made two things abundantly clear when planning their log home: They love their space (inside and out) and they love New Hampshire — so much so that the Granite State’s famous “Old Man of the Mountain” is carved into the front door. Now, their only problem is the caravans of curious neighbors who creep into their driveway to check out their getaway.
 
Why a log home: The couple both shared a childhood dream of building a log home. After jumping from one standard, pre-built house to the next, the fourth time was the charm. “When we found the land, we knew a log home had to go here,” says Sue. “Plus, if the walls are wood, I don’t have to worry what color to paint them!”
 
Most important features: For this couple, space was key. A complete wraparound porch and walkout basement gives them plenty of room to live and entertain. “The whole home is bright and breezy,” says Sue. “We can roam around. The deck is like another room for us.” For outdoor fun, the three-story garage houses their collection of toys, which includes motorbikes, four-wheelers and snowmobiles.
 
 

 

The Lowdown

With help from Mike Jackson, a construction administrator who works with Ward Cedar Log Homes, Tom and Sue’s dream began to take shape. An open second floor, an abundance of windows, two sets of French doors and ceilings that soar as high as 30 feet (even the second-story bathroom has a 15-foot-tall ceiling) all provide the openness the homeowners craved. The couple scored additional square footage by removing an unneeded third bedroom from the original plan.
 
 
 

 

The Inside Scoop

From top to bottom, the homeowners adhered to good design principles, and it shows. “The floor plan has a real flow: The garage to the mudroom to the laundry to the living room ... everything plays out naturally,” Mike explains. To help you build smart like Tom and Sue, follow their lead with these tips:
 

Be decisive.

Homeowners who know exactly what they want make the project easier for everybody. “Tom and Sue were very involved,” says Mike. “Tom was basically the owner and the contractor.”
 

Look for blessings in disguise.

Mid-construction, Mike realized the garage had been placed at the wrong angle. To compensate, the team adjusted the breezeway between the garage and the house. “It actually came out looking better,” he says. “The angle is unique. It’s less robotic-looking, less computer-generated.”
 

Don’t rush it.

Plan for construction delays because they will happen. Remember, it’s your dream home; you want it right, not rushed.
 
 
 
 
 
 
Browse floor plans of all shapes and sizes in our growing online collection here.