How to Design Your Dream House?
Congratulations! You are planning to design and build your dream house, its a wonderful feeling and you should definitely enjoy every moment of it. Whether your dream house is a duplex with 3 or 4 bedrooms or a luxurious Villa with swimming pool and all the amenities that your lifestyle demands, the design process of any house follows a logical and creative methodology.
First Step towards Planning and design of your house involves sitting down and putting your thoughts on a piece of paper. This process should be given as much time and as much discussion you would like to have with your family members. It is very easy to get carried away and emotions generally tend to rule all discussions, but don’t worry, keep calm and make a note of all your personal requirements.
Your requirements should be based on your present lifestyle and future living requirements. For example if you already have teenage children, they will most likely move out of the house in near future, so plan accordingly for them, it doesn’t make sense having a large house that will be difficult to maintain. Try not to over plan, that is one of the biggest pitfalls of this stage. We tend to desire everything in our dream house, being a little practical will help.
It is advisable that the planning of your dream house is done with your family and not to take any professional help, as that will bring in the practicality much earlier, than required.
The Planning of the house should contain your requirements such as number of bedrooms required, number of baths required, kitchen requirement, living or family room, prayer or puja space if required, closets and storage spaces, utility spaces, etc.
Once you are ready with your House Design requirements, it is time to approach a Professional Architect or a House Design Company or House Design Website.
www.houzone.com is one of the website that offers customized House Designs online.
A Professional House Designer or an Architect will consider all your requirements and design a house floor plan, which will now incorporate practical and circulation spaces. The House will be conceptualized and designed with weather conditions, ventilation, minimum spaces for bedrooms and bathrooms, etc.
The Floor Plans of your dream house will contain most of your requirements but its important to note that it may not contain all your requirements. The reason is that the Professional House Designer would have added practicality and sensibility into your requirement and yes, creativity.
You can discuss with the Professional about changes or revisions that you require in the Floor Plans and try and see if other options exist. Many a times, a good House Designer would have considered all the options and given you the one that is most appropriate.
The Floor Plan is the graphic representation of your dream house and you should spend as much time as possible, understanding the flow of people and actual spaces, furniture placements and other equipment such as Television, Home Theater, Washing Machine, etc. etc. It is a good idea to get a 3D Floor Plan to better understand the design as many of us cannot read a 2D Floor plan that easily.
Elevation, the outside look of your house is an important design feature of a House Design. Elevation Design adds character to the house and brings a sense of individuality into the House Design.
Basic design of the Elevation depends on the Floor Plans that you have already finalized, yes, it is important to plan for the Elevation design only after you have finalized the Floor Plan of your house. This helps in identifying the windows, doors, decks or balconies, heights, etc. for the purpose of the elevation design.
Elevation design will contain elements and materials, colors and will define the overall look of your house. Whether you wish your house to look like a Victorian Villa or follow contemporary style of Architecture, Elevation design of your dream house, will allow you to define the way your house looks and interacts with the environment. It is important to note, that the house ages through time and hence an evergreen design concept will be better appreciated than something transient.
Elevation design depends on the design of the floor plan, the floor plan itself can be designed to follow certain Architectural styles, in that case, the Elevation will be part of the floor plan design and cannot be designed independent of it.
Once you have finalized the floor plans and the design concept, you can request your Designer to provide you with a 3D Elevation design of your dream house. It is important that the elevation be visualized in 3D as a 2D Architectural sketch will not be fully understood and may lead to wrong decisions.
COST ESTIMATION AND SPECIFICATIONS
Once you have finalized the Floor Plans and Elevation design of your dream house, you are almost ready to start with the detailing and construction drawings. Before we move onto next stages that involves detailed engineering, it is recommended that you plan your budget and materials of construction. This is an important stage as you still have the option of making changes in the house design and revisiting the floor plans if you find the cost of building your dream house not in line with your planned budget.
Many of us do not consider cost estimation as an important part of house design, but it is very critical, it provides you with the right tool to take informed and practical decisions. You would not want the budget to run out before you have moved into your dream house, would you?
Ask your Designer or Professional to provide you with a detailed cost estimation of each item of work and the material specification that is considered in the design of the house. You can always discuss and choose a different material after you receive the detailed cost estimation. You can click here to view the sample of Cost Estimation that you should get.
Now, you are all ready with the house design and can proceed towards the next stages of Engineering designs and construction. You may need the following drawings before you start the construction of your dream house:
- Construction Drawings – showing brick masonry, detailed dimensions, opening sizes, doors and windows, levels of the house, section showing heights, etc.
- Structural Drawings – showing design of Footings, Columns, beams, slabs, etc. for Reinforced Cement Concrete (R.C.C.) with reinforcing steel details
- Electrical Drawings – showing location of switch boards, power sockets, light locations, wiring specifications, main board location, etc.
- Plumbing Drawings – showing location and routing of water pipes, drainage pipes, heights of Sanitary fittings, location of hot water geysers, etc.
We all wish that our dream house should be a perfect house, yes, ofcourse it can be a perfectly designed and easily maintained house, you just need to spend a little bit of time and efforts in ensuring that you get the best designs and drawings along with best guidance for your dream house.
Ar. Ravi Siddhartha, the writer of this blog is a Practicing Architect with more than 17 years of experience. He is an IITian with a vision to bring Architecture closer to people and use the power of design to upgrade the standard of our living.