Wondering if an apartment floor plan is right for you? It can be tricky to imagine yourself living in a space without seeing all your stuff in it.
Luckily there are some key floor plan design elements you can consider before moving in that will help you determine if an apartment has enough space for your needs.
Evaluating floor plan space
Your primary consideration when evaluating apartment floor plans should be space. You need to know if an apartment design includes enough space for you, your family and all of your things.
Sometimes merely looking at the amount of square footage on a blueprint floor plan isn’t really a good indicator of how usable the space will be. Interior designers recommend classifying the rooms into three categories: private areas, service areas and public areas.
Living rooms are an example of public areas. They are the social spaces where you entertain, relax and live most of your day-to-day life. These should be multi-purpose spaces where you could participate in a variety of activities from hosting a party to simply reading a book.
Service areas include the kitchen and laundry room — highly functional spaces that you use for singular purposes. When you evaluate these spaces, look for logical layouts that will make your life easy.
Private areas include the spaces where you want to be alone: your bedroom, your office and your bathroom. In many apartment floor plans, these private areas will be separated from busy public areas by physical barriers.
Thinking about separating floor plan space into these three areas should give you a better idea of whether or not an apartment has enough usable space.
Don’t underestimate the importance of storage space in your new apartment. Everybody needs a place to put food, clothing and important valuables.
Design experts recommend looking for an apartment that is ten to fifteen percent storage space. In other words, built-ins like closets, cabinets and pantries make up almost 15 percent of a floor plan with adequate storage space. Look for an apartment design that incorporates these storage features throughout the unit and makes them easily accessible.
If you look around an apartment and don’t see as many built-ins as you’d like, don’t write it off just yet. The floor plan may still work for you if it’s spacious enough to hold a lot of non-built-in storage furniture like dressers, shelves or trunks.
Traffic patterns are another important floor plan consideration. A floor plan’s traffic pattern refers to the way a person has to walk through the apartment to get from room to room. The best apartment designs are arranged so that you can move easily from space to space, as well as enter and exit easily.
Questions to ask about floor plan design
When you’re evaluating an apartment floor plan, ask yourself these questions to get a grip on whether or not a space will work with your lifestyle:
- Will each person in your apartment have enough space to him/herself?
- Are private bedroom areas far enough away from public living areas?
- Is there room for entertaining as well as everyday living?
- Does the apartment design include a logical foot traffic pattern?
- Are entrances and exits conveniently located?
- Is there enough storage space?
The key to finding the right apartment floor plan is to consider what really works for your specific needs. Think about how you need your space to function, and you’ll make the right choice.