Is An Open-Floor Plan A Viable Option?
As the size of homes shrinks, open-floor plans gain momentum. One of the most effective layouts to utilise the space, architects, interior designers and developers in India are implementing the concept in their projects.
What is an open-floor plan?
An open-floor plan is designed using large open spaces in a home and connect separate rooms, thus, minimising the use of walls or creating small enclosed areas. In such a house plan, the living room, the dining room and the kitchen are mostly combined into one large space.
If you are planning to implement this layout in your new apartment, here are some advantages and disadvantages of having an open-floor plan that you should know of:
Advantages of an open-floor plan
Multi-functionality: An integrated space facilitates several functions all at once, making it into a multiple-use. This is best-suited for those who prefer casual living. The same living room can be used for dining purpose while it can also be turned into a home-office by placing a desk and a computer.
Sense of spaciousness: With lesser confined areas or divided rooms, open-floor layouts give an illusion of having more space. A combination of a larger floor area with higher ceilings is ideal for those who enjoy open spaces.
Ample light and ventilation: With no walls to separate rooms in an open-floor plan, the entire house is more likely to benefit from natural light and well-ventilated space. Thus, you save on your energy bills, too.
Promotes family bonding: open-floor plans make for better conversations and foster family togetherness. For instance, you can keep an eye on your kids while working on the computer or can finish your kitchen chores while chatting with the guests. With more seating options, entertaining the guests becomes all the more simpler.
Disadvantages of an open-floor plan
Lack of privacy: One of the biggest disadvantages of open-floor concept is that it takes away the much-needed privacy. While it helps you interact conveniently with your guests, it can be uncomfortable for family members who want their personal space. Ultimately, you end up using external things like folding screens or room dividers to restore the required private space.
Difficult to maintain: In an open setting, there is also pressure on you to keep the place tidy and eliminates the freedom to just shut the doors on a messy kitchen or an untidy playroom.
Noise factor: When spaces with multiple functions coexist, there can be an apparent increase in noise levels in the house. For instance sound from the kitchen appliances and television can be deafening. This must be tackled by spreading rugs on the floor or using an added texture to the walls and ceilings.
Difficult to heat or cool: Weather control becomes a challenge in open-floor homes. In traditional home layouts, it is easy to heat or cool some rooms while leaving the rest.