Trending Home Plans: Learn How to Understand The Blueprints

While the stunning photographs in architectural magazines might provide hints, it’s still usually house building plans that offer the detailed views of luxury houses. The problem here, though, is that these blueprints are geared towards the people involved in home construction, not the potential homebuyer. Fortunately, learning how to interpret these two-dimensional renderings is not very difficult if you know some of the more common symbols and features of luxury layouts. 

French Elegance
Among up-scale homes, the French chateau has continued to enjoy considerable popularity since its North American introduction in the late 1800s. This style features turret-like stairwells and lots of French doors. Stairs are usually portrayed in blueprints as a series of parallel lines within a rectangle. In the case of a French chateau, locating the stairwells means looking for a semi-circular space along the building’s exterior that contains lines radiating out from the center. French doors, on the other hand, are shown as two arcs forming a kind of letter M adjoining an opening in a wall. Like basic door symbols, these symbols identify which direction the doors swing towards.

Common Features
Diverse styles, such as Mediterranean villa, contemporary modern, or colonial, actually feature fairly common components like double-hung windows, usually characterized by four parallel lines across a relatively small gap in an exterior wall, and sliding glass doors, symbolized by two partially overlapping lines in a five or six foot exterior wall gap. These items are also common to less affluent styles of homes.

Eclectic Taste
Victorian mansions have maintained their popularity due to their ability to offer a wide variety of individualized features. Like the chateau, a Victorian house possesses circular staircases. It also offers a huge variety of windows. Bay windows are easy to spot by their arch shape projecting out from an exterior wall. Resembling a partially opened version of the French door symbol can identify casement windows. As the name implies, accordion doors on closets are identified by a saw tooth symbol.

Locating Rooms
As you might imagine, specialized rooms like the kitchen or bathroom will have their own distinct symbols for common fixtures. Since nearly every type of luxury house has these components in common, learning the basic symbols involved can help you navigate virtually any of them. The kitchen can be distinguished by countertops and cabinets, which appear as rectangles attached to the room’s walls. The sink will appear as one or two smaller rectangles with rounded corners within a countertop. Bathrooms are just as easy to spot because of such fixtures as the toilet, an oval and small rectangle, the sink, usually a small oval within a rectangle, and the bathtub, a rounded-cornered rectangle within a larger one.

Shaping Up
With this basic understanding of architectural drafting, many people can visualize what the final outcome of a plan will be. Other people, though, just don’t have a good eye for such things. The good news is that there are a few free apps for both computers and smart phones that allow you to create three-dimensional images from floor plans. Of course, you’ll still need to know the various doors, window, and other symbols to enter this information. They provide one more tool to help you picture what your luxury dream home could look like.

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