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Room Guide:
How many and how big.  These are the typical questions asked by all new home buyers.  What do I consider "appropriate" for the various rooms in my ideal home?  Well... here's the list.

Rooms: How many and how big.
Room Name Description
Master Bedroom Moderate size, and sparsely decorated. We don't spend a lot of (waking) time in this room. 
The need for extra space is minimized by the planned walk-in closet and window seat.  The bed will be Queen-sized at most, and will not need extra room for elaborate head or foot boards.  Room for a well lit dresser and chest or drawers is desirable.  Roof mounted TV on a swivel.
Master Bath This is one area we want a little more luxury.  Separate shower and tub, both designed for double occupancy.

Natural light via Skylight.  Double vanity with full width mirror.  Separate attached room for toilet with water saving flush.  Pocket doors to save space.  Recessed medicine cabinet and exhaust fans on timers for each room. Floor drain.

Master Closet Moderate size, with ample hanging storage for his/hers clothes.  Storage system for sweaters, jeans, socks, jocks etc.  Entry from bedroom, and close proximity to laundry equipment (possible second exit).   
Laundry Room Separate washer/dryer.  Tumble washer for water saving.  Deep utility sink for rinsing etc. Built in storage for cleaning supplies & brooms etc. Hanging space for drying clothes. Preferably connected to Master closet for ease of hanging clothes, but must have second full size entrance for replacement of equipment.
Kitchen This room will not be hidden away behind closed doors or partitions.  Kitchen/dining/living rooms will be designed as an integrated space.  Food preparation will simply be an extension of living room activities.  Cook will be able to view entertainment center.  Food will be stored in wide, but shallow, wall pantry (walk-in not required).   Kitchen space may be demarked with breakfast bar or counter island.  

Wide counter top for food preparation with integrated splash guard at rear.  Standard oven and electric range tops.  Built-in Microwave (possibly above stove with integrated exhaust fans).  Single sink with disposal.  Under-counter high efficiency, low water dishwasher.  Combined fridge freezer with side-by-side configuration, ice-make and water chiller.  Above counter storage for glasswear, stoneware and storage containers.  Below counter storage for pots pans etc. 

Dining Dining space is almost redundant in this home.  The only meal consumed at the dining table is breakfast.  This could be easily satisfied by a breakfast bar or window nook.  A dining "Table" is only required when entertaining, and this rarely happens with more than 6 people.  An innovative way to set up a dining space "when required" would be wonderful.
Living Room Moderate-Large sized room, designed for cozy comfort.  Integrated audio-visual center.  Stand-alone or 2 sided fireplace desirable.  Placement of fireplace such that it is effective while viewing entertainment center.  Interior seating will be easily movable to provide optimal Summer/Winter usage.  Deep window seats will be provided for reading/relaxation.
Office Large sized room with ample built-in desk space (100 sq feet).  Work areas for 3 people. Built-in book-cases and separate storage area for stacked file boxes.  Independent power circuit for computer equipment and under-counter cable path for signal and power wiring.  Recessed over-desk lighting.
Guest Bedroom Moderate sized room near the guest bathroom.  Wheelchair accessible with double bed.  Built-in wardrobe.
Guest Bath This will be a wheelchair accessible bathroom with shower, toilet and vanity.  The shower will be fitted with a transfer seat.  Room will use a pocket door.
Away-Space This will be a small area/nook that is well separated from the rest of the living space and can act as a quite retreat. Likely access is from the master bedroom. It should have good natural light for reading or nature watching. Good interior sound proofing is essential.
High-Space Although the house is essentially single level, it may be desirable to use some of the roof area for a loft or catwalk.  Possibly combined with a raised ceiling in the living room.  Access to this space can provided by a spiral staircase, or even captains ladder.  Natural light from skylights or "dormer" style windows would turn this space into an upper level sun-room.  In winter this are is used to collect solar heat. In summer, the windows/skylights must be able to be covered with reflective panels or blinds to prevent overheating. 

© 2000-2018, Phil and Lisa's relaxed lifestyle home.
An exercise in Energy Smart, Not So Big living. -


This site is all about building a cool, energy efficient house, that makes maximum use of earth sheltered design, passive solar heating and cooling, geothermal exchange energy management, and right sizing of the house for it's designated use. The home's placement is on a south-facing hillside in Deep Creek Lake, Maryland. This site describes the design process, the technologies used and the expected results. We also have a comprehensive Links Page for anyone who is also interested in designing a similar project.