Whatever size of plot you are planning your house on, it is often quite disillusionary to find it being short for space. A good Architect can easily understand YOUR requirements and work out a viable solution for you. However, the Quacks may not be able to do a decent Space planning. Your space planning should be such that they flow from each other.
The main entrance should lead you to the Drawing room and not to the dining or kitchen. Ideally, as you enter, the Drawing, Living, dining and kitchen sequence is the best option and flows with the utility of spaces.
Often, many architects or designers are fixated with their ideas and want to impose them on you, emphasising on the benefits. A good Architect is quite akin to a good chef, who caters for your palate and not his culinary likes.
Today it’s a norm not to have a Storeroom @ Bhandar, next to the kitchen. However, if I need a storage room next to my kitchen, its my lifestyle and the Architect or designer should understand my style and make a plan that suits me.
A Gyan I always give to my clients – The earlier you learn to discard items you have not been using for 2-3 years, the more spacious your house will become.
There are numerous ways by which one can make the most of the available space without adding on to costs.
Lets discuss a few of them:-
- FAR & Height. Building Byelaws in all states, give out the
- Area which can be covered.
- No of floors, setbacks, height of the building, etc., that one can legally make.
- One of the most important parts of the planning is to use the maximum acceptable height and Floor Area Ratio (FAR) permissible. However, please never do the blunder of spilling over even by an inch, rather, keep it lesser, by a small margin. Else, the JE etc would trouble you.
- Ceiling Height. Have max ceiling height possible, as it is easier to have storage above head level in a house with ceiling height of 10 ft, compared to one with 8.5 / 9ft.
- Balconies. The byelaws lay down the length & width of balconies acceptable. In Gurgaon, in a plot of the size 225 meter or more, one can have a 180 cm depth for front balcony, while 1 m side balconies. So, if you wish to have more space, and have left a side setback, you could have a balcony over full length of the house.
- Using temporary structure like Glass in Aluminum frame is permissible in balconies and these can be used as additional storage space without any legal violation.
- If you have a green thumb, go for hanging plants, could be above head height, if in the passage.
- If you feel hanging plants obstruct your standing space, you can create tiny shelves on the wall or railing, to place the pots, without feeling claustrophobic.
- Exploit the Balcony. Ever thought how much of the Balcony do you use? Exploit this space for storage, eg, in your rear balcony, have an enclosed / covered storage made which houses your Gas Cylinders, mopping & cleaning material, which also could hold some beautiful pots.
- Verandah. The area covered by a verandah, if it exceeds the depth allowed, gets included in the FAR. So, take this decision wisely. If you enjoy a Barbecue on the verandah, you could have a depth of, say 10 ft for that area, giving adequate space for the function.
- Corridors. In all our designs for smaller plot sizes, we strictly avoid corridors. These cover a lot of space, which could have formed part of the rooms. So, we try and design the house without any passage / corridor.
- Walls. Unlike what we see in India, internationally, most residential buildings do NOT have brick walls. Even for external wall, the Contractor uses bricks only if he is told to. However, in India, safety factors make it mandatory to have strong external walls. It could be of 9 inches brick and columns or steel structure. Steel frames ie non RCC, are stronger, and take lesser space. Steel is costlier, as also, there is less expertise available in the market.
- However, internal walls should be max 4 inches, and wherever possible, use Gypsum or Ply or ACP sheets partitions. These reduce the cost and increase the space but need better planning.
- Wherever possible, have glass separators; maybe frosted.
- Loft. In case the corridor becomes impossible to do away with, keep the passage with least possible length and make a loft in the area, with access to the loft from both sides, if feasible. Having openings on both sides helps keep it cleaner, ventilated, and easier to use.
- Bedrooms. Ideally, if you could plan two Bedrooms side by side, the storage of both bedrooms could be on one wall. This saves cost, as also a uniform shape, while giving an open feel to the bedroom.
- TV unit. In case you plan a TV Unit in bedroom or drawing or living, a Wall mounted unit is any day more space friendly, as also easier to maintain than a ground based one.
- Storage. In India, in any household, one can find many stuff, which have not been used for maybe a decade. As a resultant, storage space is always less and wanting.
- As a rule, try and have a storage everywhere you can, but don’t go overboard, in that the house starts looking like a store house. For example, your beds, foot-ends, sofas, study table, etc, all can be designed with storage.
- Please avoid making any room like a Locker room of the Gym or swimming pool, with all round storages.
- Doors and Windows. Placing of doors and windows affect the furniture layout of the room, as also the possible storage. This aspect needs detailed planning.
- Windows. Placing large windows specially in the direction from which sunlight comes, adds to the spaciousness feel of the rooms.
- Dead areas around Columns. Columns are a necessity. Using the areas next to it aesthetically, could give you a lot of storage space for small things.
- Storage in Furniture. As far as possible, utilise the space occupied by your furniture, to have storage. It could be your
- Beds. Apart from normal designs, one can install trundle beds too, as they offer more floor space during daytime. You can roll out the bed from the regular bed to create additional sleeping space.
- Setties & Sofas. The sitting as also the back rest can have spaces for storage, without being conspicuous.
- Side Tables. With drawers / shelves.
- Dining Table. Area below the top counter can have 3-4 “of storage for table mats, napkins etc. Compartmentalize it like the cutlery unit in your modular kitchen
- Create A-frame Beam Shelves. Create A-frame beam shelves in your hall or kitchen and integrate the structural reinforcement with more space. To add to the longevity, ensure the quality of the material for shelves and vertical spacing in between.
- Cabinets Against the Shower. Finding space to keep individual items in your bathroom is quite troublesome when you lack storage in your Washroom.
- To make your bathroom spacious, build cabinets against the shower. Aligning your stuff properly protects them from being wet underwater; this is how you make small things work.
- Mount a Towel Rack To help clear out the space in your bathroom closet, use vertical space and make your bathroom more spacious. Wall-mounted towel racks with no closed cubbies create ideal space for storing extra bathroom clothing essentials.
Are you spending your days in a small space and not comfortable? Installing and arranging things wisely can help you make the most of your tiny home. The tips mentioned above can help you build a dream home, creating an aesthetic setting and positive vibes around your premises.
If you want to build your home, reach out to our professionals. Team Colonelz is just a call away!