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Top 15 House Plans, Plus their Costs, and Pros & Cons of each Design

Have you finally decided to build a house of your own? Well, you know it has to be perfect. After all, you’ve been dreaming about this for years! 🙂 We know, it’s always hard to decide how your house should look. There are endless possibilities. To help you narrow down your search a bit, here are top 15 house plans, designs and styles to entertain. Keep in mind that all the building costs are based on the national average and may vary considerably from one city, state or region in the US to another. Before we take a deep dive into various house designs, architecture, and styles, it’s important to note that in many cases it may be necessary to provide a site plan to obtain various home building permits from your city hall or township. You can turn to 24h Plans to get a custom site plan drawing prepared for your dream home in less than 24h hours by our team of experienced architects and drafters. Use our promotion code: 24hplans-20off to get a 20% discount off any package. — Please note this is a limited time offer, exclusive to the readers of our blog. This offer is not being advertised anywhere else. Modern style Basement plan Level 1 plan Images via Eplans This modern 1 story house has a living area of 4,600 sq. ft. There are 4 bedrooms, 3 baths and 2 garage bays, so it’s perfect for any big family. There are some special features that sets this design apart from others: Full window walls that make the rooms look even more spacious Decorative stone pillars at the entryway A fireplace in the master suite A garden tub A recreation room A wet bar that connects the professionally designed kitchen to the vaulted dining room 11×14 ft. double garage that you can turn into a workshop The plan costs around $1600 if you don’t want to modify it, but if you want to make changes prepare to pay as much as $3000 for the AutoCAD file. You have to admit it’s a gorgeous home, but there’s a major downside too: the average U.S. cost-to-build settles at around half a million dollars. New American Style Level 1 plan Level 2 plan Basement plan Images via Eplans This design with high peaked and steeply sloped roofs actually combines the New American style with the French country style. French influences are seen in the design of the doors too. There is a certain rustic elegance about this house. Given the fact that there’s a wraparound front porch and 3 rear porches, the house is suitable for families who enjoy outdoor activities. Measuring 4,012 sq. ft., the living area includes 4 bedrooms, 4 baths and 2 garage bays. The house has 2 stories. As you enter inside you will see an informal dining area that leads to the study room. One small rear porch can be accessed directly from the master bedroom. Upstairs, you will see 3 bedrooms each with its own bathrooms. 2 of the bedrooms actually have walk-in closets. The modifiable plan costs between $1500 and $1800. The cost-to-build is anywhere between $400k and $500k. This may be a disadvantage for those looking for affordable homes. […]

By | January 13th, 2019|Architecture, Design, Home Designs, House Design, House Plans|4 Comments

Top 15 Prefab Home Designs, and their Costs – Modern Home Design & Architecture

While having a custom-designed home might seem like the golden standard in terms of getting that beautiful and exquisite architecture, design, and decor elements, there are many good reasons why you might opt for a prefab house instead. First of all, you have to consider the cost. Building a custom house requires you to pay 15-30% more. Then, there is the significantly longer time frame necessary to build a custom house from scratch. With prefab houses, you simply order the kit, and then you can actually put the pieces together by yourself, provided that you have some construction experience. If you don’t, you’ll have to hire professionals to get the work done. Either way, you will pay less for labor, not to mention that you can completely bypass the costs related to the actual design of the house. 😉 Architects are not that cheap to hire, so if the whole prefab house idea doesn’t make you happy, you should expect to give 8-15% of the project value to the architect. If you are planning on building a house worth $100,000 you would be paying an extra $8,000 to $15,000 to the architect. — If this doesn’t chip away at your enthusiasm, then you are probably making the right call. Anyway, for all of you who are on board with the prefab home idea, we scoured the internet for 15 designs that will show you don’t have to wait years to have a brand new home. The HOMB House Image via Method Homes Developed by Method Homes and Skylab Architecture, this design comes in different sizes. Regardless of size, the house will be made of 100 sq. ft. triangular models that can be transported hundreds of miles away from the construction site. If you are looking for the cost effective option, the 1 bedroom 900 sq. ft. XS model is perfect for a couple with no kids. However, you have to think about the future, which is why the 3-bedroom M model would be more suitable if you think you will expand your family in the future. Besides, the M, L and XL models offer garage space. The very essence of the design is to combine coziness with some pragmatism, and we can say they nailed it. A great feature of the HOMB house is that regardless of how small it is you always get at least 400 sq. ft. of deck space. How awesome is it to wake up in the morning to drink your coffee on your deck watching the sun come up? It’s not only very romantic but also relaxing. Such an experience fuels you up for the entire day that lies ahead of you. It’s important to note that in many cases it may be necessary to provide a site plan to obtain various home building permits from your city hall or township. You can turn to 24h Plans to get a custom site plan drawing prepared for your dream home in less than 24 hours by our team of experienced architects and drafters. Use the promotion code: 24hplans-20off to get a 20% discount off any package. — Please note this is a limited time offer, exclusive to the readers of our blog. This offer is not being advertised anywhere else. […]

By | January 12th, 2019|Architecture, House Design, House Plans, Modular Homes, Prefab Homes|0 Comments

Top 20 Porch and Patio Designs to Improve your Home!

Summer is just around the corner and it’s the perfect time to start a home improvement project. If you didn’t have enough money to buy a house with porch and patio, it’s time to make some additions. Here are 20 porch and patio designs to choose from or to at least give you a place to start your search for the perfect porch/patio. Wraparound porch This porch is great for sunny areas because it gives you enough shade to chill. It also provides cover from the rain allowing you to read a book outside while watching the rain pour. Wraparound porches are usually see on Victorian, Colonial and Vintage style houses. They can also give some depth to tall and narrow homes. The plan costs around $150 and the building costs go as high as $25,000. This price includes only the materials you need to build the deck. If we add the contractor’s fee, the price goes over $45,000. This should not come as a surprise taking into account the size of the porch. Lots of materials go into its building and it takes longer to finish the job. Images via Builder House Plans It’s important to note that in many cases it may be necessary to provide a site plan to obtain various home building permits from your city hall or township. You can turn to 24h Plans to get a custom site plan drawing prepared for your dream home in less than 24h hours by our team of experienced architects and drafters. Use the promotion code: 24hplans-20off to get a 20% discount off any package. — Please note this is a limited time offer, exclusive to the readers of our blog. This offer is not being advertised anywhere else. Parallel front porch This is perhaps the most common type of porch and it’s seen all over the US. It costs less than $20,000 to build and it highly increases the curb appeal of the house. This is particularly important if you want to sell it in the future. If you want to fit some small chairs and a table, remember that the porch should be at least 8 feet wide. The plan costs $130. By mallgirl316 Image via Simply Additions Screened porch with a gable roof This plan costs $130 and the cost to build is $6500 provided that you do the work yourself. If you want to save a few hundreds of dollars you can use substituted treated decking instead of cedar. This design is spacious and the glass walls allow you to feel like you are outside. You can dine, read, and hang-out with your friends when the weather doesn’t allow you to go outside. Images via Family Handyman Screened Porch with a Shed Roof This design is more suitable for smaller houses. The nets make it an insect free zone which is live saving during hot summer nights. A 4/12 pitch roof is attached to the roof of your house. The plan costs $70 and the cost-to-build for a 12 ft. x 16 ft. screened porch with shed roof is $13,000. Images via Family Home Plans […]

By | January 8th, 2019|Remodeling Ideas|1 Comment

Top 15 Shed Designs and Their Costs: Styles, Costs, and Pros and Cons

Summer is coming fast and you’ve been dying to dive right into a new home improvement project. Last year you were so excited about building a pool, the year before that you repainted the house, so what’s it going to be now? By DesignRulz How about building or buying and installing a quality shed or a classy garden structure in your backyard? Perhaps you need some more storage space or maybe you want a nice place to chill and work outside the house. Who can concentrate with all the noise your kids and wife/husband are making in the house? So, let’s explore the top 15 sheds and other outdoor structures that are worthy enough for your yard, but first, we have to answer a very important question: Do I need a building permit to have a shed on my property? Although local building regulations may differ from city to city and county to county, there are some general rules that indicate whether you need a permit or not. However, the easiest way to find out is to take a look at your local building department regulations. Also, note that in many cases it may be necessary to provide a site plan to obtain the permit from your city hall or township. You can get a custom site plan drawing prepared for your property in 24 hours by our team of experienced architects and drafters. Use the promotion code: 24hplans-20off to get a 20% discount off any package. — Please note this is a limited time offer, exclusive to the readers of our blog. This offer is not being advertised anywhere else. Size On average, the limit is between 100 and 120 square feet. Anything that’s below 100 sq. ft. usually doesn’t require a permit. The height also matters especially if you belong to a HOA (Homeowners Association). Most height related concerns refer to overhead power lines and fence heights. Location You are not allowed to build a shed on underground pipes or close to another building. The shed must be at least 3 ft. away from any surrounding fences and buildings. Building standards This is important for those who live in areas with harsh weather conditions. For example, living in an area with tornadoes will require you to get a building permit. Authorities will come to inspect your shed to assess whether or not it’s designed and built to withstand extreme weather conditions. Other Considerations If you plan on having electrical power and running water in your garden shed, you most likely will need a permit. Also, using the shed as a business location requires you to apply for a permit. As for being in a HOA, you should rather be concerned about the looks of the shed than about its structure. Things like the height, positioning, and color are the main points here. So, if you plan on painting the shed in a fluorescent pink shade, you should check with your HOA first. You wouldn’t want your neighbors to feel ashamed of and start complaining about your shed. After all, the color of your garden structures can often be of the utmost importance to the entire neighborhood. Shed Types: Vertical Sheds Small Vertical Shed by Rona We’ll start with the most basic shed you could possibly get. It is very practical and cost effective. The shed in this photo is 4 ft. tall and 2 ft. wide and costs around $450. In general, vertical sheds look more like wardrobes which makes it difficult to store large objects. If you own a bike, you can easily put it inside, though. The installation is very straight forward and you don’t need any special tools to do that. Almost anyone can use a screwdriver to assemble the parts. The lack of windows makes it impossible for thieves to peak inside, so you can rest assured nobody will know what you are keeping in there. Since it’s made out of plastic, there’s nothing glamorous about this shed’s appearance. Also, if you plan on storing expensive stuff in this shed, you should perhaps think about other options, because this one is a low security shed. Although you can install a hard to break lock, the thief can still cut through the plastic with ease, thus rendering your lock useless. Lean-to sheds These sheds are perfect for small yards where space is scarce. If you plan on storing large items inside, make sure to install double doors. On the other hand, if you want to design it like a very small office, one door is enough. Lean-to sheds are generally used for storing tools like nails, screws, electric drills, gardening equipment etc., basically anything that fits. Lean-to sheds can be placed in close proximity to your house or other existing structure. They can be built from scratch, so here’s a plan to guide you. If you were to buy a kit and assemble it yourself, you would pay about $600 for a 8 ft. x 2 ft. wooden shed or as little as $400 for galvanized steel sheds. The latter provides extra durability, but it tends to have no floor. By DIY Garden Sheds By The Family Handyman If you want a shed that’s a bit fancier, you would pay around $1000 for a wooden 3 ft. x 6 ft. lean-to shed with double doors. You can see that the above design works great as a storage place for gardening equipment, a few shelves and even patio furniture. Tiny-House or a Lean-to Shed on a Flatbed Trailer A large shed or a Tiny House on a Flatbed Trailer designed by MiniMotives This design is a bit more elegant and of course, a lot more expensive. You will probably need to hire some professional contractors to build this for you, because the design is very specific, and it’s not like you can easily find it during a weekend shopping session at Home Depot. If you were wondering how much a house-like shed costs, here’s the price: a 12 ft. x 24 ft. gable style wood storage kit with floor, windows and doors costs around $7000. The above design is perfect for a small office or a place where you can enjoy some alone time. You can also use it as a guest room. Gambrel Sheds A Gambrel style roof provides extra space on the vertical line, which is why most barns are shaped this way. You can use this shed to store anything that can be stacked, so that you make use of all the vertical space: hay, logs or other construction materials. People also shelter cars and agricultural machines in such sheds. Berkely 10 Ft. wide X 14 Ft. long Shed by Handy Home via WayFair However, Gambrel sheds are not suitable for windy or snowy areas. They require maintenance on a regular basis and they must be waterproof at the ridges. The building kit for a wooden Gambrel shed measuring 10 ft. x 14 ft. costs a bit over $2000. Below, you can also view a simple Gambrel shed plan in case you have plenty of framing experience and solid carpentry skills to enable you to build such a shed DIY style from scratch. By DIY Garden Plans Gable Style Sheds All the sheds below are made of wood, but you can also buy Gable sheds made of resin. If you live in an area with frequent rain, wood may not be the best option. Nonetheless, make sure to choose treated lumber or durable timber, for example cedar heartwood. You should also use a wood stain or paint to prolong its durability. As for appearance, wood looks much better than plastic or resin. There is so much beauty and natural variation in wood that it’s impossible not to find one that you like. Plus, if an element deteriorates, you can easily replace it with another piece of wood. The gable roof style allows for proper shedding of water and snow while giving you more vertical space than flat roof construction. Gable roofs are generally cheap and easy to build. However, gable sheds are not suited for areas with high wind and hurricane risks. Materials on such a roof can be peeled away by high winds, thus making it a safety concern. Moreover, if the frames are not properly built, the roof is at risk of collapsing. By DIY Garden Sheds Are you against the idea of a treehouse because you fear for your kids’ safety? Then, here’s the solution. If you don’t want them to hate you ever since their childhood (they’ll have plenty of occasions later on), you’ll buy a nice shed and you will paint it to turn the construction into a beautiful playhouse for your children. The shed in this photo was actually turned into a playhouse for 2 little girls. The cost for a 8 ft. x 8 ft. gable style shed with a door and a window is approximately $2500. If you want to build it from scratch, see the plan above. So, if you have no kids or you simply don’t want to give them a playhouse, then turn it into a workshop or storage space. Build some shelves for your tools and a ramp for your mowing machine. You can also store the bikes of your children and other toys meant for outside use. This design is obviously not suited for a person to play or stay in. This outdoor structure is a little bit of both: you have a small storage space to the right and a cozy space to the left where you can place a few chairs and watch the rain pour on your garden or look at the stars, since part of the roof is made of glass. The disadvantage is that it’s not going to be cheap to build considering it’s a pretty specific design. This modern design basically has a gable style roof tied to the ground. It would be a shame to waste it on storage space. Bring some patio furniture and you will be able to enjoy a good book in peace. Go green by growing grass on top of it as shown in the image. The design is cheap and easy to build by someone with some construction experience. Flat Roof Sheds Flat sheds can be built with many materials: wood, metal, resin and others. The flat roof is susceptible to water leakage thus making them unsuitable for areas with heavy rains and high snowfall. Prepare to spend a lot on maintenance and/or replacement over time especially if you choose a wood shed. A small 7 ft. x 7 ft. wood flat shed costs around $600 whereas a larger one goes for as much as $1200. However, if all you need is a storage place, you can buy a metal 7 ft. x 4 ft. metal flat shed for $300 or a plastic 6 ft. x 6 ft. plastic one for $600. By Sheds Blue Prints This design is far more than a simple shed. The large window and the glass door are part of a modern cabin or a guest room. Add some Ikea furniture and you have a very fancy place to sleep for your parents when they come to visit. By Alfredo Jones Did you always want to dine outside? Well, this is your chance. Although it looks a bit like a box of matches, this space may be exactly what your yard lacks. It is obviously not suitable for storage and it’s not available as a building kit but it sure adds some elegance to your backyard. It’s not very cheap either, but this depends on the contractor. By Lushome Although it seems unsecured, there is no reason to worry the roof will collapse while eating dinner. The dimensions can be adjusted, but you’ll need a large yard anyway. If you live in a rainy area, there’s probably no reason for building such an outdoor structure. So sorry Londoners, you have to find something else. 😉 Oriental style shed By Secrets of Shed Building This is the type of thing you put in your yard if you value the oriental culture and you want to add a plus of beauty to an empty yard. Although there is no practical use for an oriental shed of this size, it still looks great. You have to find someone to build it and you then have to permanently take care of its maintenance. […]

By | January 7th, 2019|Design, Sheds|1 Comment

Top 20 Tiny Home Designs and their Costs – Smart Green Living Ideas

If you don't want or can’t afford a brand spanking new, five bedroom home that occupies 4,000 sq. ft., don’t despair! ;) There’s still a chance for you to live the American dream! Let us present the top 20 professionally designed tiny houses. It’s true that a family of four will probably have some problems [...]

Land Survey Cost vs. a Plot Plan – When Do you Need a Land Survey?

There are many reasons to have land surveyed, whether it is property you own or a piece of ground you’re considering buying. This article answers questions about: When to have land surveyed Preparing for a land survey What the survey includes Who pays for the survey The cost of a land survey and factors that determine cost Affordable alternatives to a land survey The Reasons for a Land Survey The surveyor has one of two primary tasks in each surveying job: Precisely establish a parcel’s legal boundaries when it has not been surveyed before, mapping those boundaries and producing a legal description of the boundaries that determine what ground the parcel entails Determine where the boundary lines are on a previously surveyed parcel. For example, the survey might read something like: “Southwest quarter of Northwest quarter (SW ¼ of NW ¼) and East Half of Southeast quarter of Southwest quarter (E½ SE¼ SW¼) of Section four (4), Forest Township, containing ten (10) acres of land, more or less.” A surveyor uses the information to determine what area constitutes the parcel legally described. The surveyor works to find the metal pins used to mark the corners of a surveyed parcel or establish where those pins should be placed. […]

By | January 4th, 2019|Land Surveys|2 Comments

Privacy Fence Ideas, Costs, Building Permits: Home, Garden & Backyard

Yard fences come in a wide variety of materials and styles that can accent and compliment the look of any home. Fences contribute to safety, security, peace of mind, curb appeal and overall style of your home. Before delving into various types of privacy fences and their styles, we have to examine local construction ordinances. Let’s briefly address these considerations first, and then get to the top fence types for residential properties as well as their costs and pros and cons. […]

By | January 4th, 2019|Gates and Fences|0 Comments

Top 20 Shipping Container Home Designs and their Costs 2019

There is a hot new trend: shipping container homes. Basically, you modify and re-purpose used shipping containers and stick them together to build a house. Architects, designers and builders have actually found a way to transform big boxes of steel into beautiful and fully-functional homes. With proper planning, you can endeavor to design and build a luxurious house for half the price of a “normal” house. 🙂 Let’s talk a bit about the costs of building a shipping container house. Base cost to build per container: There are two standard sizes for shipping containers: 20 x 8 x 8 ft. covering a surface of 160 sq. ft. and 40 x 8 x 8 with a surface of 320 sq. ft. A used 20-footer costs anywhere between $1,400 and $2,800, whereas a 40-footer costs $3,500 – $4,500. You will also have to pay for labor (about $50-$150 per hour) and for the modifications needed to make the container livable. Expect to pay at least $10,000 for labor, more likely $15,000. There are prefabricated shipping container houses sold for as little as $15,000. A big and luxurious house made of shipping containers can cost more than $200,000, but this is one half of the price of a regular structure of similar size. Green Home Via Digital Trends With a surface of 2,000 sq. ft., this house combines the industrial design on the outside with a walnut finish on the inside. The floors are made of concrete and the dual-pane aluminum windows provide natural light all year round. The house has 5 separate decks to enjoy the sun while eating outside, tanning or simply standing still to enjoy the view. You would probably have to pay about $150,000-$200,000 (estimated) for a metal container house this big. Compared to the $300K required to build a normal house with the same dimension. We think metal containers sound quite attractive at this point, especially if the value of unique design and sustainability are taken into account. 😉 Container Guesthouse Via Digital Trends The costs to build this 1,000 sq. ft. house rise up to $75,000 – $125,000 (estimated). They used 2 x 40 ft. containers and added large windows to make the house look very spacious. This will help get your mind off the fact that it’s made of metal containers. Although you can’t tell from this picture, the house is located near a two-million people city: San Jose, Costa Rica. This is a great way to build the house of your dreams without burying yourself in debt. Any young married couple who bought a house agrees their life became a lot more difficult after getting a loan of $300K+, so why would you do the same when there is a more affordable way? You have to be open minded though about the whole shipping containers idea. Green and black containers house Via Digital Trends Located in France, this house measures 1,119 sq. ft. and is made of two metal containers positioned on top of each other. Maybe you don’t like the green color, but this is not a reason to dislike this design. Remember that you are free to paint it in whatever color you want. Besides, you have to appreciate the desire of architects to make the construction look as if it defies the laws of physics. Inside, you will see the house looks like any other one: wooden floor, white walls, and a comfortable sofa in the living room. If you go upstairs you will find the bedroom that has a door (or window, you can’t tell for sure from the picture) that leads to the top of the first container. You can put grass there or add a chaise lounge to get a tan during hot summer days. PV14 house Via PV14 house Here’s what a guy from Dallas, Texas, managed to build; an impressive house comprised of 14 steel shipping containers designed and built for around $350,000 – $490,000 (estimated total cost to build). It has an impressive surface of 3,700 sq. ft., featuring 3 bedrooms, each with its own bathroom, a garage large enough to fit 2 cars, and a roof deck. There is also a study that the owner (who is an architect) probably uses for late night work. You must admit that the design is innovative. You can barely tell the walls are made of metal. On the other hand, your bank account would definitely tell if you were to build a regular 3,700 sq. ft. house with pool. PV14 House interior by Wade Griffith Photography […]

By | January 2nd, 2019|Architecture, Home Designs, Shipping Container Homes|14 Comments

How Much Does it Cost to Build a New House: Itemized Costs 2019

The cost to build a house includes a large number of components and variables based on site factors, design and materials. There’s a lot of information to tackle, but that’s what we’re here to do. You won’t find a more comprehensive, itemized list of costs for building a home from initial site work on a vacant lot to the finished product. This home construction cost guide covers: Land development costs and fees Foundation costs Framing costs Exterior finish costs such as siding and roofing Interior rough-ins such as plumbing and electrical Interior finish costs from drywall to flooring, cabinets and countertops Final grading and landscaping Driveway and deck In each section, you’ll find: a price range and an average cost for that phase, factors affecting cost, percentage of the whole cost that each phase represents, potential pitfalls and a timeline for each phase of development and construction. Average Home Size According to the US Census Bureau, the average size of new homes in 2018 was 2,500 square feet. That’s the size we use for the average costs below. Let’s jump into residential home construction costs from start to finish: Residential Construction Site Work Cost Average cost: $14,355 Cost range: $10,000 to $25,000 Share of total home cost: 5.6% Overview: These are fixed costs regardless of home size. This phase involves the work needed to make vacant land habitable. Engineers inspect the property to determine whether it is buildable, where the home (and well and septic field, if applicable) should go and how the site should be graded for drainage. The more complex the site and home, the higher these fees will be. Water on the property typically raises the costs significantly, as an impact study must be done. The design, engineering and studies are often done for entire developments, so the absolute costs might be higher, but cost is less on a per-home basis. Time frame: 4-10 weeks depending on the complexity of the inspections and engineering and the workload of the engineers Potential pitfalls: Finding wetlands on the property or a water table so high it prohibits building or the installation of a basement or standard drain field, delays in getting site reports completed or plans approved. Here is a breakdown of the average costs of the steps involved in permitting, planning and preparation process: Permits, fees and inspections: $3,650 Impact study cost, if required: $1,750 Architecture & site engineering fees: $4,600 City water hookup: $1,500 or Well: $4,500 City sewer hookup: $2,300 or Standard septic system: $3,700 or Engineered (mound) septic system: $13,500 […]

By | January 2nd, 2019|Home Construction, Land Development|7 Comments

How to Build and Place a Simple Shed on your Property

There are 10 steps to building a shed on your property. Choose your shed design Acquire a permit if needed Order materials Install the foundation, if needed Frame the shed – Floor, walls and roof Install the door and windows Wire the shed (optional) Install roofing and siding Build a shed ramp (optional) Finish your shed to suit your style A storage shed is a convenient way to reduce clutter in your home, reserve your garage for vehicles and save thousands of dollars in storage rental fees. Plus, your extra items will be close at hand rather than across town in a storage unit. […]

By | November 25th, 2018|Sheds|0 Comments