When you're looking at homes for sale you'll notice that there are a lot of buzz words that are common to many of the real estate listings. Words like 'open plan' or 'open concept' may catch your eye, but what do they mean? Is this something you want in your house? Our article on open concept designs should explain the concept to your satisfaction and help you decide whether or not this is a feature you would like your new London home to have.
Generally speaking, when realtors or home sellers use the terms 'open concept' or 'open plan,' they mean that the house has fewer definite room divisions than a house that is not open concept. Where regular homes would have walls separating the kitchen, the dining room, and the living room, open plan houses don't. The kitchen, dining room, and living room are usually one large space with the kitchen counter being the only division that the room possesses. Sometimes the entire ground floor is taken up by this one large room.
There are advantages and disadvantages to open plan design. Open plan designs make the house feel larger and more open, which is good for those who will be living in it. Open plans also give you more options as far as room usage is concerned. If you usually eat in the kitchen anyway, you could forgo the dining room and have a very large living room instead. It's also great for entertaining, because you can still talk to your guests in the living room while you're in the kitchen getting things ready.
The major disadvantage of open plan designs is that if you want to use more than one room simultaneously, it will be very disruptive. For instance, you couldn't have your friends over for a dinner party in the dining room at the same time your daughter had her friends over to watch TV in the living room. Sound from open plan rooms tends to echo throughout the house. Open plans also allow a contractor to skimp on the size of all three rooms since the smaller spaces will feel larger when they're open.
This is the most common usage of open plan, although some realtors will use it to describe one room or bachelor apartments in a way that seems more hip and modern. Before you decide if you want to look for an open plan space among many homes for sale, consider how you're going to want to use the rooms. Another factor to consider is that open plan designs are hot right now, so houses with them will be easier to resell.
Image sample of an open concept floor plan