Empty Nest Top 10 Design Elements: Part 2
Well I just dropped my youngest daughter off for school for her first day at Pre-K and my oldest daughter got on the bus this morning to go to her first day as a High School student. And I was supremely tempted to go back home and take a nap in a quiet house. And that makes me wonder about the parents who are sending their kids off for an extended stay at school or moving them out of the house for good. Do they get the urge to go take a nice nap in a quiet house?
I bet they do. Parents all have the same thoughts as their kids get older. We love them, but sometimes we just yearn for some time to ourselves. Empty Nesters, those parents whose kids have moved to college or have moved out completely, now have an abundance of time to themselves.
Top 10 Design Choices Continued
Here at Nelson Design Group, we want to make sure that your new home has all of the things that you haven’t had space or time for with the kids at home. Many people who are at this stage start to pick up new hobbies or reclaim old ones that they haven’t been able to practice. Some begin to work on their health more and so are looking for spaces to work out and exercise.
One of the things that you tend to need as the kids get out of the house is that you need to have a place to store away all of the bits and pieces you have accumulated over the years. Yes, you may not need the baby crib anymore, but its bad luck to give it away.
Another thing that you may find more time for now is enjoying the great outdoors. Going outside with kids is fun but relaxing in an outdoor living area is just tip top. The older I get, the more I dream about things like this. So, let’s look at these design choices and some house plans to get you there.
6. Outdoor Living Area
Let’s face it, kids have a love/hate relationship when it comes to outdoors. They love the freedom to rip, romp, run and scream and no one to tell them to “use their inside voices". They hate the bugs, heat, cold, and just basically all of the things that are climate controlled. Being able to enjoy an outside space without all of that drama would be amazing.
Ainsley Manor (MEN 5045)
This modest manor gives you over 4,000 square feet of living space with 3 Bedrooms, 3 Full Baths and 2 Half Baths. It also features a 3 car Garage to store your mechanical babies. The first thing that you notice about this home is the European stylings and unique roofline. This house plan makes it seem smaller than it is, but it is all about a great design.
As you step into the home from the Entry Porch, you find yourself in the Foyer that features high ceilings and an open railing to the staircase. You can move straight into the open floor plan that features the Great Room, Kitchen and Dining Area. This Great Room features a vaulted ceiling with exposed timber beams and an arched opening to the Kitchen.
The Kitchen features a large center island with seating for 6 as well as a large counterspace for all over your prepping. The Dining Room features a large picture window that faces out into the rear of the home. The Great Room gives you an amazing view of the Outdoor Living Area in the rear of the home through a set of large windows and French Doors.
The Outdoor Living Area is covered and has a high vaulted ceiling and features a stone fireplace so that you can enjoy your space no matter the weather. The best thing about having a covered Outdoor Living Area is that you are protected from the rain and it makes it easier to screen in. This gives you the ability to enjoy even days that are rainy. I love a nice spring rain, don’t you?
One of the great things about his particular plan is that it has two large Pantries. I can see one being used for snacks and quick fix items and one being used for the big shopping things. Oh, to be able to store more than a week’s worth of groceries at a time. That would be amazing!
This plan also features a large Laundry Room with an area for a soaking sink. This allows you to soak all of those tough stains before you put them in to the wash and it gives you a space to rinse out items before they end up in the washer. (I’m looking at you, nasty grassy pants that the yard was mowed in.)
This plan also features a large Mudroom that comes in off a side entrance close to the Garage. This Mudroom gives you ample hanging storage space as well as built in benches to help you peel your shoes off at the end of the day. This side entrance gives you a great place to come in without having to go through the main part of the house with groceries.
On the other side of the home on the main floor, you will find Bedroom 2 with its own in-suite Bathroom and walk-in closet. The Master Suite is on this side as well. The Master Bedroom features 10-foot boxed ceilings and large picture window facing the rear of the home. The Master Bath features a very large corner glass shower with two seats as well as a whirlpool tub and two walk-in closets.
The basement of this home is like a whole other house. When you come down the stairs, you enter the Game Room. This large space has picture windows and French Doors that lead you to the second Outdoor Living Space, the Covered Patio. This Patio gives you a great place to watch storms. The Game Room also features a smaller Kitchen Area with a raised bar with seating for 3 people.
On the left side of the Game Room, you will find a small Office that features both a large picture window facing the rear of the home but also a half Bath. This is a great place to work from home or simply get away from all the hustle and bustle in the Game Room.
On the right side of this level, there is a large Exercise Room. This gives you plenty of space to work out and this could also double as a great place to take shelter during severe weather. Bedroom 3 rounds out this plan with its in-suite Bathroom and walk-in closet.
5. Storage Space and Large Closets
The older I get, the more I find stuff that I absolutely have to keep. Over the years my husband and I have accumulated a great deal of, well, stuff. We even had to build a storage shed to help keep it from cluttering our house up too much. So, one of the things that Empty Nesters are always looking for are great ways to store their items.
Tahoe Park (SMN 1043)
This plan gives you just over 4,100 square feet of living space with 5 Bedrooms and 5.5 Bathrooms and features a 3 car Garage. The first thing that you notice about this home is that it has some great Rustic stylings. The Front Porch is covered with exposed timber trusses and has stonework as the base of those. The rest of the home continues that with stonework throughout the property.
Moving inside, you enter the Foyer that gives you a grand scope of the plan. To your right is the formal Dining Room. This room features exposed beams and has columns to help keep the space separated from the rest of the home.
From the Foyer you can step into the Great Room and Kitchen Area. This open floor plan blends the two rooms seamlessly and gives you a feeling space and airiness. The Great Room features a vaulted ceiling, large picture windows facing the rear of your property, exposed beams in the ceiling and a stonework gas fireplace.
The Kitchen gives you ample space with a large island in the middle with seating for 5 and a space for a sink. The Kitchen also gives you a small Pantry and loads of counterspace. Moving further into the home, you find the second Pantry that is big enough to fulfill all of your pioneer woman dreams.
This side of the plan also features a large Laundry Room with loads of counter space and a soaking sink as well as a closet to store things away in the off season. The Mudroom is also down this way, close to the covered Side Entry. The Mudroom gives you an area of hanging storage with benches under it to help stow away your gear.
The other side of the plan gives you a Study that can also double as a Guest Room. This room has its own closet and access to the Bathroom in the hall. The Master Suite features a large stonework fireplace and picture windows that face the Screen Porch on the rear of the home.
The Master Bath gives you a large bathing area including a huge shower and massive tub. This plan also features one of the largest walk-in closets in the Master Suite that I have ever seen. I think the walk-in closet may be bigger than most of my house!
The second floor of the home gives you Bedrooms 3, 4, and 5. Each of the Bedrooms feature their own Bathrooms and large walk-in closets. The second floor also gives you a small Loft Area that overlooks the front of the home and the Covered Porch.
4. Exercise Space, Hobby Rooms, Home Office, Room for Pets
One of the things that I look forward to when the kiddos leave the house is having time to devote to my hobbies. I love to do hand crafts like weaving and crocheting, making jewelry, etc. I just don’t have the time. That is something that Empty Nesters do find themselves with. They now have loads of time to devote to their hobbies, exercising, working from home, and getting pets. So now they need space to do so.
Chandler’s Place (MEN 5205)
This is one of those house plans that catches the attention of anyone who sees it. It gives you that European style of home with a gorgeous roofline and arches facing the street as you come in. This plan gives you 5,600 square feet of living space with 5 Bedrooms and 4.5 Baths. Unlike your average chateau, this home also features a 3 car Garage.
The first thing that you notice about this home is the covered Porch. This home greets you with a stonework porch and steps with beautiful arches that give it a taste of elegance and sophistication. As you enter the home from the Porch, you find yourself in a Foyer. To the left is a Study with floor to ceiling shelving along almost every wall. This also features a nook nestled under the stairs where you can read all about “The Boy Who Lived".
On the other side of the Foyer is a multipurpose room. This room can be used as a Guest Room or as a Recreation Room. It has a large closet and window and connects with a smaller Fitness Room that would be a perfect place to “sweat" it out.
From the Foyer, you can move directly across to the Great Room which features a brickwork gas fireplace and a large double door opening to the Covered Porch on the rear of the home. If you move to the left of the Great Room, you will find yourself in a hallway that will lead you to the Master Suite.
The Master Suite features large windows that look out on to the rear of the home and a corner brick work fireplace for those cozy winter evenings. The Master Bath features both a whirlpool tub and a corner shower with a seat for a relaxing evening after work. The walk-in closet is “L" shaped and will offer plenty of room for anyone’s collection of shoes and accessories.
If you move to the right from Great Room, you find yourself in the large Kitchen area. The Kitchen features a wine refrigerator and 2 bar top areas for dining. One is on the island in the center of the Kitchen and gives you seating for 3.
The island also gives you space for your microwave and a warming drawer. I had a stove that a warming compartment. It was wonderful to be able to fix my husband’s dinner on those nights that he had to work late and keep it nice and warm for him without having to warm it all up again.
The second bar seating area gives you seating for 6. The Kitchen has plenty of counterspace and room for both a refrigerator and a freezer. That would be perfect for anyone who loves to cook. And let’s not forget the entire countertop on the front wall of the home! This features its own sink and the double range! The Dining Room/ Hearth Room is along the rear wall and gives you an entryway to the Grilling Porch/ Outdoor Living Area. The Dining/Hearth Room features a large brickwork fireplace.
Moving from the Kitchen you find yourself in the Laundry Room. This room gives you plenty of workspace and sink for rinsing and soaking as well as access to a Laundry Chute from the second floor. The Half Bath is just through the door here and also has an entrance from the Dining/Hearth Room.
A Hunting Room rounds out this floor of the home. This room features space for all of your hunting gear including a Gun Safe and a bench with hanging storage directly above it. This room is perfect for those who love to hunt and fish and will give you a place to store all of your gear. This room also allows you to reach the Safe Room/Cedar Closet.
This is a multipurpose space that can be used to store clothing and is available to you and your family in times of inclement weather. The Second Floor of the plan features a Balcony overlooking the courtyard at the front of the home that can be accessed from Bedrooms 3 and 4.
All three of the Bedrooms on the Second Floor have their own in-suite Bathrooms and walk-in closet. There is also a Balcony overlooking the Great Room and Foyer. This home gives you luxury living and is perfect for a growing family.
Maybe you're looking for something in particular? Don’t worry, we have you covered. Come check out Nelson Design Group’s collection of over 1,800 house plans. And come check out the past blog posts in our house plan series:
- Farmhouse style
- Farmhouse House Plans
- Contemporary Modern style
- Contemporary Modern House Plans
- Rustic Style
- Rustic House plans
- Mountain and Cabins House Style
- Mountain and Cabin House Plans
- Examining House Styles: Pool Houses
- House Plan Spotlight: Pool Houses
- Examining House Styles: The Florida Collection
- House Plan Spotlight: The Florida Collection
- Outdoor Buildings: Garages and Pool Houses
- American Style House Plans
- Starter Homes Spotlight: Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3.
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