Floorplan Showdown: Completely Open vs. Partially Open

Filed in Design, Economics, Home Building, Housing Trends by on February 1, 2017 0 Comments

Sabal Homes in Summerville, S.C., created this open floorplan in “Camelia at Summers Corner,” a 2016 Platinum BALA winner. Photography by Johnson Pictures, Inc.

To be (completely open), or not to be (completely open). That is the question for today’s new homes as builders adjust their layouts according to ever-evolving home buyer preferences.

General results from NAHB surveys of home buyers (in 2015) and home builders (in 2016) show that buyers have a strong preference for open floorplans, and that most builders are doing their best to create those open spaces for their clients. 

There are, however, some differences between what buyers are seeking and what builders are delivering.

For example, regarding kitchen/family room layouts:

  • 54% of builders said their typical new homes have a “completely open” floorplan.
  • Yet only 32% of buyers said that’s what they were shopping for.

And as for kitchen/dining room layouts:

  • 51% of builders said their typical new homes feature a “completely open” floorplan.
  • But just 41% of buyers preferred this option.

While the surveys may suggest a slight disparity between the groups, it’s important to consider that the home buyers survey includes responses from both new-home and existing-home shoppers. The strong demand for completely open floorplans enables builders to compensate for the shortage of such layouts in the existing-homes market.

These details and many others can be found in a new NAHB report. The report includes an analysis of buyer preferences for home size and the number of bathrooms, among other housing characteristics.

An additional summary of the report is also available on EyeOnHousing.org

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