After we drew out the floorplan in life-size, we only had a couple of last tweaks to make. We changed the alcove area off of the powder room to shorten the master bedroom hallway and expand the closable alcove that allowed us to separate the “wing” from the rest of the house. We also increased the size of the garage to allow for more storage.
Since our living room would be stacked on top of the garage, increasing the garage space increased the living room space as well. This wasn’t exactly something we needed – the living room was already plenty big – and we considered for a bit whether it was worth staggering the sizes of the two spaces or doing something else to avoid the added square footage. But in the end, it wasn’t adding a ton of finished space, and once we marked out the living room size it was generous but not cavernous. So we kept it. That brought our total square footage to 2542, with 3158 enclosed (adding the garage) and a 600 sq ft deck. Which essentially maxed out our square footage for the $600k build budget.
We also tweaked the downstairs bathroom to allow for a double sink and washroom setup, so when we have two teenage girls in the house they both have their own space. Which got us here:
We also went with the linen closet option, given the downstairs bathroom’s proximity to the planned bunks in the activity room and the girls’ bedrooms.
A couple of question marks remained. Where did we want to put the hot tub? Getting it to the second story would be expensive but the views are better, and there isn’t a great location downstairs. We know plenty of people who have regretted hot tubs, but at our Summit County condo, where we’ve spent the weekends, we use the complex’s hot tub every weekend, so we figured it was worthwhile.
We also wanted some sort of fire in or near the living room; either a gas fireplace or stove. We started playing around with options, since we didn’t want to have any sort of a major negative impact on the views. But some of the least-obstructive options, like a classic stove like this didn’t do a lot for us.
We also needed to figure out how we wanted to handle the exterior office door. The main entry of the house would be near the garage, pretty far from the office. Did we want a wrap-around deck? A wrap-around sidewalk? Something else?
Meanwhile, Shaun was also playing around with side elevations, toying with how the levels of the house would be arranged and whether the foundation slabs/crawlspace would step into the hillside. An earlier elevation had a stepped set of slabs for the upper floor, but the current version only had a step for the garage:
Those gave us a number of things to tinker with. The next issues to pin down were to figure out window locations and figure out how the house would be oriented on the site. Shaun’s first swing at this oriented the house southwest, so that Peak 1 would be framed out the narrow-end living room windows. That wasn’t what we were shooting for, since we wanted the long axis of the house to be exposed to the southern views, with the narrow-end windows pointing at Buffalo Mountain, a little something like this for the narrow-end windows:
And this for the long-sided living room windows; a view from Peak 1 to Baldy:
With those and a few other issues set to resolve, we set an in-person meeting with Shaun, trying to slot it into our youngest’s usual morning nap time.