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Maximizing Space in Narrow Lot Homes: It Can Be Done!

2nd May, 2017 | Filed under Articles, Blog

When you only have so much room, you go to great lengths to maximize the space available to get the most out of less. It may seem easy to do in some cases. But maximizing space takes on new meaning – and new challenges – when building a home on a narrow lot. These slender lots require ample storage, convertible space and well-placed rooms to amp up the overall appeal of the home designs.

“On a narrow lot, you have to be smart about how things fit together in a home design,” said Rick McAlexander, CEO of Associated Designs. “It has to both maximize the space available as well as appeal to a homeowner in terms of style, personality and practicality.”

In other words, maximizing space on a not-so-wide lot can be done, but it’s all about how the home is put together. Some elements of a home are enhanced, while others are rearranged and given new meaning. Rooms that normally would have only one use can be multipurpose rooms instead. These two 2,000-square-foot homes from Associated Designs put all of those pieces together in unique and appealing ways that fit well on narrow lots.

Charming Space Saver

Just imagine relaxing on a front porch in summer, chatting with friends while sipping drinks and waving to neighbors as they pass by. That’s the appeal of the Blue River home plan 30-789 – a two-story Craftsman-style bungalow. The hand-railed front porch, tapered columns and porte-cochere all add to the nostalgic charm of the home. But the exterior charm is only one side of this three-bedroom, two-bath design. Every component, attribute and room makes the most out of the space available.

The detached garage and drive-through porte-cochere saves on building width, while the two-story design allows for the main level to be filled with gathering spaces and the second floor to be confined to the family’s sleeping areas. The great-room style living on the main floor means no space is unused, and the bungalow opens up to natural light in the living room, dining room and C-shaped kitchen. The kitchen itself saves space by putting a walk-in pantry near the covered back patio. Meanwhile, the hobby room can double as a guest suite or home office. The roof’s attic storage can be opened from each of the smaller bedrooms on the second floor, but the stairwell near the utility room boasts an under-stair closet for more storage, too.

“This home has a little trick up its sleeves though,” said McAlexander. “There are no hallways, which means there is a nearly seamless transition from room to room.”

The hobby room, utility room and main floor are accessed from only a short hallway, but only a small landing at the top of the stairs accesses the second floor bedrooms. The end result is that this home takes the narrow lot and saves space on all levels while still retaining its nostalgic charm.

Flexible Country Cottage Living

Wrapping the living area in an L-shape around the garage allows the Shasta home design 30-866 to offer all the comforts of a large 2,000-square-foot home in a narrow building lot. The floor plan is completely attuned to contemporary families, with the master suite on the main floor in this one-and-a-half-story cottage-style home. But it’s the multipurpose functionality of the home that really shines.

The den is a prime example of this as it is the home’s flex space. Whether used as a home office, a guest bedroom, a study or another gathering area, it blends seamlessly with the rest of the main floor. An under-stair closet boosts the home’s available storage, but the second floor holds even more space-saving, multipurpose charm. Utilizing dormers, the home’s vaulted bonus room and additional attic storage means there is no limit to what can be done with this house.

“It both saves space and gives families options,” said McAlexander. “But it doesn’t shy away from being open and spacious despite it’s narrow lot appeal. You can be standing at the kitchen sink and look out across a wide area of functional living space. It definitely makes the Shasta a great choice for growing families with narrow lots.”

A narrow lot doesn’t mean you are limited in what you can do and how you can build your home. Maximizing space means rethinking how a home is pieced together, creating storage and rooms that are enhanced not overlooked. In other words, it’s easy to get more out of less space with the right home design.  

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