Prioritising your space

While looking for a home, my husband and I spent a lot of time thinking about floor plans, and what would work best for us. We knew we didn’t want a place any smaller than about 700 square metres (in London that’s a decently sized 2 bed flat), but we also quickly realised that square footage wasn’t enough to guarantee we’d like a place. We also needed to consider HOW that space was divided up into living areas. We saw some places with oversized bedrooms and tiny kitchens. Others with massive bathrooms, but a very small second bedroom. And some with several small rooms off one, long, space-hogging hallway. Unfortunately, you can’t always find the exact layout you want, but it helps to work out which rooms you use most, and which you naturally spend a bit less time in, as those generally can be smaller.

So what works for us? Well, when we’re home we spend most of our time in the kitchen or the front room. S0 it’s ideal to have those two rooms quite near one another. Especially if I’m cooking while Liam is watching tv. Or vice versa. And it also works well when we’re entertaining to have the living space all together so that people don’t need to trek between the kitchen and the front room. That said, we like having the kitchen just separate to the main room so that we can contain cooking smells, grease, and other general food-related mess. So while we love the idea of open plan, I prefer the option of being able to close off the kitchen if I want to.

We use bedrooms very much for sleeping or storage. We want the main bedroom to be big enough for a queen size bed, wardrobes and some additional space. But not so huge that it dwarfs the other bedroom or even the living room (we saw one place that would have fit a couch into the bedroom along with a kingsize bed. Amazing, but for us it would have become wasted space). It’s also important that the bedrooms are quiet, and located towards the back of the house. We spent a year and a half of our lives sleeping in a front bedroom that looked onto a train, and only after we moved did we realise how much it actually disrupted our sleep. The second bedroom, we want to at least fit a double fold-out bed for when friends and family come to stay. And I have been waiting to buy a desk for the last five years, so having room for a small space where I can write or work from home is also important. But our second bedroom and bathroom were definitely where we were willing to make compromises. Finally, I knew I needed SOME outdoor space – whether it’s in the form of a small balcony or a garden. After spending so much time inside, and also with the work we like doing on furniture, we need a spot to hide some tools and just get out of the house on the weekends or nice evenings.

Luckily enough, the place we’ve found fits all those criteria. And here’s a little sneak peak.

Floor plan of our soon-to-be-first home
Floor plan of our soon-to-be-first home

We even managed to find a place with a bay window, which has me very excited. I’ve loved those since I was little, and am thinking about adding a built-in window seat to create a focal point in the front room. I can just imagine the two cats settled there snoozing during the day, or curling up with a book and a blanket come winter time.

We won’t be moving in until the end of September, but that gives us plenty of time to think about what we want. We’re hoping next week to go back and snap some photos and grab some measurements of the interior, so I’ll share those when we can. But come September, be prepared for lots of posts about us updating our new place.

What about you – which rooms do you prioritise when looking for a new home? How big or small do you need your space to be?

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