How to Maximize Your Design Using Your Lot

  • Your lot shape and size can play a larger role in your home’s design than you may expect
  • Consider where you want your garage or driveway to sit on your lot in relation to the rest of the home
  • Weigh the benefits of a sloped or flat lot for a unique home design

How to Maximize Your Design Using Your Lot

Just like any other custom home project, there are various aspects to consider before we recommend any concrete planning begins. Each BrightLeaf custom home client focuses on something that matters most to them, but one specific element that’s important to consider early on is the size, shape, and features of the lot you’re building on.

Aside from the town or specific school district the land resides in, elements such as the orientation, natural landscaping, neighboring structures and more can play an influential role in how you are able to design your custom home on that lot.

Before purchasing a lot to build your dream home on, take these following factors into consideration first.

Natural Light and Sun Path Throughout the Day

While it’s hard to imagine how the final product will look when staring at a tear down or even an empty lot, it’s important to consider what natural light your finished custom home will be exposed to. In the Northern Hemisphere the Sun will always move from East to West in the Southern sky. The orientation of the home and window placement in the design will play a huge role in interior natural lighting from sunrise to sunset.

With our advanced 3D modeling capabilities, we could demonstrate to you before putting a shovel in the ground how the sun and natural light will interact with the inside of your home.

What are the benefits of designing a custom home with BrightLeaf?

Window Placement for Natural Light and Privacy

As we briefly mentioned above, there are ways we can creatively add privacy to your home without having to put up a large or unsightly fence. If your home’s plans have you sitting closely to the next house over, we can strategically place windows so they’re offset from your neighbors while still maximizing natural light. This achieves the perfect balance of functional while still maintaining privacy.

What Is The Shape and Path of Your Driveway

While this may seem like a less important element of your home’s design, it will make a big difference in the day to day function of coming and going from your house. If your lot sits on a busy street, we recommend a turnaround or u-shaped driveway for easy entering and exiting. No stressful reversing into traffic here!

all white symmetrical home with lots of windows
white home with side loaded 3 car garage

Where Should Your Garage Sit on The Property

If your lot is wide enough, you may want to consider a detached garage, hidden behind your home, leaving more room for creativity in the exterior design of your home. However, if you don’t want to walk back and forth between your home and the garage during a bitter winter or downpour, consider an attached garage. These can still be placed on the side or back of your home, but will require a wider lot in order to accommodate your driveway too. We’ve found if a wide enough lot isn’t an option to search for a corner lot instead which offers more flexibility.

How Much Space Do You Want for Outdoor Entertainment

Sure, you’ve already determined how much interior space you’ll need, but how about your outdoor space? This element of custom home designing can occasionally get overlooked when so many focus on interior design, but it’s still important to consider when searching for a lot.

If you’re an entertainer, gardener, or just all around outdoor enthusiast, having space to enjoy your yard and some privacy should be a priority when searching for a lot to build your custom home on.

Sloped Lot or Raising the Land for Water Protection

Don’t be intimidated by an existing hill on your property. There’s plenty of opportunity to design and build your home around a landscape like this. In fact, we had a client who specifically sought out a sloped lot in order to incorporate a light filled walkout basement as part of their custom home design.

grey home with large back deck and walkout basement

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Additionally, the higher your home is raised from ground level, the more light can enter the basement and the harder it will be for groundwater to reach the foundation, increasing protection from water damage or flooding.

Design Your Custom Home with Your Lot In Mind

There are so many things to consider when designing a custom home – we get it, and we hear it all the time from our clients. We hope this article helped you feel more prepared for your project and have a stronger understanding of what kind of lot you’ll need to check off those priority items in your custom home design.

Ready to find your perfect lot? Schedule a call with us today so we can assist in locating your ideal lot for your custom home. Or feel free to explore our LotFinder Service until you’re ready to begin your search.

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About BrightLeaf

BrightLeaf is an award-winning, custom home builder specializing in sustainable, modern energy-efficient homes as well as remodeling and renovations. We are also a  full-service real estate brokerage that can help you buy and sell in the Greater Chicagoland Area.

Live or thinking of living in the Greater Chicagoland Area and need one of the following services? Click on the link to book an appointment to talk to a BrightLeaf Home Consultant.

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