When designing a new home, people usually anticipate spending a few years living in that house. That few years can turn into a lifetime. During those years, or even decades becoming a lifetime, the home will probably need to accommodate changes to its features. A home should be adaptable to most of the changes without becoming too costly and labour intensive.
Taking all possibilities into account you can design a house that can be, firstly, made bigger and later even be divided into two different smaller homes.
Advice on things to Consider while you Plan and Design a New Home, or Buy a House to Adapt to your Needs:
Create an Adaptable Floor Plan: Households change with time. Some changes can be planned, others will happen unforeseen. Design a floor plan that can be easily modified with enough room on the outside where possible enlargements can be built.
Strong Enough Foundation: If you plan to later go multi-level with your home, start off with a strong enough Foundation. Strengthening the foundation of an already built house can be bothersome and difficult and might be costly.
Plan for Easy Access from the Street and Car Ports and Garages: If the possibility exists that you will change your home in two separate homes, you might need to leave room for a possible second access path from the street. Also, keep in mind that you might need to make provisions for easy access for an elderly relative.
General Interior: Plan living spaces that will allow easy movement and access between them. Place electrical outlets and light switches where it’s accessible. If children are included in the household, you should use childproof electrical guides for all installations. You should include enough electrical outlets in each room and more in the living spaces and kitchen.
Bathrooms and Toilets: Ensure that there will be enough circulation in all rooms where water and steam are used. If separate toilet and bathroom is preferred, install a removable wall that can be removed later on, depending on your wants and needs
Bedrooms: Plan all sleeping spaces to be within easy reach from the bathroom facilities. Rooms must be made airy and well lighted. Design windows to give maximum light and air. Well-placed doors can mean either a room well built with many options or a room with only one option where the bed goes and nothing else.
A home that is accommodating to all the lifestyle changes that will occur in its time, without the need to demolish, or greatly modify the existing services or structure, is seen as an adaptable, liveable house.