Whether looking for a new home or revamping a current residence, home owners continue to be drawn to the feelings of spaciousness, easy flow and welcoming togetherness evoked by an open floor plan.

Pioneered in the early 20th century, open floor plans remain popular today, according to a recent survey from the National Association of Home Builders. The survey found that 70 percent of buyers want a kitchen-family room area that is either completely or partially open, with 32 percent wanting it completely open.

And owners of existing homes are choosing to open things up, too. Remodelers reported that 40 percent of their projects involve opening existing homes’ main floors by removing interior walls entirely or by using countertops, cut-throughs or archways, rather than full walls, to define separate areas in a more open way.

Main floors with few or no interior walls between areas for cooking, eating, relaxing and entertaining allow cooks to chat with family members or guests, provide easy flow for entertaining and enable parents to keep an eye on children from different areas.

Open floor plans not only maximize space and flow, they optimize natural light. Windows serve more than their immediate area, illuminating the entire space.

With the increasing focus on accessible design, open floor plans meet another of today’s needs— with fewer doorways, they are easier to navigate in a wheelchair or with a stroller.

Time to open up the living space in your home?  Be sure to work with a member of the Rochester Home Builders’ Association or Upstate Building Industry Alliance. You’ll find them at FindTheHomePros.com.

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