Thursday, July 17, 2014

Why you need to understand how to properly read a set of house plans

Why you need to understand how to properly read a set of house plans

Whether you want to become a carpenter, work in any part of the construction industry or you are thinking about having a custom home built then you need to learn to read a set of house plans or blue prints properly.

If you want to pursue a job with an engineering firm or work for a municipality then being able to put on your resume that you can accurately read a set of blue prints will give you a leg up on the competition. Everyone eventually will need to deal with a construction company or renovation company when they own their own home; this makes it imperative that you take the time to learn how to read a set of plans.

There are many reasons why you need to be able to read a set of house plans, especially if you are having a custom home built;

When your contractor asks you a question about your home over the phone or by email you need to be able to look at the plans and understand what he is asking you. There are a lot of decisions to be made by you the homeowner on a custom home but not all of them have to be made in person.

How do you know what the inside of your home will look like if you can’t read the plans the architect drew for you. It wastes time and money if you have to wait for your contractor to build sections of the house before you can understand what it looks like.

Understanding your house plans will help you understand what you’re being billed for by your contractor.

Most delays when building custom homes come from the homeowner having trouble making decisions, it is usually because they can’t envision what they are being asked or the options that they are being given.

Most disputes between the homeowner and either the contractor or the trades are because the homeowner has asked for something that cannot be done because of the way the home has been designed, drawn or engineered.

When having a custom home built or having someone renovate your existing home knowing how to read the plans is not just a one person job, your significant other should always learn to read them as well. This will allow better communication between the two of you and give your contractor the option on who they can talk to when explaining something or asking a question.

Knowing how to read the plans that your house was built with will also help you in the future, even custom homes eventually require renovations or repairs and when that time comes you might not be using the same contractor that built the home. Even if you are using the same company it could be ten to twenty years since they had been to the house and might not remember what’s behind the walls. A set of house plans will inform the contractor and you as the homeowner of the load points and bearing beams that are behind the drywall.
This is critical information when you are planning out a major renovation that requires removing or moving walls.

The more you can understand about your house plans the better it is for everyone involved, it makes your contractors job easier and will help take the stress off a lot of the decision making that you will be required as the house progresses.

Once you learn how to read a set of house plans or blue prints you probably will never forget. It will also give you the basics to reading many different plans and schematics for many other things that you could run into in life.

Rob Abbott
Operations Manager
Village Builders Inc.

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