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Ask a Realtor: Will an open floor plan bring in top dollar?

KeancolumnsQuestion: We are planning a remodel of our home which is about 1,400 sq. ft. We currently have a large living room (357 sq. ft.), a dining room (136 sq. ft.), and a kitchen (125 sq. ft.) we are planning to remodel. We are thinking of possibly opening up the walls between these rooms to have an open floor plan. In general, are open floor plans desirable for home buyers? If we decide to sell our home after the remodel, will it add more or less value to our home to have an open floor plan. Thank you, Carol.

Answer: From Prudential California Realtor David Kean:

Open floor plans are very popular with today’s homeowners, from singles, to couples, to large families. Removing walls, halls, and doorways can improve the flow and light level of the home, as well as create an inviting entertaining space. One thing to take into consideration is the architectural style of the home. If you have a Craftsman cottage, for instance, it should have some separation between rooms to retain the architectural integrity. Adjust the degree of openness to suit the style and layout. You can either completely open the wall, or you create a very large opening and retain a small degree of separation. You can also add architectural elements, such as archways, corbels or columns (the latter of which is pictured here in a condo I remodeled) to give the idea of separation. Once you open up your floor plan, make sure the rooms flow gracefully and naturally into one another and, since the rooms will all be visible to each other, you’ll have to be mindful of clutter.

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