There's a real tension in house designs at the moment, with one push towards bigger homes and another towards accessible homes.
With the price of land ever-increasing, most people choose a double-storey design to increase the number of rooms in the home. But that typically means stairs, which present accessibility problems for people of advancing years, people with a disability or even those with short-term injuries.
Our latest poll asks whether you would prefer to live in a single-level or double-storey house. One might be more convenient and accessible, the other option presents significantly more space (and potentially other bonuses like views).
Let us know which you prefer by voting in the poll on the front page. Feel free to also add to the discussion by replying below.
@Jason, I'm an unabashed single storey fan, & I have no doubt in my mind that people would still prefer them, if land prices weren't so outrageously ramped up by greedy speculators.
Quite frankly, you can call me Frank, I can't see a single advantage in multi-storey construction, other than a smaller foundation footprint, but then again, they have to be more substantial, to keep the taller structure stable. Saving = zinch.
OK, l'll try again, less gutter area to install, but you're probably paying the installer the same anyway, because he's hit you with a steeper price to cover his inconvenience.
I'm batting for you multi-storey fans, so there're less roof tiles to fit, so that's a saving, right? NUP.
We're down the track a bit, & utility costs are kill'n yah. No worries, you go solar, right? Guess what, you've got less area to install the panels, & you're gonna be hit hard for having them installed way up there.
The seaons are a chang'n, & you simply want to clear your gutters, but damn, you don't have enough land area to set up a ladder at a safe incline, except in your front yard. The same goes for, painting & window cleaning. Hmmm!!!
OK, here's the positive of that multi-storey view, you can see 3 of your direct neighbours, that're able to look straight back at you, unless you share the cost of multi-storey fences, & that's not going to happen.
The view from the ground floor room(s), will more than likely be obscured by the family cars, that aren't residing in the double garage. Not to worry, you can always take in the view of the Coles/Woolworth supermarket, carpark, & the rotating takeaway food outlets from the other floor(s), if you're lucky.
Time stops for no-one, & we all age, so where do you go from there? The smart choice is to stay put, & if you hadn't made provision for a lift as previously suggested, then there're stair lifts, kinda like compact mobility/powered chairs that glide up your staircases, & can come in wheelchair friendly varieties.
That'll do for now.
One advantage of multi-storey houses is that you can have a clear distinction between the living spaces and the bedrooms, which are typically upstairs. Good for bedroom privacy and creating peaceful/restful bedrooms.
@Kellie, I can see your point, but it's almost mandatory for the master bedroom to have an en-suite, & the other 2 or 3 bedrooms (if on a budget) share a toilet. Somewhere in the confines of the bedroom floor plan, there will be bedrooms a wall away from a toilet, which is potentially a sleep disturbing sound source.
True story, I workmate landed the high paying position that I ended up in, but he was the youngest ever, having started at 21 years of age. His wife had a good paying job, & they had 2 daughters who had a bedroom each, making it 3 bedrooms in total. The privatisation of the electricity industry created mega-buck opportunities, if you were prepared to move inter-state. He sought a position in Sydney, & was confident that he'd get good money for their home, as he'd lavished money on it, & it was their pride & joy. The shame was, he couldn't sell, because the market demanded 4 bedrooms.
How does that relate to your bedroom grouping on a single floor? I'm thinking it has to be a big footprint multi-storey house to fit all those bedrooms/bathrooms on the one floor level, but I admit, I'm out of touch with modern thinking.
Hi Chris .. Elaine here.
Back to my "future" loft (fingers crossed). A Stair lift is exactly what I am thinking of to include with the physical stairs to get up to my future Craft/Art room. Thinking ahead as I am not planning to move from my present home.
Of course, all this has to be approved by Council etc. first!!!!
Poll: At my stage of life (only 32 hahahaha) a single-level home is very suitable for me .. but I am thinking of a "Loft" for a Craft/Art Studio.
This would free up my 2nd bedroom and be used for exactly that purpose!!!
@BibbyKat, I saw your "only 32" typo, but don't dispair, I often transpose numbers too.
In under a week, I'm going to be 66, so that should make life a lot easier for me for the next year.
About the stair lift idea, it may be possible to have one fitted directly to your garage wall, without the expense of installing stairs. Don't hold me to it, but I can see savings on your garage floor space, & the expense of the stairs.
I admit that I have a disdain for stairs, I see them as a potentially serious accident hazard waiting to happen, when going up or down, while carrying objects.
Hope this helps.
@Jason & fellow Workshoppers, I apolgise if I'm seen to be spamming negativity, or beating my own drum, but I have another aspect of multi-storey homes that worries me.
In a single storey home fire, there'll be a front, & or rear door to escape through, but if they aren't accessible, breaking a window is another escape route. In a multi-storey build, if the stairs lead you straight to the fire hazard, where do you go from there?
I'm not delusional, I recognise that there are plenty of people, who for whatever circumstances, multi-storey accomodation is their only option. I'm not callously beating up on anybody, on the contrary, I sympathise with those that've been forced into submission. I also accept that there're people who happily live in multi-storey dwellings/complexes/apartments, & I congratulate them, for making the choice that's right for them.
Hi Andy_Man ... Wadda you mean typo error? Well really !!!! hahahaha
OK OK .. Truth .. 33|!
Didn't think of just having a chair lift and no stairs ... but they are so slow! That would drive me "nuts". At the moment am able and very fit! Thinking more down the track really.
Agree, stairs can be a hazard ... anyway .. great idea and agree with comments.
PS. Happy Birthday wishes for your forthcoming birthday day!