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Buying & Selling Tips

No room for error.

How to pick the new construction floor plan that has you worshipping the ground you walk on.
By Justin Kerby Apr 14, 2022

Sometimes, new is better. That’s what we recently covered in a guide article here at REW that highlighted the benefits of purchasing a new construction property. If you’ve decided that a new build is right for you, congratulations. Knowing where to start your search is half the battle. 

 

Luke, meet Obi-Wan. 

Like everything else in life, nothing worth having comes easy. Thus, to help guide you through the process and make evaluating properties as easy as possible, we’ve called in the experts. 

Shannon McNulty is a pre-sale pro, in the top 10% of all Vancouver real estate agents, and she’s been kind enough to give us her thoughts on some of the floor plans listed below. Shannon frequently consults with real estate developers, sells new construction units and helps buyers find their newest new home - in short, she’s the perfect guide for this particular real estate adventure.

 

From the window to the wall. 

To quote professional baseball legend and amateur philosopher Yogi Berra, “If you don’t know where you’re going, you’ll end up someplace else.” A floor plan is a preview of your new life, so you’d better be sure you’ve thought through the details.

This is a lesson many of us have learned the hard way. You fall in love with a beautiful area that fits your budget, and a month after move-in-day you realize that being on the 44th floor with two Dobermans was perhaps a mistake. Or that having zero natural sunlight isn’t helping you stay motivated while you work from home. 

No room for error.

 

The times, they are a-changin’.

Floor plans in general are more open than they’ve ever been and in many cases a bit smaller than they used to be. Family, living and kitchen areas are likely unseparated in most new builds, which also reflects a changing of preferences from new buyers. 

What hasn’t changed are the essentials: people still want functional living spaces, with storage options, amenities and layouts that fit their lifestyle. 

 

Make a list, check it twice.

First assess how you’re currently living. What could you use more of? What drives you crazy about your current space? What are you thankful to have in your home right now? 

 

Space: The final frontier

If you play lots of sports or ride your bike to work, storage space is something you’ll need to look for (unless you love the ‘I live in a bike shop’ aesthetic). If you’re sharing a bathroom, two sinks could be a game-changer for you and your partner - yes, an extra oval in your vanity can do wonders for your relationship. Or maybe you’re planning on expanding your family, in which case a second or third bedroom may be in order? 

No room for error.

 

Here’s an example of a perfect floor plan for a growing family in need of space. Solstice at Tower Ranch in Kelowna is a new development featuring extra deep double car garages, a flex space that could be used as a home office, and plenty of closet space including a walk-in closet off the master bedroom. 

 

What the experts say about Solstice at Tower Ranch

Shannon McNulty’s thoughts: This project presents a great entry-level townhouse product for the growing family and young couple looking to get a foothold into the market. Only a fraction of the cost of a single-family, you're getting a really functional floor plan that is providing a similar living style to a traditional home. It is in an area that presents a lot of opportunity for future growth. 

The real bonus is the optional third bedroom or den that is perfect for a new or visiting family member, as well as a home office space. It’s an upwardly mobile product for professionals looking for a work-from-home space - a great place to enter the real estate market.

REW now offers homeseekers the ability to browse the floor plans of new developments. Take a look at Solstice at Tower Ranch below.

No room for error.

 

See the floor plans here

 

What you see is what you get.

Other than the number of bedrooms and bathrooms, square footage is the first thing buyers look at when evaluating a floor plan. It’s extremely important when determining pricing, but don’t overlook the layout and specific dimensions of a floor plan - 1,600 square feet can look and feel very different depending on how things are laid out. 

 

Traffic jam.

Think about traffic flow through your home and access points. Will your guests have to walk through your bedroom to get to the bathroom, or for balcony access? Does your bathroom open into the kitchen or will it offer a bit more privacy? 

Take a look at the Horseshoe Bay Sanctuary in West Vancouver. The floor plans in the villas offer direct access to the patio from the main living area, and bathrooms are nestled away from the kitchen area. There won’t be any shortage of views in these units. 

No room for error.

 

See the floor plans here

 

What the experts say about Horseshoe Bay Sanctuary

Shannon McNulty’s thoughts: We're seeing more and more developers trend towards open concept living plans - even in large square foot plans. A big reason for this is it best captures the view plane, especially for waterfront products such as this development at Horseshoe Bay. 

We've got to think about the project and its surroundings - you have the spectacular vistas and no distractions of the view plane from all angles of the home. It will allow for different pods of the home that aren't closed off from the main living area. This will feel like a sociable, warm space.

 

No room for error.

The dimensions of each room are another important consideration. Accessibility, the size of the bed you’ll be putting in your master bedroom, how much kitchen space you need to host friends and family, and storage space should all be thought through so that on move-in-day you don’t have any unpleasant surprises. 

No room for error.

No room for error.

No room for error.

 

Home is where the sauna is. 

The amenities are the cherry on top of a good floor plan. Take the amenities at the Landmark on Robson development in Vancouver’s West End, for example. 

No room for error.

 

With 24-hour concierge and security services, an ozone pool with sunning areas, his and hers saunas, a fitness and yoga centre, a billiards room and a wet bar, this new build is the perfect choice for a buyer with an active lifestyle. Not all new construction properties come with amenities this impressive, so consider what’s important to you when you do your research. 

 

There is always a plan b. 

The good news is that if a floor plan doesn’t work with your lifestyle, you don’t have to go far to find more options. Typically new construction builds offer plenty of options. 

Landmark on Robson is a great example of the variety that you can find in some developments. The twin towers include 1, 2 and 3 bedroom floor plans, with two 1-bedroom offerings, four 2-bedroom offerings, and four 3-bedroom layouts. Plenty of options to choose from in one development. 

 

No room for error.

 

What the experts say about Landmark on Robson

Shannon McNulty’s thoughts: This is a great example of a well-laid-out corner unit under 1100 square feet. I love that this offers a full two bed and bath, plus the additional den space. Having the dining and kitchen in the corners will give the unit a ton of light. 

Generally, I would always like to recommend a two-bedroom corner unit. Corner units tend to be reserved for the bigger floor plans. Northwest exposure is also considered the most ideal because you're not getting blasted with sun and you're getting great exposure in the evening. However, if you're a lizard who can’t get enough sunlight, I'd choose southwest to soak up the rays.

See the floor plans here

No room for error.

No room for error.


Your new home is on REW just waiting to be discovered, search through floor plans today to size up the perfect fit for you and your family.

Justin Kerby
Justin Kerby is the founder of Something Great, a digital marketing agency that specializes in real estate branding and content creation. They help companies create social media strategies, newsletters, blog content plans, and advertising campaigns.
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