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Revise layout in victorian end of terrace

(10 Posts)
thereisnocheese Mon 04-May-15 09:08:03

Hi, I'm looking for mumsnet jury view on my plans to revise our downstairs layout. Our terrace has typically a small lounge ( front door opens directly to it) then stairs parallel to front of house (cuts downstairs in half) beyond that a dining room and beyond that a kitchen extension with downstairs loo. I don't love the fact that the front door opens directly into lounge plus there is a bunch of wasted space which ostensibly is the corridor to the stairs other downstairs rooms. We have been planning for ages to open up the kitchen and dining room and use this as main social space but have just had a thought that if we reinstated the corridor leading from front door then could market the front room as a third bedroom when it is time to sell up, and use it as a snug/guest bed in meantime. There is a massive cupboard connecting lounge and dining room which must have been the existing access beforeprevious owners took down the wall by front door. So what do you reckon?

wowfudge Mon 04-May-15 13:34:42

Having lived in a similar house by the sounds of things I would: put a porch on the front so access isn't straight into the living room.

Either move the kitchen into the dining room and have the extension as a utility room or open up the two rooms into one. If the extension isn't all the way across the back of the house, could enlarging it be an option?

You don't say what the room dimensions are, but I wouldn't reinstate the hallway as it is likely to make the front room too small to be comfortably useful with modern furniture. Anyone buying the house with a view to using the downstairs front room as a bedroom can easily reinstate the hall with a partition wall themselves. It won't help your resale value if you do it.

We had two sofas in the living room and we just had them set out so you had to walk around them slightly rather than leaving a corridor. The room was big enough to allow a couple of different configurations anyway - it wouldn't have been with the hall reinstated.

I don't quite understand where you mean the massive cupboard is. The original layout was probably come in through front door, down the hall with door off for living room then access to stairs and a door into the back room. Sometimes when the hall wall was taken out, the access to the foot of the stairs was bricked up and the understairs cupboard/pantry altered so you would cross the living room to enter the back room and have to walk round to get to the foot of the stairs.

CloserToFiftyThanTwenty Mon 04-May-15 13:41:50

It's not really a third bedroom is it, unless you are marketing to student let landlords

EnriqueTheRingBearingLizard Mon 04-May-15 14:00:14

I was going to ask if you have any front garden space or if the pavement's right outside your door. If you could I'd agree with putting a front porch onto the house to break the entrance.

We had a house like this and I can't say that I'd have ever wanted the front living room to be a bedroom. I'd also be wary of making changes now which you think will make the house more salable if that were the only point of the alterations. I do get what mean about the corridor effect but I would've found the front room too small if we'd put in a partition wall and as much as you gain some wall space for furniture don't forget you also have to allow for an extra door opening where you'll lose space.

We opened our kitchen up to the middle (dining) room and lost the back door by putting opening doors in the dining room where there'd previously only been a window. That also gave us more light to that room.

I'm not really clear what you mean about the huge connecting cupboard? would it give you better use of space to block up the current access to the middle room and reinstate the access where the cupboard is now?

TheOneWiththeNicestSmile Mon 04-May-15 14:07:50

round here (Lancs) the houses with this layout often use the small front room as the dining room, esp when the corridor is still there, & use the larger back room as living room.

If you don't want the corridor you could add a vestibule (internal porch)

Timeforachangetoday Mon 04-May-15 16:36:01

I had a similar layout and put in a hall, called the front room the dining room (though could be playroom/study/whatever) and used the back room as the living room. Everyone told me not to do it, and when they couldn't stop up told me not to make the hall so wide, and once I'd done it admitted that it was a massive improvement smile

thereisnocheese Mon 04-May-15 18:09:10

Yes, time for a change that's it exactly, your floor plan is exactly what I'm thinking of doing. The cupboard is the other end of the stairs and accessed from both dining room and sitting room. So in theory could access the front room from dining room rather than the hallway, and crucially be used as a guest room as the guests wouldn't be disturbed by comings and goings by the front door. This is important to us as all our family live hundreds of miles away and we don't have any spare bedrooms ( and two dogs!)... Great idea of front porch, this is definitely something to think about, plus the kitchen could be extended a bit further I think. Just need to weigh up costs to determine if it's viable. We bought a bit of a wreck and slowly doing it up, but will want to sell within the next three years so still keeping half an eye on an ideal layout. Thanks to all for input!!

addictedtosugar Mon 04-May-15 18:21:55

What dimensions would the front room be? I don't think you'll be able to sell it as an extra bedroom so only do that bit if its right for you.
End terrace. Can you go sideways?
Could you put the kitchen at the front, and have a big dining-sitting room at the back?

TheOneWiththeNicestSmile Mon 04-May-15 21:07:38

separate small formal dining room at the front, & kitchen/living/dining/family room at the back, works better for most families

EnriqueTheRingBearingLizard Mon 04-May-15 22:38:49

A porch would be useful and would also help with the thermal values.
Didn't realise that a third occasional bedroom would be useful for you now OP as opposed to it purely being a future selling point, so making a private downstairs room with a sofa bed is probably worth your while then.

I wouldn't move the kitchen because the plumbing and drainage costs would probably outweigh any potential gain.

Best get some costings and start prioritizing smile

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