Before we jump in to talking about the pros and cons of open floor plans, it might be a good idea to talk about what this means, or in other words to define open. Open, in this instance, describes the layout of a larger space that functions as multiple rooms or functionalities within that single (larger) living space. The most common form of open floor plan in today’s homes includes a combination of kitchen, dining room, and living room all open to each other within a single “great room”.
Open space, to feel like truly open space, needs to have plenty of “white space” and free-flowing airspace. One way to achieve an opened up look in any room in the house (even the kitchen!) is to make larger pieces of furniture or even the architecture itself incorporate legginess. This allows our eyes to travel above, around, and under even the largest of elements, thus maximizing the sense of openness.
Once in place, hot water radiant heating tubing can be covered up with most types of flooring, although carpet isn’t ideal due to its insulative qualities, which end up counteracting the whole heating idea. Although the upfront installation costs are more, hot water radiant heating is the most popular and cost-effective way to heat a whole house – this system can be up to 30% more efficient than forced-air heating.
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