What’s Included In A Set of House Plans?
Each set of working construction drawings that we offer will provide you with the needed information to build your home. Certain adjustments may be required to the house plans before construction begins to meet specific local building codes. Depending upon the location, this will need to be done locally by your contractor, a structural engineer, or in select states (New Jersey and Nevada) by an architect.
While each set of construction blueprints is unique and can vary by designer, the list below highlights the items that are generally included with each set of construction house plan packages that we offer.
The foundation plan will depend upon the design selected and shows the general intent of the foundation. Typically, the foundation will be a slab, crawlspace, full basement, or walk-out basement. Depending on the foundation, the plan typically delineates the location of bearing walls that will support the structure. It also identifies locations of footings, steel (rebar) placement, and other structural elements that are required to support the load of the upper floors. In select situations, the foundation plan will be a foundation outline.
Detailed Floor Plan(s)
A floor plan layout on blueprints is an overhead view of each floor of the completed house. You'll see parallel lines that scale at whatever width the walls are required to be. Dimensions are usually drawn between the walls to specify room sizes and wall lengths. You'll also see on the floor plan locations of doors and windows. Other elements called out may include fixtures like sinks, water heaters, furnaces, etc. Among the walls and dimensions, you will often find notes to specify finishes, construction methods, or even symbols for electrical or to reference cross sections. You can expect floor plans to be drawn at 1/4” scale.
Describes the elements that make up the roof including notation of spacing and schematics of peaks and valleys. It may also include the slope of the roof surfaces, chimney locations, and notations on the roofing material.
Elevations are a non-perspective (two-dimensional) view of the home. These are drawn to scale so that measurements can be taken for any aspect necessary. Plans include a front, rear, and both side elevations. The elevations specify ridge heights, the positioning of the final grade of the lot, exterior finishes, roof pitches, and other details that are necessary to give the home exterior architectural styling. You can expect elevations to be drawn at 1/4” and 1/8” scale.
Building Cross Sections
Overhead views or floor plan views of the structure don't always provide enough information as to how the home is to be built. Often, cross sections or details will explain certain special conditions more appropriately. A cross section is basically a view of the home if it were sliced down the center. This allows you to view the home from the side and understand a little better the relativity of varying floor heights, rafter lengths, and other structural elements.
Electrical layouts are sometimes on a separate page to make reading them a little easier. The layout will show locations of light fixtures, fans, outlets, light switches, etc. There is usually a legend on the page that explains what each symbol represents. There may be such legends for heating systems, door swings, and sizes, or even to specify certain finishes.
* The majority of our plans include electrical layout but some do not. Please email or call us if you have a specific question about a particular plan.
Interior Details and Elevations
These may include kitchen and bath elevations to show the arrangement and size of significant cabinets and other significant fixtures in the room. These drawings give basic information that can be used to create customized layouts with a cabinet manufacturer.
This is an artist's sketch to give you an idea of what the house would look like once built and then landscaped.
These are included for many interior and exterior conditions that require more specific information for their construction. This includes but may not be limited to the sizes of windows, fireplaces, doors, and staircases.
These are the basics of what is included in plans, which will vary according to the designer who drew them.
What’s Not Included?
Architectural and engineering stamps.
Location of actual ductwork for heating and cooling or pipework for plumbing.
Drawings showing the actual sizes and routing of the plumbing and mechanical systems.
Please Note: Some designers and architects offer a different set of offerings with their plan packages. These will be specified on the individual plan page under "Designer Notes." If you have any questions, please contact us by clicking the button "Ask Us a Question" on that plan's page.