In the 1950s and 1960s, many homes featured small, separate, and distinct rooms; each room was its own private space. Open floor plans emerged in the 1980s, and immediately became a must-have design for home buyers. As time passed, the open concept house plan only grew in popularity, and is still a staple in custom home building today.

Open Living Spaces

An open floor plan is more than just the elimination of walls. It is creating an open, airy, space that encourages togetherness and flexibility in homes. Usually, open floor house plans combine the kitchen, dining area, and living space into what is called a “great room.” This means, one person can be cooking in the kitchen, another can be watching TV, and another doing homework at the kitchen island, all within view of one another. Open living spaces allow for greater communication between family members and guests, while older homes with small, separate rooms, are not conducive to social interactions or the lifestyles of families today.

How Open Floor Plans Increase Livability

Custom home builders construct new homes with livability often in the front of their minds. Open floor plans tend to increase livability, which is likely why the design concept is so popular. So, what is livability? Essentially, it is an evaluation of how well the overall design of a home corresponds with your lifestyle. Open floor plans utilize height, windows, and constructive and creative design details to develop productive, roomy, and livable spaces.

There are many ways open floor concepts increase livability, such as:

  • Encouraging engagement and togetherness among family members
  • Allowing ample room for activities and entertaining
  • Prompting creative and flexible use of space
  • Creating a more modern lifestyle


Decades ago, homes were built with the idea that every room had a distinct and individual function—kitchens were for cooking, dining rooms for formal eating, living rooms for relaxing or entertaining. Today, however, we live in a fast-paced, multi-tasking society, and homes tend to reflect that notion. Open floor plans allow for this multi-functional lifestyle, where each room can have a variety of uses and harmonizes well with the advancements of modern society.

The open concept house plan has become a staple in custom home design trends, and the builders at Sandy Spring are experts in these designs. Interested in a livable custom home with the open floor plan you’ve always desired?

Contact Sandy Spring Builders today to learn more!