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Need help with exterior
February 25, 2013 in Design Dilemma
This is my amateur sketch of my own house design. I need help with the exterior front facade. The two gables meet in a valley which I'm pretty sure is a design no-no. I don't have the expertise, however, to come up with anything different. I want to highlight the front entry as well as gain unheated storage above the carport, all while maintaining a cost-effective design for building (that's why most of the house is largely just a box--that's on purpose). I've included the floor plans to give you an idea of window sight-lines, interior space, etc.

My design hasn't been professionally spec'd, so please excuse any egregious faux pas. Any suggestions would be most helpful. Thanks!
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Ironwood Builders
Running the two gables together is a common enough design. We install a "cricket" in the valley area with a torch down or bituminous roofing material, Basically a triangle that's apex is at the roof edge and base is at the wall, with a slope to the exterior. We frame a superstructure and fill it in with plywood, let the roofers go to town flashing and waterproofing. More of a concern is the floating corner of the entry gable end...needs a post under the right side! You may want to keep it clear for aesthetic reasons, but the mind says "Don't walk under that!". The water heater on the second floor causes me issues...unless you are going on-demand, that much water potentially leaking through two floors bugs me. No place to put it on the first floor?

I'll bow out of design stuff at this point...practical issues are my endeavor here.
1 Like   February 25, 2013 at 10:21PM
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You've done well for being an 'amateur'. I would remove the gable for the double carport in order to draw more focus on the main door.
1 Like   February 26, 2013 at 9:01AM
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Revolutionary Gardens
Agree with the top 2 comments. What's your pitch on the carport roof? It looks like you could push it down a hair and go with a hipped roof instead. That would be a potential way to draw attention to the entry.

Now that you're getting the concepts worked out my recommended next step would be to consult with a local design pro to get it right (and buildable).
2 Likes   February 26, 2013 at 9:40AM
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The Color People
ok, I'm going to be a bit rough on you but it will help in the end. You have kind of designed it around the parts you want to have. An architect would try to conceive it as more of an organic whole. The biggest problem is that none of the gables or angled roof have any relationship visually or proportionally with each other or the main mass of the house. Ironwood's comments on the entry gable are really right on. It feels like the gable is just leaning on the other roof- so a post for the corner will be essential. Lastly the car port will just feel like it is floating on the front of the house because while the house is substantial and the carport is not, so it will never feel like part of the house and detract from your home. Maybe you could run a stone wall between the stone piers and back to the entry pier. This would give it a more substantial visual base and make it feel tied to the house in a solidly. Painting the posts in the same color as the trim would make everything feel more substantial too because it would play up the structure of a beam supported by two posts to much better effect. When porch posts are a different color from the beam they support they kind of temporary and like they can be popped out.

That being said I can only commend you on venturing into a realm few would have the adventuresome spirt to go. Your basic idea is sound and materials choices and colors, etc are excellent. I'm not sure if you live where it snows, rains, blows or hails a lot. A metal roof tends not to look very homey but if you live in an area where it is the best choice or if you just love them by all means do it.
1 Like   February 26, 2013 at 3:02PM
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Thank you all for your very helpful comments, suggestions, and perspectives! They are so appreciated. I look forward to incorporating the best suggestions into my design!
0 Likes   February 28, 2013 at 11:14PM
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