The plan of the house must be above all a direct and business-like arrangement. Every foot of space must be made to count, must contribute either to the smoothness of the housework or to the effectiveness of the whole interior. There should be no waste nor stagnant space, no idle nor undefined areas.

The organization of the floor plan should fit the organization of home activities. The three phases of daily life-work, play, and sleep-suggest three divisions of space in the arrangement of a dwelling, the living-rooms forming one group, the working parts another, and the sleeping-rooms another. Each of these space groups is distinct in use, in arrangement, and in the character of its furnishings.

Communication between these parts is provided by means of hall and stairs; in fact the starting point of any plan is a study of its circulation or passage. The hall may, therefore, be considered as the kernel of the plan, the distributing center of space.

The arrangement of the living-rooms should be generous in feeling. To this end, wide doorways, groups of windows, and long vistas both indoors and out are essential. One large unit for general family use and two or three smaller ones usually comprise the living area of the modest house. Some variety in the size, shape, and direction of the rooms is desirable in the design of the living space. Combinations of oblong rooms of different sizes placed at right angles to each other, or of oblong and square rooms of different dimensions, make a more interesting and more furnishable arrangement than a succession of square rooms, which tend to repeat each other in character and use. Generous window groups on long or important walls and arrangements of single windows or pairs on short or unimportant walls furnish a variety of outlook and lighting that is bound to give life and animation to the whole interior.

In general the living-rooms in temperate climates should occupy southerly exposures-south, southeast, and south-west-unless such an arrangement is contradicted by the direction of the view, prevailing winds, or other conditions of the site. An east dining-room is especially to be desired, since the morning sun on the breakfast table starts the day off cheerily. Living-rooms southerly and working parts northerly make a good complementary arrangement for using to advantage the four exposures of a free-standing house.

Further discussion of the working arrangements, such as kitchen, pantry, laundry, and the like, may be found on pages 99 to 119.

The sleeping-rooms must above all be private in location. That means that each room must be entered directly from a hall, not from another room. In a two-story house the privacy of the sleeping-rooms is automatically assured by placing them on the second floor. In a one-story arrangement a small bedroom-hall must be deliberately provided in addition to the entrance-hall.

The relative advantages of a one-floor or two-floor arrangement for a private dwelling depend on a number of factors. In general, the two-story house and the real bungalow, which has all the rooms arranged on a single floor, are climatic expressions of housing for widely different localities. Each is so normal for its own conditions that it becomes the prevalent type of that place. The informal spread-out plan of the bungalow is normal for warm climates, where yard and grounds form part of the daily life for a large part of the year and where the buildings may be lightly constructed without cellars and without heating systems. But when a dwelling must be arranged for year-round comfort in a locality of extreme heat and cold, the supposed economy of a one-floor arrangement, unless kept very small and compact, loses all point and defeats its own end. Large cellar and roof areas, the need for weather-tight construction and for an effective heating plant soon eat up the supposed economy of cost.

Fig. 1

Fig. 1. - Floor plans of a small house. The first floor plan shows a desirable spaciousness of living area and adaptability of working parts. The second floor plan shows an arrangement of four bedrooms, closets, and bath developed from a central hall.

There is, however, something to be said for the simpler housekeeping of the one-floor arrangement. The ease with which a servantless household may be comfortably maintained when all the living arrangements are on a single floor, is responsible for the popularity of various forms of apartments, flats, two-family dwellings, and even cottages with bedrooms on the first floor. Most of these are, however, rented dwelling-places and must not be confused with the type of house that it is desirable to build and own as a permanent home.

The three arrangements shown in the accompanying illustrations are typical examples of houses planned for modern conditions.

In Fig. 1 are shown both floor plans of a small house 26 by 30 feet. Here the spaciousness of the living area and the adaptability of the working parts may be instantly noted. The contrast in the size and shape of living- and dining-rooms, together with the long vista through both rooms and porch to the yard beyond, form a pleasing development of the space. The stairway is screened from the front door and is arranged in a separate stair-hall which serves also as passage to the coat-room and the kitchen. Such an arrangement greatly assists smooth and noiseless housekeeping. The second-floor plan shows an arrangement of four rooms, closets, and bath developed from a central hall.

Fig. 2

Fig. 2. - The first floor plan of a suburban house designed for the accomodation of a family with little children.

In Fig. 2 is shown the first-floor plan of a suburban house designed for the accommodation of a family with little children.

The panel of space across the front, comprising living-room, hall, and dining-room, is supplemented by a similar arrangement of rooms in the rear, in the form of nursery and kitchen. The front of the house can thus be kept in order while the rear part is in use. The nursery is so located that it can be watched by the worker in the kitchen, and the stairs are very accessible. With such an arrangement properly equipped, a mother could do her own work without exhaustion or loss of time. The children's lunch could be served in the nursery and the mother's couch and sewing materials would always be ready. The nursery could later be transformed into a study-room or library, or in case of illness into a downstairs bedroom, since toilet facilities are at hand. The house also adjusts itself to hired help.

Fig. 3

Fig. 3. - A typical arrangement of all rooms on one floor. The living-rooms and kitchen are grouped snugly together, and the bedrooms are grouped and arranged to open from a retired hall.

A typical arrangement of all rooms on one floor is shown in Fig. 3. The living-rooms and kitchen are grouped snugly together, and the bedrooms are grouped and arranged to open from a retired hall. Such a plan is suitable for a one-floor cottage arrangement in temperate climates. Another one-floor arrangement is shown in Fig. 4.

Fig. 4

Fig. 4. - A small farmhouse arranged on a single floor, with a cellar beneath for the furnace and for vegetable storage.