There are skinny margaritas, skinny jeans, and yes, even skinny houses, typically 15 to 20 feet wide. You might think a 20-foot wide house would be challenging to live in, but it actually is quite workable. Some 20-foot wide houses can be over 100 feet deep, giving you 2,000 square feet of living space.
20-foot wide houses are growing in popularity, especially in cities where there’s an increased need for skinny houses. This width makes having a home on a narrow lot (common in cities) extremely doable. The total square footage depends on the depth, anywhere from 20 feet to over 100, and the number of floors.
You could live in a 20’ x 20’ tiny house with only one floor and 400 total square feet. Or you could have a two-story 20’ x 90’ home and end up with 3,600 square feet. Now you can start seeing how you can fit a lot more than you think in a 20-foot wide house.
Why Build A 20-Foot Wide House?
The odds are high that if you build a 20-foot wide house, it’s because you have to. Perhaps you’re working with a narrow lot that sets your maximum home width at 20 feet. Or, it could come down to budget and the size of house you can afford to build.
If the restriction is solely your lot size and you need a larger home, you would build up. If budget is your main concern, then you might opt for a more tiny house experience. Or, it could be a combination of the two, and you opt for a two-story home that’s about 30 feet deep.
No matter the reasons, if you’re working with a house that maxes out at 20-feet wide, the layout is important.
Considerations When Designing A 20-Foot Wide House
When you have a 20-foot width to play with, you can end up with some large rooms. For example, a 20’ x 20’ room is very spacious. However, it all depends on your available depth and the number of rooms.
A narrower home will mean smaller or fewer rooms. But, if you opt to add a second story, you could have larger shared spaces downstairs and all bedrooms upstairs.
Whichever way you decide to layout your house, start with the essentials–a place to sleep, eat, and use the bathroom. Once you know where those rooms will be, you can play around with any spare space.
Extra space might go to a laundry room, office, walk-in pantry, or playroom. If your house is more of a tiny house, then you’ll only be squeezing in essentials.
A Single-Story 20-Foot Wide House
Assume you have an overall depth of just over 50 feet in a single-story, 20-ft wide house. This gives you just over 1,000 square feet to play with. You need to fit a kitchen, living room, 3 bedrooms, and 2 bathrooms and would like a laundry area, too.
In this example, your layout might look something like this floorplan from Durango Homes. The kitchen, dining, and living areas combine into one open shared space to make them all appear larger.
A kitchen island helps add separation while providing extra seating and an additional place to enjoy meals. A guest bath is in the middle of the home, opposite one of the bedrooms.
Further down the hall are the laundry room and another bedroom. All of these areas share the 20-foot width of the home, making them somewhat smaller rooms.
However, the master bedroom and ensuite take up the home’s back end, allowing this retreat the full 20-foot width. This setup still allows for a more spacious master and multiple bedrooms.
A Two-Story 20-Ft Wide House
If you decide to build a two-story 20-ft wide house, you can possibly fit more bedrooms or extras. In this example, this 20-foot home is about 36 feet deep. Since it’s two stories, the overall livable square footage is about 1,400.
This home also has three bedrooms but fits an additional bathroom for a total of three. There’s also a separate lounge area upstairs. The addition of porches, verandas, and a terrace add to the openness and provide extra space.
One thing to note is in this plan; the kitchen is somewhat closed off. This could be a personal choice for some. However, if you wanted a more open feel, you could make the kitchen and living area one large space.
20-Ft Wide Houses In A Multi-Dwelling
Another popular place to find 20-foot wide homes is in multi-dwelling units, like fourplexes and triplexes. These buildings typically feature several homes in a row connected to each other.
So, you can have an overall building size of 3,000 square feet with three 20-ft homes within it. In these types of setups, you’ll usually find two-story units.
The kitchen and living area are typically on the bottom floor, and the top floor would be similar to below. All of the bedrooms are upstairs, along with a washer and dryer closet and two bathrooms.
How Should You Size Rooms in a 20-Foot Wide House?
The room sizes in a 20-ft wide house should be what you would expect in a wider home. After all, you still need adequate space within each separate room and area. Builders typically allocate a certain percentage of a home’s overall square footage to each room.
So, you can use these percentages to give you a rough idea of your individual room sizes. But, when planning your layout, remember some rooms may be narrower and longer to accommodate the overall 20-ft house width.
According to the National Association of Home Builders, these percentages vary based on your home’s size. The percentages look at small homes (under 2,000 sqft) and large homes (over 3,500 sqft).
These examples will look at a small 20-ft wide house that is 20-ft deep and totaling 400 square feet. Next, an average-sized, two-story 20-ft by 60-ft home, totaling 2,400 square feet. And, finally, a larger 20-ft wide home, measuring 100-feet deep and two stories, for a grand total of 4,000 square feet.
Based on the recommended percentages, your room spacing might look something like this.
Average Space Allocation in a Single-Story 20′ x 20′ Home
|Room||Percentage of Square Footage||Total Square Footage|
|Bedroom/Sleeping Areas||29.8%||119.2 sqft|
|Kitchen Area||14.7%||58.8 sqft|
|Breakfast Nook/Eat-In Area||3.1%||12.4 sqft|
|Living Room Area||24.3%||97.2 sqft|
|Laundry Area||3.5%||14.0 sqft|
|Other Finished Spaces/Storage Areas||13.2%||52.8 sqft|
Average Space Allocation in a Two-Story 20’ x 60’ Home
|Room||Percentage of Square Footage||Total Square Footage|
|Master Bedroom||13.1%||314.4 sqft|
|All Other Bedrooms||16.7%||400.8 sqft|
|Master Bathroom||6.5%||156.0 sqft|
|All Other Bathrooms||4.9%||117.6 sqft|
|Breakfast Nook/Eat-In Area||3.1%||74.4 sqft|
|Dining Room/Living Room||16.1%||386.4 sqft|
|Family Room/Library/Etc.||9.9%||237.6 sqft|
|Laundry Room||3.5%||84.0 sqft|
|Other Finished Spaces||11.0%||264.0 sqft|
Average Space Allocation in a Two-Story 20’ x 100’ Home
|Room||Percentage of Square Footage||Total Square Footage|
|Master Bedroom||9.2%||368.0 sqft|
|All Other Bedrooms||17.3%||692.0 sqft|
|Master Bathroom||5.2%||208.0 sqft|
|All Other Bathrooms||6.6%||264.0 sqft|
|Breakfast Nook/Eat-In Area||3.4%||136.0 sqft|
|Dining Room/Living Room||5.8%||232.0 sqft|
|Family Room/Library/Etc.||9.8%||392.0 sqft|
|Laundry Room||3.5%||140.0 sqft|
|Other Finished Spaces||25.5%||1,020.0 sqft|
Obviously, you can tweak these numbers to accommodate your specific lifestyle. However, this provides you a general idea of room sizes that would work in a 20-ft wide house.
Are there special restrictions to consider if you build a small house?
It all depends on where you’re building. Some building codes state a home must be a specific minimum size, which can vary significantly in some states. For example, some states require new homes to be at least 1,000 square feet.
In other cases, there may be stipulations on room sizes and so forth. If you’re planning to build a new house, it’s vital to know the local building codes no matter the size. Ensure you work with a reliable and professional contractor that will stay on top of all code restrictions and permits.
How wide is a single-wide mobile home?
Single-wide mobile homes, on average, are 18 feet wide. The typical depth is 80 feet. But mobile home sizes can vary, typically ranging from 66-80 feet in length and 14 to 18 feet wide.
You’ll usually get about 500 to 1,200 square feet of living space in a mobile home. You can expect to find one to two bedrooms and one to two bathrooms.
In comparison, double-wides can be 36 to 42 feet wide, but some might be shallower. You can find some that are about 28 feet deep, with others over 75 feet long.
- 15-Ft Wide House Plans (with Drawings)
- 7 Types Of Floor Plans (With Photos)
Stacy Randall is a wife, mother, and freelance writer from NOLA that has always had a love for DIY projects, home organization, and making spaces beautiful. Together with her husband, she has been spending the last several years lovingly renovating her grandparent’s former home, making it their own and learning a lot about life along the way.
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The cheapest way to build a home is to design a simple box. Sticking to a square or rectangular floor plan makes the building and design simple. Generally speaking, building up is cheaper than building a sprawling one-story home, so you may want to consider planning for a multiple-story home if you need more space.Is there a website to draw house plans? ›
Make Floor Plans for Your Home or Office Online
SmartDraw is the fastest, easiest way to draw floor plans. Whether you're a seasoned expert or even if you've never drawn a floor plan before, SmartDraw gives you everything you need. Use it on any device with an internet connection.
In fact, only 3% of homes built every year are created in conjunction with an architect. The short answer is yes! You can design your own house without an architect.Is it cheaper to build or buy a house? ›
Overall, it's cheaper to build a home than to buy one in California, with 13 out of the 20 counties saving you money if you decide to build your house from scratch. Budget-wise, building is more favorable in Southern California whereas Central California caters best to those interested in buying.Is it cheaper to build up or out? ›
In general, building up tends to be less costly than building out. When you factor in things like digging and pouring a new foundation, building out typically carries a higher price tag (though this isn't always true, and certainly depends on the size of the room and its purpose).What is it called when you draw house plans? ›
An architectural drawing or architect's drawing is a technical drawing of a building (or building project) that falls within the definition of architecture.Can anyone draw a house plan? ›
You typically can, that is, if you or your builder have a talent for design, if you have a clear idea what you want, and if you (or your builder, or someone you know) can produce plans that satisfy your local building authorities. In all these situations, you could get by without an architect.Is draw plan app free? ›
Install now and enjoy a free 7 day trial of the subscription plans. Payment will be charged to your Apple ID account after the free trail period. Subscription automatically renews unless it is cancelled at least 24 hours before the end of the current period.Is there an app that lets you build your own house? ›
Accessible to everyone, Home Design 3D is the reference interior design application for a professional result at your fingertips! Build your multi-story house now! CREATE, DESIGN, FURNISH AND DECORATE EASILY YOUR HOME AND SHARE IT WITH A COMMUNITY OF MORE THAN 90 MILLION OF USERS WORLDWIDE!Is there a way to design your own house? ›
Everyone can create a home design on their own by simply knowing where to find home design ideas. Many people will agree that online resources provide very comprehensive information on what trends exist on the home design market today and how these trends can be utilized.
A draftsman is cheaper than hiring an architect, typically charging 1% to 3% of the building costs—where an architect might charge upwards of 10%!How much does an architect charge to draw house plans? ›
Here's how much it will cost to have an architect draw plans
Most architects claim to charge between 5% and 20% of the cost of the building. That means if a home costs $100,000, you can expect the price of the architect to be somewhere between $5,000 and $20,000.
Architect fees vary for several reasons, but as of 2023 you can expect to pay an architect anything between 3% to 15% of your total construction costs. We look at why this varies so much below.What is the most expensive part of building a house? ›
Perhaps the most expensive part when it comes to building a home is the framing, which consists of wooden beams that make up the home's skeleton. Forbes states that high-quality lumber averages about $33,000 for a home in the United States. Metal stud framing systems begin around $20,000.What state has the cheapest houses per square foot? ›
West Virginia is the cheapest state to buy a house in as it has the lowest median list prices for homes as well as the cheapest sales price per square foot. Property taxes in the state are also some of the lowest in America.What city has the lowest cost of living? ›
Fort Wayne, Indiana, was named the city with the lowest cost of living for 2022.What is the cheapest type of house to build per square foot? ›
- Prefabricated Homes. Prefab homes are some of the cheapest type of houses to build per square foot. ...
- Shipping Container Home. The second cheapest type of house to build in 2023 is a shipping container home. ...
- Tiny House. ...
- Off-Grid Homes. ...
- Ranch-Style House.
While the average cost to build a house was $285,956 in 2022, most homeowners spend $111,892 – $460,414 to build their homes. Even though you can get a general idea of what you may pay, it's important to keep in mind that there are numerous factors that will impact the cost to build.How long does it take to build a home? ›
On average it can take approximately 6 months to complete the build of a house. However, it can be as little as 4 months or potentially more than 12 months. For a pre-designed house, you are looking at roughly 4-6 months, while custom designs can take longer at an expected 10-16 months.Which is cheaper basement or second floor? ›
Generally speaking, building up tends to be less expensive than a basement. That said, not too long ago, lumber was at an all-time high and basements were the better option. Check with your builder and they can advise you on the pros, cons, and cost of each.
A bump-out is a minor addition to a house that increases its total square footage but doesn't reach the scale of a full addition with multiple rooms. A bump-out can be as small as two or three feet that push out the side of the house, or as large as a single room.Is it cheaper to build a 1 story house? ›
A single-story home is more cost-effective to design, but it will cost more to build than a two-story home. To make things more complicated, they'll likely cost less to heat and cool over the years. Crunch the numbers and choose the home design that fits your budget.What does F mean in floor plan? ›
F or FURN – Furnace. FPL – Fireplace. KIT – Kitchen. KS – Knee Space. LN – Linen Closet.Should I hire an architect or draftsman? ›
Should I hire an architect or a draftsman? If you're looking to embark on a big construction project, particularly if it's a commercial build, you should probably look to hire an architect. This is to ensure your construction is built safely, with the correct materials and abides by all necessary building regulations.How do I find someone to draw a house plan? ›
Ask for recommendations for draftsmen from your builder, friends, or even local trades groups like the area Home Builder's Association. You may also find great recommendations by asking local lumberyard owners. Many work closely with draftsmen. Visit your local Home & Garden Show to scout potential options.How long does it take an architect to draw house plans? ›
How Long Does It Take an Architect to Draw Plans? Four to six months is the time it takes to go from ideas in notes and pictures to a full set of heavily-detailed technical construction documents that a construction team can use to create your family's dream custom home.Do house plans need to be stamped? ›
All final plans, specifications, reports, or calculations for buildings or structures that are not exempt shall be prepared by a licensed engineer or architect and, at the time of permit issuance, shall include a signature, stamp or seal, registration/license number and expiration date.How much does a draftsman charge vs architect? ›
Average drafting rates run between $75 and $125 per hour. An architect's hourly charge is significantly more, at about $350 to $400 per hour. Freelance rates tend to be lower than the hourly rates of a company.What is the number one free drawing app? ›
|Software/Tool Name||Supported Operating Systems|
|GIMP||Windows, macOS, Linux|
|Krita||Windows, macOS, Linux, Android, and Chrome OS|
|Sketchpad||Windows and macOS|
Floor Plan - Google Workspace Marketplace. Build interactive diagrams with intuitive UI. You can export result to PNG, JPG or SVG.
Artists and illustrators love Sketchbook for its professional-grade feature set and highly customizable tools.How much does it cost to build a house app? ›
What is the typical cost to build a home construction app? A home construction app usually costs $52,500 to build. However, the total cost can be as low as $35,000 or as high as $70,000.Can I draw a house plan online? ›
Can you draw a floor plan online? SmartDraw works on any device with an internet connection. Once you're done, you can export your floor plan as a PDF, SVG, or add it to any Office® application.How do I design my whole house? ›
- Choose a Theme. An easy way to make your home design unified is to have a common theme throughout. ...
- Match Materials. When shopping for furniture and accessories, consider the materials of the items you're buying. ...
- Pick a Signature Color. ...
- Coordinate Wall Colors. ...
- Incorporate Focal Features.
The cheapest way to build a home is to design a simple box. Sticking to a square or rectangular floor plan makes the building and design simple. Generally speaking, building up is cheaper than building a sprawling one-story home, so you may want to consider planning for a multiple-story home if you need more space.Can I draw my own blueprints? ›
While you may still need the help of a professional architect to successfully draft blueprints for a complicated building project, you can make your own blueprints to design a simple project. You can use tracing paper and an architect's ruler to draw them by hand yourself or use a computer program to make your design.Can I draw my own plans for planning? ›
You are neither required by law to have an architect submit your planning application or design your home. In fact, anyone can put together a set of floorplans.What app can I design my own house? ›
Houzz is the No. 1 app for improving and designing your home. Whether you're building, remodeling or decorating, Houzz has you covered.Is there a free app to make blueprints? ›
SmartDraw's blueprint maker is much easier to use than traditional CAD software costing many times more. Yet it offers some amazingly powerful features. Start with the exact blueprint design you need—not just a blank screen. Draw walls and add windows and doors to suit your needs.What is the difference between blueprints and drawings? ›
The term blueprint continues to be used less formally to refer to any floor plan (and even less formally, any type of plan). Practising engineers, architects, and drafters often call them "drawings", “prints”, or “plans”. It has almost entirely been replaced with digital computer-aided construction drawings.
The cost to hire a professional drafter ranges between $800 and $2,700, depending on complexity, or an average of $1,750. A draftsperson's hourly rate will range from $50 to $130. It takes at least ten hours to draw the blueprints of a three-bedroom house and costs anywhere from $500 to $2,000.How long does it take to draw plans? ›
For smaller projects, you are looking at approximately four weeks. For larger ones, it can be considerably more than that. It can seem frustrating at times, but it is these drawings that will be considered in detail by the planning department. They will need to be approved before you can start any work.What is a person who draws house plans called? ›
An architect plans the structure, lay out a blueprint or design of the building and reviews the construction. They basically plan the structure of the building.Can you design your own house and have it built? ›
You most certainly can! You can save a lot of time and money if you design a house plan yourself. It is also really fun to do. Many local authorities require an architect-drawing together with the permit application.Is design home app free? ›
Design Home is a completely free and fun way to furnish your virtual apartment, and there are no hidden costs.