Best design and layout for extensive renovations

Deonne Lyness
2 months ago


I’m hoping for some design/layout assistance, specifically best use of space.

My husband and I are looking to do some fairly extensive renovations; kitchen, laundry, ensuite and family bathroom. We have a reasonable amount of flexibility with plumbing placement as our house is built on a slope and we have timber floors (and we need to re-do our flooring). There is a large cathedral ceiling in the existing lounge and dining room and one of our big problems has been keeping this central part of the house cool in summer and warm in winter. Unfortunately, the design of the house didn’t factor in air flow so there is only one small pace where we get that at the moment – from the kitchen window across to the window in the dining room. Therefore, one idea I had was to move the kitchen completely so that we could install big sliding doors where the existing kitchen window is, although we still only have a doorway where the air would flow. My concern with doing this is whether the old kitchen area is big enough and suitable for a family room. I don’t want to turn the existing dining room into the family room as there is no way to separate it from the lounge room due to the cathedral ceilings.

Because of the cathedral ceilings and heating/cooling issues it brings, we have three split system air-conditioners. One in the ‘current’ family room, one in the lounge room and one in the master bedroom. This means that we need to be able to close off parts of the house at different times.

I want to make sure this renovation is practical and family friendly as I know that we will need to sell this house down the track as we get older.

We have a reasonable budget but still need to be thrifty as I am a full-time carer for my husband who is ex ADF and we are both on pensions.

I’m sorry I don’t have a proper floor plan. We checked with council when we brought the house and there is nothing on file. We will probably engage an architect soon to assist us with this.

I am open to any suggestions/ideas you may have.

The first photo is of our existing floorplan and the second one is a rough one of my current renovation plan. The faint stripes are to denote the cathedral ceiling. The funny boxes with squiggles are to denote the air-conditioners. I have also attached photos showing some interior shots of the house that might assist; 1. lounge/dining, 2. kitchen, 3. family room/kitchen, 4. Master and sun room.

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