Floor Plan – The Complete Guide

I decided to make this post because a lot of people that are in doubt about the floor plan, how to interpret the plans of houses and even on the differences between the plans, sections and elevations of architectural designs.

Floor Plan – The Complete Guide

What is the Plant Low?

The blueprint is a technical drawing which represents a cut to a metre and a half from the base of the house or building, it is done in a certain scale with the actual measurements of the property.

Imagine that you passed a chainsaw cutting the house exactly 1.5 m from the floor and you’re looking for that cut above, then you will see the walls cut, doors, windows, plinths and pillars cut off, and will also see the design of the floor, furniture and other details of the house.

Everything that is cut by this blade the imaginary is represented with a line thickness more strong, there is a hierarchy between the thicknesses of lines and types of lines that are used in an architectural project.

With the low plant houses it is possible to scale the furniture, have the sense of how the environments will relate, the circulation, the structure, how will the access to the property, what is the relationship of the building with the outside area of the terrain.

Today the term blueprint is rarely used, being more common the use of the term plant floor, plant floor ground or even plant on the ground floor.

What is represented in the floor plan?

In the plans are given the access to the property for pedestrians and cars, the level of the floors in relation to the quota 0,00 terrain, the names, and the openings of doors and windows, the names and areas of the environments, types of coatings, the design of the floor, the areas of permeable ground and may represent the distribution of the furniture.

The furniture give an idea of the size of the environments and they may or may not be represented in the floor plan of a house.

The floor plan and architectural details, along with the other plants, cuts and elevations of the project are the basis for the complementary projects: electrical design, hydraulic, structural, plaster, interior, landscape, etc.

Each professional that will complement the design of the architect, engineers structural, electrical, plumbing, interior designers, interior architects, landscape architects, will use the floor plan to represent to your specifications.

Where does the plant low?

The floorplans can be made by hand or in software , the most common program to make plans of houses is AutoCad, whose extension is called .dwg, it can also combined with other plug-ins and software such as: SketchUp, 3D Studio Max, ArquiCad, etc. to generate prospects realistic 3D project. The own AutoCad has the possibility of modelling the house in 3D.

The which is plant low-humanized?

The plant humanized, is the one that comes with the representation of the furniture and floor coverings drawn and colored, if it is a house plant can also have the garden designed.

It is a plant made for the layman to understand with more ease, it is different from the technical plant which is basically composed of lines, the blueprints humanized are the most commercial, are used by architects and companies to better explain the project to the clients.

It is not the same plant that goes into the work, the plans, sections and elevations that go into the execution of the work are technical details which are difficult for the layman to understand.

Taking advantage of that got on the subject let’s talk about the phases of the project, about the types of plants, cuts and elevations.

Architectural Design

Now that you already know what is a floor plan, basically a plant floor of a house or a building must imagine that not only floor plans is an architectural design, to build a house or other building any it is necessary to understand all the dimensions and plans.

We architects have to view and design the house in our minds in three dimensions (3D) and put our ideas in a paper of only two dimensions, that later will be built and become physically in a house that will have not only three dimensions (height, length and width), as it will have a sentimental value, sensory, functional and aesthetic.

To represent architectural designs using graphic drawings of plans, sections, elevations, perspectives and details.

If a house, for example, has two floors without basement, it will have at least the following: the plant floor, the plant on the first floor, plant coverage, deployment, the elevations of all their facades and some cuts.

Plant: The plants are usually made to 1.5 m from the floor, in the projects if they use dashed lines to mark the axes of the project, so it is easier to relate each section, vertical and horizontal axes.

In addition to the axes, on the architectural plans there are indications of cuts, with an arrow indicating the side of the court and the name of the cut, this serves to relate in the plants that will be viewed in court.

As said the plants did not cease also to be a cut in the horizontal direction, but we call cutting the vertical section.

There are several types of plants:

Low plant or plant the ground floor: What is the plant access to the residence nearest the street level.

Plant the basement: What are the plants that are below the level of the street, and you can have several floors underground, like in a shopping mall, in houses it is common to have only one level of the subsoil that generally houses the garage.

Plant mezzanine: That are plants that do not arrive to be considered a floor, as for example, plants from attics or mezzanines of commercial shops with less than 1/3 of the total area of the shop, which are areas that are not computable.

Plant of the other flooring: What are all the plants of the other floors, the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, etc.

Plant coverage: Are the plants that show the view from the top of the building, which is the slope and which side of the fall the waters of a roof, where there are gutters, drains water catchment of the rains, if the roof is slab, is the roof, which is the type of waterproofing, shading, and what are the quotas of coverage.

Always the one that is stronger in design is that this higher, “closer to the observer” and that which is more clear, with fine lines, and clear is the one that is close to the level of the ground floor.

Deployment: The deployment is also called plant of the situation and shows the whole ground and its immediate surroundings (streets, sidewalks, trees, garden, etc.) and also with the plant coverage on a smaller scale.

The deployment is important to identify the accesses of vehicles, pedestrians, levels of the terrain, the demotion of the tabs, free electric, hydraulic and sanitary, existing vegetation, solar orientation, prevailing winds, limits, batch, etc.

The first thing that is analyzed is to initiate an architectural project is the deployment, what are the determinants of the lot, which the solar orientation and wind direction to design the best solutions for facades and wyse dos environments. As well as the analysis of the level curves, clearances, side setbacks are required and all the constraints are analyzed together with the plant situation to determine where it will be deployed in the residence.

If the plants represent the project horizontally, elevations and sections to represent the design vertically.

The elevations are drawings of the facades of the building, all of its faces, the elevations can also be called views, as there are sessions, cuts, as plants and cuts, are the only views that indicate how is the façade, which are the coverings, which the openings (doors and windows), what is closer and what is farther away.

Already the cuts are sections of vertical, again imagine that you passed a chainsaw and cut off, say, a house vertically from the roof to the basement. In the courts determining heights of doors, windows, stairs, beams, ceilings, lining, slab, etc.

In addition to these representations technical with the details, areas, names of the environments, etc. the perspectives of the internal and external, serve to illustrate the project to the client that you will see will look like the finished project.

These perspectives can be sketches, mock-ups, electronic and even mock-ups physical.

Fases do Projeto Arquitetônico

Tem gente que acredita que o projeto arquitetônico nasce que nem mágica, que é só desenhar e a casa pode começar a ser construída, se fosse assim arquitetura nãos seria uma graduação de 5 anos, os arquitetos não são contratados para desenhar, são contratados para projetar.

And what does this mean? That each project is unique, when you hire an architect he will assess your needs, what your family needs, how you live, what is the situation of the terrain, that conditions the project?

Each land has their specifications, some are flat, others sloping, wide and narrow, you have to evaluate the solar orientation during the months of the year, the prevailing winds in the winter and summer, the laws of urban, state and federal, the budget and the resources available.

All of this comes even before the project begins to be “drawn” on the paper, first there is an analysis careful so that the outline of the project start to be born, because all this will determine the quality of the design, good use and the healthiness of your home.

Preliminary Study

Based on the step of analyzing the first designs emerge in the preliminary study, when the architect uses his creativity to design the best solutions of the use of the property with the wyse of the environments and the relationship between the spaces, in this phase, here are delivered: plans, sections, elevations, and a memorial justification, and may also include the perspectives, model a volume and a cost analysis.

In the preliminary study of the building elements are represented schematically, with the levels and some dimensioning main.


With the project more well-defined with the client, the architect begins to develop the Draft bill, where is defined the party for the architectural, building elements considering the complementary projects. It is in this step that the client approves the final design and that if the entry with the Council of Architecture and Urbanism – CAU.

Here the projects are more detailed, are delivered: deployment, plans, sections and elevations, memorial justification with the aspects of construction, discrimination technical documentation for approval by us government agencies and a preliminary list of materials.

Can be delivered also maquette, perspectives, cost estimation, and complementary projects.

The difference is that the representations should be in a scale higher than or equal to 1/100, the measures, dimensions, building elements, areas, names of the environments, axes, topography, and solar orientation must be clear in the Draft. Are plants with measures and specifications.

Cool Design

The phase of the Project Cool is the adaptation of a Bill for approval in the town hall and in the competent bodies, in this case can be made various modifications until the project is duly approved in accordance with all applicable laws.

Here are specified the areas computable, not computable, areas permeable, constructed area, number of floors, and all that the city hall will require to release the project for construction.

Project Executive

It is here that the “critter catch” my people, the project executive is the project that is going to work, can not have errors, you need to be with the maximum of details possible with clear and objective information within the technical standards to which all in the work to understand.

Are delivered: deployment, plans, sections and elevations, details, technical discrimination, specifications, execution, list of materials and complementary projects.

You can have the frame of the finishing materials, the general framework of areas, mock-ups and detailed budget of the project.

The scale of the project executive must be equal to or higher than the scale 1/100 with the representation of all construction details, measures, dimensions, and recommendations for construction.

After the project executive shall also be responsible for architect the preparation of the as Built, or owner’s manual that indicates how it was built, the routes of the plumbing plumbing, electrical wiring, placement of pillars, beams, etc.

So you don’t run the risk of future drilling is a water pipe at the time of installing your TV, it is a manual that has all the plans, sections and elevations and all changes made to the project until the final moment of the execution.

This document is important in the event of future changes in the project and even not to hit the hydraulic lines at the time of screwing or nailing something on the wall.

For more information about the phases of the project you can refer to the NBR 6492/1994.

How to Make a floor Plan

To end this post, I hope it has been helpful to you I I have attached a video that shows a preliminary study of the architect Shahram Azizi, that shows their resourcefulness when designing a cottage-residential 30 m2.

This type of representation that you see in the beginning of the video used in the Preliminary Study, since it is a drawing more freely, without detailed measurements, just an idea of what will be the project, in the second part it shows the design in CAD with a 3D model of the house.

A big hug and until the next post!



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