When they renovate, most homeowners give little thought to the hallways included in their plans. But hallways have many challenges and should be both considered carefully and designed well if they are to add to the home rather than take away from it. To help you craft good hallways and avoid pitfalls, here are four key tips to remember.
1. Limit Hallways When Possible
Too many hallways may make your home seem more like a maze than a comfortable and logical living space. They also take away usable floor area from surrounding rooms, sometimes even resulting in wasted space that's rarely used or enjoyed. So, assess whether or not you can avoid hallways. But if you must include one, such as for a group of bedrooms on the second floor, find ways to skip hallways elsewhere.
2. Go Wider Than Is Required
The wider the hallway, the more possibilities it has and the more comfortable it's likely to be. Narrow halls that only meet minimum code requirements for size often feel oppressive and dark, and they may even be impractical for moving furniture or passing other people. On the other hand, a wider space can be used for more purposes, making it more enjoyable and more practical.
3. Plan for Practicalities
Include practical features in every hallway, depending on its location and potential use. Two important features in most halls are good lighting and easy access to electrical outlets. Hallways attached to the front and back doors (or even near work areas like the garage) should also include some storage plans—either built-in or includable at a later date.
4. Give the Hallway Interest
If you do add a hallway, think about it as more than simply a way to move from Room A to Room B. Include interesting elements within the hallway itself. For instance, you might include a more interesting angle, such as 45 degrees rather than 90 degrees, or a window. Arrange walls so you can hang a gallery wall of art. Or design an accent wall that will stun users when they first step into the hall. Be flexible and have fun.
Clearly, the inclusion of hallways should be a strategic decision and their design carefully planned out. Need help deciding how best to do this in your new layout? Start by meeting with a remodeling contractor that specializes in interior design. Together, you can maximize the potential of all areas in your home and minimize future problems.