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House Design - Window Placement

Star Windows have a big impact on the character of a home.

Window placement can be a tricky.  It doesn't take a lot of windows to make an impact on the character of a home.  Knowing where to place them is key to creating the look and feel most desired in your home.  This is where sight lines are useful.  Look for areas in the home that are blocked off and dark, and use windows to open up the view and make the space appear larger.

Many people think that if they have a long wall in the family room that it must be filled with two-story windows to bring in the beauty of the outdoors.  Actually, the same effect can be created with a strategically placed set of smaller height windows.  This arrangement will offer the same impact, cost less, and also avoid excessive heat loss.  Personally though, I still like tall windows because I like to see lots of sky.

Internal windows between rooms can be a good way to open up site lines without the full sound transmission between rooms that you get by making a full hole in the internal wall.  Sometimes when sound transmission is not a concern, you can just make a rectangular hole in the internal wall or make it a half height wall and save the cost of a window.

One idea some people like is to place small windows under cabinets in the kitchen.  They can have a significant influence on the look and feel of a kitchen.  Personally I'm not a big fan of this.  Another example that some people like would be a bow bay window in a small dining area, as it will make the room seem larger.

You should always pay attention to the direction that a window faces.  What view will the window give and will it give morning or afternoon light?  Windows on the western side let in the evening sun, but you probably need blinds or curtains on them if you are trying to avoid glare on a PC screen.

Personally I like a symmetrical house, so that has a big influence on external window placement on the north and south sides of the house.