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what  Check before buying an apartment from a contractor / on paper

Architectural plans are a world in its entirety, a complete language for construction professionals. Each part of the graphic is meant to mark, emphasize and indicate a different element in the construction. We have recently received many inquiries from customers who are facing buying a contractor apartment or a privately owned apartment and do not know if the apartment is right for them, in terms of options for dividing the apartment and changing the existing scheme, storage planning, requests for changes and more. We decided to write this article to help you understand what are the important parameters to check before buying a contractor apartment. We have compiled a number of highlights for you to consider as soon as you approach reading an architectural plan for a potential apartment.


Areas and space of the apartment


First note that you know what the net area of the apartment is and not the gross. The net apartment area will be the area without walls and public areas. You will be surprised to find that there is a big gap between the two.

In terms of area and space of the apartment itself (main areas), it is important to see that there is a correct and sufficient space for the main spaces in the house. The living room for this purpose should contain sofas, a coffee table, a sideboard or a library. Do not rely on drawing without furniture. At the end of the day everything has its place and it is important to take into account the entire furniture set while planning. Note that there is a set space for a proper dining area with a number of spacious seats that meet your accommodation needs and if not make sure that there is room to open a table while entertaining.

The whole issue of transitions in the home and between furniture is important as well. Make sure there are correct and not crowded aisles 80-100 cm. But there are exceptions, the space between a kitchen surface and an island, for example, must be a minimum of 1.20. You can move freely.


Furniture is drawn to the right scale

More than once we came across a design that on the face of it looked right and spacious but in practice was small and uninviting. In any plan you receive from the developer or contractor you will see "blocks", blocks are markings of furniture such as a sofa, bed, closet and more. They are usually designed and sketched in accordance with the dimensions of the drawing itself. But their size can easily be forged so that in practice the true dimensions will look large and correct in the drawing but small in reality. This way the whole house will look very spacious but in fact it is an optical illusion.

You need to know what their standard size is furniture such as: bed, dresser and more. This is in order to know that indeed the drawing you received does not "beautify" reality and is indeed drawn in the right proportions.


Kitchen size  

The whole matter of the kitchen is a whole world in terms of sizes and dimensions. The kitchen is a functional system in the house next to serve us while cooking and entertaining. The aisles in the kitchen must be correct. And note that there is enough space for the refrigerator, between 90-105 cm wide. There is a defined place for the oven and the microwave are usually located one above the other 60 cm wide, and a place for the stove and sink is also 60 cm wide, in addition we recommend that you make sure there is a comfortable place for a pantry can also be 60 cm wide. Convenient among all functions. If there is an island designated for sitting, make sure that there is indeed ample space for chairs and seating.


Bathrooms and toilets

The most important emphasis to take into account when inspecting restrooms and bathrooms  In plans is the whole issue of ventilation.

More than once we came across customers who were considering buying an apartment where one of the bathrooms was artificially ventilated with a vent or blower. It is important to understand that natural ventilation prevents the accumulation of mold and bad odor. Therefore note that there is easy access to a window large enough to allow natural ventilation. Guest toilets on the other hand can be artificially ventilated because there is almost no humidity in these spaces.


Technical systems and electrical products in daily use

In any matter of home systems it is important to make sure that there is easy access to the various professionals and to any system whatsoever.

For that matter, boilers it is important to make sure that the boiler is not located inside the bathroom, but in a hidden technical area but with easy access to operation. Regarding the washing machine and dryer make sure that there is a designated place for a laundry corner, whether it is inside one closet above the other or on a utility porch. Note that there is indeed a proper distance from the bedrooms because these are known for the loud noise they produce during operation.


In conclusion,

There are other parameters that are important to consider before buying a contractor apartment, but these sections will help you understand at the tip of the fork whether the apartment is worth a further inspection or not.

For further consultation we will be happy to be at your service.

The article was written by Basalt Architects, which gives lectures at Bezalel and the Israeli Construction Center.

(This article is a recommendation only and does not replace the full advice of all relevant professionals)

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