Part 1 – 1600 sqft 3 Bedroom Bungalow, Tennessee

1600 sqft 3 Bedroom Bungalow, Tennessee (PDF)
1600 sqft 3 Bedroom Bungalow, Tennessee (JPG)

  • Jim X

    Hi John
    It’s good to see you back at the video post. However, do not risk your voice. Give Matthew North a script, or let him riff on his own.

    Re Tennessee bungalow:

    SHAPE/SIZE Fast (Lots of windows, but long, narrow footprint works against letting light in.)

    ORGANIZATION Slow (living space on one side, private space on other side, good)

    FRONT/BACK ENTRY Fast (no closet, step into living room, etc.)

    INDOOR/OUTDOOR LIVING Fast (poor connection to back yard. I think the garage could be moved to the back of the lot to give more useable yard.)

    KITCHEN Slow, although lacks counterspace



    BATHROOMS Fast (I think the awkward layout of master bath cancels out the other well designed bathroom)


    CONCLUSION: HOW FAST OR SLOW? Fast 6 out of 9

    I think the master bedroom is strange. The rear entry, which is the only connection to the house makes it seem like a suite to be rented out. The walk-in closet should be next to the bedroom and the bath could be simplified.
    The washer/dryer and pantry(?) seem to be lost in space.

    Jim X

  • Cat

    SHAPE/SIZE Fast. Long and narrow, but actually not too bad for long and narrow; most rooms are getting light. Not too much hallway space, unless you consider the formal living room a hallway. The formal living rooms seems like a redundant space that won’t be used.

    ORGANIZATION Fast. Another close one. Having the laundry in the dining room is not ideal. The doorway to the master bedroom seems awkward somehow. The second doorway from the kitchen to the formal living room also seems weird to me.

    FRONT/BACK ENTRY Fast! No real front entry. The back entry is congested and also without closet. It doesn’t look like the walkway from garage to back door is covered, but I really hope that it is.

    INDOOR/OUTDOOR LIVING Slow. I won’t double dip with the formal living room again. Both living rooms have good light and probably could be furnished without too much trouble. I’m not sure this family is going to be doing a lot of outdoor living.

    KITCHEN Slow. That second door to the formal living might be a problem with traffic coming through the work triangle, but I don’t think it will in fact be a problem since no one is ever going to go into the formal living room.

    DINING/STUDY Slow. But I don’t like the proximity to the laundry, nor how open to the kitchen it is.

    BEDROOMS Slow. That 3rd bedroom isn’t great and I’m not sure it’s going to be easy to fit the bed in there.

    BATHROOMS Fast. Not much to say about the family/guest bath, but the master bath is wretched. I am not a fanatic about not having to go through the bath to get to the closet, but I don’t want to have to walk across wet bathmats from the shower and the tub to do it.

    GARAGE/LAUNDRY Fast. I love having the garage at the back, but don’t understand why you have to go out in the rain to get in from an attached garage. And the laundry location is still a problem.

    CONCLUSION: HOW FAST OR SLOW? When I first saw this house, I didn’t think it was too bad, but going through it piece by piece I see that I have certainly given it a lot of fast ratings. If I have to pull a number out of the hat, I’d give it a 6.

  • Sherry

    SHAPE/SIZE – Fast
    Long narrow shape. Size moderate for 3br, 2ba.

    Reasonable separation of living areas from private areas. Traffic pattern through living areas is odd. The two openings from the formal living area, combined with the orientation of the kitchen set up two paralell traffic lanes from front to back. Large wasted space between kitchen and entry to front bedrooms. Kitchen is a long way from the garage

    No closets. Front door opens directly into formal living room (really huge formal entry). Back door has small defined entry area, but location of it sets up traffic to go across the middle of the family room.

    INDOOR/OUTDOOR LIVING – Slow – Pity score, I can’t keep saying fast for everything.
    There is connection between the kitchen/dining/family room. A nice little outdoor niche could be made between the family room and garage. The master br looks out onto this area too. A pleasant bench and some plantings along the property line to delineate the space could have a nice feel. Alternately, lack of plantings and the family trash bins would feel forlorn.

    KITCHEN – Fast
    Work triangle interrupted by island. Stovetop too far from sink. Reasonable total amount of countertop and cabinets.

    Dining area ok. Not well defined and has dual lanes of traffic running through, but is adjacent to kitchen and has window.

    BEDROOMS – Slow
    Entries are shielded from public space. All have at least a small closet and small window. However the front two bedrooms are so small and have such small windows and closets that they would likely be rather cramped and dreary. Entry placement to master bedroom is odd.

    BATHROOMS – Fast
    Family bath tight but fine. Master bath is oversized and a poor use of space in this modestly sized home. Frankly, if I went into that master bath suite in the morning before coffee, I might get lost.

    Garage is at back of home and semi-detached, allowing some natural light at the back of the house. Laundry closet is ok size for home. Placement is near kitchen work hub. But, combination of laundry size, placement and home layout would likely mean that the dining area would frequently be filled with laundry.


  • Anonymous


    john. nice to see you back. continue to rest up.

    CONCLUSION: HOW FAST OR SLOW? basically slow i would say. we did a WWWTH recently that was a 2000 sf 3 bedroom in tennessee that was MUCH faster. my suspicion is that with a little bit of pushing and shoving we can make it even slower.

    i noticed that you said something like .. “the house is a 3, 4 or 5 and we will see how much further we can push it UP the scale …” have we change the direction of the scale?? i am still for the speedometer analogy. low speeds are slow and high speeds are fast.

  • MichaelG

    This is my first wwwth analysis using the criteria, lets see how it goes.

    SHAPE/SIZE – Slow
    Not bad, considering the limitations of the blocks shape and size. I like the garage at the back, but what is the offset from the west boundary? Perhaps this is a requirement, but lining the garage up with the rest of the house would give a larger rear courtyard.

    Nice separation of public from private spaces, and master bedroom from the other 2, but the kitchen is a thoroughfare and I dont like that. Plus the front door straight into the living room… But these are covered in other sections. Imagine the front living room doesn’t exist, the south wall of the kitchen is the house’s outside wall, and people magically appear in the house, then the organization is pretty good. Or, if the rear entrance was actually the front entrance, and remodeled to slow home standards. Not too bad at all.

    Back Entry not too bad, but the front is poor, straight into the living room.

    The rear courtyard could have been larger. Only one window in the front living room gives no connection to the outside world.

    KITCHEN – Fast
    Not much counter space other than the island, and a major thoroughfare. It will naturally be the heart of the house, which I like, but the layout and the circulation through it makes it fast.

    A tough decision. The dining space by itself is decent, but its also effectively the laundry, so the dining table will probably always have clothes stacked on it…

    BEDROOMS – Slow
    Nice separation, as I mentioned earlier. Good sizes and all have decent storage. Going through the master bath into the wir is a pet peeve of mine, I prefer the other way around, but I suspect its not an issue for most. Not much light into bedroom 2, but slow overall.

    BATHROOMS – Slow
    I’d personally prefer to switch the master bath with the family bath in terms of size, but they both work. I like that the toilet is separated from the rest of the master bath, but there is not really enough space in that vanity for two syncs. Lots of storage though. And a linen closet next to the family bath is good.

    Well, the garage is slow, other that the strange offset. Laundry is not so good. I have no problem with washer/dryers in closets. I think I said in a previous exercise that these are simply to load and unload clothes, and the laundering can happen anywhere. But in this case, the laundering will happen on the dinning table. Always. If you’re going to have the washer/dryer in the closet, think about having it in a private area, like the hallway between bedroom two and three, or in a bathroom.


    Overall, fast. There are some slow elements. Points for trying I guess?

  • James Scott

    SHAPE/SIZE Slow, Not a bad size, a better job could have been done with the space though.

    ORGANIZATION Fast, So little light coming in from the front of the house.

    FRONT/BACK ENTRY Fast, Front opens right into the living room. It really feels like a big foyer for a condo. Once received you move on to the private areas of the home.

    INDOOR/OUTDOOR LIVING Fast, No front space and not much rear yard either.

    KITCHEN Fast, Two lanes of traffic mean speed baby. Poor lighting coming in form the formal living space as well.

    DINING Slow, Seems to be just enough space. But with the laundry right there meal interruptions could be frequent.

    STUDY Fast, What study?

    BEDROOMS Fast, The front bedroom overlooks the porch and the street, poor privacy. The second bedroom has little light and the master bedroom overlooks the garage.

    BATHROOMS Slow, They are adequate for the job at hand. But what I can’t understand is why the master bathroom is soooo much larger than the guest bathroom when the guest bathroom has to accommodate more use (2 residents and guests) on a day to day basis.

    GARAGE Slow, At least it is somewhat disconnected from the house.

    LAUNDRY Fast, I can imagine trying to sit down to dinner with the churning of the heavy-wash cycle. I hope it doesn’t go off balance while baking one of Julia Child’s prized chenoise sponge cake.

    CONCLUSION: HOW FAST OR SLOW? Overall, Fast. Some possibilities but suffers from silly designs like many homes. I actually get the feeling that this is a house for a couple and the two bedrooms and the formal living room are add-ons. If I have 4 children then I would get a few extra rooms and another bathroom as well.

    On another note I separated the study and the laundry as I felt they are somewhat disconnected from the dining and garage in this house.

  • Murray

    SHAPE/SIZE – fast, numerous windows but all quite small and supposedly narrow side-yards will really limit the quantity of light getting into the rooms especially the kitchen and dining area

    ORGANIZATION – fast – really awkward, too many narrow openings, formal living is a complete waste of space, virtually no storage except the garage, master suite is difficult to get to, no connection between master suite and “children’s” bedrooms which may mean tripping over furniture in the middle of the night, master suite looks like an ill-conceived addition

    FRONT/BACK ENTRY – fast – entering directly into principal rooms, no closets (I lived in TN and there is a variety of weather conditions necessitating coat closets,etc), no proximity to the kitchen

    INDOOR/OUTDOOR LIVING – fast – little to no connection to the outdoors, formal living room is a waste of space, a convoluted path to the family room, there may be a conflict between the fireplace and the location of the TV assuming the homeowners

    KITCHEN – fast(ish) small, limited counter space, dark, awkward location, is the island also a counter offering additional dining? if so it is unnecessary with the dining room immediately accessible

    DINING/STUDY – slow, except for the fact that the laundry is there! reasonable size and location as long as it is used for dining and not for homework, etc.

    BEDROOMS – fast, 2 & 3 are too small for placement of furniture, master is almost too big for the size of the house (where is Goldilocks when you need her?), master closet in the bathroom is a revolting concept

    BATHROOMS – fast, family bath is prosaically slow, but the master bath is way OTT

    GARAGE/LAUNDRY – fast – ludicrous location

    CONCLUSION: HOW FAST OR SLOW? Fast, obviously, how fast? 8+

  • jim baer

    hey!! somehow i became anonymous! i want credit where credit id due…..

  • JimG

    Slow I get the impression from the plan that at one time the garage was separate from the house, and the master bedroom was added later.
    Fast, that area between the bedroom hallway, livingroom, and kitchen feels like another hall
    Fast, no closets in either of them

    Slow. I like the formal front room

    Slow, but I’m not fussy about the walk through from the living room


    Slow sure the windows are small, but I’ve seen so many bedrooms with lots of windows that have “blackout” curtains on them to make the room dark enough to sleep.

    Fast The main bath is slow, but the mess of the ensuite… I guess when they had that old bedroom to turn into a bath they just went giddy with all the space compared to the old one…

    Slow. The laundry, although not ideal that close to the kitchen has lots of room once the doors are open, and the dining room table can be used for folding.

    Over all I’d have to call it Fast, mainly because it is poorly laid out. Each space on it’s own is not too bad, but they don’t work together for me.