How do I Choose the Best Beach House Plans?

Dan Cavallari
Dan Cavallari
A stilt house can be built to help protect against flooding and high tide.
A stilt house can be built to help protect against flooding and high tide.

When choosing beach house plans, you should consider more than just looks, access to the beach, and views of the sunset. Good beach house plans must include materials that will be resistant to corrosion from sea salt, moisture, and other elements from the unpredictable ocean weather. The beach house plans must include strong supports and contingencies for floods, as well as effective living spaces that will ensure comfortable living. When considering beach house plans, review a variety of styles and structures that will be strong, safe, comfortable, and attractive while keeping your budget in mind.

Some beach house plans can provide excellent views of the sunset.
Some beach house plans can provide excellent views of the sunset.

While beach house plans should take into consideration the most important facets of its surroundings — the views of the ocean and accessibility to the beach — a beach house has to be more than just a pretty structure. Strong, storm-proof windows and doors that can withstand inclement weather should be included in the beach house plans. Consider storm doors and good quality windows that can withstand storm winds, rain, hail, and other elements. Perhaps more importantly, choose beach house plans that take into consideration the possibility of flooding. In many coastal areas, hurricanes and other strong storms can raise sea levels, and the water can damage houses easily. Houses built on stilts can help, but they must be built properly to be effective.

Post and pier construction may be used to build beach houses.
Post and pier construction may be used to build beach houses.

Another consideration for your beach house is temperature. Most beach houses are built and occupied in hot climates, which means the beach house should be a refuge from that heat. The beach house should utilize naturally shady areas of a yard to maximize coolness inside. Windows can be placed throughout the house so that sunlight hits them in the early morning but not in the afternoon when the sun is at its hottest. They can also be positioned to face the sunset, which will not only help keep the house cool, but also provide stunning views.

A beach house should be able to withstand the unpredictable stormy weather common to beach areas.
A beach house should be able to withstand the unpredictable stormy weather common to beach areas.

Verandas and porches are a good feature to consider for your beach house plan. These features maximize usable living space and provide a shady spot to enjoy the views. They are also handy when considering adding a hot tub or swimming pool, as the pool or hot tub can be installed near the veranda for a seamless transition from the inside of the house to the water. Verandas are also nice for entertaining guests. For a beach house near sandy beaches and water, consider an outdoor shower for quick clean-up after a dip in the ocean. These can be enclosed structures near the house or even attached to it.

Discussion Comments

Rotergirl

Verandas and/or decks are great for a beach house. I would start with looking at plans that are more hurricane-resistant, if I were building on a coastline prone to hurricane landfalls. I would make sure I had double-paned windows if I had a second story and the lower floor would have windows that were also either double-paned or designed so plywood could be easily placed on them if a hurricane was coming in.

A house on stilts is a must for hurricane-prone coastal homes. A home that is 12 feet off the ground will rarely be flooded, unless a monster storm comes in, pushing a monster storm surge.

I would also build behind the dune line to help protect the beach, and would try to use environmentally friendly materials and construction methods.

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    • A stilt house can be built to help protect against flooding and high tide.
      By: abstrand
      A stilt house can be built to help protect against flooding and high tide.
    • Some beach house plans can provide excellent views of the sunset.
      By: Yuriy Kulik
      Some beach house plans can provide excellent views of the sunset.
    • Post and pier construction may be used to build beach houses.
      By: jakgree
      Post and pier construction may be used to build beach houses.
    • A beach house should be able to withstand the unpredictable stormy weather common to beach areas.
      By: Pix by Marti
      A beach house should be able to withstand the unpredictable stormy weather common to beach areas.
    • For a beach house near sandy beaches and water, consider an outdoor-shower for quick cleanup after a dip in the ocean.
      By: ellensmile
      For a beach house near sandy beaches and water, consider an outdoor-shower for quick cleanup after a dip in the ocean.