Many people consider it easy to read a floor plan, but if you’re not familiar with certain aspects of seeing a sketch on paper, you can run into problems. Be sure to ask your contractor questions if you don’t understand what they’re doing. Here are some steps to help you better understand your floor plan.

Step 1: Learn about scale
Every floor plan is marked with a certain scale. The scale could be 1 inch equals 10 feet or 1/4 inch equals 1 foot. Another way of measuring scale is to use a scale ruler. A scale ruler will have the conversion rate printed right on it and can be found in most craft stores. The scale that is being used is usually written on the blueprints.

Step 2: Ask about the windows
For example, what kind are they, do they slide up and down or open out or slide side to side? Are there enough of them and are they placed where you want them? Also decide the direction you want the windows to face.

Step 3: Figure out door placement
Make sure they’re placed exactly where you want them and they open in the direction you want. All houses have a front and back door, but you may want to think about adding another door. You may want easy access to your garden, patio or swimming pool.

Step 4: See about altering a floor plan
Make sure that it won’t be difficult to add on later. Learn which are the non-bearing walls and which are the support walls. Knowing this will make it easier to tell which walls can be altered or removed later, if you want to expand your house.