Residential home design plans should be as detailed as possible with as many layers as needed for clarity.
Think of your homes design plans as layers. Stack the layers from lowest level up. Write down what you are not seeing. You're going to need to create many layers to protect yourself from any mistakes by builders due to your lack of detailed instructions.

By Murray Wennerlund published 7-24-2022 updated 8-11-2022
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Home design starts with a list of everything you want your new home to have. As you make your list of items you want you also can make a list of things you don't want to repeat based on previous homes you have lived in.

One major issue new homeowners run into is bedroom design. Many focus on windows while some focus on bed and desk placement with a single window required by code. A bedroom has a function and should not be changed into a penthouse or studio apartment. Keep your design focused by the proposed purpose of the room.

Now start making your details for your bedroom. Start by visualizing a desk and a bed, maybe a large desk and a small desk along with a single bed and a twin size bed. Move furniture around the room then adjust any window location based on known sizes of furniture. Then select the type of window you are going to need and place the window at the height you feel will work with the furniture you used for your design. A desk might work offer more  options if the window sill was a few inches above the top of the desk. Windows that are full length to the floor are typically not where you would place a desk and if you do, it's a waste of a large window. When you place your window make sure you map the direct sunlight penetration. This will help you when you are selecting shades or curtains or both.

Next would be lighting, electrical outlets, air ducts and every cable you can think of from ethernet cat6, coaxial cable R6, HDMI cable, USB cable, telephone, security camera, alarm, intercom, room speakers, etc.

The more details you put on your plans the less your tradesman has to think about or if they aren't thinking the less items they miss and you are told it's all extra costs because the items were not on the plans.

But that's the the point of this page. The point is, if your instructions (plans) do not detail items from structural assembly to electrical wiring the persons doing they work will not be liable for how the room is built if your plans are insufficient in details.

You would think a tradesman would know how things are built and your designers will often tell you that your trades will know what they are doing. But when they aren't knowledgeable and your plans are not sufficiently detailed you can not blame shoddy work on the tradesman. Look at your design plans, if you didn't list a schedule for fasteners then any fastener the tradesman uses is to design.

But then again, even if you do list a fasteners schedule you still have to make sure they are using the proper fasteners, the proper fastener depth and the proper spacing.

In Louisiana we have a law that protects residential building contractors from liability for the destruction, deterioration or defects in work they did if not clearly detailed in the design plans.

Louisiana Revised Statute (RS) 9:2771


2771.  Non-liability of contractor for destruction or deterioration of work

No contractor, including but not limited to a residential building contractor as defined in R.S. 37:2150.1(9), shall be liable for destruction or deterioration of or defects in any work constructed, or under construction, by him if he constructed, or is constructing, the work according to plans or specifications furnished to him which he did not make or cause to be made and if the destruction, deterioration, or defect was due to any fault or insufficiency of the plans or specifications.  This provision shall apply regardless of whether the destruction, deterioration, or defect occurs or becomes evident prior to or after delivery of the work to the owner or prior to or after acceptance of the work by the owner.  The provisions of this Section shall not be subject to waiver by the contractor.
Acts 1958, No. 183, 1.  Amended by Acts 1960, No. 84, 1 Acts 2001, No. 179, 1.

Most plans created by a draftsman will simply assume all the engineering is standard and all your tradesman understand how to build a house from layout of plates to ridge board. But if you don't indicate specific details you may not get the headers built as you imagined or the attic venting that you designed but didn't detail the rafter placement over the ridge beam.

We like to build flip books and make one for every sub that works on the project. The flip book design has the main design plan layers but then details every aspect of the build from nailing patterns to structural screw placement. With more details in your design plan you take the guess work out of the build process and you don't have to trust that the crew has ever done it before, all the have to do is follow your design plans. Build as design, best method of building today because of the limited number of skilled tradesman that can also read your designers mind filling in all the gaps and checking the span tables twice after the the home added a second floor.

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