3 reasons why an open-plan layout may devalue your home – say experts

Is it time to break up with your open plan? Here's why it may be impacting your home's place on the market

Open plan living room with wood floor, white walls and small kitchen
(Image credit: Davide Lovatti / Future)

It's easy to see the appeal of an open-plan when looking at your home from a design perspective. This chic layout often feels light and spacious – and is an entertainer's dream. However, it isn't quite as idyllic through a real estate agent's lens. 

Estate experts have revealed that your open-plan layout may be hindering your home's chances on the market – most significantly in a post-pandemic world when open-plan living room ideas are less sought-after. 

Do open-plan layouts devalue your home? 

Open plan living room with grey walls and stone fireplace and white door

(Image credit: Lisa Cohen / Future)

We caught up with real estate professionals to find out whether you should interrupt your open-plan kitchen ideas – or whether this layout remains in demand worldwide. Here's what you need to know. 

'Open-plan layouts are popular in homes today. However, some people believe that an open-plan layout devalues a home. There are several reasons why this might be the case,' explains Mark Wolens, the Principal and Director at Woden and Weston Creek. 

1. Open-plan spaces can be difficult to maintain 

Open plan space with kitchen, stone wall and wood floor

(Image credit: Brent Darby / Future)

One of the main benefits of an open-plan layout is that your living room, kitchen, and often your entryway all flow into one. However, this can be one of its biggest downfalls too. 

'An open-plan layout can be difficult to manage. The homeowner may need to constantly clean up after family members or pets who do not stay in one designated space,' Mark says. It can, therefore, be difficult to find a quiet space for work calls or private conservations when you face noise from other areas in the room. 

'Potential buyers may be turned off by the lack of privacy or the potential for increased noise levels. They may also be concerned about the difficulty of managing an open-plan space,' Mark explains. 'As a result, a home with an open-plan layout may be valued less than a traditional home with separate rooms.'

2. Open-plan spaces can feel challenging to renovate 

Open plan living room with white walls and l-shaped sofa

(Image credit: Anna Stathaki / Future)

Most potential buyers go into a property with the intention to make the house their own – however, Illinois licensed real estate broker Bill Samuel from Blue Ladder Development suggests that this can feel harder when it comes to an open-plan layout.

He says that, in some cases, this layout can make a home harder to sell, as 'it can be difficult for buyers to envision how to use a wide-open space.'

'If buyers start to consider a lot of the open-concept space as unusable, then it is highly likely your open concept floor plan may be impacting the resale value of your home,' Bill says. The expert adds that it is therefore important to have your home 'professionally staged for these types of floor plans' so people can see exactly how to use the space.

3. Open-plan layouts may impact the resale value 

Open plan living room with white walls, pink chairs and pocket doors

(Image credit: Robert Sanderson / Future)

A stylish open-plan layout may seem like one of the best ways to add value to your home, but Mark warns that they may have the opposite effect, especially in terms of resale value. 

'A homeowner might not be able to change the layout if they decide to sell in the future, limiting their ability to appeal to buyers who may have different preferences,' the agent explains. 

Should you rethink your open-plan? 

Open plan living room with high ceiling and blue velvet sofa

(Image credit: Rowland Roques O'Neil / Future)

While the experts warn that this decorating idea may have negative repercussions on your house value, they admit that some buyers may be attracted to this stylish way of living. 

'An open-plan layout can add value to a home if it meets the needs of the homeowner and future buyers,' Mark says. 'For this reason, it is essential to carefully consider whether this type of layout is right for your home before making a final decision.'

The style and freedom of an open-plan will surely continue to set interior design trends for a long time to come. However, if you're thinking of selling your home soon, it's worth bearing these expert opinions in mind.  

Megan Slack
Head of Celebrity Style News

Megan is the Head of Celebrity Style News at Homes & Gardens. She first joined Future Plc as a News Writer across their interiors titles, including Livingetc and Real Homes, before becoming H&G's News Editor in April 2022. She now leads the Celebrity/ News team. Before joining Future, Megan worked as a News Explainer at The Telegraph, following her MA in International Journalism at the University of Leeds. During her BA in English Literature and Creative Writing, she gained writing experience in the US while studying in New York. Megan also focused on travel writing during her time living in Paris, where she produced content for a French travel site. She currently lives in London with her antique typewriter and an expansive collection of houseplants.