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America's Best House Plans

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Plan Options

What Options Should I Choose?

When you purchase a house plan from us, you have a variety of options that allow you to customize the plan for your specific needs.

Selecting A Package Format

Plan packages come in a variety of digital and physical formats, each with their own copyright limitations. Most packages come with a single-use license, but some are offered with an "unlimited" use option as well, so be sure to check the plan detail page for details.

The four basic format types are listed below, but each designer offers a variety of different format and licensing configurations. If you require a package or multi-use license that isn't available, please contact us for pricing.


PDF is our most popular package because it gives you the flexibility to print as many paper copies as you need for your project. When selecting this option, you will be emailed a full set of house plans in PDF format, along with a copyright release allowing you to print and send the plans to anyone who needs them.

The PDF license agreements is typically for building a single home if not specified, but some options exist for unlimited construction as well.

5 Sets

This package provides 5 complete sets of full-size working drawings, printed and mailed directly to you. It is a common amount of sets to provide you, your builder, subcontractors, and permit department each a set of full-size printed house plans.

Some designers offer a PDF + 5 Sets which gives you even more flexibility.

8 Sets

8 Sets is an extended amount of printed house plans sent directly to you via the mail. This option gives you the flexibility to share the plans with more individuals.

Reproducible Set

The Reproducible Set is a single set of physical plans that are mailed to you with a copyright release, allowing you to copy the plans as many times as needed.

CAD Files

CAD Files allow a design professional the freedom to make minor or major modifications to your plans using a CAD program. This electronic format comes with a copyright release giving you the full rights to customize the plans. You will need a design professional to open these files in a CAD program and modify and print the plans accordingly.

Some designers offer the CAD files plus a PDF.

Check the plan details page to see what packages are offered for each plan.

Please contact us if you are interested in purchasing a Study Set, or a stripped down version of the plans that does not include a license to build and are marked Not For Construction. Not all of our designers offer study sets but if you're interested, give us a call and we'll verify that information for you.

Selecting A Foundation

Before choosing a foundation, contact your local builder to determine the best options for your state and the lot of land you plan to build on. Depending on the conditions of your lot, certain foundations will work better than others. The level of the water table in your state will determine which foundation is best for you. A water table refers to the depth of the soil where you find water.

Depending on the designer and the home, there are usually three options for a foundation:

Slab Foundation

Slab foundations allow for no space under the home and are the most common type. These low maintenance foundations are popular on flat lots.

Crawl Space Foundation

Crawl Space foundations are elevated a few feet off the ground and offer accessibility to a small area under the home for storage.

Basement Foundations

Basement foundations are the most expensive because they offer more space in the home by going 8 feet or deeper, thus creating a larger square footage. Basements give you more square footage and the ability to use that space however you please.

We recommend asking your builder which foundation option is best for your home.

Selecting Additional Options

When you purchase a house plan from us, you have a variety of packages to choose from depending on your personal preference.

Mirror Reverse and Right Reading Reverse

Right Reading Reverse flips the entire plan so that the left side of the home is on the right, and the right is on the left. All of the text and dimensions have been re-drawn to make an entirely new plan but with the mirrored layout of the original.

Mirror Reverse also flips the entire plan to the reverse layout, but with backwards text and dimensions, as if the plan were viewed in a mirror. This option is less convenient to work with, and is primarily used when the original drawings do not have the re-drawn text and dimensions available but a reverse layout is required.

By clicking the REVERSE button below the house plan photos on each plan, you will be able to view the reversed floor plan. The Right Reading Reverse would have the same reversed layout, but with the text and dimensions redrawn for convenience.

IMPORTANT NOTE: If you purchase 5 sets of plans and indicate you want the mirror reverse included, you will receive 4 reversed sets and 1 set of regular plans so you can correctly read the text and dimensions.

2x4 and 2x6 Conversion

While 2x4 construction is a more common option, the northern locations of the United States tend to use the 2x6 construction because this allows for more insulation for homes built in colder locations. Utilizing 2x6 construction costs more up front but also gives you a stronger structure to endure high winds, earthquakes, etc. and decreases heating and cooling costs by increasing insulation.

Some of our designers offer a 2x6 conversion, which updates the house plans to include the bigger size. Please check the additional options section to determine if that house plan offers a 2x6 conversion. If you don't see that option, you can also modify the plans to include a 2x6 conversion.

Material List

These helpful lists include all the building materials needed to construct the house plan. Because not all designers offer these lists, if needed, it is recommended that you contact a local building supply company and have them create the list for you.