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Barliman

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To all who have shared their experiences and given advice for us Insipiring Innkeepers and in my case, wanna-be an Innkeeper. I am in the process (with my wife and grown daughter) of developing a solid business plan which will drive the design of a NEW B&B. The business plan will help shape the new building, and the design will definately drive the business plan. The two go hand in hand. Having been in construction and design most my life, I've found "designing away" problems and in-efficencies is often the key to success. So I ask you, gentle reader, if you could build a new B&B (we are limited to 4 rental rooms) what would be your 3 most important design elements? TIA
Oh, and I meant to say, I've learned a HUGE amount lurking and reading all the posts/threads...not done yet. Thanks so much!
 

Morticia

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Oh, my the list is long...
  1. Large guest rooms with room for the bed (king), 2 comfy chairs, desk, TV, dresser with mirror, full length mirror somewhere and room to move around.
  2. Large bathrooms (private) with tub AND shower, plenty of shelf space.
  3. Large common spaces with additional bathroom for hosting parties.
  4. Large laundry room for folding and sorting and storage.
  5. Windows that open, a view to look at.
  6. Sound proofing. (That should be at the top of the list.)
  7. Enough separate space for yourselves.
  8. An office in the guest area.
  9. A kitchen you can close and lock.
  10. A butler's pantry sort of setup for guests to use so they don't bother you for ice.
  11. Large enough dining space for all guests to sit comfortably and with additional room for meetings and lunches, if you can do that.
  12. Lighted, paved, off street parking.
  13. I could probably go on...
 

JunieBJones (JBJ)

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Welcome Barliman!
Design as in any way we choose? Just 3? I can't stop at just three!
#1 would be separate or individ entrance for each guest room. This can be via an outside stairway or veranda. This is also convenient for late night/self check ins and smokers. I am not saying you want to encourage smokers but they will stay with you either way.
Ground floor rooms (at least a couple) as plenty of people who are not disabled, but have difficulty due to knee replacements etc, and prefer ground floor rooms.
Common area inside. A place to relax in the yard - tranquil setting - porch, pergola, ponds etc. Something to look at, or relaxing area. An experience to remember and share with others. Parking/access needs to be set up well.
Bathrooms with adequate space (good for cleaning and guest use instead of shoving people in a closet). Always offer shower/tub - preferably with room for two people to shower.
Heating and cooling - considerable attention to this - indiv units in the walls (quiet style). Windows that open.
Dining room with a view or screened in area like a sun room with multiple smaller tables which you could put together or leave apart.
Innkeepers quarters set apart but handy for meeting guests when required. Lockable, closable for privacy. Laundry room CENTRAL as it will be going constantly. Laundry chute if there are guest rooms upstairs. Plenty of innkeeper space that is behind the scenese to do your thing and not have to be under a magnifying glass of guests view.
 

JunieBJones (JBJ)

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Oh, my the list is long...
  1. Large guest rooms with room for the bed (king), 2 comfy chairs, desk, TV, dresser with mirror, full length mirror somewhere and room to move around.
  2. Large bathrooms (private) with tub AND shower, plenty of shelf space.
  3. Large common spaces with additional bathroom for hosting parties.
  4. Large laundry room for folding and sorting and storage.
  5. Windows that open, a view to look at.
  6. Sound proofing. (That should be at the top of the list.)
  7. Enough separate space for yourselves.
  8. An office in the guest area.
  9. A kitchen you can close and lock.
  10. A butler's pantry sort of setup for guests to use so they don't bother you for ice.
  11. Large enough dining space for all guests to sit comfortably and with additional room for meetings and lunches, if you can do that.
  12. Lighted, paved, off street parking.
  13. I could probably go on...
.
Bree said:
Oh, my the list is long...
  1. Large guest rooms with room for the bed (king), 2 comfy chairs, desk, TV, dresser with mirror, full length mirror somewhere and room to move around.
  2. Large bathrooms (private) with tub AND shower, plenty of shelf space.
  3. Large common spaces with additional bathroom for hosting parties.
  4. Large laundry room for folding and sorting and storage.
  5. Windows that open, a view to look at.
  6. Sound proofing. (That should be at the top of the list.)
  7. Enough separate space for yourselves.
  8. An office in the guest area.
  9. A kitchen you can close and lock.
  10. A butler's pantry sort of setup for guests to use so they don't bother you for ice.
  11. Large enough dining space for all guests to sit comfortably and with additional room for meetings and lunches, if you can do that.
  12. Lighted, paved, off street parking.
  13. I could probably go on...
Have I got a deal for you!
ha ha sorry but you almost described my place. Does a cemtary on the back of the house fall into "a view to look at?" There is a mountain behind it. ha ha
Sound proofing - for this AVOID having rooms with adjoining doors - this is on the list to replace. The list is long, it is toward the middle bottom. LOL!
 

Morticia

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Oh, my the list is long...
  1. Large guest rooms with room for the bed (king), 2 comfy chairs, desk, TV, dresser with mirror, full length mirror somewhere and room to move around.
  2. Large bathrooms (private) with tub AND shower, plenty of shelf space.
  3. Large common spaces with additional bathroom for hosting parties.
  4. Large laundry room for folding and sorting and storage.
  5. Windows that open, a view to look at.
  6. Sound proofing. (That should be at the top of the list.)
  7. Enough separate space for yourselves.
  8. An office in the guest area.
  9. A kitchen you can close and lock.
  10. A butler's pantry sort of setup for guests to use so they don't bother you for ice.
  11. Large enough dining space for all guests to sit comfortably and with additional room for meetings and lunches, if you can do that.
  12. Lighted, paved, off street parking.
  13. I could probably go on...
.
Bree said:
Oh, my the list is long...
  1. Large guest rooms with room for the bed (king), 2 comfy chairs, desk, TV, dresser with mirror, full length mirror somewhere and room to move around.
  2. Large bathrooms (private) with tub AND shower, plenty of shelf space.
  3. Large common spaces with additional bathroom for hosting parties.
  4. Large laundry room for folding and sorting and storage.
  5. Windows that open, a view to look at.
  6. Sound proofing. (That should be at the top of the list.)
  7. Enough separate space for yourselves.
  8. An office in the guest area.
  9. A kitchen you can close and lock.
  10. A butler's pantry sort of setup for guests to use so they don't bother you for ice.
  11. Large enough dining space for all guests to sit comfortably and with additional room for meetings and lunches, if you can do that.
  12. Lighted, paved, off street parking.
  13. I could probably go on...
Have I got a deal for you!
ha ha sorry but you almost described my place. Does a cemtary on the back of the house fall into "a view to look at?" There is a mountain behind it. ha ha
Sound proofing - for this AVOID having rooms with adjoining doors - this is on the list to replace. The list is long, it is toward the middle bottom. LOL!
.
We have rooms with adjoining doors. Do you have one door or two? We have two doors with weatherstripping and it is sincerely hard to hear guests in either room. And it's no more noisy than between rooms without the doors. However, most of our rooms are offset. None share a complete common wall. (Exception being two back to back bathrooms.)
 

gillumhouse

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I agree with SS's list. When we created the private bath, we moved the original claw-foot into the new private bath and also installed a 48 in shower. We included personal shower heads when a regular guest asked if we were going to have them which also made me think about cleaning them - the personal shower head is fantastic for that if for no other pupose.
The innkeeper MUST have a space that no one else sees that is THEIR workspace/office. That in addition to real living quarters - at a minimum bedroom, bath, living room plus a laundry room and a storage room - where you keep your linens, that case of wrapped glasses, cleaning supplies, vac, that extra TP & Kleenex that was on sale at such a great price, Christmas ornaments and other decorations, spare pillows & blankets,,,
A nice walk-in pantry in the kitchen to take advantage of the sales on supplies you use a lot of in addition to your regular supplies, storage space for extra dishes (have at least 2 sets so you can change dishes for a 2-night at a minimum), serving dishes, goblets, silver, coffee pots, carafes, etc. A broom closet. A cabinet/shelves and workspace near the stove for herbs & spices and often used ingredients, bowls, and kitchen tools. Counter space and more counter space.
Our friends designed their house so that she backs the car into the garage, opens the trunk, and opens a door into the pantry where she empties the trunk of groceries directly into the pantry - eliminating the carry the bags into the house onto a table or countertop and then moving to pantry shelves. That is wonderful says this person who has to climb a couple steps and walk a deck (and pray not to slip on ice this time of year), fight the kitchen storm door, and then find a place to set the bags - no counter space!
Large guestrooms with decent sized private bathrooms. If I was doing new construction, I would also make a first-floor handicap room with a roll-in shower. Regular people can still rent it, but as we age..... My husband is not in a wheelchair but without his brace he cannot climb into a tub and even an inch or two lip on the shower is very difficult. You might want to consider making one room pet-friendly. Dogs get treated better than the kids (they are probably easier to get along with come to think about it - unless it is a yapper, there is a lot less lip!) and more old folks and DINKS are traveling with Fifi.
Edited to add that individual room climate control is essential - some like it cold in winter and some want it to be like Florida even though the snow is up to the keister. In summer the Florida thermostats from the winter will want Arctic A/C while the next room wants no A/C.
 

Samster

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Take a look here. As a guest, this was one of the best designed newly built B&Bs that I've ever stayed in. It seemed to work well for the owners too :)
 

muirford

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Another new construction B&B that gets rave reviews and has a lot of amenities is the Inn at Sugar Hollow Farm near Charlottesville, VA. It's got more rooms than you want but it is very popular with guests.
 

YellowSocks

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I wholeheartedly agree with all of the lists posted already.
In addition--
I have a laundry chute which I adore. If you are a multi-story building, give serious consideration to adding one. Even better... put a dumbwaiter next to it! My laundry's in the basement and one of my guest rooms is on the third floor... it's a long way up/down. If not multi-story, still give consideration to where the laundry is... as well as where you're going to store extra sheets, pillows, comforters.
I had a custom laundry shelf/ironing board/folding table built that I absolutely love. It's directly across from my HE washer and dryer. It is 4 feet wide, floor to ceiling, and has a retractable ironing board/folding table at a perfect height for ironing. I can iron a king-sized pillow case or a full-size napkin without shifting it. To the right is the plug for the iron. Below the retractable part are two shelves with laundry baskets where I put clean laundry for our family. Above are three shelves... bottom one is a catch all for ironed napkins, as well as things waiting to be ironed, plus the iron and water jug, etc. The top two shelves hold towels and sheets that are clean and folded and ready to go upstairs (stacked by room).
I also learned from the people here (before I purchased and renovated) that you cannot have too much storage. I have a big house with four guest rooms (with lots of neat storage areas already in it), and I drove my contractors crazy trying to max out every nook and cranny that could possibly be made into storage space. As it is, I need more than I have. Off my kitchen I have a floor to ceiling cabinet (built in during renovations in 1950?) maybe two feet wide. The upper portion is completely filled with glassware (parfait dishes, banana boats, fruit cups) and I really could use room for more.
So... give serious consideration to your laundry set up, especially how it moves from place to place, and where it sits while waiting to be ironed or put away, and put in scads of storage.
- private, en suite bathrooms (pref. with whirlpool tubs)
- private entrance for innkeepers
- completely separate innkeeper quarters, with lockable connecting door
- at least one first floor guest room
- sound proofing
- heated tile floors
- wireless internet
- wall mounted flat screen TV's (requires designing room for shelves for the high-def cable boxes)
- sitting areas in rooms
- guest service area(s) with fridge, microwave, water, etc.
- storage for guest service area supplies
- commercial kitchen (depending on what state you're in)
- sufficient parking
I'm sure I'll think of more in a few minutes...
=)
Kk.
 

Barliman

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Wow! You guys are the greatest. I never expected all these suggestions in just 4 hours. They ALL go on my design features list. Some...maybe half were already in there (wall seperation...sound mitigation, ground floor rooms, big rooms, king beds, universal design, etc.) I will come clean as this develops and show you the floorplan(s), location, "theme" and why we think this is a winner....but that will have to wait for a bit. I really want to think this through and see if it pencils first. That business plan has to make sense. So keep those suggestions coming. Thanks a bunch!
PS: Is there a spell checker in here?
 

seashanty

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hi and welcome

how very exciting for you!
private bathrooms with shelf space for guests to put down their toiletries and personal items they want to use in the bathroom like shavers and curling irons and brushes and contact lense solution. i personally think it's the ultimate if my bathroom has a whirlpool tub ... if you can possbily put those in with shower, i would do it in a heartbeat.
guest rooms that allow for space for a big bed (queen size at the smallest, king preferred), an area for lounging like a couple comfty chairs or a love seat, and a writing desk, as well as a closet for guests to hang up their clothes. the more self-contained the better so if you can tuck and iron an ironing board in there, great.
a common area with enough room for all guests if you are full where they can make their own coffee and tea, guest fridge (if you don't have them in the guest rooms), bar sink, microwave, room for quiet reading as well as watching tv and/or socializing. this will keep guests in their space ... because you MUST have your own space. i am assuming you have your own space in the design ... not just bedroom and bath, but living area and office. oops, that's four.
 

swirt

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Wow! You guys are the greatest. I never expected all these suggestions in just 4 hours. They ALL go on my design features list. Some...maybe half were already in there (wall seperation...sound mitigation, ground floor rooms, big rooms, king beds, universal design, etc.) I will come clean as this develops and show you the floorplan(s), location, "theme" and why we think this is a winner....but that will have to wait for a bit. I really want to think this through and see if it pencils first. That business plan has to make sense. So keep those suggestions coming. Thanks a bunch!
PS: Is there a spell checker in here?.
Barliman said:
a spell checker in here?
There is no spellchecker built in. If you have the google toolbar installed, that spellchecker works great. But for the most part, spelling is not a big deal unless it leads to a funny moment as it does on occaision.
 

gillumhouse

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Wow! You guys are the greatest. I never expected all these suggestions in just 4 hours. They ALL go on my design features list. Some...maybe half were already in there (wall seperation...sound mitigation, ground floor rooms, big rooms, king beds, universal design, etc.) I will come clean as this develops and show you the floorplan(s), location, "theme" and why we think this is a winner....but that will have to wait for a bit. I really want to think this through and see if it pencils first. That business plan has to make sense. So keep those suggestions coming. Thanks a bunch!
PS: Is there a spell checker in here?.
Here is one I left out - OUTLETS!! You cannot have too many outlets. You should devote one to the location of your emergency light (we use the plug-ins because #1 they are hard wired to your electricals meaning if the power goes off they come on and #2 the guest just pulls it out and uses it as a flashlight to get out) and then have many others for breathing machine, phone chargers, lamps.......
 

swirt

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Wow! You guys are the greatest. I never expected all these suggestions in just 4 hours. They ALL go on my design features list. Some...maybe half were already in there (wall seperation...sound mitigation, ground floor rooms, big rooms, king beds, universal design, etc.) I will come clean as this develops and show you the floorplan(s), location, "theme" and why we think this is a winner....but that will have to wait for a bit. I really want to think this through and see if it pencils first. That business plan has to make sense. So keep those suggestions coming. Thanks a bunch!
PS: Is there a spell checker in here?.
Here is one I left out - OUTLETS!! You cannot have too many outlets. You should devote one to the location of your emergency light (we use the plug-ins because #1 they are hard wired to your electricals meaning if the power goes off they come on and #2 the guest just pulls it out and uses it as a flashlight to get out) and then have many others for breathing machine, phone chargers, lamps.......
.
gillumhouse said:
...and then have many others for breathing machine...
It is funny, that is one I never would have guessed at when we started up...but we've seen a many of those machines come through our doors, so it is a good idea.
 

Morticia

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Wow! You guys are the greatest. I never expected all these suggestions in just 4 hours. They ALL go on my design features list. Some...maybe half were already in there (wall seperation...sound mitigation, ground floor rooms, big rooms, king beds, universal design, etc.) I will come clean as this develops and show you the floorplan(s), location, "theme" and why we think this is a winner....but that will have to wait for a bit. I really want to think this through and see if it pencils first. That business plan has to make sense. So keep those suggestions coming. Thanks a bunch!
PS: Is there a spell checker in here?.
Here is one I left out - OUTLETS!! You cannot have too many outlets. You should devote one to the location of your emergency light (we use the plug-ins because #1 they are hard wired to your electricals meaning if the power goes off they come on and #2 the guest just pulls it out and uses it as a flashlight to get out) and then have many others for breathing machine, phone chargers, lamps.......
.
gillumhouse said:
...and then have many others for breathing machine...
It is funny, that is one I never would have guessed at when we started up...but we've seen a many of those machines come through our doors, so it is a good idea.
.
swirt said:
gillumhouse said:
...and then have many others for breathing machine...
It is funny, that is one I never would have guessed at when we started up...but we've seen a many of those machines come through our doors, so it is a good idea.
We were lucky that the OO's followed code when they did the reno and we have outlets fairly standardly placed around the rooms. Still... we have had to add surge protectors in some rooms to beef up the outlet capacity without hiring an electrician.
 

gillumhouse

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Wow! You guys are the greatest. I never expected all these suggestions in just 4 hours. They ALL go on my design features list. Some...maybe half were already in there (wall seperation...sound mitigation, ground floor rooms, big rooms, king beds, universal design, etc.) I will come clean as this develops and show you the floorplan(s), location, "theme" and why we think this is a winner....but that will have to wait for a bit. I really want to think this through and see if it pencils first. That business plan has to make sense. So keep those suggestions coming. Thanks a bunch!
PS: Is there a spell checker in here?.
Here is one I left out - OUTLETS!! You cannot have too many outlets. You should devote one to the location of your emergency light (we use the plug-ins because #1 they are hard wired to your electricals meaning if the power goes off they come on and #2 the guest just pulls it out and uses it as a flashlight to get out) and then have many others for breathing machine, phone chargers, lamps.......
.
gillumhouse said:
...and then have many others for breathing machine...
It is funny, that is one I never would have guessed at when we started up...but we've seen a many of those machines come through our doors, so it is a good idea.
.
swirt said:
gillumhouse said:
...and then have many others for breathing machine...
It is funny, that is one I never would have guessed at when we started up...but we've seen a many of those machines come through our doors, so it is a good idea.
We were lucky that the OO's followed code when they did the reno and we have outlets fairly standardly placed around the rooms. Still... we have had to add surge protectors in some rooms to beef up the outlet capacity without hiring an electrician.
.
I have surge protectors all over the place! We had one attached to the Tea Hutch when he built it and there will be one on the new cabinet being built for the kitchen. I have one or more in each guestroom (one by bed, one by the A/C unit and TV/VCR/radio....). Had a business guest who unplugged everything every week for his stuff - even with a "strip" so I bought one just for him and put it by the bed - and then he stopped coming. I wonder if it was that surge strip.......
 

YellowSocks

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Wow! You guys are the greatest. I never expected all these suggestions in just 4 hours. They ALL go on my design features list. Some...maybe half were already in there (wall seperation...sound mitigation, ground floor rooms, big rooms, king beds, universal design, etc.) I will come clean as this develops and show you the floorplan(s), location, "theme" and why we think this is a winner....but that will have to wait for a bit. I really want to think this through and see if it pencils first. That business plan has to make sense. So keep those suggestions coming. Thanks a bunch!
PS: Is there a spell checker in here?.
Here is one I left out - OUTLETS!! You cannot have too many outlets. You should devote one to the location of your emergency light (we use the plug-ins because #1 they are hard wired to your electricals meaning if the power goes off they come on and #2 the guest just pulls it out and uses it as a flashlight to get out) and then have many others for breathing machine, phone chargers, lamps.......
.
Agree wholeheartedly on the outlets. My new rooms have lots, AND two surge protectors (on the desks and behind the TV's). Between my own usage and the guests we may need:
- TV
- DVD/VCR
- cable Box
- clock(s)
- lamps: three per room minimum [desk, one each side of bed], one of my rooms has seven
- fan/white noise machine
- cell phone charger
- cell phone charger for spouse
- bluetooth earpiece charger (could be two)
- ipod/mp3/Garmin charger (could be two)
- laptop (sometimes two)
- radio/cd player
- hair dryer
- curling iron
- electric razor
- toothbrushes
- breathing machine
- window lights (those little candle ones)
- night lights (that come on at night)
- emergency lights (that come on when the power fails)
- vacuum cleaner (needs to be empty and handy)
You need dozens of places to plug things in! (And cable pre-wired as well.)
Most of my rooms don't have phone outlets, though... not really called for in this wireless age.
=)
Kk.
 

gillumhouse

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Wow! You guys are the greatest. I never expected all these suggestions in just 4 hours. They ALL go on my design features list. Some...maybe half were already in there (wall seperation...sound mitigation, ground floor rooms, big rooms, king beds, universal design, etc.) I will come clean as this develops and show you the floorplan(s), location, "theme" and why we think this is a winner....but that will have to wait for a bit. I really want to think this through and see if it pencils first. That business plan has to make sense. So keep those suggestions coming. Thanks a bunch!
PS: Is there a spell checker in here?.
Here is one I left out - OUTLETS!! You cannot have too many outlets. You should devote one to the location of your emergency light (we use the plug-ins because #1 they are hard wired to your electricals meaning if the power goes off they come on and #2 the guest just pulls it out and uses it as a flashlight to get out) and then have many others for breathing machine, phone chargers, lamps.......
.
Agree wholeheartedly on the outlets. My new rooms have lots, AND two surge protectors (on the desks and behind the TV's). Between my own usage and the guests we may need:
- TV
- DVD/VCR
- cable Box
- clock(s)
- lamps: three per room minimum [desk, one each side of bed], one of my rooms has seven
- fan/white noise machine
- cell phone charger
- cell phone charger for spouse
- bluetooth earpiece charger (could be two)
- ipod/mp3/Garmin charger (could be two)
- laptop (sometimes two)
- radio/cd player
- hair dryer
- curling iron
- electric razor
- toothbrushes
- breathing machine
- window lights (those little candle ones)
- night lights (that come on at night)
- emergency lights (that come on when the power fails)
- vacuum cleaner (needs to be empty and handy)
You need dozens of places to plug things in! (And cable pre-wired as well.)
Most of my rooms don't have phone outlets, though... not really called for in this wireless age.
=)
Kk.
.
We used to think a "double" outlet was enough. If I had it to do over, when I had things rewired here, I would have had quads installed. I have a quad heavy load surge outlet where my computer plugs in and one of those holds my surge strip for the printer, the cc machine, my lamp amd my speakers. The tower, monitor, UPS, and cell phone charger take up the other 3. I have multi-plugs and surge strips everywhere! I need at least 4 more outlets where every outlet is located and would add more locations if I could. I have the calculater and shredder on another outlet and lamps and radio on another....... and that is just my office!
 

JunieBJones (JBJ)

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Not sure why you all are even mentioning outlets, he is building a new structure, code requires outlets on every wall, and most people put them every 4 or 5 feet apart which is standard drill. So most walls have two or three. He is building a NEW structure, not remodeling a historic home. All new homes are built with electronics in mind.
 

swirt

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Not sure why you all are even mentioning outlets, he is building a new structure, code requires outlets on every wall, and most people put them every 4 or 5 feet apart which is standard drill. So most walls have two or three. He is building a NEW structure, not remodeling a historic home. All new homes are built with electronics in mind..
We built new, and we still could use more than we have. ;)
 
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