Not every building plot is rectangular and even. Often, it is the unusual plots that are particularly impressive and offer unique possibilities. One example would be hillside properties. Well planned hillside homes blend in well with their surroundings – as if hugging the terrain. But at the same time, they can also be quite a challenge.
Aspects of planning
Anyone thinking of building a home envisages spacious, light-flooded rooms. For many people, an appealing view is the cherry on top. Hillside homes are a way of making this dream come true – at least as long as you pay attention to certain planning details.
First and foremost, carefully observe the light conditions on the potential building plot. Is there a wooded slope that casts its shadow in the afternoons? Or is the plot possibly north-facing? If you value light-flooded spaces, you should study the actual conditions, ideally at every time of day or year. This also includes examining the subsoil. On slopes, it is important to perform a geological survey. This will prevent unwanted surprises in the future, such as landslides or crevices.
Slope water might pose a possible challenge in this context. If slope water accumulates along the outer walls, this could damage the brickwork or even the statics. You should also keep in mind that construction time will be longer than when building on a level plot. The development of the site and protection against landslides could impose additional costs.
Questions to ask yourself before buying
Once the hillside home is complete, its views will often leave potential buyers spellbound. But before buying, you should ask yourself the following: Is a multi-level home really what you are looking for? Do you mind climbing stairs? To what extent do you want to use the garden? Depending on whether the house was built upslope or downslope, you might have to navigate differences in height just to access the actual living area.
Level access to the kitchen and storage rooms is preferable. This keeps the distances that need to be covered carrying shopping bags to a minimum. Rooms that you will be spending much time in should face downslope, as this will allow you to fully enjoy the views. Furthermore, the architecture should facilitate maximum light incidence throughout the day and year. A shifted floor plan is a good way to achieve this. Last not least, a level access to the garden or terrace will impact how these are used. In day-to-day life, stairs do tend to be cumbersome.
The joys of living in a hillside home
Although there are various factors that need to be considered when planning or buying a hillside home, it can also be said that: Anyone who has found the hillside home of his dreams will never want to miss these magnificent views ever again. If optimally aligned to the south, the building will enjoy many hours of direct sunlight on all levels. Furthermore, a very steep slope can also be energy-saving. The house can be built into the hillside, which makes for perfect insulation along the rear. Valley views visually extend the living area outwards, and are really worthwhile.
Are you still looking for a home or plot with views? Then visit the Engel & Völkers website. Here you will find an extensive portfolio of properties. There is something for every taste – from hillside villas with pool to modern hillside family homes.