What is a floor plan?

Floor plans give a top-down view of each floor within a building. They “are like cross sections which are taken horizontally half way up the wall” (National VET E-learning Strategy, BCGBC4007A: Prepare Documentation: Floor Plans).

Floor plans are drawn to scale (usually 1:100) and show the position of rooms, walls and openings such as doors and windows.

Floor plans will usually include:Sketch of simple floor plan for single storey house

  • room names and/or numbers
  • all horizontal measurements (including wall thicknesses, room sizes, hallways, doors and windows)
  • position of toilet, bathroom, laundry and kitchen fixtures
  • size and position of built-in cupboards, stairways, ramps and other permanently fixed structures
  • internal areas of rooms

Other details may also be shown, such as roof lines, types of floor coverings, wall materials, and reference numbers for individual doors and windows.

A floor plan would be used by a builder to accurately locate and position walls, doors, windows and other structures during the build. The plan would provide an approved reference point to resolve potential client-builder disputes.

The builder would be able to use the floor plan to create a rough estimate of building materials, costs, time and workers required.


‘CPCCCM2001A Read and interpret plans and specifications’, NSW HSC Online, NSW Department of Education and Communities, viewed 12 March 2014, http://www.hsc.csu.edu.au/construction/other_units/compulsory/bcg1003a/bcg1003a/bcg1003aedit1csu.html

‘How to Read and Interpret Plans and Elevations’, DA Planner’s Online Mentor and Induction Kit, Planning Institute Australia, South Australian Division, viewed 12 March 2014, http://www.daonline.net.au/site/how_to_read_and_interpret_plans_and_elevations.php

National VET E-learning Strategy, BCGBC4007A Prepare Documentation: Floor Plans, Commonwealth of Australia, viewed 12 March 2014, http://toolboxes.flexiblelearning.net.au/demosites/series10/10_01/content/bcgbc4007a/02_prep_documentation/02_plans/page_003.htm

Working Drawings, Osman Designpac, Underwood, Queensland, viewed 12 March 2014, http://www.osmandesign.com.au/working-drawings.htm