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Anyone built or seen built Frank Betz's Northfield Manor?

dbrad
February 9, 2015

We've been working on a custom plan for years (everything drawn up and paid for already) but recently tired of it - what a waste of time and $$! But as much as we hate to admit it, we just aren't "feeling it" anymore.

Recently we saw the below plan by Frank Betz and fell in love. The floor plan needs very few changes and with a walk-out basement it will fit nicely on our lot. Our only concern is that the neighborhood where we purchased land is full of rather large - or at least large-seeming - houses. The minimum size for the neighborhood is 3000 (recently lowered to that after the housing crunch) so it's not like the house has to be really large (this plan is 3800 + 600 bonus), but we're just not sure this house fits. Our initial impression was WOW, but now we think the house just has a small-looking front elevation to it. Are we crazy??

We would LOVE to see more photos of this house but even after contacting Frank Betz Associates we can't seem to find anyone who has built it (they are understandably unwilling to share that information). We are even willing to drive/fly to see the house in person - don't judge, we're (annoyingly, even to ourselves) picky and want to get this right this time!

So, anyone know where this house has been built, or at least have some photos that would give us a better impression of it? Thanks for indulging our craziness!

https://www.frankbetz.com/plans/Northfield%20manor

http://www.eplans.com/house-plans/epl/hwepl12437.html


Comments (670)
  • Jay
    We took the support out in the kitchen. We installed a triple LVL. We did the same thing in the living room.
  • Jay
    We took the support out in the kitchen. We installed a triple LVL. We did the same thing in the living room.
  • Diane Heitmann

    We took ours out also....LVL....

  • Molly Buckner
    Hoping to move in the middle of August!! Still have to add the finishing touches.
  • dbrad

    We're getting really close - should be moving in this week.


  • Elizabeth Beverly

    @dbrad Beautiful! Love the transoms!

    dbrad thanked Elizabeth Beverly
  • Elizabeth Beverly

    I finally got a pic of the upstairs loft that is bedroom 3 in the ST plans. We swapped the wall and open rail and made the bonus room a bedroom, putting a wall with closet halfway. Now, the former bedroom closet is a big toy closet and the bathroom can be accessed without having to go into someone’s bedroom. In order to do this, we had to do a landing in front of the bonus and two steps up to the loft. We are SO glad we made this change. We use the back stairs all the time!

  • Crystal Sims

    @dawnjarvis I live in Statham, not far from Athens. Will you email me the name of your builder? Email is sims7197@bellsouth.net.

  • M Childress

    My husband and I still cannot decide on "the one" for our house plan. We love the Northfield Manor AND Southern Trace, but the NM is a bit larger than we were looking for....with that being said, has anyone minimized the square footage on either of these, or has everyone ended up with more sq footage than the house originally states? Thanks for your info in advance!

  • dbrad
    M Childress, we dropped one of the garage bays from the main garage and added one in the side of our walkout basement instead. This made the bonus room smaller.

    You could also drop the master sitting area if you wanted to. Our master bedroom would be plenty big without it.

    Not a whole lot of sqft savings there, but every little bit helps.
  • bellaella1

    We built the ST but kept NM master bath and closets and built out 600 sq ft in the bonus room. We’re at 3,917 sq ft total.

  • Diane Heitmann
    More landscaping and walkway lights ......its never ending...patiios next...I love watching everyone's progress...I still need to unpack as many boxes as I have already unpacked....Our ST in Lake Wylie SC



  • Jason Freeman
    Current progress of our Reconstructed Southern Trace/Tuxedo Park...
  • sparkie08

    Jason, where are you building your house?

  • Jason Freeman
    Hello @Sparkie08, we’re building in Huntsville, Alabama.
  • sparkie08

    Your building site looks so much like the Texarkana, TX area! There's also a Jason Freeman here, I was hoping to be able to check out your house in person! I looked up the Tuxedo Park plan that you're combining with Southern Trace. I hadn't seen that one yet. We're still in the planning stage, so many good ideas here! Thanks to everyone for posting!

  • pamela mendez

    For those currently building or finished building the NM what was your cost to build for your location without the lot price included? Thanks

  • bellaella1

    @sarahhogle message me at bellaella1@yahoo.com and I’m happy to send you pics of whatever you would like to see Re: the floor plan.

  • mrsmarshall21
    Hi everyone, my husband and I are building a house inspired by the Southern Trace floor plan (however we are building on a lake so we chopped off the garage and moved it to the front allowing for more lake view) and I can’t settle on a kitchen layout. It’s keeping me up at night! Would anyone mind sharing the dimensions and layout of their kitchens?? @DawnJarvis your kitchen is similar to one I have been considering with seating on the great room side of the island - would you mind sharing dimensions??
  • Mindy Apple

    @Erin Smith I love your dining farmhouse table. Can I ask how long it is (how many feet?). Thanks!!!

  • Erin Smith

    Thank you! I think our table is 8.5 feet long.

  • Paul Williams

    My wife and I are awaiting the final changes to our Northfield Manor plans and I can't tell you how valuable the information in this thread has been to us. Thank you! I am always thinking ahead and have been going through James Hardy color samples and am stuggling. I am wondering how many of you used hardy plank and what were the colors you actually chose? Thanks for your help!

  • sarahogle
    Can someone please post pictures of their sitting room off the kitchen. I’m so confused with this space since the living room is so close. Considering making the sitting room the breakfast area and maybe making the breakfast nook a kids/ computer area? Thoughts?
  • Erin Smith




    This is one of our favorite spaces. It has been used just as much, if not more, than our main living area.

  • Erin Smith


    Here is another angle.

  • Jason Freeman
    Progress Pics....
  • wrightgj

    @Jason Freeman Did you have Frank Betz create the plan for you? We're looking at a fairly modified NM/ST, and not sure if it's more cost-effective to have FB do the modifications, or give it to a designer to start from scratch.

  • lolabannister

    Dawn, Do you mind telling me where you got your keeping room chandelier? It is exactly what I am looking for. Thank you!

  • lolabannister

    Dawn, Do you mind telling me where you got your chandelier? It is exactly what I am looking for. Thank you

  • lolabannister

    Dawn, the keeping room, one.

  • Dawn Jarvis
    @lolabannister
  • lolabannister

    Dawn, Thank you so much!

  • Jason Freeman
    @wrightgj We took our ideas to a drafter and had him modify/merge the Tuxedo Park with the Northfield Manor to fit our wants & needs. But if you like the NM/ST plans as is, I would go with Frank Betz.
  • wrightgj

    @Jason Freeman Thanks - we wouldn't have a cookie-cutter version of the plan, so there would certainly be a need for some mods.


    I know a couple people have mentioned that the plans from Betz were very detailed - more so than what they'd get from other draftsmen - and that saved them from potential issues in some spots. You might not have a side by side comparison, but did you find that you were missing anything in regards to the plans you had? I know it'll depend on who's doing the drafting, so I'm not going to assume that all others are incapable, just wondering if there were things that would be noted or called out explicitly by FB since it's their original plan.

  • Jason Freeman
    @wrightgj So far in our build process, we have not come across any issues regarding the plans not being true FB plans. As you mentioned, maybe if we had the two sets side x side, I could find differences in the details of roof lines, window sizes and utility rough-in locations. For us, it was just easier to work directly with a local, highly skilled drafter to make modifications to fit our needs/wants rather than trying to correspond with a FB architect over the phone or thru email. To see more of our progress, you can follow us on Instagram @thefreemanscraftedfarmhouse
  • lldaves6

    @wrightgj for us, it was taking longer to get mods communicated and completed through FB. We did make some initial changes with FB but in the end, worked with a local since we are out of state.


    Looking great @JasonFreeman! Exciting times!

  • lldaves6

    @sparkle08 I am in Texas in the McKinney area if you want to see our modified ST/NM

    @sarahogle We made the sitting room off of our kitchen a dining room as we are using the original dining space as an office.

  • sarahogle

    Show me your pictures of the master bath and master bedroom! We just received our modifications back from FB we went with the southern trace but, kept the northfield manor master bedroom and master bath. We also enlarged the laundry room and pantry! I am trying to figure out the best lay out in the master bath!

  • bellaella1

    @sarahogle We did the same. We also cut the sitting room off of our bedroom in order to expand the porch across the entire back of the house. I don’t have pics on my phone but happy to send a couple later.

  • Mandi Smith

    @jasonfreeman did you take the window out of the master closet? We purchased this ST plan but that closet window and the kitchen are not my favorites.

  • Jason Freeman
    @MandiSmith Yes, we opted to remove the window to give us more useable wall space in the closet. On the exterior closet wall, we’ll create the look of a closed shutter/faux window. For the kitchen, we chose to have our island face the Great Room instead of the Keeping Room. It gave all the spaces more walk-around room. Our layout goes Kitchen-Dining Room-Great Room all in one continuous space.
  • Mandi Smith
    Any new starts on a Southern Trace in North or South Carolina? We plan to start in January, but would love to walk through one before if possible.
  • lolabannister

    Steve Hollis, Coukd you please tell me, how big your island is and what solid surface did you use (Name and color)? Did they do a seam and if they did where did they put it? We were told that quartz stilestone would work better in not showing the seam and to choose a less busy pattern. Thank you so much!

  • Greg Tanner

    I am so happy to have found this! We are literally in the beginning phase of preparing for a build. We love this plan. A couple of builders were confused by the layout of the plan on the website and comparing the pictures. So we are just going to order the FB plan and then make changes as needed. Overall, I love the plan as is. The confusing part is the kitchen and if that is a column of some type that comes down in the middle of the kitchen.


  • Molly Buckner
    The dining room is looking a little like Christmas!
  • Diane Heitmann

    @Greg Tanner...we built the Southern Trace....our local architect removed that (we really did not like it nor did our builder) and lvl's were use to omit it.....Good luck!!!


  • Erin Smith

    The column is what I was most concerned about, also. It caused me to play around with 15 or so kitchen layouts. HOWEVER, it has ended up being such an amazing part of my kitchen. I will post a picture. Definitely one of the most complimented part of my house.

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