A floor plan key defines symbols used on blueprints or architectural drawings, such as walls, doors, electrical sockets and design elements. Sometimes these symbols are self-explanatory, but drawings can be so elaborate that the meanings of some symbols are not obvious to the non-professional. Keys can therefore provide important, detailed information that could impact the cost of construction.
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A floor plan key allows a non-professional to take away more detailed information about an architectural plan by listing the symbols used in the plan and the definition of what they represent.
When floor plans include keys, the keys are often printed along the side or bottom of the blueprints or drawings. For elaborate plans, the key can be printed on a separate page.
Floor plan keys can also be used to give technical data, such as scale, elevation, design details and even sun exposure. Some use very detailed symbols that specify the type of wall, type of sink or specific appliances.
There are many home design software programs that include a database of hundreds of the symbols used on blueprints, such as Better Homes and Gardens Designer Suite, Turbo Floorplan Home and Landscape Pro from IMSI, and Punch! Home Design Studio.
Floor plans in digital form, such as those viewed on the Internet, can have more complex floor plan keys that provide links to pictures or other details about the design elements on the plan.
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