How to Find Blueprints of a House

How to Find Blueprints of a House

If you are planning to renovate your house or simply curious about its architecture, finding the blueprints can provide valuable insights into the original design and layout. Here are some helpful tips on how to find blueprints of a house.

1. Contact the builder or architect: Start by reaching out to the original builder or architect of the house. They may still have a copy of the blueprints or can direct you to the current owner who might have them.

2. Local government offices: Visit your local building permit office or city planning department. They often keep records of construction permits and blueprints. Provide the address and any relevant details to assist them in locating the documents.

3. Previous owners: If the house has changed hands multiple times, try contacting previous owners. They may have kept a copy of the blueprints for their records.

4. Real estate agents: Reach out to the real estate agent who facilitated the sale of the property. They might have access to the blueprints or be able to assist you in locating them.

5. Online databases: Several websites offer access to a vast collection of blueprints. Websites like, Architectural Designs, and The House Designer provide a wide range of architectural plans for purchase.

6. Local libraries: Visit your local library and inquire whether they have any resources on local architecture or historical records that include blueprints. Librarians can guide you to relevant sections and help you with your search.

7. Online archives: Check online archives or digital repositories that specialize in architectural records. Websites such as the National Archives, Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS), or the Library of Congress contain a wealth of architectural documents, including blueprints.

8. Hire a professional: If all else fails, consider hiring a professional architectural historian or a licensed architect who specializes in historical preservation. They have experience in locating and interpreting historical blueprints.

Frequently Asked Questions:

1. Are blueprints the same as floor plans?
No, blueprints are detailed technical drawings that include floor plans, elevations, sections, and other construction details.

2. How much do blueprints cost?
The cost varies depending on the complexity of the house and the source. Online blueprints can range from a few dollars to a few thousand dollars. Hiring a professional may be more expensive.

3. Can I make changes to the blueprints?
Yes, you can work with an architect or designer to modify the blueprints according to your needs. However, consult local building codes and regulations before making any changes.

4. Can I find blueprints for old houses?
Yes, blueprints for old houses may be available in local archives, libraries, or online databases specializing in historical records.

5. Are blueprints necessary for renovations?
While not always necessary, blueprints can provide essential information during renovations, ensuring that changes align with the original design and structure.

6. How long does it take to find blueprints?
The time required to find blueprints can vary significantly. It depends on the availability of records and the resources you utilize in your search.

7. What if I can’t find the original blueprints?
If the original blueprints are unavailable, you can hire a professional to create as-built drawings based on measurements and observations of the existing structure.

8. Can blueprints be used for new construction?
Yes, blueprints can be used for new construction projects as they provide a comprehensive guide for building a house. However, they may need to be modified to meet current building codes and regulations.