Keep the number of columns consistent (or improve panel editing in general) so that the panels don't reposition themselves.
Panels reposition themselves when the chat is hidden. It may just be me but it messes with the look of my panels which are of varying sizes, and I do not want to compromise by deleting certain panels or by unnecessarily adding more panels.
What would greatly help with this dilemma is making the number of columns is consistently three or four so that the user does not have to worry about the position and look of the panels for both the three-column and four-column look.
Or, if possible, improve the panel editing overall so that we can place panels where we want or at least with greater ease.
Doing either of this, I think, would encourage at least some of us users to make better panels to present ourselves with and, in my case, reduce my frustration with editing panels.