LOCAL RECORDS OFFICE – While you may be either building a completely new home or searching for your next home, it is one of the most exciting times and it is important to start looking for your ideal home design.
As we are growing out of modern architecture, you may be wondering if building a ‘fad’ for your newer structure really worth it? Tiny houses have been the big craze for many families looking to downsize and still be able to access an adequate amount of surrounding land, but will it still be a popular choice for potential homeowners in 20 to 30 years?
Either way, looking into styles of homes that fit both you and your family’s needs and wants is your main objective. And here are the few ideal architectural home designs that are both popular and offer significant features with each having its own unique style.
This can be overwhelming, as there are many different housing designs, so I put this list in alphabetical order, in case you already know what design you are looking for.
These house plans share the ideal Country French architecture and are found in Louisiana and across the American southeast, maritime Canadian areas, and exhibit the Louisiana and Cajun influences. Rooms are arranged on either side of a central hallway and the kitchen is in the back. And these stylized homes typically feature a steep, sloping roof with gables that shed snow and moisture effectively.
It is a regional architectural style that draws inspiration from the Pueblo and Spanish Missions located in New Mexico, and typically is made with stucco and has a flat roof with rounded edges. These decorative features often found in this style home include wooden beams projecting from the roofline, hand-hewn lintels inset above deep window openings and walls that slope inward.
The popular style A-Frames have come back into style and are great for that cozy, ‘cabin look’ and most offer acres of land surrounding rivers, a lake or a body of water. And they are well-underpriced for what they have to offer.
The A-frame is shaped like an equilateral triangle and its distinctive peak is formed by rafters or trusses that are held together at the top and bolted to the floor joists or plates down below. And the cross-piece of the A is created with horizontal collar beams to stabilize the structure and typically supports a sleeping loft.
A-frames meet the earth on the rubble of cinderblock walls, concrete or even wood columns, but their essential nature is for them to float slightly above their natural environment, with a viewing platform for an expanse of nature.
These houses are often raised houses suitable for shoreline sites and are adaptable for vacation homes near water or mountain areas. The Tidewater house is typical and features the wide porches, and are constructed of wood with the main living are raised one level.
These house plans are common to Craftsman, Rustic and Cottage home designs. These typical home designs have a great porch for your rocker and are typically one-level with over-hanging eaves as some of the most classic features.
This small, symmetrical style is typically 1 ½ story, and typically people will add on additions behind or on the sides to increase the square footage. These first Cape Cod homes were also built in the 1600s and were inspired by Britain’s thatched cottages, but with steeper roofs and larger chimneys to withstand the cold Northeastern winters. New builds in this style are rare, says Rob Brennan, principal at the Brennan + Company Architects in Ellicott City, Maryland.
Get their name from the outbuildings of large manors whereas owners store their carriages. Today, the carriage house generally is in reference to the detached garage with living space above them.
It has a symmetrical look and floor plan and has been a popular style throughout the 19th and 20th centuries. These are typically two to three-story house plans with symmetrical façade and gable roofs and often are expressed in temple-like entrances with porticos topped with pediments.
Multi-pane, double-hung windows with shutters, dormers, and paneled doors with sidelights, topped with rectangular transoms or fanlights, and include entry-hall floor plans, fireplaces and simple, classical detailing.
It offers today’s building appearances and can vary in design. The most common characteristic is clean lines, large windows devoid a decorative trim, and with the focus towards function. It is comparable to connecting the indoors with the outdoors by emphasizing energy efficiency, sustainable materials, with large, floor-to-ceiling windows offering lots of natural light and uses recyclable non-toxic materials.
The exterior is a mixture of siding, stucco, stone, brick, and wood. The roof is either flat or shallow-pitched, and often with great overhangs.
This smaller design is a storybook charm that will fit near a lake or in a mountain setting. These are sometimes also referred to as bungalows.
As are one of the most popular styles, these styled house plans embrace the wraparound porch and have a gabled roof. And they are offered most commonly in either one or two stories high.
The French County style is rooted in the rural French countryside and includes modest farmhouse designs and estate-like chateaus. This style exudes warmth and comfortable design elements such as curved arches, soft lines, and stonework. The inside has wooden beams, plaster walls and stone floors as the most common thematic features.
The Low Country house plans are suited for coastal areas and the coastal plains of the Carolinas and Georgia. Typically, they are elevated and have welcoming porches to enjoy the outdoors in the shade.
The Craftsman displays the honesty and simplicity of a truly American house. These homes emphasize natural materials –wood, brick, and stone with wide porches and low-pitched, gabled roofs (often hipped) with exposed rafters. The porches are either full or partial width, with tapered columns, and or pedestals that extend to the ground level. The interior’s open floor plan features built-in furniture, big fireplaces, and exposed beams.
A Dutch Colonial is similar to Colonial-style and it most recognized for its gambrel roof and has a shallower pitch with must steeper sides –a look most commonly used on barns. Dormers are where second-story windows pop out of the façade and are also a more common feature of Dutch colonial homes.
These houses have typically steep roofs, subtly flared curves at the eaves and faced with either stucco or stone. The roof comes down to the windows and the second floor is often the roof, or as we know it, the attic.
Reflects the American simpler era when families gathered in an open kitchen and a living room. This version of a country home style usually has bedrooms clustered together and features the friendly porches. The lines are simple and often faced with wood siding.
The Federal-style became popular during America’s first decades as a nation in the late 18th century and 19th centuries. These homes tend to be symmetrical with tall windows. The Federal homes were originally built in a similar box shape, and it is common to see in additions to the side or expanded depth.
A Florida house plan embraces elements of several styles that allow comfort during the heat of the day. This Mediterranean house with its shallow, sloping tile roof and verandas is faced with wood and has one or more porches, verandas, and windows to allow a breeze to flow freely throughout.
These home plans characterize with proportion and balance and typically have square symmetrical shapes with paneled doors centered on the front façade. The paired chimneys are a common feature of added symmetry. The common building materials use stone with red, tan or white being the most frequently used colors.
This Texas Hill Country style is a regional historical style with roots in European immigrants that settled the area, with available white limestone and later brown sandstone that were used with the local cedar to construct these well-crafted and attractive homes. During the settlers’ movement and due to these lean times, the result of these homes is simple and has an authentic style with modern elegance.
Log Homes originally were small cabins in the 1600s and were built as one room using no nails, sort of like the same concept of when we were kids building our own homes with the logs. Now, they are built as functional and large luxurious getaways. These log homes are ideally found in a rural setting. The climate of the surrounding area will dictate the type of wood you should use to build the home. And can be handcrafted or milled (built of manufactured wood).
This is usually a one-story home design with shallow roofs that slope, with a wide overhang to provide shade in warmer climates. The courtyards and open arches allow for breezes to flow through freely the house and verandas. There are typically open, big windows throughout and the verandas can be found on the 2nd floor. The exterior is stucco and the roofs made with tile, making these great vacation homes in southern latitudes.
It Features glass, steel, and concrete. The open floor plans are a signature characteristic and from the street, they are dramatic to behold. And even though there is some overlap to the contemporary house plans, they are two different looks.
Mountain home designs commonly feature huge windows and large decks with rugged exteriors and exposed wood beams. These prow-shaped great rooms are quite common. There is some crossover to vacation home plans.
From Greek and Roman architecture for inspiration, the Neoclassical design embraces large columns and smooth surfaces. Some of the well-known homes in the U.S with the Neoclassical design, include the White House and Thomas Jefferson’s home, Monticello.
Designed by architects from the Northwest, this home is simple in design, devoid of the excessive exterior details and it is mostly made of wood. The roof usually is medium to low-pitched with deep overhangs. Windows being large can bring light into the interiors.
The plantation home plans are typically boasted with white pillars, asymmetrical shape and sprawling porches mostly associated with the South, though, found all over the country. The grand scale features are spacious and suggest the charm and genteel lifestyle of the South.
The prairie style home plans came around the turn of the 20th century and are often associated with one of the giants in design. With seeping horizontal lines and wide-open floor plans, the common features of this style include overhanging eaves, rows of small windows and one-story projection, and in many cases, a central chimney.
Is also known as “rambler” for the way the rooms spread out over only one level, but it also becomes a raised ranch or a split level with room for expansion. These styles became popular in the 1950s and had inspiration from Frank Lloyd Wright’s Prairie style, says Brennan. The asymmetrical shapes are common with the low-pitched roofs and a built-in garage. And the exterior is faced with either wood or bricks or has a combination of both.
Shingle style house plans were born in England and popular throughout the West Coast, they are informal and highly imaginative –a summer style “cottage” often built for the wealthier clients. This architecture of American summer is known for its casual style with its ability to blend into their surroundings, with wooden shakes in natural colors. The wide porches are fairly common and are an invitation to spend more time outdoors in the sun.
Spanish Colonial Revival
These Spanish styles are easily recognizable by the terracotta tiles roof that is perfect for warmer climates, and stucco or adobe walls, and arched windows and doors that complete the look.
Its variation of the ranch but has more of an up and down feel as you walk through. Essentially is a ranch house with a garage stuck underneath it. The short staircases lead up and down to different levels and to rooms throughout.
This being one of the most common styles in the U.S. is a mix of classic, simple designs that commonly features little ornamentation, simple rooflines, and symmetrically spaced windows. The building materials are in either wood or brick.
The Tudor Revival homes only use timber cosmetically and are easily recognized by its steep-pitched roof and framing of typically half brick or half-timber with stucco. Often, is misrepresented as the Tudor which refers to the English architectural style in the 16th century.
These house plans combine modern elements with a classic Italian design and resulting in an attractive Old World European charm. Though similar to Mediterranean house plans, the Tuscan designs typically feature stucco exteriors and stone accents, terracotta roof tiles, narrow, tall windows with shutters and enclosed courtyards. Additionally, this style often features decorative ceilings and wooden beams.
Vacation home plans have central, open living spaces and with few or many bedrooms to suit a couple or a family with lots of friends.
It is best marked with its steep roof, asymmetrical facade and elaborately crafted trim on overhangs and rooflines, giving it a ‘gingerbread house’ look. San Francisco’s Painted Ladies are a prime example of Victorian and Edwardian architecture in the U.S.