Your Guide to Home Architecture Styles

If you are currently looking for homes, you may have noticed the diversity of shapes and styles each home’s architecture holds. From the broad eaves with exposed rafters often seen in the craftsman bungalow popular in Seattle, to the American four-square popular from the mid-1890s to the late 1930s, Washington hosts a collection of homes with unique and varied architectural styles. In my blog, I will be discussing the characteristics often associated with each popular home style.

Prairie Style

This style home is synonymous with clean lines and a meticulous design and rose in popularity in the early 20th century. From Antique Home, “the Prairie style was a reaction to the ornate overblown Victorian architecture of the late 19th century.” This home style is often marked by flat or hipped roofs with overhanging eaves, and a seamless transition between outdoors to indoors.

Craftsman Bungalow

If you have driven through any Seattle neighborhood you are sure to have seen a few craftsman bungalow style homes. The craftsman bungalow is a term used to encompass small to medium size homes building during the early 20th century. These homes are characterized by their low-pitched roof, exposed rafters, open floorplan, and build in cabinetry. This prominent style increased in popularity as Seattle’s population tripled. From KUOW, the style became popular “Between 1900 and 1910, Seattle’s population tripled, from just over 80,000 to more than 230,000 people” and “the rooming houses and small apartments in the center city couldn’t accommodate the influx of new residents.”

American Four Square

Known for a simple floor plan, this was one of the most commonly built homes in the early 20th-century house for a number of reasons. The American Four Square “is an extremely simple form, energy, and resource efficient, easily standardized, and economical to build. All are key reasons for its popularity, but like a plain vanilla cake, it also took decorative details well.”

Ranch Style

A ranch style home, often referred to as an American ranch, rambler, or rancher, is an architectural home style with a one-story wide-open layout. These homes originated in the United States and commonly featured a low-pitched roof, asymmetrical shape, and large windows. This style home was named after its starting in the West, according to Houzz “although its development is linked to the rise of car culture starting in the 1930s rather than cattle ranching.”