The Most Popular Architectural Home Styles in the Twin Cities

Dated: August 19 2021

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No matter where you live, you’ll likely encounter a wide variety of architectural house styles just by driving through your neighborhood. From extravagant to quaint, homes across the Twin Cities hold their own unique beauty and characteristics just like the people who inhabit them.

So, what are the most popular home styles in the metro area? From Richfield to White Bear Lake, you don’t have to be an architect to appreciate the range of stunning house styles available on the housing market. So whether you’re in the market for a new home or just love browsing homes on your favorite real estate app (hopefully mine - download here), here are the 5 most popular house styles in the Twin Cities right now.

1. Ranch-style homes

The Ranch-style home is a common one across America. It is known for its low, sprawling single-story layout. In addition to more linear designs, ranch homes were also L- or U-shaped. They exhibit large front windows, open floor plans, and often an attached garage.

Ranch


2. Split-Level-style homes

This raised ranch variation stands apart with two floors that are separated by short flights of stairs. This approach to housing works well on lots that feature hilly landscapes, or ones with varying heights. The middle floor of a split-level typically includes common living areas, whereas the bedrooms and rec room may only be a few steps up or down. 

Split-Level


3. Bungalow-style homes

While there are a half dozen different types of bungalow homes, there are a few key features that draw a line through the historically Indian construction. While occupying India, British colonizers wanted to develop easily built houses to live in: the original bungalow’s low-to-the-ground design aided in airflow and helped its inhabitants to beat the heat. Later, the style grew in popularity in the U.K. and eventually made its way across the Atlantic in the early 1900s, thanks to the Arts and Crafts movement. Generally, bungalows include low-pitched gables, wide porches, and are one story high (or are made to look that way). 

Bungalow


4. Cape Cod-style homes

Popularized in the northeastern United States, Cape Cod-style homes feature a large chimney as the centerpiece, as well as a box-shaped form, a central front door, and a steep roof that encourages snow to easily slide off it. The centuries-old Yankee style is admired for its simplicity; they made up the bulk of Levittowns in the U.S. The Cape style is so iconic to the American zeitgeist that it was immortalized in the family favorite board game Monopoly. 

Cape Cod


5. Colonial-style homes

In a departure from the ornamental styles of the late 1800s and early 1900s, Colonial Revival homes took a simpler, more classic approach to homebuilding (though the style wasn’t always historically accurate to Colonial times, according to Historic New England). Characteristics of these houses generally include a side-gabled roof and a sturdy brick or wood facade. The style did up the drama with contrasting dark window shutters against stark white multi-paned windows and short-reaching porticos and pediments. 

Colonial

Descriptions adapted from apartmenttherapy.com

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Jon Speich

I am a licensed, full-time, professional realtor with JP Willman Realty Twin Cities, specializing in buying and selling residential real estate. My clients trust me for being a real estate expert who....

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