These are the Most Popular House Styles in America Right Now

Whether you’re on the hunt for a new home or you’re just admiring the architecture in your neighborhood, learn about the different house styles in America and their defining characteristics.

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Know Your Architecture

Today’s home buyers encounter a melting pot of architectural styles across the United States, ranging from sprawling Queen Annes to clean-lined contemporaries. But which styles reign supreme? For your shopping (and dreaming) pleasure, we’ve rounded up examples of the 12 most popular styles. Check them out, choose your favorite facade, and then head out on a house-hunting expedition.

Craftsman Bungalow

This house style emerged from the Arts and Crafts movement of the early 1900s, which rebelled against industrial production and extravagance and instead embraced handcrafted elements and natural materials like wood, stone, and brick. Defining features of Craftsman bungalows include columned front porches, low-pitched roofs, and double-hung windows with divided panes in the upper sash and one large pane in the lower sash.

Related: 13 Striking House Styles from Around the World

Cape Cod

Originally built by English settlers in the 17th century, Cape Cod homes saw a resurgence in popularity during the 1940s. The quaint structures are recognized by their steep roofs, central chimneys, shingle siding, and symmetrical windows framing the front door.

Related: 13 Homes from the Original Colonies That Still Stand Today


From the 1940s to the 1980s, ranch-style homes dominated new construction in the southern and western United States. Americans loved their open, single-story floor plans, attached front garages, sliding glass doors, and low rooflines.

Related: America’s 50 Most Famous Houses


Many newly constructed homes incorporate a wide variety of architectural influences, giving them a “contemporary” look. Guiding principles of these modern dwellings include sustainability, energy efficiency, open floor plans, and plenty of natural light.

Related: Living Remotely: 12 Stunning Homes in the Middle of Nowhere

Queen Anne via Jimmy Emerson, DVM

This Victorian-era house style became mainstream in the United States after the Civil War. Often vibrantly colored and asymmetrical, Queen Annes stand out from the pack with their varied rooflines, turrets, spindlework, and prominent front porches.

Related: 11 Crazy Colorful Homes We Love

Colonial Revival

Wikimedia Commons via Corey Coyle

Colonial Revival houses emulate the simple residences of early American colonists, and their reputation boomed after the 1876 Centennial Exhibition instilled a sense of nationalistic pride in the family home. The symmetrical two-story brick dwellings often feature a grand entryway, dormers, and evenly spaced windows with shutters.

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Tudor Revival via Teemu008

Half-timber framing and steeply pitched rooflines define Tudor Revival architecture. Vaguely modeled after English Tudor-era dwellings, this style of home was widely built in the Northeast and Midwest during the 1920s.

Related: 20 Beautiful Homes Hiding in America’s Most Affordable Cities


Townhouses, sometimes known as row houses, are multistory dwellings stacked side-by-side, often sharing walls with each other. Both space-conscious and practical, townhouses became popular in the early 19th century, and they still endure today, especially in big cities.

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Prairie via Steve Silverman

Most famously associated with Frank Lloyd Wright, Prairie-style homes rely on a low, horizontal aesthetic to dissociate themselves from European influence. They’re usually built to flow with the natural expanses of the American Midwestern landscape.

Related: The 19 Most Photographed Homes in America

Midcentury Modern

Zillow Digs home in Santa Barbara, CA

Born of the forward-thinking mindset of the 1940s and ’50s, midcentury modern is still one of the most celebrated architectural styles today. This aesthetic embraces open space, large glass windows, geometric lines, and the integration of nature.

Related: 12 Incredible Homes That Were Built by Their Owners


Neoclassical homes exude grandeur with their iconic full-height columned front porches. The style, which was extremely popular in the United States through the late 1800s, reflected the classical ideals of beauty found in Greek and Roman architecture.

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Zillow Digs home in Naples, FL

Drawing from the architecture of Spain, Italy, and Portugal, Mediterranean-style homes display red tiled roofs, stucco exterior walls, and elaborate arches. This aesthetic rose in popularity during the 1960s, particularly in warmer states like Florida and California.

Related: The Secret Histories of 15 Grand Old American Mansions