Blog - Providing Insight into Residential Architecture and Construction

Choosing an Exterior Home Style

NJ Architect Colonial Home It can be argued that a home is an extension of its owners. The way it is decorated, the way it is maintained: These are just some of the factors that play a part in showcasing the homeowners' personalities. When making the decision to build a custom home, owners have an even greater opportunity to do just this through the architectural style. With numerous styles to choose from, it can be a painstaking process to choose the correct home type. To simplify the final decision making, consider the following before breaking ground:

One- or Two-Story Living

One-story residences provide all of the conveniences the owner requires without the necessity to switch floors. This is often beneficial for families with small children, retired persons or those with disabilities. On the other hand, two-story homes provide a separation of living and personal spaces, and thus, more privacy. Either way, the decision eliminates quite a few options. For example, choosing a one-story home eliminates most Tudor, Colonial, Georgian and Cape Cod designs.

Simple or Grandiose

The clean, straight lines of contemporary structures provide a stark contrast to the careful ornamentation and rounded turrets of a Victorian home. The square-base, tapered pillars of a craftsman provide a more down-to-earth look than the soaring columns of a Greek Revival. Homeowners must consider if beautiful simplicity or highly decorative grandeur is more reflective of their personality. If grandiose homes are to be eliminated, a farmhouse, bungalow, rancher or shingle house are great possible options.

Modern or Traditional

While any architecturally designed, new-constructionhome is technically modern, the architectural style of the home does not have to reflect that. Certain exterior looks, such as prairie- and Mediterranean-style homes, give structures a timeless look that spans across the ages. These homes, as well as other long-spanning styles, are best for homeowners looking for a traditional look. On the other hand, the metal and concrete accents, large panels of glass and linear designs of modern residences make a contemporary home easy to identify. Homeowners who appreciate the clean look of modern design are best-suited for the latest styles in architecture.

Architectural Specializations

Once a homeowner has his preferences in mind, finding an architect that fits the bill is essential. Some architects have specific areas of expertise, while others have a broader spectrum of architectural styles in which they work. Hiring an architect that specializes in New American construction could prove detrimental to a neoclassical home project.

The Look of the Area

Working with a professional architectural firm not only results in a beautiful, solidly constructed residence for the client, but it also provides a boost for the area in which the home is built. One of the most important jobs at the beginning of a project is looking at the surrounding lots. Whether the house is to be constructed in one of New Jersey's numerous subdivisions, in the city or out in the country, the styles of the surrounding homes must be considered. Of course, architecture is flexible and home styles are easily altered to adhere with the "norm" of the area; however, choosing something completely different from the other residences makes a new structure stick out. This is not always a good thing.

Though there are many architectural styles for clients to consider, with everything from antique Queen Anne's to international masterpieces, there are no set rules that must be followed. Skilled architects have the ability to combine styles, add unique elements and truly make a home one of a kind, because a custom build should be just that: custom.

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