What Type of Home Are You?

By understanding the structure and features of common home designs, not only can you choose the right home that will fit your lifestyle and personal goals, you’ll also be able to better communicate your dream home to your loan officer.

Take Quiz

If you could live anywhere, where would it be?



New York City




Grand Rapids


1 / 5

What is your favorite color?









2 / 5

What is your favorite pet?







No pets, please


3 / 5

What is your dream car?

One that runs


Range Rover


Muscle Car




4 / 5

What does your family look like?

Just me


Just my partner and me


A few kids


Lots of kids


5 / 5


There are several styles of bungalow – California style, Michigan style, Chicago style, ranch style, etc. – but they all refer to the same type of home that contain the following features:

  • Either one- or one-and-a half stories with a low-pitched roof and a horizontal shape
  • Low eaves with exposed rafters
  • Tapered or squared columns that support the roof
  • Large covered front porches
  • Most of the living spaces are on the main floor with the living room located in the center
  • Lots of built-in cabinetry, shelves and a large fireplace with cabinetry built in on either side

Cape Cod

Originally, these homes featured heavy shutters that could be closed during a storm and a large central chimney that was linked to fireplaces in each room. Today, modern Cape Cods typically only have decorative shutters, and chimneys are often placed at one end of the roof instead of at the center.

Features include:
  • Either one- or one-and-a-half stories with a steep roof and a small roof overhang
  • The home is constructed of wood and covered with clapboard or shingles and boasts a symmetrical appearance with a center door
  • Architecture includes multi-paned windows, dormers (which are created as usable space with windows in the roof) and a formal floor plan, usually with hardwood floors


Colonial homes are distinct in their use of geometry – square symmetrical façade, evenly spaced multi-paned windows with shutters and fireplaces with evenly proportioned chimneys

Features include:
  • Two to three stories with a rectangular shape, a gabled roof (both sides slope at the same angle) and dormers
  • Decorative crown over the front door that’s supported by pilasters or columns
  • Construction is made of brick or wood siding
  • Grand entrances and porticos reveal living areas on the first floor while bedrooms are located on upper levels


This very distinctive style are very popular in warm, Southern states and are typically built with a stucco exterior with large arched windows and a tile roof.

Features include:

  • A flat or low-pitched tile roof, often red, with warm-colored stucco finishing
  • Many homes include extensive outdoor living areas or verandas, second-floor balconies and large open seating areas to allow for air flow throughout the home
  • Balconies and large arched windows are surrounded by wrought-iron railings and details

Mid-Century Modern

This easily recognizable style is most often characterized by flat straight lines, large glass windows and open spaces. The focus of this particular design is its simplicity and integration with nature and the surrounding environment with an emphasis placed on form as well as function.

Features include:
  • Bi-level floor plans with wide flat roofs, angular details and asymmetrical features
  • A focus on the use of floor-to-ceiling windows, walls of glass and wide open floor plans
  • Known for using materials like steel, plywood and concrete in the home’s construction


While the mid-century modern home is a recognizable style for the time, the American-style ranch home was quickly gaining popularity as a result of the rise of the post-World War II baby boom and the high-demand for quality and affordable housing in the suburbs across the U.S. The layout is horizontal, and each room is easily accessible and interchangeable.

Features include:

  • A single story with a brick, wood or stucco exterior accented by simple trim and often with an attached garage
  • Large picture windows and sliding glass doors that can lead to a patio or backyard
  • Floor plans that are open versus the divided rooms intrinsic to other home styles


This style of home is characterized by its staggered floor-level layout. The top level is typically the bedroom level of the home, followed by a short set of stairs that lead to the main floor landing area, with another short set of stairs that go to the basement area.

Features include:

  • Three or more levels with the main entrance typically located in the middle level
  • The front door can open to a landing or foyer with a small flight of stairs leading up and another leading down. Alternatively, the front door can open directly to the main living area with the stairs located in another place
  • Living activities are separated, as sleeping, eating, socializing and parking are done on different levels of the house


This style originated in England. It’s best known for its very steep, multi-gabled roofs and half-timber framing.

Features include:
  • Steeply pitched roofs with wide gables, elaborate chimneys with small dormers and slate surrounds
  • Exposed wood framework on the exterior, with the spaces between the frames filled with stucco and masonry
  • Large, narrow casement windows with multiple panes that are framed with wood or metal
  • Stone trim and decoratively embellished doorways with stone trim and door surrounds


These are the homes we all immediately recognize – large, imposing structures with fancy woodwork decoration and big wrap-around porches.

Features include:
  • Steeply pitched roofs of irregular shape with a dominant front-facing wide gable
  • Ornate woodwork and textured shingles with decorative wooden brackets, and clapboard siding
  • An asymmetrical porch one story high that extends around the front or the front and sides of the house
  • Some homes have combinations of up to eight exterior colors
  • The home’s interior often contained high ceilings, deep archways between rooms, with small rooms divided up by their use: a formal dining room, a small library, a parlor, a formal living room, and so on