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Many people are looking to build their next home rather than buy.

New housing starts for August 2018 were up 9.4% from a year ago, according to the U.S. Department of Commerce.

What architectural styles are people seeking out? Home design experts say buyers are looking for comfortable and practical over showy and ostentatious. Eco-friendly features are big with those looking to go green or save on utilities, while tech-friendly options are must-haves for contemporary and traditional homes alike.

Let’s take a look at the most popular house plans, along with some of the hottest building features, that homeowners are looking for.

Popular House Plans

According to a survey of 2,000 Americans conducted for Trulia, craftsman was named the most popular house plan style, with 43% of responses. Ranch clocked in second with 41%, while colonial held down third place with 36%. Responses also varied by age group: while craftsman was favored by Millennials, those 55 and older preferred ranch.

Here’s a short summary of these and other house plans that homeowners are looking for.

  • Craftsman. As noted above, Millennial homebuyers are driving a resurgence in this cost-effective style, known for its down-to-earth, practical feel with exposed rafters and overhanging eaves.
  • Ranch. The suburban staple is still going strong, thanks to sturdy construction, low costs and simple floor plans that lend a classic twist to today’s minimalist interior design trends.
  • Colonial. The tradition-minded homeowner will appreciate the timeless appeal of brick or wood exteriors, balanced window displays and beautiful chimneys.
  • Mid-Century Modern. Large windows, clean lines and spacious rooms look fantastic with contemporary decor while offering energy-saving benefits.
  • Victorian. With its pitched roofs, bay windows and front porches, Victorian architecture exudes a romantic, throwback vibe.
  • Cape Cod. For an inviting taste of New England charm anywhere on the map, the Cape Cod style makes the most of functional, symmetrical design for great curb appeal.
  • Farmhouse. Homeowners wanting a rustic atmosphere will fall in love with the natural wood accents, slanted roofs and homey feel of the farmhouse style.

Of course, one style never fits all when it comes to architectural design. Custom house plans let your clients blend the exact styles and functions they want without having to follow a predetermined floor plan.

What Are the Most Popular Home Design Features?

In addition to overall house plans, there are several specific architectural features that many homeowners are looking for these days.

  • Eco-friendly features. Everyone wants to spend less on utilities, and building design is a big part of that equation. From large windows creating lots of natural light to programmable thermostats to solar panels, there’s no shortage of smart options for boosting energy efficiency.
  • Mudrooms or drop zones. Families need a convenient spot to drop those shoes, backpacks, coats and hats after coming home from another busy day. Cabinets, shelves, sinks and storage bins add to the style and functionality of these spaces.
  • Device charging. The traditional computer desk is giving way to the charging station for many residents. Regardless of the architectural style, the home should include plenty of outlets so residents can charge anywhere they please.
  • Wine and drink storage. For those who don’t want or can’t afford a full-fledged wine cellar, wine chillers and beverage coolers make a great addition to kitchens, pantries, wet bars and many other locations throughout the house.
  • Garages that do more. A bigger garage could hold more cars, or it could provide extra space for hobbies or storing belongings. Upstairs bonus rooms and outdoor patios are other great additions to the garage area.
  • Mix and match. Buyers love texture, and pairing brick with stone or contrasting siding and shutters is a great way to add personality.
  • Vaulted ceilings. This is great for the eco-minded resident who wants more natural light, or for those who want to add richness and character to living rooms and great rooms. Higher ceilings give the room a “wow” factor and make the entire space feel bigger.
  • Straight lines. Squared-off openings rather than arched doorways, or quadrilateral columns instead of round ones, give the house a simple, straight-forward, back-to-basics feel.

Are you looking for the right materials and expertise to make your client’s dream home a reality? Contact Mid-City Lumber and our professionals will help you get the job done right!