It may not have been a pretty sight in the 1920s and 1930s—stuck in the midst of neighborhoods with the traditional bungalows, Colonials, clapboards, and split levels. But today, new homeowners are buying – or building – Modern and Post-Modern homes that are more suited to their lifestyles and needs.
Why Is Modern House Design Now a Hot Trend?
(Hint: 10 Reasons!)
With a real estate market that’s in flux, potential homeowners are more prudent with their spending—choosing simple and affordable homes that are stylish and attractive.
This attractively simple 1-story, 2-bedroom Modern home features a rock/stone and wood exterior and a low-angle shed roof. The home has a front porch/patio covered by a roof overhang, a rear partially covered deck/patio, sstorage areas flanking the deck, and an open floor plan with a fireplace in the family room of the Great Room area. Here’s one view of the sunny Great Room with the fireplace (Plan #149-1886).
2. Spaciousness with Open Floor Plans
Walk into most homes today, and be amazed with the creative and efficient use of space. Narrow hallways and under-used rooms are gone. Instead, there is a huge free-flowing space without walls and boundaries that pulls the family together into one social area. In this “undivided” home, there is increased interaction with family members and guests.
Open the doors of this 2-story Modern home, and step into its open floor layout – a magnificent foyer leads to the Great Room area. (Plan #153-1808)
And because open floor plans provide unobstructed views of outdoor living spaces – decks, patios, outdoor grills, rear courtyards, swimming pools – the home’s interior space is effectively linked with its outdoor surroundings.
The Great Room of this open floor layout house plan opens into an attractive sun deck and a view of the natural landscape (Plan #168-1088).
3. Higher Ceilings
A typical Modern home may feature anywhere from 10-foot to 12-foot ceilings, which enhance the sense of spaciousness in the home. High ceilings also give the home an airy and breezy feel and add to the overall brightness of the space.
A view from the balcony highlights the 10-ft.-high ceilings on the first floor of this 5-bedroom Modern home – and the sunlight that fills the interior. The basement also features 10-ft. ceilings (Plan #161-1048). (Photo courtesy of Rentfrow Design; Photo credit: Warren Diggles Photography)
4. Light, Light and More Light
Natural light suffuses the Modern house plan. With the basic design including glass doors and floor-to-ceiling glass windows, an abundance of natural sunlight filters into the home and reduces energy costs in cold weather due to solar gain.
Glass doors and windows allow plenty of natural light in this Modern home’s dining area and breakfast nook (Plan #153-1808).
5. Bigger Master Bathrooms
The bathroom is now one of the most renovated and modernized space in a home. Gone are the dark, cramped, functional bathrooms of old. Instead, we have designer baths that are bright, roomy, and contemporary, and come with trendy features for a “spa-like” experience. Walk-in showers and stand-alone tubs are in.
Everything you can ask for in a master bathroom – light-filled with windows and mirrors, spacious, and equipped with a walk-in shower, soaking tub, and modern vanity (Plan #163-1047).
6. Energy Efficient/Environmentally Friendly
From materials used for insulation to heating and cooling systems and optimal positioning of rooms in relationship to the sun, the Modern home is designed to maximize energy efficiency and reduce the use of fuel.
As we become more aware of preserving our surroundings and natural resources, designers and builders are constructing homes that are environmentally friendly. They use steel studs, engineered lumber products that utilize materials that would otherwise be waste, composite decking made of recycled plastics, and more.
This 1-story passive-solar home plan is designed with an octagonal sunroom and clerestory windows that allow plenty of sunshine into the room. There are sliding doors to the backyard and in the dining and living rooms – features that are very energy efficient (Plan #146-1160).
7. Lower Maintenance
Most new homes built within the past five to seven years have lower maintenance costs. They are well insulated and have plenty of windows that allow natural sunlight to warm the interior. Appliances installed in the home are more energy efficient and will reduce water, electricity, and heating and cooling costs.
8. Flexible Design for Expansion Possibilities
With the open floor plan, extra space can be utilized for the so-called functional rooms – home office, hobby/play/reading rooms, and more. The unfinished square footage can also be designated for an in-law suite, guest room, or room for an adult child who has returned to the family home.
How to use flex space: an all-purpose gathering room where people can watch TV, exercise, play cards, and just chat with each other. (Plan #163-1047) On the right is a study/home office with comfortable furniture where one can also relax. (Plan #109-1086)
9. Wheelchair Friendly/Accessible
With wider hallways and open floor plans, a Modern home has all the flexibility of being wheelchair accessible. Look around your neighborhood at especially constructed ramps that provide wheelchair access to porches and home entryways.
This 1-story, 4-bedroom home – the first true "Designer Home" for ABC's Extreme Makeover: Home Edition – presented two challenges for the builders: create a comfortable and accessible home for two family members confined to wheelchairs and make ambulatory members of the family feel at home in their new house (Plan #149-1121).
10. Smart Technology/Smart Home Options
Today’s Modern home may be equipped with automation technology to give homeowners remote access to their various home systems. You can install centralized audio-video, security systems with cameras that link to a security firm, voice activation, access from your smart phones, and other 21st century home automation technology.
Are you ready for the new, Modern home with its affordability and stylish comfort?
Footnote: The lead image is a two-story, four-bedroom Modern-style house plan with an open floor plan design. For more details, see: Plan #107-1015)