Key elements of Southern house styles

by Robert Ruppel, Associate Broker/Manager 06/20/2022

Rich with historical inspiration, Southern house styles are still popular in the world of modern architecture. What’s known as Southern architecture is largely inspired by a specific time period, and often refers to structures originally built before the American Civil War. However, you can still find the style’s influence in contemporary architecture across the country.

But what exactly defines a Southern house plan? Here are the key characteristics to know:

Symmetrical exterior design

Most Southern style house plans feature a square-shaped, symmetrical facade. The front door is always centered and often flanked by tall, narrow windows. French doors are another common exterior feature, always symmetrically oriented to allow access to outside living spaces.

Raised basements

In the American south, the frequency of heavy rain, flooding and hurricanes makes raised basements a necessity as well as a style choice for a Southern style house. Both in modern and traditional Southern house plans, raised basements protect the main living areas from water damage and also provide extra storage space.

Wrap-around porches

Enormous wrap-around porches are one of the most recognizable features of Southern architecture. These porches provide a plethora of comfortable places to sit while protected from the elements. Rain or shine, these porches are an essential element to Southern house plans.

Vaulted ceilings

Tall ceilings are another example of an architectural feature of Southern house plans that is both functional and stylish. Vaulted ceilings make a Southern home seem grand and palatial, but also help keep a comfortable temperature and humidity inside the home by allowing the warm air to rise above the main floor.

These are only a few recognizable features of Southern house plans. Other elements like decorative columns, exterior staircases and expansive gardens are also present in this architectural style. No matter where you are, you can find inspiration from Southern houses and their profound effect on contemporary architecture.

About the Author
Author

Robert Ruppel, Associate Broker/Manager

Hi, I'm Robert Ruppel and I'd love to assist you. Whether you're in the research phase at the beginning of your real estate search or you know exactly what you're looking for, you'll benefit from having a real estate professional by your side. I'd be honored to put my real estate experience to work for you.