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Architectural Attraction – How to choose the architecture and style of your home

A stunning first impression is an invitation to consider who’s behind the front door.

Curb appeal or Rorschach test? What does the exterior of your home say about you?

When building a new home, choosing all of the parts and pieces that express your unique style is exciting. This can also be a bit overwhelming when you’re now sure about what you want your style to say. Having a good idea about the design and architecture you find appealing will help the entire process run smoothly.
A home can be architecturally faithful to a historic period, or reference a point in time with adaptations for modern lifestyles. We customize every home for the perfect balance of architecture, lifestyle and character. Browse through some of our favorite exteriors to help identify your style preferences. Then be sure to take the style quiz at the end to guide you in the selection of the perfect home for you and your family.

Cape Cod

This historic charmer has its roots in New England with inspiration from Britain’s thatched cottages. Its popularity grew post World War II as a modestly priced option in housing. This style is a classic and can be expanded in size with upscale amenities.

Style Features

  • Symmetrical exterior with centered front door
  • Steep roof with side gables and dormer windows
  • Clean lines with siding of clapboard, shingles or brick

Style Attraction

  • Simplified style can range from casual or moderately formal
  • Excellent choice as starter home or vacation home
  • Compact footprint adapts well to smaller lot size and lends itself well to future additions

Craftsman Architecture Lowell Management Lake Geneva WI

Craftsman

An impressive comeback is in progress for the Craftsman Style, which emerged in 1905 from the Arts and Crafts Movement. This style is characterized by modest yet meaningful carpentry details and the use of natural materials. It is uniquely American with a nostalgic reference to the home kits sold in pattern books and catalogs.

Style Features

  • Wide porch with tapered columns on shingled, stone or brick piers
  • Low-pitched roof with exposed rafter tails
  • Emphasis on rustic qualities using natural and local materials

Style Attraction

  • Relaxed atmosphere that encourages togetherness for families or entertaining
  • Organic quality with gentle transition between indoor and outdoor spaces
  • Open floorplans with built in niches for convenient storage

Farmhouse Architecture Lowell Management Lake Geneva WI

Farmhouse

Unpretentious and real, these homes are streamlined versions of Victorian or Colonial architecture. The pure form is based on need and efficiency rather than ornamentation. Uncomplicated lines make this style suitable for both country and urban aesthetics.

Style Features

  • Front or side gabled roof with tall windows and second story dormers
  • Signature wide or wraparound porch covered by roof overhang
  • Rectangular structure with additions, all covered in lap siding

Style Attraction

  • Casual comfort with sprawling, light, and airy spaces
  • Minimalist appeal balanced with the warmth of county styling
  • Large kitchen or gathering spaces that relate to the outdoors

 
Meacum from Vicky from lake w logo -59-1x

Victorian

Complex and ornate, the Victorian home is rich with detail and covers popular styles from the Queen Ann, Gothic Revival, Italianate and Romanesque architectural periods.

Style Features

  • Asymmetrical with complex intersecting gabled or hipped roofs
  • Steep roof pitches with turrets, towers, and eyebrow dormers
  • Detailed, often with lacy ornamental work and decorative shingle patterns

Style Attraction

  • Romantic quality with whimsical details
  • Architectural details are complimented by multi-color schemes
  • Layout offers opportunity for privacy and special purpose rooms

Shingle Architecture Lowell Management Lake Geneva WI

Shingle Style

Uniquely American, the Shingle style incorporates Queen Ann and Colonial Revival architecture with the costal free form character that originated along the shores of New England.

Style Features

  • Asymmetrical forms featuring multi level eaves, towers, dormers and eyebrow windows
  • Rambling shapes unified by shingle siding, often on a rough-faced stone foundation
  • Wrapped porches, classic columns and expansive windows

Style Attraction

  • High style inspired by architects of New England’s seaside resort design
  • Relaxed formality with breezy rambling floor plans
  • Strong relationships between indoor and outdoor rooms

Dutch Colonial Architecture Lowell Management Lake Geneva WI

Dutch Colonial

With humble beginning as early American one-room houses, the Dutch Colonial hosts highly efficient floor plan. Resembling a barn, the gambrel roof creates extra living space without adding a second story.

Style Features

  • Gambrel roof structures adaptable to multiple architectural periods
  • Moderate roof pitch, dormer windows often with flared eaves
  • Round window on gable end of roof and covered entry often with pediment top

Style Attraction

  • Efficient personality making every square inch productive
  • Friendly human-scaled structure with intriguing curb appeal
  • Timeless design in a cost efficient structure

Traditional Architecture Lowell Management Lake Geneva WI:

Traditional

This American icon is rooted in the 1600’s and continually adapts to lifestyle trends. Using classic Colonial or Tudor architecture as inspiration, these homes present a formal façade to the public while integrating comfortable living areas behind the scenes.

Style Features

  • Steep roof pitches allowing for volume ceilings and loft areas
  • Combination brick, stucco and siding exteriors
  • Symmetrical or Asymmetrical exteriors with covered entry

Style Attraction

  • A balance of formal public spaces with relaxed private areas
  • Gentle application of historically accurate details
  • Floor plans that are adaptable for modern lifestyles

European Influence Architecture Lowell Management Lake Geneva WI

European Influence

European style homes suggest features from Country French and English Tudor homes dating back to the 18th century. The emphasis is on high quality finishes, and large scale spaces for a luxurious experience.

Style Features

  • Steeply pitched roofs with multiple generously sized chimneys
  • Brick and stucco exteriors with details trimmed in stone
  • Formalized balance to the ornamental and structural details

Style Attraction

  • Accommodates a highly formal to semi formal lifestyle
  • Well-appointed design with luxurious amenities
  • Highly attentive to historic accuracy in the architectural details

Cottage Style Architecture Whimsical Lowell Management Lake Geneva WI

Cottage Style

Whimsical features often add to the storybook appeal of cottage style homes. The intimate scale features romantic details borrowed from medieval times. It is the perfect starter or vacation home that can be enlarged and still maintain its charm.

Style Features

  • Intimate scale with an abundance of picturesque details
  • Steep roof pitches, cross gables and arched doorways
  • Bright exterior color scheme surrounded by flower gardens

Style Attraction

  • Romantic character with an effortless country attitude
  • Meandering walkway to the main entry and throughout property
  • Cozy and inviting style that translates well to larger spaces

While these beautiful homes express some of today’s most popular architecture, we have a full team of designers and an AIA architect who will work with you to design a home that truly reflects your personal style and lifestyle.  

You can start to discover your style personality with this fast and fun Style Quiz from Homegoods  It’s amazingly accurate!

Style Quiz from Homegoods

Image Credit: Style Quiz from Homegoods

Next learn more about various architectural styles, by visiting this helpful guide from Realtor Magazine.

Image Credit: Realtor Magazine

Image Credit: Realtor Magazine


 

Be sure to stop by the Lowell Website for more information about building and remodeling your home.

You can view the Lowell Gallery of Homes on our website

or visit our portfolio on Houzz.

While you’re there, check out the Houzz Decorating Personality Quiz!

 

We enjoying hearing from you, so contact us for answers to your home building and remodeling questions!

 

Should You Remodel? How to decide if remodeling is right for you.

Like many of life’s decisions, this one can cause sleepless nights. The financial bottom line is as significant as your readiness for change. How do you make the decision to remodel instead of moving?

2 Floor Plans Before & After pix

Asking yourself a few key questions will help you evaluate your position and guide you in the right direction. Once you make the decision to remodel, join forces with a team like Lowell Management to create a fresh version of your home with experts who know how to make the process run smoothly.

3 a exterior with curve and pryamid skylight pix

Location, Location, Location!

  • Are you in a beautiful location with friendly neighbors?
  • Are you close to everyday conveniences?
  • Would you love your home if it just had a little more space or updated appearance?
  • Are the views from your home already stunning?
  • Is your home sitting on a beautiful lot?

Then why would you want to leave? Most homes can handle a renovation or addition. Remodeling will allow you to maintain your connections while adding considerable square footage. As a builder and remodeler we are familiar with zoning regulations and will help you create a new plan that satisfies all of your lifestyle needs.
4 character pix
Your Home’s Character

  • What about your home attracted you in the first place?
  • Does your home have a  special “feel”?
  • Would it be impossible to recreate the atmosphere in another location?

Distinctive architecture, vintage-building materials, and exclusive views cannot be recreated. When you love so much about your home, making adjustments that will increase or update your space is the right decision.
5 exterior addition pix
6 exterior addition pix
Good Bones

  • Does your home have good bones?
  • Are you sitting on a solid foundation?
  • Can known issues be resolved easily?

Not every home should be remodeled. It must have good bones. A professional opinion is needed for proper evaluation of your home’s condition. Adding space, reconfiguring your floor plan and updating plumbing and electrical is logical when you are sitting on a solid foundation.
7 interior banquette and entertainment
Budget Talks

  • Does remodeling suit your budget?
  • Would remodeling save you more than the expense of relocating and moving?
  • Would updating windows, roof or mechanical systems increase energy efficiency?

Of course you need a trusted professional to provide an accurate quote and detailed contract. Consider related costs that may be involved. Temporary living arrangements will often allow your contactor to complete your remodel more efficiently and furniture storage will protect your belongings.

We are always happy to hear from our homeowners at the end of a project!

We are always happy to hear from our homeowners at the end of a project!


Are you up for the experience?

  • Do you have the patience to tolerate some inconvenience for a worthwhile outcome?
  • Can you be flexible and adapt to change if construction uncovers any surprises?
  • Do you have a builder that you can trust?

Remodeling is an exciting undertaking and proper preparation will eliminate problems. Patience and versatility are good qualities that will make the entire process more enjoyable for you.
As builders we routinely expect the unexpected and are always ready to adapt.  We approach every project with the understanding that this is a new experience for most homeowners and we keep it as stress free as possible.

Home Remodel by Lowell Management - Cabinetry by Geneva Cabinet Company

Cabinetry by Geneva Cabinet Company, LLC in Lake Geneva WI


There are countless options and decisions to consider throughout the remodeling process. Our best advice is to find a qualified professional like Lowell Management who is able to guide you through every major to detailed decision for a worry free experience.

How to Choose the Best Home Plan

You don’t have to settle for ordinary home plans.  Your home should be customized to fit your personal needs.  The floor plan or layout of the room is a key factor for shaping how you live in your home and how happy you are living there.  We enjoy guiding new homeowners through the process of building their dream home and want to share some of the factors that will help you create the perfect home plan.
Home Plan Floor Plan Lifestyle ConsiderationsLifestyles
This is an all encompassing category that will help you express the general attitude of your home.  It is all about who you are and what your typical day looks like.  In general, think in terms of your desire for a structured or relaxed atmosphere. Consider where you are in your life and the possibilities for the future.  Does this home need to accommodate a single or married person, youthful or mature couple, growing family or empty-nester?  These are all indicators to help you decide on the compatibility of your home to your lifestyle.
Floor plan size considerations for home plans
Size
A home of any size can be fabulous, so asking yourself how much space you use.  Take inventory of your current living conditions and plan ahead for the amount of space your will need to be comfortable in the future.
Questions to ask yourself:

  • Is the space you have actually where you need it?
  • What spaces are unused and where can you use more square footage?
  • Do you need more storage or more living space?
  • Will you family be growing?
  • How long do you plan to stay in this home?
  • Is this a weekend retreat or your main residence?
  • Will you need additional living space in the future to possibly care for elderly parents or grandchildren?

Open Floor Plan Great RoomActivities
It is important to know how do you spend your day and accommodate all of your normal activities.  A family with children may have the central focus of a sunny eat-in kitchen while a retired couple may spend a good part of the day in a cozy den with a fireplace.? Questions to ask:

  • Which room is used most often during the most active hours of the day?
  • Do you live a formal or informal lifestyle?
  • Do you entertain often? Will you need space for overnight guests?
  • How many people and pets are living in a home and how active are they?
  • What are the important home activities to make space for, like cooking, working-at-home, relaxing?

staircase squareAdjacency, Traffic Flow & Versatility
This is as important as the size of the rooms. Be aware of how your day progresses, and which rooms need to be near or next to other rooms?  This is referred to as “adjacency” and having your spaces organized with convenient locations will save you time and energy in your day-to-day activities.  The idea of an open vs. closed floor plan will start to form as you decide on the best relationships for your spaces.  Entry points, traffic flow and storage spaces are all key considerations. The location of the storage space must be convenient to its use, serving pieces near the kitchen, coats near the entry, toys near the play space.
Floor Plan Home Plan consideration energy efficiencyEnergy Efficiency
As a builder we are using the most advanced materials and systems.  In addition to this, floor plan design becomes an important part of the equation.  The most active areas during the day should take advantage of natural lighting. This along with the careful placement of windows is referred to as “Daylighting”.  Generous overhangs and abundant windows are just the start to floor plan design that will work with the mechanical systems to enhance the efficiency of your home.
Floor plan Home plan considerations noise cotrolNoise Control
Open spaces are great for the flow of activity, but noise will easily bounce through the room.  If you need quiet zones, build in niche areas with walls or lower ceiling heights to help control the sound.  Add to this the careful selection of materials for sound absorption and the combined effect will give you the alternatives you need for balance.
Home Plans Private Spaces vs. Open PlanPrivate Spaces
How much privacy do you need and where do you need it?  Even an open floor plan needs areas of privacy or intimacy. Analyze your needs in terms of the amount of quiet time you would like in your day and be sure your floor plan provides the space for you to retreat, study or work-at-home.  In addition to this, be sure to consider the views into and out of each room to ensure that you have privacy from neighbors and street traffic.
Floor Plan Home Plan Indoor to OutdoorIndoor Outdoor Living
Your access to the outdoors will be determined by the convenient location of exit points to the leisure areas on you property. This is a major consideration in the placement of your home on the lot.  If you can see your property and the outdoor living spaces from indoors, you are more likely to go out and enjoy them.  Create a natural flow between indoor and outdoor spaces with plentiful doors that open wide for activities like cooking, entertaining or playtime.
Floor Plans Accessible and Aging in PlaceMulti-Generation Friendly, Aging In Place & Accessibility
Building our homes so they are accessible through the normal ups and downs of life is more important than ever.  It’s not just about aging; the occasional injury or health condition can influence your appreciation of design factors like living on one level or easy to reach cabinets and appliances.  Additionally, blended families are becoming more common and empty-nesters are not necessarily downsizing. Our longer and healthier life styles make it wise to add accessible features that will allow us to live independently in the homes we love.
Expert guidance is available to you. As a highly reputable and experienced builder, we encourage you to seek the help you need in making key floor plan decisions as you prepare to build a new home or remodel. We are available to answer any questions you may have and please visit us if you are in the Lake Geneva area!
Lowell Management
Lake Geneva, Wisconsin
262 245 9030