31 American House Styles!

house types

“Home is where the heart is.”

There are many types of buildings people from all over the world sleep in every night. Some live in big, tall modern buildings. Others sleep in a home with wheels under it.

Here are 31 house types from all over the World with explanation and each used in an example sentence. What kind of building do you live in? Leave it in the comment section below.

31 American House Styles

1. Apartment

An apartment is an American term for a home where you live (British English: flat) in a separate home within a large building where others also have their own home.

This style of building is often called an apartment block. Or, if it’s very large, a skyscraper.

Apartment blocks are normally owned by a single company or developer and each apartment is rented by the person living there.

  • Young professionals like apartments because they’re cheaper than detached houses.
  • The apartment looked so small now that she was all grown up.

2. Bungalow

A bungalow is a low-built one story house. It’s often small in size. Bungalows often have a veranda (porch), at the front and or back, which is a covered area to sit.

  • I love living in my bungalow I never have to walk up or down stairs.
  • Center Parks is a resort where families stay in bungalows instead of hotel rooms.

3. Caravan

A caravan is a vehicle, which can be pulled behind a car or truck, which is made for living in. A caravan is also commonly called a trailer.

Caravans are often used for short term stay, for example when going on holiday.

  • The circus clown is in his caravan, putting on makeup for tonight’s show.
  • Many retirees are selling their homes and living in caravans due to rising living costs.

4. Castle

Castles are large and often old buildings. Hundreds of years ago, many kings and queens would live in castles.

Castles are made with thick stone walls to protect the people living there. They’re also sometimes surrounded by a circle of water, called a moat.

  • Switzerland is home to some of the world’s most beautiful castles.
  • The Disney Castle at Disneyland is visited by over 1 million people per year.

5. Condominium/Condo

A condominium is a style of an apartment which is individually owned. Normally by the person living there, although you can rent from the condo owner.

Each condo owner is allowed to buy and sell their own condo and own a small percentage rights to the land and common areas, like the gym or tennis court.

This is different from an apartment where the entire building is owned by one person or company.

  • Condominiums are very popular in Bangkok where houses are too expensive to buy.
  • Some people love living in condos because they can live close to their work.

6. Cottage

Cottages are small old-fashioned houses often found in the countryside. England style cottages are world famous for their signature look. They are often made of stone or brick with a straw or thatched roof.

  • Little Red Riding Hood’s grandmother lived in a little cottage near the forest.
  • Look! There’s smoke coming out of that cottage’s Someone’s home.

7. Dormitory/dorm

Dormitories are similar to apartments and common on college and university campuses. Here they are used by students who want to live close to school.

Dormitories are large buildings with many individual rooms called dorm rooms. People often share rooms with other people and share bathroom and kitchens with many other dorm rooms.

  • My brother loved living in the dormitory because of all the parties they had.
  • Excuse me, Professor, I forgot my calculator in my dorm May I go get it?

8. Duplex

A duplex is a kind of house where two homes are built under one roof. It is similar to a semi-detached house because duplexes are attached to another person’s house on one side but not on both sides.

Some duplexes used to be one house but were split into two homes.

  • Duplexes are often cheaper than single family homes because they cost less to build.
  • When living in a duplex, you have to be careful not to make too much noise.

9. Farmhouse

A farm house is what it sounds like. A house on a farm. Farm houses are one story low built houses.

They are traditionally built far away from the city, on large areas of land used for farming or raising animals.

  • John dreamed of leaving the city to live in a farmhouse in the countryside.
  • Timmy, run back to the farmhouse and ask mum for a glass of water please.

10. Flat

A flat is the British English version of an apartment. See apartment for more details.

  • Their brand new flat in London had a beautiful view of Big Ben and London Bridge.
  • Did you hear the story of the whole block of flats in China that fell over?
  • 11. Hotel

A hotel is a place where you pay to sleep for a short period of time when you’re on holiday or traveling for work.

A hotel has many rooms which have their own bedroom and bathroom. Hilton, Hyatt, and Marriott are all famous hotels seen around the world.

  • Google pays for their staff’s hotel room and meals when they have to travel.
  • The Hyatt hotel has the best buffet lunch in town. Would you like to go?

12. Houseboat

A houseboat is a type of floating building where people live. As the name suggests, they’re part house, part boat.

There are different kinds of houseboat. Some look like a boat that has room to sleep.

Whereas others are square shaped and simply look like floating houses.

  • Have you ever watched the Danish YouTuber who lives on a houseboat?
  • Wouldn’t you get seasick living on a houseboat?

13. Hut

A hut is a very simple one story house, often built with cheap materials or natural materials like mud.

These kinds of homes have been used for thousands of years by our ancestors.

They’re still seen today in poor places and regions which have not changed their ways in many generations.

  • In the old days, the chief’s hut would be at the center or all the others.
  • There’s a great video online where a guy builds a mud hut from start to finish.

14. Igloo

Igloos are buildings made out of ice and snow. They have a recognizable round dome like shape.

Igloos keep the people inside them warm by using the people’s body heat to warm the air inside the ice building.

  • Pete the Penguin lived in an igloo with his parents and brother.
  • Some igloos can last for over 100 years in the right weather conditions.

15. Lighthouse

A lighthouse is a tall building near the ocean with a huge light on its top to warn boats coming too close to the land at night.

  • Many captains and their crew’s lives have been saved by
  • The lighthouse is painted white to reflect the most light at night.

16. Lodge

A small building near the gates of a large estate or piece of land, often used as a guard’s house. Presently, lodges are also halls where some groups go to meet.

  • Stephenson met the other Free Masons in secrecy at the local lodge.
  • The guard was sitting at his station in the lodge when he heard a strange noise.

17. Log Cabin

These buildings are small structures found in the forests or woods. They’re made almost completely out of wood, or large logs.

A “log” is a round piece of wood cut right from a tree. People also use logs to keep their home warm in a fireplace.

  • Granddad used to have a log cabin he would stay in when he would go hunting.
  • I wonder how many log cabins burn down every year because of their fireplace?

18. Manor

A big country house with a lot of land. They are an old style house, normally owned by wealthy families. Manors have very large and beautiful gardens.

  • Lord of Chester lived in a large manor that had been in his family for generations.
  • There was a murder in the old Hill State manor last night.

19. Mansion

A large and impressive house. Similar to a manor. However, manors are generally old and in the country.

In contrast, mansions can be anywhere. Mansions can be old, or new. Most famous actors and singers live in mansions.

  • Hollywood is famous around the world for its mansions and movie stars.
  • Robert Di Niro just sold his mansion for a huge sum of $22 million dollars.

20. Motel

A hotel located close to a major road and mostly used by travelers who wish to rest while making long road trips.

Motel comes from the words motor and hotel. On average motels are not as nice as most hotels and offer only basic services.

  • The truck driver decided to pull over into a motel to rest for the night.
  • I hate motels. I once found a rat in the ice machine at one of them.

21. Palace

A palace is the home of a country’s king or queen. Buckingham Palace is the very famous home of the Queen of England.

Palaces are generally very large and have many people working there to take care of the royal family.

  • The changing of the guards at Buckingham Palace is a world famous tradition.
  • The Queen likes to read the newspaper each morning in the Palace’s

22. Semi-detached House

Semi means half or partly. Detached means that it is not touching anything else.

A semi-detached house is a house that is touching another building on one of its sides but not on another.

  • Johnny lived in a semi-detached house on Smith Street before moving to London.
  • The semi-detached house on 5th avenue sold for $500k last weekend.

23. Shack

A shack is a small building often put together loosely with left-over or cheap materials. A shack is similar to a hut or cabin.

What makes a shack different is that it is often made with modern materials like wood and metal and generally not well built.

  • They stepped into the dimly lit shack where a man sat cross-legged, head in hands.
  • The slums in Rio are mostly shacks made from garbage and sheets of metal.

24. Single family home (Detached)

A single family home, often called a detached house, is an alone standing medium size house. There aren’t any other buildings touching a single family house.

Single family homes are most common outside of the city in areas called “suburbs”.

  • The agent told me about a single family home for sale near the local school.
  • This single family home is perfect for me and my family. We’ll take it!

25. Skyscraper

A skyscraper is a very tall new style building. You will see many skyscrapers in nearly every city around the world.

They are made of glass and metal. Skyscrapers are used as office buildings or apartments.

  • The tallest building in the world is a skyscraper called the Burj Khalifa.
  • Skyscrapers are made to be flexible and move in the wind.

26. Teepee

Teepees are the old style of house in which Native American Indians used to live. They were made with animal skins and sticks.

Whole towns of Indians would live in a small group of Teepees which could be taken apart and moved to new locations when the seasons changed.

  • A whole family of Indians would live in one teepee together for safety and warmth.
  • The chief and the soldier sat in the teepee, sharing a peace pipe.

27. Tent

A temporary shelter made from fabric. Most people use tents when they go camping and need to quickly set up a place to sleep that will protect them from the rain, wind and small animals overnight.

  • A tent is a great way to stop bugs and spiders but it won’t stop a bear.
  • The old tents used to be so hard to put up. Now all you have to do it push a button.

28. Terraced House

A terraced house is a tall but narrow house which is attached on both sides to another house. They are common in many European countries like England, Holland and Germany.

In those countries, whole streets of houses can all be connected to each other in a row.

  • Sherlock Holmes famously lived in a terraced house at 221B Baker Street, London.
  • Terraced houses were built closely together to share heat in the hash winter.

29. Townhouse

A townhouse is similar to a terraced house. Townhouses are houses built for inner-city living.

There are tall and narrow buildings. They don’t have a lot of land around them and often only have very small gardens at the back.

  • Over 100 townhouses fell into the river when London Bridge collapsed in 1703.
  • You can’t find a townhouse for under a million dollars in Sydney.

30. Trailer

(See Caravan) A trailer is a small cabin with wheels. They can be pulled by trucks or other vehicles and often made from metal or fiberglass.

Trailers are commonly used by people who need to move from one place to another for short periods of time. For example, circus performers and actors who live on set.

  • Amanda Lawson sat in her trailer practicing her lines for the next scene.
  • In America people believe that people living in trailers are low class.

31. Treehouse

A treehouse is a structure built between the branches of a large tree. They are often seen as places for children to play.

But there are hotels around the world where you can sleep in a treehouse hotel room above the ground. Some old tribes also live in treehouses.

  • Daddy built a treehouse for me when I was 6 years old. It’s still there today.
  • Treehouse of horrors is my favorite Simpsons tradition.
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ashley john282
ashley john282
4 years ago

Nice tips! Planning to build a house, I think these tips present on the blog are really useful. Please keep sharing…

5 years ago

Thanks to help me!

Jasper Edward Travis
Jasper Edward Travis
4 years ago

Thanks for the tips! I was wondering about getting an idea for a country home I’d want to build and I’ll also be considering thee ideas.

6 years ago

How many types of house yeaah, that’s all function is for human living. But, unfortunately in this article you don’t put the picture off all the types. To build a new house is the best choose. facebook.com/tedbiesterbos

Reply to  kennis
5 years ago

This article is okay. Only just would have been very nice to add images. But besides that, the information is educative and clear. Thank Vic Umythy

Guilherme Loureiro
Guilherme Loureiro
5 years ago

Great, but how come Studio Apartment is not included in this list?

Yug Rathod/
Yug Rathod/
3 years ago


6 years ago

Thanks for your sharing. By the way, my suggestion is that the next time you distinguish the similar things, you can attach some photos to help readers more easily understand it.

Reply to  Amina
2 years ago

Your soon is very late … This was posted in 2017 and it’s now 2021 – still no pictures. BUT. I did like your article.