By Thomas Ostermann at June 16 2019 21:59:57
The ranch house floor plan is a shining example of the American Dream in its purest form. It was then, and remains today, the most widely built housing style ever seen in America. This house plan style had its heyday from 1949 to 1965 for several reasons.
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The availability and increasing popularity of the automobile also defined the heyday of the ranch house floor plan. For the first time, the garage was moved to the front of the home. This was the first generation of home owners to have a highly prized freedom and mobility to work and shop in the city and then retreat to the suburbs to live. Because the suburbs removed the need to build houses close together, lots became increasingly larger and the square footage of the average house floor plan expanded accordingly. Ranch house floor plans generally accentuated the width of the lot.
The ranch house floor plan was the American Dream in a box from the late 1940s to the mid 1960s. Sliding glass doors, kidney shaped swimming pools and back yard patios created a new informal way of entertaining guests. Though the ranch house floor plan was the embodiment of casual living, most homes of that era lacked architectural details that would make them memorable. By the 1970s, the ranch style house was replaced by the split level home with Colonial or English details. The 1980s saw a reversal of the ranch house floor plan formula that included showy front entries with grand staircases and vaulted ceilings while the back of the house was left almost naked. The only remains of the ranch house floor plan today are the open floor plans, great rooms and hearth kitchens and the current popular trend of an outdoor room. All leftovers from the original ranch style housing era.