The housing market is booming worldwide. Homes are selling for record prices while new houses are constantly under construction. In fact, almost 50,000 new residences were built in the U.K. in just the first quarter of 2021, setting a new record high.

What kind of homes are most popular for owners pursuing new construction? These architectural styles are gaining popularity for their aesthetics, features and practicality.


1. Georgian

Georgian architecture is the most sought after style across residential properties in the U.K. With real estate prices continuing to rise, many hopeful homeowners are building their own Georgian-style residences rather than competing for existing properties.

Georgian homes have a refined but welcoming elegance, characterised by symmetrical facades and hints of Greek design. These homes offer a polished, timeless aesthetic that will always have curb appeal.


2. Mid Century Modern

Mid Century modern design stems from the post-WWII era in the 1950s and ‘60s. Homes with this design style feature flat panes, geometric shapes and bold colour palettes, both inside and out.

This style of architecture often features an abundance of windows, maximising indoor sunlight. Architectural and design features in these homes tend to highlight functionality over decoration. The mid century modern style is experiencing a revival among many prefab homes, with contemporary architecture borrowing design elements.


3. Scandinavian

Scandinavian design is often confused with mid century modern, but the two are distinct architectural styles. Scandinavian style homes also have an abundance of windows and smooth, geometric shapes.

However, these houses are much more likely to have pointed roofs, unlike the flat roofs of mid century modern homes. The design also focuses on light, neutral tones and cosy aesthetics. These homes are akin to contemporary-style cabins.


4. Tudor

Tudor homes are among the most popular and recognizable in the U.K. and the world at large. These storybook-style houses feature a combination of brick, stone and wood panelling, with characteristic dark and light panels on upper levels.

Traditionally, Tudors had thatched hay roofs, though today they feature pitched roofs typically protected by dark tile or shingles. Tudor architecture, which was inspired by Medieval houses, has yet to go out of style. It’s an easy choice for anyone looking for a home with timeless charm.


5. Cape Cod

While the Cape Cod house originated in Colonial America, it is actually the product of classic English cottages. Puritan settlers brought design ideas from countryside cottages to the Americas, where the Cape Cod style became popular in New England and New York.

These charming homes have shingle siding, gabled dormers and symmetrical exteriors. The centred front entryway and shuttered windows are easily recognizable features.


6. Modern Rustic

Modern rustic homes share some design elements with Scandinavian dwellings but have a more raw, craftsman-style aesthetic. These houses are often built amid nature, where the wood and stone architecture is best highlighted.

Modern rustic style strikes a balance between craftsman and contemporary, with clean lines and minimal decoration but with the distinctive shape and aesthetics of a rustic cabin or lodge. Modern rustic architecture is a great choice for homes that are off the beaten path.


7. Contemporary

Contemporary homes are a descendant of modern and mid century modern architecture but have their own unique characteristics. This style has become especially popular over the last several years. Trends like 3D-printed construction and sustainable design are likely to boost the popularity of contemporary style homes even further.

These houses feature clean, smooth surfaces and geometric shapes. Windows are large and wide to maximise ambient sunlight, and wood, metal and concrete are popular building materials, typically with a neutral colour palette.

Contemporary homes are a nice balance between minimalistic modern and mid century modern architecture, prioritising comfort and function with pops of colour.


Design Trends Across Styles

Some recurring themes are cropping up in new home architecture across various design styles. These trends are influencing architectural designs and the construction methods used for new homes.


Prefab and Modular Construction

Prefabricated and modular construction offers distinct advantages in today’s housing market. Due to the mass-produced nature of these methods, they tend to offer lower pricing and faster build times than traditional construction. They also tend to be more environmentally friendly than standard methods.


Tiny Homes

Tiny homes experienced a surge in popularity over the last couple of years, sparked by the COVID-19 pandemic. People began using them to create off-the-grid retreats or backyard sanctuaries.

Tiny homes can feature any of the above architectural styles, though modern rustic and Scandinavian tend to be the most popular. These houses are cost effective options for one- or two-person households.


Sustainable Design

Sustainable design is on the rise in residential architecture. More people are looking for homes with energy-efficient design, solar panels and sustainable materials.

Contemporary dwellings are popular among sustainable design enthusiasts, though Scandinavian and modern rustic architecture lend themselves well to environmentally friendly features. Modern rustic architecture works great with reclaimed building materials like weathered wood and uneven stone.


Connection to Nature

Prospective homeowners are looking for properties with an openness to the outdoors. This doesn’t necessarily have to be a sprawling backyard or a location deep in the woods.

Elements like large windows, skylights and interior courtyards are all great features that enable connection to nature from home. Architects and designers can expect to see many requests for features like these in new homes over the next few years.


Popular Home Styles For Neighbourhoods New and Old

Architecture is a form of art and expression. People deciding on what style they should use for their new home should consider what design best fits their lifestyle and values. All of the top architectural styles are experiencing surges in popularity due to the building boom.

Architects, designers and construction professionals will have no shortage of exciting projects in new home construction for the foreseeable future.


By Evelyn Long, Editor-in-Chief of Renovated.