The Ultimate List of Different Types of Homes

The Ultimate List of Different Types of Homes

An old saying, home is where the heart is. Over the past year, home is also where the office is; the gym, the daycare, the coffee shop, and much more. As we humans evolve, our home needs grow as well, which is reflected in the many types of homes there are in the world.

For clarification, there are many styles of homes available, but we will focus on the types of homes available for this article. Here’s the difference, the type of home refers to the structure of the building, its purpose, and sometimes even its history. In comparison, the style of the house relates to the architectural style or the design, such as Cape Cod. Colonial revival and so on.

Today, it’s all about type. So, from Townhouse to yurt, here is the ultimate list of types of homes available to you.

Single-Family Home

A single-family home is the most common type of home in the US. Usually, a larger building not connected to other homes. This is a classic suburbian type of home and, this is the home most associated with the idea of the American dream. These detached homes come in a wide variety of sizes and shapes and tend toward a modern style.


A townhouse is a tall, narrow property that is connected on either side to other townhouses. Townhouses are built in rows and are often two stories tall; however, they can be three or four stories as well. As these structures are connected to others, townhouses only have windows in the front and the back.

Townhouses get their name because they usually appear in the center of towns or cities where land is at a premium, so builders construct many homes close together. Over the past ten years, more townhouses have been showing up in the suburbs as well.


A multi-family home is a residence that contains two or more housing units. This means it can be a home with a guest house, an apartment, or a mother-in-law suite attached or inside the structure.

A residential multi-family home can also refer to condominiums, apartments. Or stand-alone structures that house many units.


An apartment is one building with numerous houses. The building is usually owned by one person or company, and the apartments or units are rented or leased out. The syles of apartments vary as some come with amenities such as a gym, pool, meeting rooms, or game rooms. In contrast, others are very basic in style. Each apartment is usually set over one floor; however, that’s not always the case.

Apartments are usually purpose-built structures, although, at times, they can be historic buildings that have been retrofitted to accommodate several units.


The condominium or condo, for short, is the sister to the apartment. They have many things in common; however, the main difference is that a condo is privately owned. Unlike an apartment where, if something goes wrong, the renter calls the landlord, the condo owner is responsible for everything in the condo as well as outside, such as the balcony or the front door.

With a condo, you also get the pleasure of dealing with an HOA that governs all communal spaces. This HOA sets the rules and collects a monthly or yearly fee which then goes toward the upkeep of the condo complex. Condos vary in size and price and are found in both cities and suburban spaces.


A co-op, which is the abbreviation for cooperative, is very similar in purpose and appearance to a condo or an apartment. However, a cooperative is a housing agreement in which the unit occupiers lease it from the cooperative; they do not own the unit. Those leasing the units are considered shareholders in the corporation, and the corporation owns the building.

The shareholders do not own their apartment or condo; however, they do own a percentage of the cooperative or building.


A penthouse is the top floor of any building used as a residence; the height of the building doesn’t matter, five stories of fifty-five stories, the top floor residence is the penthouse.

Typically, the penthouse is accessed by an elevator, and they are lavish places with many windows to take in the fabulous views afforded by living on the top floor.

Now we’re moving toward the more non-traditional houses.


The houseboat is precisely what its name suggests, a house on a boat—a floating home that resides on the ocean, lake, pond, or even a river. Although some smaller houseboats can sail, the houseboat is typically moored to the land not usually used for sailing.

Inside you’ll find all the traditional living needs, bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchen living areas, yup, it’s just like a house or an apartment, except that it floats. Obviously, a houseboat typically doesn’t have a yard, although some do have a garage on land.

Round House

A round house, not to be confused with a Road House, which is a movie where a zen bouncer casually rips the throats out of bad guys, is a house that has a dome-like structure. These can be modern built designs, whoever, in some cultures, they have been used as homes for centuries.

Inside you’ll find all the traditional living needs, bedrooms, bathrooms, kitchen living areas, yup, it’s just like a house or an apartment, except that it floats. Obviously, a houseboat typically doesn’t have a yard, although some do have a garage on land.


Not only a type of home, but it’s also a fun word to say. Go ahead, say yurt ten times. It’s funny. Okay, moving on. A yurt is a structure with a round footprint that is easy to put up and take down. The walls are made from waterproof fabric, and some have polythene windows.

The yurt (giggle) is the traditional home of the nomadic people of Mongolia whoever, over the years, they have become more common in western culture as well.

Let’s get weird.

Converted Shipping Container

Oddly enough, disused metal shipping containers are showing up all over the place as homes. So what you’ve got is basically a recycled house. They are made of metal, so soundproofing
and weatherproofing are needed. Single shipping containers can be used to create a small house, or multiple containers can be put together to make larger spaces or even apartment complexes.


The cave is the original house; just ask the Flintstones. Although not very common, there are still places in the world where people live in caves. They have retrofitted them to be cozy little

homes but, they’re still caves. Some folks like them because they see them as harkening to simpler times or just want to get off the grid.


The treehouse conjures visions of a slapped-together dwelling for the kids accessible by a rope ladder, a password, and a no girls allowed oath. But, some people take the idea of a treehouse to the limit.

Now, tree houses are more like elevated log cabins with all amenities one would need to live comfortably high among the trees. Many of them come equipped with heating and cooling systems, bathrooms, kitchens and can be lived in year-round, though primarily used as vacation spots.


The snow house. This is a dome-shaped dwelling made from blocks of snow packed on top of each other. These can be temporary dwellings or full-time dwellings, depending on the climate. An igloo is surprisingly efficient as any heat generated in the igloos stays inside as the snow acts as an insulator. A small hole is cut in the top of the igloo to release smoke from cook fires or oil lamps.

These houses are popular with the indigenous people of the Arctic regions, known as Inuits, and have been used by people for centuries. Deceptively simple, comfortable, and energy-efficient.

Underground House

More commonly known as bunkers, these are houses that are built under the surface of the ground, usually in a hillside with one side open to the outside world, which is a convenient place for the entry.

Lord of the Rings fans look upon these homes as sort of Hobit homes. They were usually built for safety during the war, but now, many people find them fine, cozy, inexpensive dwellings.

Now rustic.


A cabin is traditionally a log structure, found in the woods and generally small in size. They are used for fishing or hunting, a place to sleep and eat meals, so they are not built for aesthetic appeal. Function rules form with a cabin, and so they are usually sparsely furnished and quite basic.


A farmhouse is a residence located on a farm, in use, or disused. It’s usually a large structure surrounded by acres and acres of land. Once used by the people who worked the farm, now they are occupied by people who just want a little seclusion.

Ranch House

A ranch house is a single-story home that usually sits on a large parcel of land, and they were historically found on horse ranches. Often they have an attached garage and a few outbuildings. Interiors are traditionally open for casual, easy living. You’re most likely to find a ranch house in a rural area with many acres of land around it.


Chalets are common in the mountainous regions of Europe, where they used to house shepherds and goat herders. They have steep roof pitches that overhang the exterior walls to cope with the massive amounts of snowfall. The roof’s pitch encourages snow to fall away from the building and off the roof to prevent collapse from the weight of heavy snow.

Chalets are built from wood with more wood on the interior, which allows them to blend nicely into the mountainous areas where they are most common, disrupting the natural surroundings as little as possible. These houses are usually found in ski resorts and are often bought by people who frequently ski as vacation spots.


Say the word cottage, and you get the image of a quaint little detached house with thick walls, a thatched roof, wood fence, and a garden. Either that or a small tub of lumpy cheese. These little retreats are often getaways for their owners and are usually situated on lakes, near the ocean, or rural areas.

Cottages differ from cabins in the area of comfort. Cottages pay more attention to cozy comfort, and great care is taken with the exterior detail. Though small, they have everything an owner
needs for an extended vacation. When you think of it, the word ‘cottage’ used to describe any kind of vacation home; however, now more people live in cottages year-round.

A question of size.


A mansion is an extensive, detached property usually owned by the very wealthy or the famous. They are sprawling, expensive properties and are typically hidden by fences or natural barriers. You can build one out of any material, but they are commonly constructed from brick or stone.


This is a derogatory name for a poorly built, ugly design building that was slapped together with shoddy materials and limited skills. Interior square footage for one of these atrocities is anywhere between 3000 and 5000 square feet.

Some of the unique characteristics of these types of homes are a flashy, mass-produced, or ready-made look that does not have the custom build, careful construction, and design of the type of home called a mansion.


You’ve seen them, thick walls, stone turrets, built to house and protect important members of society. They were designed for maximum protection and are relatively minimum on the comfort level. Nowadays, some castles are occupied by the relatives of the original owners, in which cases, they have been renovated to be more comfortable. Other castles are now just historical attractions.


It may look like a castle, but, well, it is a castle. The word Chateau is French for castle. This type of house is large and regal and was built for the Lord of the manor, nobility, or the general elite of France.


A palace is built as a home for a royal family. Many of them are historically connected, such as Buckingham Palace, and in many cases, theta re still the home for current royalty.

Palaces are, well, palatial built with string, lasting materials, such as brick and stone, and imposing impressive statures. They tend to be symmetrical in design, which helps create them, making it easier to construct these mammoth buildings.

Coach House

Typically a smaller structure on the same property as the main house. Once, they would have housed horses and carriages, but they have been renovated to be nice little houses. Usually used for extended stays of family members, or sometimes they are rented out to strangers.


A bungalow is a single-story structure with a square or rectangular footprint. Built in abundance in the 1900s in the US, they usually have a front porch and a quaint appearance. There are no stairs inside, which makes them ideal for elderly folks. Since they are not built much anymore, they come at a higher price than you’d expect.

Mobile Home

Mobile homes, or trailers, are called such because they are built in a factory and then towed to their final destination, unlike other homes that are built in situ. But, do not be deceived; a mobile home is not built to be mobile like a motor home or recreational vehicle.


An annex usually serves the same purpose as a basement suite, family members, or rented out for income. The difference here is that the annex is not confined to the basement. It is usually on the side of the home or separate but close by the main house.

An annex will be a complete home set up, private entrance, kitchen, bathroom, etc., everything needed to live comfortably and be separate from the main house.

Tiny Home

Tiny homes are any property between 100 and 400 square feet. Over the past decade or so, tiny homes have biome popular are people try to live more affordably and sustainably.

One of the features of the tiny home is how well they are laid out to maximize space with inventive bits of furniture and clever floor plans. They are coveted by people looking to downsize and rid themselves of a lot of unnecessary possessions.

Basement Suite

This is the basement portion of a house that has been converted or purpose-built to be a fully functioning home with its own entry, kitchen, bathroom, and the like. You’ll often find these in places where the property prices are high, and people pool their money to buy a bugger place.

Some people use the basement suite for family members, older in-laws, and sometimes the suite is rented out to earn some extra income.

Just for fun.


Your old barn used to house horses and farm machinery; now, it houses people. The term is a mix-up of barn and condominium, and it originally referred to a barn that was converted into a living space. Today it is a metal or steel structure that has the outward structural look of a converted barn.

Spacious interiors and fully functional like a regular home these buildings can be added to, upgraded, or renovated by architectural design to suit any taste. The interior space can be divided into rooms, and they have all the amenities of a traditional house.


A fort is an enclosed military structure built with the purpose of defense in mind. Inside the high, thick walls are questers for living, barracks, as well as a medical facility, command quarters, mess hall, artillery storage, and, surprisingly, guest quarters. A ditch surrounding the structure is usual, as are parapets, turrets, or ramparts.

A Man’s Home …

…is his castle. No matter the size, the construction, the materials used, your home is your castle, one that you will protect and live in for most of your life. If you’re looking to buy a home or build a custom home, then your first step should be to call the experienced home builders at Revere Homes.

For decades Revere homes has been building houses, creating neighborhoods, and making life easier for many people. Townhouse, cottage, single-family, new construction, or previously owned, Revere Homes has the know-how and the skills to get you into the perfect home for your needs; why not give them a shout.

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