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Top 10 Most Popular Types of Houses To Build

Are you finding your first new home or building your own dream house? Before you start building your house, there is a lot of terminology regarding the type of house to build and their structures. You can make more informed choices for your house after understanding this terminology, knowing the pros and cons, and learning the benefits associated with certain home types.

It’s important to know your needs when choosing which type of house suits you best. Different types of houses serve different purposes with the considerations of quantity of residents, quality of life, environment, comfort, and space. So, we have collated the most popular types of house to build so you can choose the best house types to build for yourself.

1. Bungalow

The bungalow is a type of house that originated in Bengal, India in the mid-nineteenth century. The bungalow home comes in many different styles in different countries. The benefit of living in a bungalow is that it is easier to maintain as the house does not have multiple levels, so there are no staircases to clean or vacuum. It is a single-storey home where you can enjoy your living in an open space. It is suitable for senior citizens or family with senior members as the single-levelled house makes their mobility accessibility easier. If you are looking for a retirement home, then a bungalow might be your best option!

Image credit: Albert Lim KS

Shown in the image above is a grey bungalow with three bedrooms, designed by Pinoy eplans from Philippines.

Image credit: Clarendon Homes

This spacious bungalow is a country-inspired home in Clarendon’s Estate Collection designed for large blocks. This single-storey bungalow features huge spaces for living and throwing parties, which is suitable for a growing family.

2. Mansion

If you are looking for those luxurious houses like the ones in romantic comedies or action films, with a ballroom, spiral staircase, chandelier, swimming pool, car garage, a manicured garden, a basketball or tennis court, and with an amazing view from the house, this type of house is a mansion. Charlie Cheever once wrote in quora.com, “Technically, realtors term mansions as houses that have at least 8,000 square feet of floor space.”

The luxe amenities are a must to hit the standard of a mansion. The standards include at least 6 to 8 bedrooms, at least 8000-20000 square feet of floor space, game rooms, karaoke rooms, bar, swimming pool, gym room, and a lot more entertainment facilities and leisure spaces.

Image credit: Albert Lim KS

Cornwall Gardens, with a nature-inspired style reminiscent of greenhouses, is located in the Bukit Timah district. This beautiful house is built by the Singaporean architectural firm, Chang Architects. It is built on is a sloping terrain that spans about 16059 ft². It also has seven bedrooms, a family room, a koi pond, an entertainment room, and a library, all essential amenities for the three-generation family living there.

Image credit: Albert Lim KS

The biggest advantage of living in a mansion is privacy. If you can afford to own a mansion, you will definitely enjoy the private land without the hustle and bustle of the city.

3. Townhouse

A townhouse is like a mini version of the condominiums, but with multiple houses connected to one another in a row in the style of terrace units. The difference between the townhouse and the condominium is that the latter is usually located in high-rise property while the former is generally low-rise in nature. Usually, this type of house tends to comprise two or more building units connected to one other. Each townhouse comes with three storeys, or even four storeys.

Image credit: EdgeProp

If you wish to live in a landed house but enjoy the privileges of the condominium facilities such as a gated community and swimming pool at your doorstep, a townhouse might be the answer. In addition, a townhouse is suitable for multi-generational living.

Image credit: PropertyGuru

This is the townhouse residency at the Hillsta.

4. Penthouse

penthouse is typically known as the upper floor unit of a luxury residential building.

Image credit: Insider

This is Singapore’s largest penthouse, which is worth about $104 million on the market. This 28,000 square feet of luxurious penthouse comprises 24 bedrooms and 5 residences. The billionaire James Dyson bought the house in 2019 and sold it in 2020. It is positioned atop the Marina Bay Residences, which is a 54-floor condominium tower in central Singapore. It is also known as the Marina Bay Penthouse Collection that features a high ceiling and floor-to-ceiling windows for the picturesque views of the bay.

Image credit: Tristar Property

Due to its premium features, the penthouse is considered one of the most luxurious properties in Singapore.

5. Soho

If you are a workaholic, or if you are living alone and working from home, then the Soho apartment is the new type of house that will fit someone looking to get a house and office space simultaneously. This is due to “Soho” being an acronym for “Small Office Home Office”. Nowadays, many young adults love to rent and buy a Soho apartment since it is a home where you can work, live and play. Most importantly, a Soho is not priced as high as the previous four house types.

Image credit: Far East Organisation
Image credit: Far East Organisation

You can have more freedom to plan for your house space as the Soho unit usually comes with high ceilings up to five metres high.

6. Semi-detached

When a single-family home shares a common wall with another house, that type of house is called a semi-detached house. This means you are sharing a small portion of the house with another family.

The two houses that share a wall in semi-detached housing are also often mirrored facades of each other. This means that the design layout is the same unless you find a builder or interior designer to plan a new layout. Semi-detached homes also have a little space in the front and back yards.

A normal semi-detached house might seem too ordinary, but with a builder, an architect, or an interior designer, everything can be spiced up according to your preferences. Check out the incredible semi-detached house design below.

Image credit: Hier Architect

This contemporary semi-detached home in Singapore was designed by Hier Architects.

Image credit: idesignarch

Here is another amazing semi-detached house design in Singapore, done by Aamer Architects.

7. Terrace

If you don’t have many requirements and are just looking for an affordable landed house to live in, the terrace house may be your best choice. The houses are positioned side by side in a row and with limited front yard space. But you can always change the style of this home with the help of a creative designer. Check out the Victorian-styled terrace house in the above video.

This 1,680sqft terrace with 2+1 bedrooms at Jalan Usaha is ideal for a small family. Rather than the common terrace house design, this house has been beautifully designed to become a luxurious-looking home.

8. HDB Flats

Housing Development Board (HDB) flats are subsidised public housing for Singaporeans. It is considered the cheapest and most basic type of house to own.

According to Singsaver, a two-room flat in Singapore costs between $90,000 to $162,000. The reality is that it is difficult to own a condominium or a landed house in Singapore as such properties may cost up to a million dollars.

However, this does not mean that an HDB flat is too mundane to spruce out. Just check out the above video and see how this couple transformed their HDB unit into a mid-century-styled executive flat. There is a quote saying, “Some people look for a beautiful place, others make a place beautiful”. 

Geraldine & Vincent, the owners of this flat, are also its designers. Geraldine is an art teacher while Vincent is a photography hobbyist, so the aesthetic standards garnered from their careers helped make this unit a wonderful house they can call their own.

9. Condominium

The condominium is like the extended and upgraded version of an apartment. Condos come with exclusive facilities such as private gyms, swimming pools, spas, and play spaces. The benefits of living in a condo are luxurious amenities, maintenance, property appreciation value, and the thrill of urban living. The demand for condos has increased in recent years, with their value becoming widely appreciated. No repairs and maintenance are needed with this type of house.

Image credit: Artdecor
Image credit: Artdecor

Art Décor Design Studio, a premium interior design firm in Singapore, encompasses the entire home design process, from design and consultation to project management and construction. You can contact them if you are looking for an interior designer for your condominium.

10. Shophouse

According to the Urban Redevelopment Authority Singapore (URA), shophouses are a prevalent building type in Singapore’s architectural and built heritage. Standing at two to three storeys, these buildings are built-in contiguous blocks with common party walls. They are similar to terraced houses but with smaller spaces and sheltered ‘five-foot way’ pedestrian ways at the front.

These buildings were built between the 1840s and the 1960s, so they are considered conservation buildings by Singapore’s government. They are unique and special as they are a brilliant mix of cultural influences and a blend of different building styles. 

Recently, shophouses have gained popularity and many people are now investing in them. According to the URA Realis data, the total transaction value of shophouses hit a historical high in Q1 2018, topping the previous market peak in Q1 2013.

Image credit: JLL
Image credit: Peak Magazine

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