types of bungalows

Exploring Types of Bungalows Across the US

The American Bungalow is a beloved style of home that has captured the hearts of many homeowners. These small and efficient houses were constructed during a period of rapid population growth in the United States. Bungalows were designed to optimize space and were primarily built for the working class. One of the fascinating aspects of American bungalows is their ability to adapt to various architectural styles, resulting in a wide range of bungalow variations found across the country.

Key Takeaways:

  • The American Bungalow is a popular style of small home in the US.
  • Bungalows were built during a time of population growth and were designed to maximize space.
  • There are various types of bungalows across the country, each with its own unique architectural influences.
  • Some popular bungalow styles include California Craftsman, New England Cape Cod, Dutch Colonial, and more.
  • Bungalows can also be found in other architectural styles such as Tudor cottages and Cape Cod.

California Bungalows

California bungalows are a charming architectural style that showcases the beauty of natural materials and the craftsmanship of the popular Craftsman style. These bungalows often feature wood, stucco, and shingle siding, creating a warm and inviting exterior. With their one-story layout, overhanging eaves, and sloping roofs, California bungalows exude a sense of coziness and simplicity.

Step onto the porch of a California bungalow, and you’ll be greeted by a space that invites relaxation and outdoor enjoyment. The spacious porch provides ample room for outdoor furniture where you can unwind and soak in the California sunshine. Inside, these bungalows typically offer an open floor plan that seamlessly connects the living room, dining room, and kitchen areas.

The interior of a California bungalow maintains the same craftsmanship and attention to detail as the exterior. In the living room, a fireplace becomes the focal point, adding both warmth and character to the space. The dining room provides a separate area for gathering with family and friends, while the small but functional kitchen space allows for easy meal preparation.

California bungalows often incorporate natural elements and a handmade aesthetic, reflecting the influence of the Craftsman style. From sturdy pillars to Spanish-inspired design elements, each detail adds to the overall charm and character of these homes. The gabled roof completes the look, giving the bungalow a distinctive silhouette.

California bungalows

Key Features of California Bungalows:

  • Wood, stucco, and shingle siding
  • One-story layout
  • Overhanging eaves
  • Sizable porch
  • Sloping roof
  • Open floor plan
  • Simple living room with a fireplace
  • Separate dining room
  • Small kitchen space
  • Craftsman style influences
  • Sturdy pillars and Spanish-inspired design elements
  • Gabled roof

Chicago Bungalows

Chicago bungalows are a distinct style of homes that showcase the city’s architectural history. These bungalows are rectangular in shape and typically have one-and-a-half stories above a basement. One notable feature of Chicago bungalows is their brick construction, which is a result of the city’s historic fire incidents. The use of brick not only provides durability but also gives these homes a charming and timeless appeal.

Chicago bungalows have a compact front view with a symmetrical design, creating a sense of balance and harmony. The front windows are prominent, allowing ample natural light to enter the interior spaces. A central dormer is a prominent feature of Chicago bungalows, adding architectural interest to the roofline and providing additional headroom in the upper floor area.

These bungalows often feature artfully decorated roof tiles, adding visual interest to the exterior. The multi-panel doors add a touch of elegance, while the elaborate interiors boast abundant use of ceramic tiles and wood, creating a warm and inviting atmosphere.

Chicago bungalows are not only aesthetically pleasing but also highly functional. The open layout provides flexibility in arranging the living spaces, while the basement offers additional storage and utility options.

If you are considering a Chicago bungalow, you can expect a well-built home with a rich architectural heritage that perfectly combines style and practicality. These homes offer a unique slice of Chicago’s history and are highly sought after by homeowners who appreciate classic design and enduring craftsmanship.

Chicago bungalows

Tudor Bungalows

Tudor-style bungalows combine the elegance of medieval architecture with the practical layout of a bungalow. These charming homes are known for their intricate design work, featuring detailed doorways, elaborate chimneys, and distinctive wall cladding.

One of the standout features of Tudor bungalows is their steeply pitched gabled roofs, which add a touch of grandeur to the overall aesthetic. The tall narrow windows, adorned with characteristic half-timbering, bring a unique charm to these homes. The asymmetrical facades further enhance their visual appeal, creating a sense of character and individuality.

Wall cladding in Tudor bungalows can be made from brick, wood, or stone, adding texture and visual interest to the exteriors. The combination of different materials gives these homes a timeless and distinctive look.

Tudor Bungalow

  1. Intricate design work including detailed doorways and elaborate chimneys
  2. Steeply pitched gabled roofs with a touch of grandeur
  3. Tall narrow windows adorned with half-timbering
  4. Asymmetrical facades for a unique and individual look
  5. Wall cladding made from brick, wood, or stone

Prairie Bungalows

Prairie bungalows, developed by the Prairie School, a group of Chicago-based architects, are a unique and iconic architectural style of bungalows. These homes showcase the principles of the Prairie School movement, characterized by its emphasis on harmony with nature, functional design, and craftsmanship.

Prairie bungalows feature a porch roof supported by piers, providing a welcoming entrance. The use of contrasting wall materials, such as brick and stucco, adds visual interest and depth to the exterior. Flat chimneys and Prairie-style windows, typically arranged in rows, contribute to the distinctive appearance of these homes.

These bungalows can have up to two stories, with rows of casement windows that allow ample natural light inside. The contrasting trim around the structure further enhances their architectural appeal. Prairie bungalows often boast hipped low-pitched roofs and widely overhanging eaves, creating a sense of harmony and balance with the surrounding landscape.

Elaborate interior furnishings, including decorative door surrounds and horizontal woodwork, showcase the craftsmanship and attention to detail that are characteristic of Prairie School design. One-story porches provide additional outdoor living space and a seamless transition between the interior and exterior.

Prairie bungalow

The Prairie bungalow style offers homeowners a timeless and elegant architectural choice. With their emphasis on horizontal lines, contrasting materials, and appreciation for natural surroundings, Prairie bungalows continue to be a popular and distinctive option for those seeking a harmonious and beautiful home.

Milwaukee Bungalows

Milwaukee bungalows are known for their unique design elements that set them apart from other bungalow styles. One standout feature is the protruding sunroof, which acts as a tucked-away front entryway. This design element adds character and charm to the exterior of the bungalow.

Another distinctive aspect of Milwaukee bungalows is the use of different gables. These roofs have multiple peaks, with one gable typically being larger than the other, creating an interesting visual effect.

Light-colored stucco is a common feature found on the tops and bottoms of Milwaukee bungalows. This choice of material gives the bungalows a clean and bright appearance, enhancing their overall aesthetic appeal.

When it comes to the floor plan, Milwaukee bungalows often separate the public rooms from the private spaces. This layout provides a sense of privacy and creates distinct areas for entertaining guests and retreating to personal quarters.

Milwaukee bungalows

The Unique Protruding Sunroof

The protruding sunroof of Milwaukee bungalows serves as a special architectural feature, offering a tucked-away entrance.

  • Provides shelter from the elements
  • Enhances the visual appeal of the bungalow
  • Creates a unique and welcoming front entryway
  • Allows for a seamless transition between indoor and outdoor spaces

Milwaukee bungalows portrays the striking architectural design of a Milwaukee bungalow with its protruding sunroof.

Light-Colored Stucco for a Fresh Look

The use of light-colored stucco on Milwaukee bungalows offers several advantages:

  1. Enhances the brightness and freshness of the exterior
  2. Complements the overall design and aesthetics
  3. Provides a low-maintenance exterior finish
  4. Reflects sunlight, keeping the bungalow cooler during hot summer months

The light-colored stucco adds a delightful visual element to the Milwaukee bungalows, making them stand out in the neighborhood.

Detroit Bungalows

Detroit bungalows are renowned for their unique architectural features that set them apart. These charming homes showcase a distinct central dormer, adding character and visual appeal to the overall design. With their hipped roofline, Detroit bungalows exhibit a graceful slope that contributes to their timeless aesthetic.

Typically, Detroit bungalows are one-and-a-half stories, offering a comfortable living space while maintaining a cozy atmosphere. The hipped roofs extend over the front porch, creating a cohesive look that matches the home’s width. This architectural element not only enhances the overall curb appeal but also provides a welcoming entryway.

What makes Detroit bungalows even more desirable is the raised first floor, adding half a story to the living space. This elevated floor plan allows for large perimeter windows, flooding the interior with natural light and providing captivating views of the surroundings. Moreover, the added space in the attic offers additional living or storage areas, maximizing the functionality of these homes.

Detroit bungalows often feature imaginative chimney designs executed in stone or brick, further elevating their architectural beauty. These creative chimney structures contribute to the overall charm and uniqueness of these homes.

To visualize the distinctive elements of Detroit bungalows, take a look at the image below:

Detroit bungalows

Characteristics of Detroit Bungalows:

  • Central dormer for a standout architectural feature
  • Hipped roofline with a graceful slope
  • One-and-a-half stories with elevated first floor
  • Front porch extending under the hipped roof
  • Creative designs for chimneys using stone or brick

Cape Cod Bungalows

Cape Cod bungalows embody simplicity and elegance with their symmetrical design and low-pitched gabled roof. These single-story buildings are a classic representation of American architecture.

Cape Cod bungalows

The Cape Cod bungalow style often features shingle siding, which adds to its timeless charm. The double-hung windows with wooden shutters enhance both the visual appeal and functionality of these homes, allowing for proper ventilation and natural light. The central front doors welcome residents and guests with character and warmth.

One prominent feature of Cape Cod bungalows is the large central chimney, which not only adds a touch of architectural interest but also serves as a practical element for heating during colder months.

Cape Cod bungalows demonstrate the beauty in simplicity and emphasize functionality over elaborate decoration. The clean lines, symmetrical layout, and low-pitched gabled roof inspire a sense of tranquility and charm.

Craftsman Bungalows

Craftsman bungalows are a prime example of meticulous craftsmanship, featuring intricate and handcrafted woodwork both inside and outside. These charming homes are known for their modest yet sophisticated details that often draw inspiration from Victorian architecture.

With their small and compact designs, Craftsman bungalows are easy to maintain and provide a cozy living space that can be tailored to individual preferences. The hallmark features of these bungalows include shingled roofs, wide overhanging eaves, street-facing gables, fireplaces, casement windows, and exposed wooden beams that add warmth and character.

Whether adorned in wood or stucco siding, Craftsman bungalows exude a timeless appeal that blends harmoniously with their natural surroundings. Intricate woodwork, such as finely crafted trim, ornate railings, and decorative brackets, adds a touch of elegance and showcases the attention to detail characteristic of this architectural style.

Craftsman bungalows are beloved for their ability to seamlessly blend functionality and aesthetics. From cozy reading nooks to built-in storage solutions, these homes offer a thoughtfully designed space that maximizes comfort and convenience.

Take a closer look at the interior of a Craftsman bungalow, and you’ll find cozy and inviting living areas, often featuring rich wooden cabinetry, exposed ceiling beams, and charming built-in features. These details add to the bungalow’s overall charm and create a warm and welcoming atmosphere.

Explore the intricate woodwork and modest details of Craftsman bungalows in the image below:


Bungalows offer an affordable housing option with their simple living quarters and distinctive artistic touch. Among the various types of bungalows, Craftsman bungalows stand out as one of the most sought-after styles in American architecture. These homes are characterized by their intricate woodwork, modest details, and the use of natural materials, creating a warm and inviting atmosphere.

Craftsman bungalows have a timeless appeal that continues to captivate suburban residents across the United States. With their wide overhanging eaves, street-facing gables, and shingled roofs, these homes exude charm and craftsmanship. The attention to detail in these bungalows, including casement windows, wooden beams, and wood or stucco siding, showcases the dedication to quality and aesthetics.

When considering a bungalow, it is crucial to research the different variations available and select the one that aligns with your preferences and lifestyle. Consulting with a home design expert can provide valuable insights and guidance to help you make an informed decision. Whether you are drawn to the warmth and tradition of Craftsman bungalows or are interested in exploring other styles of American architecture, the bungalow offers a timeless and versatile choice for homeowners.


What types of bungalows can be found across the US?

Bungalows in the US can take on many different shapes and styles, including California Craftsman, New England Cape Cod, Dutch Gambrel roof, Arts & Crafts Style, Spanish Colonial Revival, Neoclassical Bungalow, Dutch Colonial, and more. They can also be found in other styles such as log cabins, Tudor cottages, and Cape Cod.

What are the characteristics of California bungalows?

California bungalows typically feature wood, stucco, and shingle siding. They have one story, overhanging eaves, a sizable porch, and a sloping roof. The interior often includes a simple living room with a fireplace, a separate dining room, and a small kitchen space.

What makes Chicago bungalows unique?

Chicago bungalows are rectangular in shape with one-and-a-half stories above a basement. They are known for their brick construction, compact front view, symmetrical design, and prominent front windows. The interiors often include artfully decorated roof tiles, multi-panel doors, and elaborate use of ceramic tiles and wood.

How would you describe Tudor bungalows?

Tudor-style bungalows blend medieval architecture with the modern layout of a bungalow. They are characterized by their intricate design work, including detailed doorways, elaborate chimneys, and wall cladding. Tudor bungalows feature steeply pitched gabled roofs, tall narrow windows with half-timbering, and asymmetrical facades.

What are the key features of Prairie bungalows?

Prairie bungalows were developed by the Prairie School architects. They have a porch roof supported by piers, contrasting wall materials, flat chimneys, and Prairie-style windows. Other characteristics include hipped low-pitched roofs, widely overhanging eaves, decorative door surrounds, and elaborate interior furnishings.

What defines Milwaukee bungalows?

Milwaukee bungalows have a unique design with a protruding sunroof that serves as a tucked-away front entryway. They often have different gables and feature light-colored stucco on the tops and bottoms of the house. The floor plan of a Milwaukee bungalow typically separates the public rooms from the private spaces.

What sets Detroit bungalows apart?

Detroit bungalows are known for their distinctive elements, including a big central dormer, a sloping roofline, and a symmetrical design. They are typically one-and-a-half stories with hipped roofs that extend over a front porch matching the width of the home. The first floor is raised by half a story, allowing for large perimeter windows and adding living space in the attic.

How would you describe Cape Cod bungalows?

Cape Cod bungalows are typically single-story buildings with a perfectly symmetrical design and a low-pitched gabled roof. They feature little to no decorative elements and often have shingle siding, double-hung windows with wooden shutters, central front doors, and large central chimneys.

What are the defining features of Craftsman bungalows?

Craftsman bungalows consist of intricate and handcrafted woodwork in both the interior and the exterior. They are often described as modest with simple details reminiscent of Victorian homes. Craftsman bungalows have shingled roofs, wide overhanging eaves, street-facing gables, fireplaces, casement windows, wooden beams, and wood or stucco siding.

Why are bungalows a popular choice in the US?

Bungalows offer low-cost housing with simple living quarters and an artistic touch. There are many types of bungalows to choose from, with Craftsman bungalows being one of the most popular styles in the US. They have a timeless appeal and continue to be a preferred choice for suburban residents.

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