Younger and first-time home buyers are revisiting ranch design, drawn by the appeal of an informal and laid-back layout and the typical affordability of these mid-century homes.Meanwhile, an older generation of buyers are lured by the ranch’s single-level floor plan, which is easy on aging knees.So when Bruce and Mary Jane decided to remodel the kitchen, their main goal was to rework the floor plan to combine the cooking and socializing areas, and to do this without destroying the features that make their house unique.Space, accessibility and relaxed living make ranch homes popular, but their exteriors can be dull.The slim ranch-style trim is easy to match or reproduce and goes well with popular modern and retro cabinetry and furnishings.One drawback, however, is that the small enclosed spaces in the typical ranch floor plan are usually out of step with today's lifestyles, which favor more open space and informality.
Q My husband and I have been living in our ranch home since the 1970s, and we are finally ready to do some upgrading to make it a little more current. The earth-hugging prairie-style houses pioneered by Frank Lloyd Wright and the popular California bungalow styles paved the way for the ranch.
Despite these practical attractions, the style’s horizontal, close-to-the-ground profile gets a bad rap for its exterior, which is often knocked for being dull.
Fortunately, visual interest is just a series of DIY improvements away.
To accentuate the bungalow's clean lines, a new porch railing was added, and the old roof was replaced with faux slate.
Tired aluminum siding was exchanged for prefinished planking.