For other meanings of the word House see House (disambiguation).
A house in its most general sense is a human-built structure with enclosing walls and a roof. It provides shelter against precipitation, wind, heat, cold and intruding humans and animals. When occupied as a routine dwelling for humans, a house is called a home. People may be away from home most of the day for work and recreation, but typically are home at least for sleeping.
A house generally has at least one entrance, usually in the form of a door or a portal, and may have any number of windows or none at all.
An alternative form of housing is an apartment (or flat), which is one of several individual units on different levels separated by floors, walls and doors but combined to form a larger building under a shared roof. A house containing only two apartments is called a duplex. In England a flat on two floors is often called a maisonette.
Houses have been used as living quarters for humans since prehistoric times, when they first became used as an alternative to cave dwellings, and construction materials, styles and methods of construction have varied wildly over time.
Popular modern house construction techniques include light-frame construction in areas with access to supplies of wood, and adobe or sometimes rammed-earth construction in arid regions with scarce wood resources.
So-called 'alternative building' structures have recently gain (or regained) popularity in recent years. Examples of these are cordwood construction, strawbale construction, and geodesic domes.
Early European houses were mere single-roomed shacks without windows in which entire families and their cattle lived, keeping the house and each other relatively warm during winter.
Among the first examples (according to the estimated age of archaeological retrievals), notable are the palafittes.
Forms of shelter simpler than a house include dugoutss, tents (see also camp), campers, huts, roofs without walls, or a structure with roof and partial walls, such as often at a bus stop (see picture there), and a gazebo.
A mansion is a very large house, often very ornate and expensive.
Humans often build houses for domestic or wild animals, often resembling smaller versions of human domiciles. Familiar animal houses built by humans include bird houses and dog houses (kennels), while domiciles for agricultural animals are more often called barnss.
As a verb, to house (pronounced "howz") is to provide a routine locale for an object, a person or an organization. Historic or artistic artifacts, for example, are said to be housed in museums. A business may be housed in a storefront, or a family may be housed in an apartment or a house. A collection of domiciles, either for persons, for organizations, for animals or for objects, is often called housing. An individual person or a single object might also find housing in an appropriate domicile.
Communities often establish standards, either by formal process or by custom, for adequate housing. Concepts related to housing include:
- housing shortages, which is a disproportionate number of people needing houses compared to the availability of structures.
- substandard housing, which is the existence of housing structures that lack sufficient space, environmental protection, security or maintenance to conform to community standards.
- homelessness, which refers to the condition of humans who lack a regular abode.
- billet, which refers to the usually military act of ordering civilians to share private homes or to surrender private homes to soldiers. Billet is sometimes used as a metaphor to describe any temporary housing situation.
- council house or council flat, a house or flat which is provided by the state for the use of the poor.
- mortgage, a loan secured on a house.
See also ( in alphabetic order)
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The Sater Design Collection
Award Winning house plans from one of America's premier designers, The Sater Design Group. Over 300 house plans to choose from for any style or location.
The Dreamplans Network
Large, searchable database of house plans. Interactive plans using Shockwave.
House plans from various designers in a searchable database. Links and articles on building new homes.
Home plans and house construction assistance. Bellevue, Washington.
Country Plans by Natalie
Over 100 house plans in styles from country to the more formal. Designer specializes in traffic flow, creative storage solutions and alternative touches.
Caddhomes Classic Home Plans
Over 160 house plans that offer a variety of layouts and exterior styles.
Alpha Cad Home Designs
Catalog of over 100 different home plans all done in CAD. Photos.
Greater Living Architecture
Specialize in the design of home plans for residential, new construction and remodeling. Members of the American Institute of Architects, the National Home Builders Association, and the American Institute of Building Designers.
New England home designs, garage plans, barns and workshops at reasonable cost. Architectural design and drafting services for builders and home buyers. Brookline, NH.
Stock home plan catalogs and custom home design services.
Homes designed by architects to fit a wide range of needs, sites, tastes and budgets.
Bright Visions Architecture
Architecture & Home Design Tutor. Stock house plans, custom design, and tutoring services. Thousands of plans.
House plan designer. Stock plan catalogue available by mail. B.C. Canada.
Dream Home Source
Search through thousands of professionally-designed stock house plans from over 68 architects and designers.
Searchable by category and by design features. Online ordering.
411 All Plans
Searchable database of house plans for sale. Includes artist impressions.
English Country Homes
English and Mediterranean house plans for sale from UK firm. Custom design modifications available.
Memphis TN architectural design firm featuring house plans. Also electronic drafting and custom design services.
Home plan design company since 1907 also publishing home plan magazines and tradebooks.
House plans by several of the nations leading home design firms. Searchable database.
Homes for Today
Architect designed construction blueprints with floor plan layouts and renderings. Includes residential house plans, garages with/without loft apartments, and home improvements you can build.
Original Home Plans
Interactive home plans: design your own house on line and order your custom plans.
Atlanta Plan Source
Stock house plans, custom designs and plan books available.
Patrick McGee Design
Craftsman, Traditional, Coastal and European styles. Computer generated plans adaptable to any geographic location. Plan portfolio for sale.
Alan Mascord Design Associates
Collection of home designs; portfolio, news, events.
BC Mountain Homes
Stock plans and custom design services for cabins, garages and homes from 420 - 2,000 sq. ft.
House Plans and Community Development
We challenge you to find more efficient standard house plans anywhere. The house plans presented fit well in both rural and urban communities.
Korel Home Designs Online
Hundreds of up-to-date contemporary house plans of classical country English, country French, European Mediterranean and popular American styles.
Classic Colonial Homes
Building plans for homes that capture the warmth and character of early New England architecture. Homes with classic exteriors and modern interiors.
Weinmaster Home Design
House plans in an online searchable catalog.
Choose from the French Country Collection or many others.
Residential Technologies, Inc.
Home and garage plans, searchable by design features and other criteria.
Offer a full line of home plans that can be modified to meet your needs.
Design Lines, Inc.
Specializing in custom home design and plans for additions or remodels. Stock plans for homes and garages available. Wattsun energy efficiency analysis performed.
Extensive variety of plans for garages, garage additions, country style homes, small homes and vacation homes. These are professionally drawn plans that comply with current building codes and are guaranteed for building permit in most locations.
Southern Homes Inc.
Site has a search for southern designed homes.
Design Works Inc.
2D and 3D home design kits. Reusable peel-and-stick furniture and architectural symbols for floor plans.
Stepfen Fuller Inc.
Providing custom home designs and pre-designed house plans.
Architect's Choice House Floor Plans
Free architect's choice house plan reviews. This house plan search site delivers results reviewed by an architect.
Featuring stock home plan designs of all styles and sizes. Catalogues available by mail or online. Custom design service available. Established in 1950.
A Point of View
A collection of limited edition house plans as well as custom home design and planning services. Includes a photo gallery of clients' homes.
American Design Gallery
House plans from 800 to 3000 sq. ft. with blueprints available on-line.
Creations West Home Design
A database of floor plans & home designs.
Online home designs offering affordable custom plans for individuals and builders. Talk to our designers while viewing our interactive online sketch pad. Small homes to entire communities.
Brent Gibson Classic Home Design
Custom and stock house plans, 2,400 to 10,000 square feet in size. Country French, English Tutor & European style homes. Edmond, Oklahoma.
Church & Commercial Building Plans, L.L.C.
Plans for warehouses, office buildings, strip mall, grocery stores, health clubs, and gymnasiums.
Australian House Plans
House plans suitable for owner builders and builders of kit homes. Standard plans and custom designs.
ICON Design Group, Ltd.
Stock home plans ranging from 1400 to 8000 square feet, including ranch style, story-and-a-half, and two-story. Architectural renderings and virtual walkthroughs are also available.
Architects and home designers, providing plan books, floor plans, design ideas and custom home plans. Specializing in large lakefront homes.
Offering affordable and efficient house plans designed by architects, books on design and construction and informative articles.
Hundreds of home plan designs. Custom design services available.
Colonial, country farm house and traditional house plans for sale.
Creative Home Designs of America
Home design services and plans for developers, builders and the individual homeowner. Plan books, archived plans, search, and Plan of the Month.
Hundreds of house plans from North America's top architects and home designers.
Home plans and blueprints of architecturally unique houses.
Arbor South Architecture, PC
Stock plans featured in national magazines are available to order online with secure sever. Sizes from 1,000 to 3,500 square feet.
Construction plans for country homes, barns and garages. These buildings combine the simplicity of traditional country design with flexible layouts to suit your needs.
McKie Roth Design
Blueprints for old New England style designs, including saltboxes, capes, gambrels, barns, and garages.
House plans from a variety of U.S. and Canadian home plan designers and architects. Includes a searchable database of plans.
Traditional, contemporary, vacation house, and loft apartment garage plans.
Better Homes and Gardens
Collection of plans, searchable by house size, room dimensions, and other criteria.
Drummond Designs Inc,
Stock and custom plans available as blueprints and CAD files for single and multi-family homes.
House plans, guide books, links to a variety of plan services and other useful resources to help you build your new home.
A collection cottage home plans from 700 to 3500 square feet. Southern designs with porches and verandas. Many will fit on small lots.
House Plan Designs
House plans, home design, plan catalogs, and commercial building plans available for purchase.
Selection of plans and blueprints.
The Coastal House Plan Source
Coastal Home Plans offers authentic coastal house plans. Site lists over 130 house plans including beach bungalows, coastal cottages and seaside estates.
Home Designs Online
Library of stock plans, other custom home design and planning services.
Authentic Historical Designs
Offers traditional house plans and plan catalogs.
Dennis Davey, AIA
On-line design services. Custom design house plans, specializing in solar energy, energy conservation and affordable housing.
eplans House Plan Store
Home improvement house plans, blueprints, and floor plans for home design construction projects and home remodeling.
The Natural Home Building Source
Passive solar, high thermal mass home plans.
Larry James Designs
Specializing in house plans for custom home residential designs. Site includes photos and plans.
B 4 U Build
Over 7,500 house plans, floor plans, home plan books and blueprints for large and small houses, sheds, garages, playhouses, outbuildings, horse barns, log cabins, vacation homes, decks and gazebos.
Bruinier and Associates, Inc.
Custom and stock plans for single family homes, apartments, duplexes and row houses. Virtual 3D walk-throughs. Order plan books online.
Blueprint Design Consultants
Custom house plans, construction documents, building permit assistance, 3-D renderings, and plotting services. Serving Bellingham, Whatcom, Skagit and Island Counties.
Rusbourne Design Ltd.
Rusbourne Design Ltd. has a great selection of home plans. You can choose from hundreds of stock plans in a variety of styles and sizes. New plans are added weekly. Custom design is also available from our award winning designer.
Discover 4500+ house plans from top residential architects and designers.
Robinson Residential Design Inc.
A collection of classic Craftsman Styled home and cottage plans.
National Home Plans, Inc.
Browse through home plans, many featuring energy-efficient "passive-solar design," Charles Koty, A.I.A. Order plans by phone, fax or mail.
Home Plans Inc.
View and purchase AIBD plans for permits and construction.
Log home design store. Find our signature series of log home plans ready for immediate purchase and download.
Dream Home Source
Search through over 9100 designed stock house plans, from architects and designers.
HSH Home Plans
Various styles and hundreds of plans. Search, customize, and buy your plan online.
Creative House Plans
Home plans and blueprints of affordable custom floor plans and designs for general contractors and individual home builders.
Islands to the World
Specializing in new designs for southern, seaside, coastal and island homes.
Master Plans & Design, Inc.
Many types of utility trailer plans and others, engineer approved, 6' to 25' trailers.
Northern Home Designs
Your source for stock and custom house plans, so that you can build your dream home. Thunder Bay, Ontario, CA
House plans designed by national home designers and architects. Features a large variety of home plans.
David E. Wiggins, Architect
Stock home plans ranging in size from 1500-4500 square feet.
Home Plan Service
Meeting all of your plan needs for house plans, custom designs, garage plans, pool houses.
Home Plan Finder
Thousands of house plans online and a search tool to quickly find home plans. Floor plans from over 60 designers. Free newsletter gives construction and design advice.
A home building community, offering house planning tools and features at no cost. Over 12,000 online plans. Find contractors, products, or services with our special search feature.
This website provides unique, low-cost, aesthetic and energy efficient house plans.
Design Classics of Saint Louis
Stock and custom house plans.
Plan Ahead, Inc.
A residential drafting service with over 8000 stock plans and custom plans.
Designers selling plans of a prototype house with an exterior that is comprised solely of straw/hay bales.
3-D Home Plans
Original home plans accompanied by multiple interior/exterior 3-D views.
Specializes in affordable bungalow, craftsman, and cottage style home and landscape plans.
Stock home plans. Includes browseable database, ordering information, and contact details.
Provides details on stock or custom home designs including site plans, drawings, elevations, prices and a portfolio of existing homes.
Thousands of house plans by some of North America's leading architects & designers. Easy to navigate, user friendly search. All questions are answered by design professionals.
Mark Stewart Home Design
New home plans, custom designs and homebuilding consultation available. Plan portfolio is available on the internet, in plan books as well as CD-ROM format
Sentinel Services Ltd.
Blueprints / houseplans in the areas of new construction custom home design, additions and renovations to existing homes in Southern Alberta - Lethbridge & area.
House Plans Design Connection, LLC
House plans for everyone. We specialize in Victorian, Farmhouse, and Colonial styled house plans. From 1,000 to over 4,000 square feet.
National Affordable Housing Network
Houseplans from non-profit organization that advocates the incorporation of resource efficiency.
New Urbanist Homes
Period homes for the new urbanist. Bungalow, Craftsman, Arts & Crafts, Victorian and Colonial Home Plans.
Hundreds of stock plans: houses, cottages, multi-housing, decks, gazebo, garages, sheds... Complete architectural and multimedia services.
Design Loft Inc.
House plans, many sizes & styles, custom & stock plans available.
Stock house plan catalog. Styles range from narrow lot bungalows and craftsman style to open site rural living.
Ahmann Design Inc.
House plans and custom home designs.
Donald A. Gardner Architects, Inc.
More than 500 house plans, home plans, and custom designs. Building services, residential development and marketing services for builders and developers.
Build It Home Plans
Advice on building a new home, home plans for sale online.
Korel House Plans
Have hundreds of house floor plans for you to fall in love with.
The Affordable House
Home designs, floorplans and renderings with descriptive text of houses in 25 traditional architectural styles.
House plans and custom designs in ranch, cape, colonial and saltbox styles. Massachusetts.
Sun-Inspired Home Plans(TM), incorporating traditional exteriors, energy efficiency, and cost-effective passive solar design. Custom designs available. Debra Rucker Coleman, architect.
Beach Builders, Inc.
Plans of award-winning piling homes for coastal construction. Designed for the Florida coast.
Design Evolutions Inc.
House plans designed in traditional and classical styles from 1,465 to over 4,600 square feet.
All House Plans.com
Online house plan publisher of national home designers that offers floor plans of a large variety of styles and layouts.
Cabin and Cottage Building Plans
Plans for cabins and cottages from small to executive with blueprints available. Architect Michael Eckardt can custom design your next home or cabin.
Architect-designed house plans for southern, coastal houses and cottages
DesignTech Residential Planners, Inc.
Custom house plans drawn just for you. Or, choose from hundreds of our stock plans.
Preferred Plans Inc
Architectural floor plans for home and house design.
Pre-designed and pre-permitted commercial building plans for fast and complete construction documents.
Concept Design Institute
Custom and stock log residence blueprints which can be computer modified.
Rick Garner Designs
Free stock house plan catalog featuring designs in a variety of styles and floor plans.
DDI Architecture & Planning
Provider of CADaptable custom and pre-drawn stock home plans. Serving builders and homeowners throughout the nation for 23 years.
Town and Country Cedar Homes
Over 70 plans to assist you in building your custom log, cedar, or timber framed home.
Custom home plans and interior designs. Specializing in modern - "timeless" architectural styles.
House Plans Online
Stock and custom residential blueprints.
MoreTrees Residential Design
House plans designed for waterfront and infill locations, and tips on how to design your own house using CAD and the Internet.
Associated Home Designs
Stock house plans, including one and two story homes, cottages, vacation homes, and ranchers. Product catalogue and ordering information, along with a search function by region, size, and most popular designs.
Remodeling House Plans
Stock plans for new construction, along with remodeling and one-off designs for residences. Includes service descriptions, pricing and contacts.
Mike Tecton Publishing
A publishing company offering primarily architectural detail and home plan books. Includes descriptions and pricing information.
Sullivan Stevens and Henry
Home plans available for purchase in working drawing format. Includes profile, partners, plan previews, online ordering, design services and contacts.
Canadian company offering stock plans and design services for new homes and renovations. Includes home design information and magazine subscription.
Hawkesbury Valley Homes