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How to Update the Exterior of a Ranch Style House?

Ranch houses have been an integral part of American architecture and living for almost a century. Now a couple of designers consider them appropriate for farms only, the renowned ranch style home that we love was introduced in 1932 for individuals who reside in urban areas. The hallmarks encompass a one-story layout, usually built with simple brick roofs, deep overhangs, and wood siding.

After the Second World War, ranch style successfully took off because these homes were quickly bought by soldiers who came back from war looking for affordable accommodations. Ranch homes popularized neighborhood gatherings and outdoor barbeques.

By the year 1950, eight out of ten houses in the United States were ranch styled. But what goes up will automatically come down. The demand for ranch houses fell in 1970, and people opted for colonial style – traditional and decorative.

However, the homeowners at present are again appreciating ranch-style properties. They prefer the simple yet appealing architecture and the fact that they can update the space as per their requirements and expectations. In a 2019 Google survey, around 2000 Americans (41%) rated ranch homes as their favorites.

So now that you know that ranch-style homes are here to stay, let’s find out ways to update their exterior, or in other words, make them more comfortable, affordable, and popular.

How to Update the Exterior of a Ranch Style House:

1. Build a patio with glass sliding door in the living space

The experts who build ranch style houses always upload before and after ranch style windows so you can see how the space you will be living in will change. They also help you realize that you can connect to outdoor living through ranch houses seamlessly.

ranch house with big windows
Before And After Ranch Style Windows

You generally see a patio with glass sliding doors in the back, right?  But how about creating something similar in the front? A flagstone or brick patio next to the entryway adds charm and personality. It also invites your neighbors to meet you.

2. Install larger windows in the house

Large Windows are an easy hack if you want to know How to make a ranch house look bigger.

By installing larger windows, of course. Actually, this trick works in most houses with restricted space. Add a clean and contemporary touch by replacing the conventional grid-style, double-hung windows with casement styles that are cent percent energy efficient.

The simple design helps you make the most of all views. The windows are easy to open and close. You may amalgamate larger picture windows that ensure optimal ventilation.

One of the best features of original ranch-style properties was the use of wood panels instead of wallpaper. Even though some people do not want the heavier appearance of wood all over their house, using window frames of natural wood promise a casual mood.

If you wish to honor ranch-style homes, add bow windows to the dining and living room. The look will create interest both outside and inside while paving the way for substantial amounts of natural light.

3. Change the front door and add details to it

So, you got yourself a ranch house with big windows, but to update its exterior, you must do something about the front door.

Usually, the façade of ranch houses is simple and sleek. But the front door can set a fascinating tone. Modern single doors with a wide window can bring forth attention, while double doors are more about formality. Spice up the color palette. Invest in red, yellow, and turquoise.  

4. Repaint the house

Repainting the house is not always a great idea, especially if the brick is phenomenal and in amazing condition. But updating bricks that are not in good shape seems like a practical move. Painted bricks provide an ideal canvas for displaying lighting. Trim the colors, and this can be game-changing for your curb appeal.

5. Plant some bushes in the open space

The interior designers and decorators building ranch style house windows said you should at times experiment with the landscaping. Curved, softer shapes and flowing edges can give your property a dynamic appeal. Keeping this in mind, you must avoid planting large shrubs that need lots of pruning, such as barberry or forsythia.

You may plant junipers or rounder evergreen boxwoods amid organic flowering shrubs such as roses, hydrangeas, azaleas, caryopteris, and spirea.

Some of the owners of ranch-style properties convert their overall front yard into a huge garden palette, lending visual exhilaration to the traditional architecture. If your ranch is located in woodland, you can create an exciting look using ground covers. Sunnier spots can benefit a lot from gravel or stone or a genuine midcentury Southwestern design.

As ranch homes are generally one story with shallow rooflines and horizontal lines, you can break the flow using some vertical elements such as potted plants and decorative details. Adding trees in the front part can improve the curb appeal, shade, and interest.

6. Add a fence in your backyard

Trimming details or ornamental fencing will keep the horizontal lines of ranch style homes in confinement. Horizontal wide planks add a modern touch. Add a few house numbers to create a statement easily.

Some more ways to update the exterior of ranch homes are as follows –

  • 1. Lift the ceilings up to the roofline
  • 2. Open up the interiors by taking down the walls
  • 3. Add a gable on top of the entryway


Ranch style homes have impressed larger segments of the population because they have a fair share of pros. Let’s dig into some of them.

Ranch homes are one-story so you can design them without any hassle. For instance, when manufacturing the cooling and heating system, it is easier to regulate temperatures on a single level. In two-story houses, heat increases quickly. There are varying degrees of warmth when you climb to the second floor from the first.

Ranch homes are easy to maintain and clean. They have no stairs, and stairs make everything complex. Have you ever carried a vacuum cleaner up the stairs? Thanks to ranch style homes, you will never have to carry heavier equipment up and down again.

Ranch homes are also safe to navigate, easy to evacuate, and immensely spacious. Go ahead and get yourself this property right away. Thank you for reading:)

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