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What Is A Raised Ranch House? A Brief Overview of Its Design and Features

What Is A Raised Ranch House? A Brief Overview of Its Design and Features

A raised ranch is a unique style of house that has been gaining popularity in recent years. However, you may find yourself wondering exactly what a raised ranch house is compared to a regular ranch!

A raised ranch house is a type of home that features a split-level design with a main living area located on the upper level and a lower level that is partially below ground. This design provides additional living space without requiring a larger footprint, making it a popular choice for many homeowners.

This design allows for maximum use of space, as it eliminates the need for a separate basement and provides more living space without adding to the home’s footprint.

While raised ranches are often associated with the 1970s, they have made a comeback in recent years due to their unique design and practicality.

If you’re in the market for a new home or just curious about this style of the house, read on to learn more about what makes a raised ranch so special!

Want to dive deeper into the history and design of ranch style homes? My hub article on What Is A Ranch Style Home? is a must-read!

Architectural Features of Raised Ranch Houses

Exterior Features

Raised ranch houses are known for their unique exterior features that make them stand out from other house styles.

One of the most prominent features is the split-level design, where the house is built on two levels, with the lower level partially sunk into the ground. This design gives the house a distinctive look and creates a spacious living area with plenty of natural light.

Another notable exterior feature of raised ranch houses is the shallow roofline with deep overhanging eaves.

This design provides shade and protection from the elements, while also accentuating the horizontal lines of the house.

Raised ranch houses also typically have large picture windows on the upper level, which offer expansive views of the surrounding landscape.

Interior Features

The interior of a raised ranch house is characterized by an open floor plan, which creates a sense of spaciousness and flow between the living areas.

The living room, dining room, and kitchen are typically located on the upper level, while the bedrooms and additional living space are situated on the lower level.

One of the most distinctive interior features of raised ranch houses is the split-level entryway, which typically leads directly into the living room or a small foyer.

The lower level of the house often features a large family room or recreation room, which can be used as a separate living space or entertainment area.

Other notable interior features of raised ranch houses include large windows that provide plenty of natural light, vaulted ceilings that create a sense of height and spaciousness, and sliding glass doors that lead to outdoor living spaces such as decks or patios.

Pros and Cons of Living in a Ranch Style Home

Pros and Cons of Raised Ranch Houses

Raised Ranch Advantages

Raised ranch houses have several advantages that make them popular among homeowners.

Some of the advantages of raised ranch houses include:

  • More living space: A raised ranch house typically has a finished basement, which provides additional living space for the family.

  • Better views: Raised ranch houses are usually built on a slope or hill, which provides better views of the surrounding area.

  • Separation of living areas: The raised design of the house allows for a clear separation between the living areas and the bedrooms, providing more privacy for the family.

  • Easy access to the backyard: Raised ranch houses usually have a walkout basement, which provides easy access to the backyard.

Raised Ranch Disadvantages

While raised ranch houses have several advantages, they also have some disadvantages that should be considered before purchasing one.

Some of the disadvantages of raised ranches include:

  • More expensive: Raised ranch houses are generally more expensive to build than other types of houses because they require more roofing and foundation.

  • Stairs: Raised ranch houses have stairs leading up to the living area and stairs leading down to the basement, which can be a disadvantage for older adults or those with mobility issues.

  • Less natural light: Because the living area is elevated, raised ranch houses may have less natural light than other types of houses.

  • No garage: Some raised ranch houses do not have a garage, which can be a disadvantage for homeowners who need a place to park their cars.

While raised ranch houses have both advantages and disadvantages, they remain a popular choice for many homeowners due to their unique design and functionality.

What is Another Name for a Raised Ranch House?

Depending on the region, a raised ranch house may be known by different names.

Let’s take a look at a few alternative names that you may here used when referencing a “raised ranch” house:

  • Split-level ranch
  • Bi-level house
  • High ranch
  • Split-entry home

These names reflect the defining feature of a raised ranch house, which is the separation of living space into two levels.

The upper level typically contains the main living areas, such as the kitchen, living room, and bedrooms, while the lower level is partially or fully below ground level and may contain additional living space, such as a family room, recreation room, or home office.

While raised ranch houses are similar to split-level homes, there are some differences!

Split-level homes typically have three or more levels, with short flights of stairs between each level, while raised ranch houses have only two levels, with a full flight of stairs leading up to the upper level.

Regardless of the name, raised ranch houses are a popular choice for homeowners who want a spacious and versatile home that can accommodate their changing needs over time.

What is the Difference Between a Raised Ranch and Split Level House?

Raised ranch and split-level homes are two popular architectural styles that share some similarities, but also have some significant differences.

Here are some of the key differences between these two types of homes:

  • Number of levels: The most obvious difference between raised ranch and split-level homes is the number of levels they have. Raised ranch homes have two levels, while split-level homes have at least three levels.

  • Entryway: Another key difference is the entryway. Raised ranch homes typically have a main entrance that leads directly into the living area, while split-level homes have an entryway that leads to a small landing with stairs going up and down.

  • Layout: The layout of raised ranch homes is typically more open and spacious than split-level homes. Raised ranch homes often have a large living room, dining room, and kitchen on the main level, while split-level homes have smaller rooms and more separate spaces.

  • Exterior: Raised ranch homes often have a more traditional, boxy shape, while split-level homes have a more modern, angular shape.

Overall, the main difference between raised ranch and split-level homes is the number of levels and the layout.

Raised ranch homes have a more open and spacious layout, while split-level homes have a more compact and separate layout.

Conclusion to What Is a Raised Ranch House

Raised ranch houses are a popular type of home design that features a split-level floor plan with a raised foundation. They are often preferred by eco-conscious homebuyers due to their smaller carbon footprints.

One of the main features of a raised ranch house is the partially submerged basement with finished rooms and windows. This provides additional living space and natural light, making it a great option for families or those who enjoy entertaining guests.

Another benefit of raised ranch homes is their low-pitched gable roof, which can help reduce heating and cooling costs. Additionally, the split-level design allows for greater privacy between living spaces, making it an ideal choice for multi-generational families or those who work from home.

While raised ranch homes share some similarities with traditional ranch-style homes, they have distinct differences that set them apart.

Overall, raised ranch houses offer a unique combination of style, functionality, and energy efficiency that make them a popular choice among homebuyers.

If you found this article helpful, make sure to take a look at my other articles on Ranch style homes linked below!

Lindsay Reed

Hi, I'm the founder of! I created this website to be a resource for everyone who wants to make the best home possible.