Though design plans for ranch-style homes first emerged in the 1930s, it wasn’t until twenty years later that the popular single-story style home became a fixture in American cities and towns. Indeed by the 1950s ranch-style homes were the most popular type of home built in America, thanks in large part to Federal Housing Authority (FHA) loans that offered low-cost, government-backed loans. Today, both FHA loans and ranch-style homes remain incredibly popular, particularly for first-time home buyers. Interested in learning more about the benefits of a ranch-style house? Read on for everything to know about buying a ranch-style house.


What is a Ranch-Style House?

Ranch-style houses are typically laid out on a single floor, with unobstructed access between rooms. This style of home typically has dedicated indoor/outdoor space, including a dedicated patio or deck, often accessible via a sliding glass door. Many ranch-style homes also have finished basements, large windows, and attached garages. They can be easily recognized thanks to low-pitched roofs, with wide eaves.


Benefits of Ranch-Style Homes

A ranch-style house offers complete living space on the ground level. This makes the style very attractive for buyers who prefer to avoid going up and down stairs. But there are other benefits to this type of home design, including the open floorplan, and simplified maintenance on the exterior.  Because ranch-style homes are typically less than 2,500 square feet, they are often smaller homes as well, which can result in greater affordability.


Things to Look Out For, When Considering Buying a Ranch-Style Home

Irrespective of the type of home you buy, you’ll want to ensure that you know of potential issues that may arise after purchasing it. An experienced home inspector can be worth their weight in gold when it comes to identifying common problems that may be found in a ranch home.   Some of the more common problems found in ranch-style homes include:


  • Problems in Area Around the Foundation
    Because so many ranch-style homes were built decades ago, it is not uncommon to find there are some issues with grading or drainage.  Before you make the offer contingent to a Home Inspection, so you may have the house thoroughly inspected.
  • Previous Water Damage
    Again, because many ranch-style homes are older, previous floods, storms, etc., may have caused water damage, which can be found in the attic, basement, or crawl spaces.
  • Deck Age
    Decks on homes need routine maintenance and have a life expectancy of roughly 25 years. If you’re interested in a ranch-style home, be sure you learn how old the deck is, and plan to replace it if it is nearing 25 years old.
  • Insulation & Window Condition
    Because most ranch homes were built long before people understood how important energy efficiency would become, you’ll want to ask about insulation and the age of the windows. Older homes may require significant energy efficiency investments, which you should know about before you buy.
  • Chimney Defects or Leaks
    Ranch-style homes that were built decades ago, and that include a fireplace, may be prone to chimney defects or leaks that should be addressed either by the seller via a price reduction, or through a credit when you purchase the home.


Look for Well-Maintained Homes

Irrespective of the style of home you’re interested in buying, it is smart to look for well-maintained homes. Unless you’re adept at fixing, renovating, or repairing a home, a house that shows signs of neglect can quickly become a money pit, and a hassle. On the other hand, if you’re willing to put in the work to transform a well-worn ranch home into the home of your dreams, renovation loans may be an option worth exploring.


Loans for Single-Family Homes in Oregon

Whether you’re searching for the perfect ranch, split-level, townhouse, or condo in Oregon, Strategic Mortgage Solutions can help you find a great mortgage loan for your needs. To learn more, call 541-275-1148, or send us a message today.