Dating from the 17th century, Colonial architecture is defined by symmetry, practicality, and a connection to local climate and readily available building materials. While we often think of the United States and Canada as British colonies, there were also Spanish, French, and Dutch colonial powers in charge in various parts of the country, so Colonial architecture will differ depending on the region.
Colonial architecture generally features a steep, gabled roof and an interior layout that is one room deep and opens from a central entrance. Depending on the climate, Colonial homes may feature a single, central fireplace or a fireplace at either end of the home. Homes feature small, multi-paned windows symmetrically arranged on either side of the entrance.
Inspired by the temples and public buildings of ancient Greece, Greek Revival was a movement in Europe and North America dating from the nineteenth century and featuring an even number of grand columns with an entablature above. The style became popular because of the early American connection between their own democracy and their democratic roots in ancient Greece.
Greek Revival homes are generally painted white in order to mimic the white marble of the originals. While the style is common in public buildings in many areas along the east coast, many of the Greek Revival-style residences that survive are located in the southeastern United States.
Dating from the late 19th and early 20th century, Victorian architecture remains a beloved and popular style in many areas. With ornate trim, asymmetrical design elements, and, in some markets, unusually bright or pastel paint colors, Victorian design is considered a fun and often-quirky style. The elaborate detail and often-expensive custom finishes reflect the Gilded Age wealth of the era.
Part of the charm of many Victorian homes is their layout, consisting of a variety of nooks and crannies, small rooms, side porches, turrets, and other interesting elements. However, for contemporary buyers used to open-concept floorplans, these can be seen as drawbacks. In addition, much of the hand-hewn custom woodwork in elaborate moldings trims, and mantels are costly to duplicate when making repairs or refurbishments. It is important to properly understand and appreciate these elements and their value when advising clients and determining value.
Unique and romantic, Tudor architecture in North America originated in the mid-19th century and is easily identified by its dark wood beams set against a white backdrop as well as brick or stonework foundations, chimneys, and other architectural elements. Tudors can range from small, cottage-style homes to expansive and elaborate mansions. Windows are another distinctive feature of this style, usually small, multi-paned, and either rectangular or diamond-shaped.
Because Tudor homes are expensive to build and maintain, they fell out of favor in new construction after the affordable housing boom of the post World War II era, but they have never gone out of style. You’ll still find a Tudor dream home at the top of many buyer wishlists, and homeowners lucky enough to own their own will no doubt expect top dollar when it’s time to sell.
The Craftsman-style home is rooted in the early 20th century Arts and Crafts movement. With low-pitched gable roofs, generous porches with squat, square columns, and prominent structural elements, the style was traditionally used for bungalows. Now, however, sprawling, newly built mansions in the Craftsman style can be found in luxury neighborhoods all over the country.
Craftsman homes have a number of unique decorative elements including square light fixtures in decorative metals like copper and bronze, double-hung windows with multiple panes in the top and a single pane in the lower half, and built-in cabinetry and other practical elements. In order to ensure long-term value, any improvements or renovations should be in keeping with the Craftsman aesthetic.
Rambling 20th-century ranch-style homes are a fixture of neighborhoods all over the United States and Canada. Beginning on the west coast, the style became popular in an era when large lots and suburban sprawl ruled the architectural world. They come in a variety of configurations including L- and U-shapes which often are arranged around a central recreational space like a pool or terrace. In addition, open-concept floorplans are uniquely suited to the ranch-style home.
While some people love a second story, many others will be drawn to the style and simplicity of a ranch design. For older couples, the style offers the opportunity to stay put after retirement without worry about accessibility as they age. For families with young children, the lack of stairs can mean an easier and more worry-free lifestyle, and the location of many ranch-style homes in suburban neighborhoods is often desirable.
Mid-century modern is currently one of the most distinctive and highly sought-after styles of home. Because they were generally produced from 1930-1960, these homes are somewhat rare, and therefore more highly valued. Combining structural elements of the ranch-style suburban home of the post-War era with artistic and design flourishes impacted by the Modernist aesthetic, these homes are truly works of art.
Mid-century modern homes have a clean, minimalist aesthetic and often feature a neutral background with pops of color on doors, light fixtures, artwork, or furnishings. They are often low-slung and built to be part of the landscape, with an emphasis on the connection between indoor and outdoor living spaces. The aesthetic also requires similarly minimalist furnishings, especially those specific to the time period, so keep this in mind when staging and showing these homes for maximum impact.
Introducing new materials and a new profile, contemporary architectural styles draw on the minimalist influences of the modern aesthetic using metal and glass to make the home feel connected to the outside world. Current contemporary homes often have an emphasis on green, sustainable design, building, and operations.
Contemporary design is often seen as cold, especially with the emphasis on hard building elements. However, the most current contemporary designers favor the use of natural stone, wood, textiles, and greenery to warm up the look and to seamlessly integrate indoors and out.
Remember, while the architectural styles listed above are fairly common throughout the United States and Canada, some coastal, historically significant, and geographically isolated areas may have their own unique architectural styles and features. It’s worth familiarizing yourself with common styles in your area so that you can be as informed as possible when working with clients.
FAUN G. HAUPTMAN
Broker Associate with Kentwood Cherry Creek
Faun grew up in the Denver area and has an undergraduate degree in Public Relations from the University of Southern California (USC) and a Master of Business Administration (MBA) in Finance from the University of Denver (DU). Faun has extensive experience in public relations. She started her career with Hill and Knowlton in Los Angeles and worked with some of the nation’s most visible luxury goods accounts including Patek Philippe, Stolichnaya Vodka, Haagen Dazs, and the Bermuda Department of Tourism. After leaving the public relations field and receiving her Masters Degree in Finance, Faun worked in investor relations. Through that experience she developed a keen set of skills working with professionals on Wall Street and publications such as the Wall Street Journal. Faun is a product of the outstanding Cherry Creek School District and has many years of first-hand knowledge of some of Denver’s most elite residential property. She is one of the top producing Realtors focusing on Distinctive Properties in Denver, West Denver and the Foothills.
"Faun gets the job done! We met her while we were in the process of relocating from out of state during the most difficult real estate market in history. Our transaction was complicated,, but she did not give up. She kept her sense of humor and managed to find us a beautiful home. Faun is creative,, tenacious and not afraid of challenge."
"Faun spoiled me! She helped us sell our house on a very tight schedule. Faun totally exceeded our expectations with her professionalism. After working with Faun it has been very difficult working with any other realtor. Throughout our interactions Faun exhibited the following qualities: true professionalism,, knowledge,, resourcefulness,, competence,, reliability,, ethics,, honesty,, along with graceful demeanor no matter what the situation. Faun is a joy to work with."
"Faun's impressive resume and qualifications led us to select her as our selling agent and we are happy to report that she exceeded our expectations by successfully negotiating the sale of our home. The house was a very extensively modified historic structure with very non-standard layout and features making it a unique selling challenge. Faun accepted the challenge enthusiastically and made practical suggestions to enhance the attractiveness of the home to a targeted market. We followed her suggestions and realized a better return on our investment than we thought possible. The buyer's agent created some difficult situations and challenges that were well beyond our expertise and Faun guided us through them with a tenacity,, flexibility and dedication that only a person of her unique talents and abilities could provide. We highly recommend her thoughtful,, targeted approach to selling,, On a more personal note,, Faun took the time to get to know us and fully understand our situation and expectations and worked very hard to help us achieve our goal. In the process,, she made two loyal friends. If you are looking to sell or buy a home -- hire this woman! You won't regret it."
"I worked with Faun in selling and buying a home. We had very tight deadlines and with her expertise she was able to meet every one. In selling my home she advised on staging (even helped me pick up items needed) and got top dollar for it. She negotiated extremely aggressively on both the sale and purchase of the homes. I wouldn't hesitate to contact Faun in the future. She's helping other family members with the purchase of their next home. Highly recommend her."
"An educated agent is a must! Faun proved this assertion to us in April 2013 when she sold our house at a very agreeable price with fewer concessions to the buyers than we were expecting. I can't express how pleased we were to list our house on a Tuesday night and have a full price offer in hand by Sunday (and we thought we were priced aggressively,, I might add). Here's the key: do what she tells you to do with the property! If Faun wants you to take down a painting,, take it down. We put some elbow grease into the house before we listed and we staged it to her specifications. You can't argue with a full price offer inside a week and a 30 day clean close. She'd be our real estate professional for life if she'd just get her North Carolina license!"Read More
"Faun and I participated in a very complicated Real Estate Transaction. She was always professional, very dependable and easy to work with. I can't recommend her highly enough."
- Venator Properties Llc
"Faun was wonderful to work with. She was in constant communication with us throughout a very long and difficult process to purchase a residence that was a short sale with multiple liens on it. There were multiple situations where her exemplary problem solving skills were put to the test,, and she always got it done."
"Faun did an incredible job of marketing my mother's home as we worked to settle her estate. This was a difficulty time for the family and Faun handled it with sesitivity and made it a lot easier that it otherwise might have been. Of course,, it didn't hurt that her expert advice concerning preparation and marketing resulted in an immediate sale. The only reason she only gets five stars is because they don't offer six as an option."
"Sadly, the circumstances under which I met Faun were due to a possible foreclosure. However,, because of Faun's experience with short sales and her tenacity, we were able to do a short sale and get some money out of the home sale. Faun calls herself the queen of short sales for a reason. She has enough of them under her belt so that she understands the system and how to proceed in a timely manner. That being said,, Faun didn't help us for the handsome commission that she would attain. She helped us because she felt really bad that good people go through bad times and can lose everything. Her compassion for our situation will never be forgotten. Definitely make the decision to use Faun as your real estate broker!!! You will be in great hands!"
"Faun spent many hours with me and my girlfriend touring houses in the Denver area. We probably saw at least 50 different properties,, and she was very patient and professional throughout that process. She not only followed my stated wishes on price range,, type of house and location,, but she also was able to anticipate houses I might like. When we found the house I wanted to buy,, she worked very hard negotiating a good price with a very difficult seller. I selected her after interviewing several other recommended brokers. She brings the whole package of experience,, knowledge and professionalism."
"Faun is exactly the type of Realtor you want on your side. I'm going to be blunt here, and I hope Faun takes what I'm about to say the right way. When we went to seek a Realtor to sell our townhouse,, we interviewed two Realtors. We thought the gentleman we met with was very nice. We met Faun and she was all business - she made no bones about telling us what we needed to change in our house to help it sell, told us what we should expect to receive in a sale,, etc. She definitely was not there to be our friend. After much discussion, we opted for Faun because we believed when it came down to negotiations and getting through all the pitfalls that can and will happen in a real estate transaction, nice was nice but we wanted someone who was a pit bull. Faun put a lot of time, energy and expense into selling our townhouse,, and when she sold it, it was during the bottom of the housing recession in Denver. We couldn't have picked a worse time to put our home up for sale. Faun put the best face possible on our property. She brought in a film crew to take both still photos and create a movie presentation. The brochures were slick and high-quality. When our brochure holder was empty,, Faun made sure it was filled back up. The webpage she set up for us was top-notch. While it did take almost eight months to sell our property (which,, considering the market and all the foreclosures/short sales in our neighborhood that were harming us), Faun did about as great a job as possible. She stood by us the whole time and provided great advice, including recommending that we pass on the first offer, proving she was more interested in doing what was right by her customer than making an easy commission. If you've read this far and you think I've suggested Faun is not nice, you'd be mistaken. She just doesn't do business from the standpoint of wanting to be your buddy and tell you what you want to hear. She does it as a serious businesswoman, she tells you what you need to hear. I'd absolutely hire her again if we found ourselves back in Denver looking to buy or sell a home."
5 STAR PROFESSIONAL
7 Years in a Row
Five Star Professional conducts market research to define and promote professional excellence in the professions we serve. The Five Star designation assists consumers in selecting a service professional based on an objective research methodology tailored to the specific profession. Five Star Professional joins forces with local and national media partners to publish our research to consumers and promote Five Star-designated professionals in more than 45 markets across the United States.
Recognized as the mark of accomplishment in luxury markets around the world, the Certified Luxury Home Marketing Specialist TM (CLHMS) designation assures affluent buyers and sellers that the agents who have earned it have the knowledge, experience, competence, and confidence they require. Those who have earned the CLHMS designation and work in the million dollar and above market, can also earn Million Dollar Guild® recognition.