How To Get The Perfect American Style Home In Australia
A 2017 Domain article highlighted a growing love and demand of America-style houses in Australia. South East Queensland in particular was facing a shortage of Hamptons-style houses in response to growing popularity. Across Brisbane and both Gold and Sunshine Coast, these homes were in high demand and low supply.
But why are American-style homes becoming so popular here? What is it about them that buyers are finding attractive? What makes them so at home in Australia, so far away from their place of origin?
We’ll take a look at two of the most popular styles of American homes, their key features, and what to look out for to get that truly authentic look.
1: Hamptons Style
Since we mentioned it in the introduction, we’ll start with the Hamptons style of home.
A Hamptons-style home is a home of contradiction; it’s effortless, relaxed, and casual, but at the same time, timeless and sophisticated. It’s at once a home that’s very beautifully designed, but not so immaculate that you feel like you’re living in an Ikea catalogue.
Named after the popular seaside community in Long Island, Hamptons style homes have high pitched roofs and broad, open interiors. You’ll usually find them as 2 storey houses rather than single level.
Designed to embrace the bohemian comfort and relaxation of beach living, it’s not hard to see why the beach-loving population of SE Queensland has fallen hard for this design.
Beyond Queensland, the style is also incredibly popular — and lucrative — in Sydney. Hamptons-style homes have been selling for upwards of $3.4 million in the city. Many real estate agents are loving the design, as they’re finding them incredibly easy to sell.
Hamptons home interiors typically feature
- Gable style roof with large balconies
- Extensive use of a crisp white palette with smatterings of pale blues and soft greys
- Timber wall paneling and dado rails
- Timber flooring
- Shutters and sheer curtains
- Pendant lighting
- Ornate tapware
- Tiling in bathrooms and on splashbacks – pressed metal is popular
- Marble or stone benchtops
- Country or shaker style cupboards
- Lantern-style lighting externally
- Lots of gorgeous soft furnishings – cushions and throw rugs
Don’t think that the homes are only suitable for coastal communities. With their open planning, high roofs, and laidback styling, they’re just as welcome in outer suburbs, in rural communities, just as they are at the sea shore.
This helps contribute to the Hamptons style’s popularity across the country. Whether you’re spending your mornings waking up to the ocean breeze, or out in the country, the Hamptons style is a house that makes a lovely home.
2: Cape Cod Style Home
Where Hamptons-style homes are typically dual level, Cape Cod style homes are usually single-level designs.
This style of home was brought to America from English puritans, and you can see the farm cottage roots in its appearance. These homes were designed to withstand the stormy, dark weather of Cape Cod. For example, the steep, high-pitched roof is meant to prevent snow and ice from building up — admittedly not something most Australians have to worry about, even in the colder southern reaches.
Like the Hamptons-style above, open planned, relaxed living is key here. Elegant and laid back; stylish but liveable. The Cape Cod design is meant to house a family, and it feels like it.
Cape Cod style homes are popular across Australia. Like the Hamptons, they’re particularly attractive to beachside and rural areas. Developers and real estate agents are finding it difficult to meet up with the demand for the style. Many property owners are even buying homes to strip them down and build a Cape Cod style in its place.
Cape Cod style homes often feature
- Symmetrical exteriors.
- Low ceilings — intended to conserve heat, but modern designs (or those in Australia) often feature higher ceilings than traditional.
- Gabled dormers
- Double-hung windows with shutters
- A central hall inside around which other rooms are laid out
- Clean lines with little aesthetic detailing
- Bedrooms in dormers or under gables.
There are certainly more types of American homes, but these two standouts appear to be taking the imagination of Australian home buyers and property developers by storm.
Yet, it’s one thing to get the right design of house. For a truly American experience, there’s actually something a little more important than just the layout.
The Authentic American-Style Finishing Touch
Look at the roof of any home in Australia and what do you see?
Typically, tin or tile. They’re the two most common roofing materials in the country.
Now look at roofs in America. Those are tiled too, right?
Surprise; they’re not.
American homes almost overwhelmingly use GAF asphalt roof shingles.
In Australia, most try and capture the look by using tile – but it rarely works. While tin is more suited to a rural style of home rather than an American style.
For a genuine American style of home, nothing else comes close to capturing the perfect look.
Asphalt roof shingles have a distinct look made of interlocking rectangles of different shades of grey. Nothing else quite looks like them.
GAF are the largest suppliers of roof shingles in the United States of America. More homes in that country have GAF shingles than there are houses in Australia. If you’re looking to get the authentic finishing touch for style and reliability, you want the best — and GAF is the best.
GAF asphalt roof shingles don’t just look great; they’re a sturdy, reliable roofing material that can withstand the harshest Australian weather. GAF also supplies the other roofing materials you need to put together a beautiful asphalt shingle roof, such as drip edge and flashing.
So long as roof shingles are installed properly, you’ll enjoy maximum safety and comfort combined with distinct aesthetics for years to come.