Modern house, with contemporary design.

Contemporary Homes: Everything You Need To Know

3-Minute Read
Published on July 5, 2023

If you’re thinking about buying a home, you’ll find many architectural styles on the market once you begin house hunting. Although the vast array of housing options can be overwhelming to some potential home buyers, having so much to choose from can be a plus.

One popular home style you might frequently encounter is the contemporary home. Contemporary homes have design elements that keep up with current trends while also giving you – the homeowner – the opportunity to have your creativity shine through.

Let’s take a quick look at the origins of contemporary architecture, the primary interior and exterior features of these homes, and the pros and cons of owning one.

What Is A Contemporary-Style Home?

A contemporary home is a house with design elements and features that reflect today’s architecture style. Although similar to a modern home, contemporary houses come with common characteristics such as clean lines, natural lighting and a minimalist feel. Therefore, this type of home is its own category for a reason.

Contemporary architecture has been around since the late 20th century but has evolved with current trends. Design trends often change, and – depending on what’s popular at any given time – a contemporary-style home will reflect these changes. Contemporary homes also shine a huge spotlight on the building materials they use, which tend to be natural and sustainable.

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Contemporary Home Exterior Features

Although not all contemporary architecture houses look the same, certain defining features make this style of home “contemporary.”

Here are some typical exterior traits of contemporary homes:

  • An asymmetrical layout
  • Free-form design
  • Large windows
  • Eco-friendly building materials
  • Green roofs
  • Tidy landscaping

Contemporary Home Interior Features

Now that we know what contemporary house plans look like from the outside, it’s important to know what you’ll be walking into after you enter the front door.

Common interior design characteristics of contemporary homes include:

  • An open floor plan
  • 1 – 2 stories
  • Energy-efficient appliances
  • Natural elements
  • A flexible layout
  • Neutral color schemes

Pros And Cons Of Buying A Contemporary-Style House

Let’s take a look at some of the advantages and disadvantages of buying and owning a contemporary-style house.


A primary benefit of owning a contemporary home is that you get to put your own creative spin on it – but that’s not only the plus. Advantages of buying a contemporary house include:

  • Personalization and uniqueness to your taste
  • Eco-friendly materials throughout the home
  • Low maintenance


Before you start your search for a contemporary-style house, it’s important to also be aware of  the downsides that come with owning one. Some disadvantages of buying a contemporary house include:

  • Higher building costs
  • Fewer real estate comps
  • Difficulty incorporating other house styles into the home

Contemporary Home Design FAQs

Below are some frequently asked questions about contemporary homes.

What’s the difference between a contemporary and a modern home?

Contrary to the name, modern architecture became popular in the mid-1900s. Contemporary architecture reflects the current-day design trends by including modern elements.

How do I add contemporary design features to my home?

If you’re looking to add contemporary features to your home, one of the first steps you can take is to add contemporary home decor. You can paint your walls with natural tones and add pops of bright color. Geometric shapes and clean lines throughout the home can also add a contemporary feel, as can wood, tile or vinyl flooring.

Where can I find contemporary homes on the market?

Contemporary homes are available for sale all across the country. If you’re starting the home buying process, we recommend working with a real estate agent who can make your search easier. Real estate professionals have access to the MLS and pocket listings, and they possess a wealth of knowledge that can help you find a new home to fit your needs.

The Bottom Line

Simple yet bold accents, clean lines and large windows are a few common characteristics of contemporary homes at this time. You can add many contemporary design elements to your home without having to build one yourself, and these homes are readily available on the housing market due to their popularity.

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Victoria Araj

Victoria Araj is a Section Editor for Rocket Mortgage and held roles in mortgage banking, public relations and more in her 15+ years with the company. She holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism with an emphasis in political science from Michigan State University, and a master’s degree in public administration from the University of Michigan.