Category Archives: Uncategorized

Spring Housing Market Demand for Affordable Homes is Overheating

The demand for low-priced and affordable homes is the strongest since the recession. The 2017 the  housing market demand for small homes for first time and empty-nesters home buyers is hot.  According to Ralph McLaughlin, chief economist for Trulia, “Housing affordability is the key to helping move inventory, but all signs are showing that homes this spring will be much less affordable than last year”.

old wesley empty nester small house plan
Old Wesley | Empty Nester House Plan | Archival Designs

The national sales of pre-designed home have grown to the highest level ever.  Entry-level homes are scarce and buyers are finding building a home comes with great benefits.  Small cottage home plans have proven to be popular among millennials.   Empty-nester house plans and craftsman house plans are some of the favorite styles among the remainder of the demographics.

Harthaven House Plan | Entry-level House | Archival Designs
Harthaven House Plan | Entry-level House | Archival Designs

Another change in pre-designed housing sales is the demand for one-story homes.  These ranch floor plans are one level for the 55+ age group that want to age in place.  These one-story home plans give the retired baby boomers the best of all worlds.

Cedar Crest House Plan - Archival Designs Luxury Home Plans
Narrow 41-foot wide home plan boasts a 14×20 family room.

As you prepare to build your new home, call your local branch of the National Association of Home Builders to find a builder in your area.  Potential buyers can negotiate the best building price from a quality group of professional builders.

Credit:  CNBC, Diane Olick

Remodeling Time

Similar to the rise in new house building, remodeling is quickly growing as well.  More and more people are a choosing to remodel their homes instead of buying or building new ones. Many times upgrading or remodeling a space is a more cost effective option. The NAHB contributed several factors to this $6 billion rise in the remodeling market.

While Baby Boomers are heading towards retirement, their needs range from building a brand new accessible home to making their current home fit all of their new needs. Millennials, on the other hand, are entering the housing market with a range of expectations. A great deal of Millennials are buying older homes at a cheap price and using the rest of the budget to upgrade and remodel the home to their custom wants and needs.  Additionally, Multi-Family buildings (apartment complexes) are requesting upgrades as well. Noticing the increase in design in newer complexes influences established complexes to remodel their spaces to compete in the renting market.

Even during new construction, some home builders require a house that can be easily remodeled or extended for future growth.  Archival Designs features a plethora of expandable house plans that have the simplicity and flexibility to easily be remodeled in the future!

The Tilly– Being a Ranch Style House Plan has its advantages when it comes to versatility.  Including an unfurnished bonus space makes expanding accessible without having to build an actual add on, which will cut down on remodeling cost. .

The Tilly house is 2,355 sq. ft. with 4 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms.
The Tilly house is 2,355 sq. ft. with 4 bedrooms and 3 bathrooms.

The Marymount – Featuring both an unfurnished 2nd floor bonus area and basement, expanding this house will have endless possibilities.  The possibilities do not stop there; having an open floor plan will also make remodeling more of a design upgrade than an actual building project. The open floor layout’s adaptability will allow you to simply change the purpose of most rooms.

The Marymount is 2,531 sq. ft. with 3 bedrooms and 3 1/2 bathrooms.
The Marymount is 2,531 sq. ft. with 3 bedrooms and 3 1/2 bathrooms.

The Pepperwood– Slightly larger than the previous house plans, The Pepperwood also includes unfinished bonus rooms, a walkout basement, and an open floor plan. This floor plan also foresees a multi-generational family’s needs by featuring a future in-law suite. Possessing these future plans with a layout already incorporated in the design will make the expanding process very easy.

The Pepperwood is 2,878 with 3 bedrooms and 2 1/2 bathrooms
The Pepperwood is 2,878 with 3 bedrooms and 2 1/2 bathrooms

Your new expandable house plan could be one click away! Visit Archival Designs today!


Materials, Materials,Materials

Throughout the course of building your new home you will encounter many decisions. One major question that will appear in every phase of building your home is: What materials are we going to use? The type of materials you select for your new home can make or break the total aesthetic of your house. Choosing lower quality materials may reduce your upfront cost, but can lead to complications later down the line. Spending a great deal on the highest quality materials will increase your cost to build drastically. Learning about different levels of quality in building materials will make this journey a pleasant one, and will ensure you choose  excellent materials for your surroundings and budget.

The NAHB shows us some materials options that prove to be helpful and great picks for many different regions. Using recycled glass, or concrete as kitchen and bathroom counter tops can be an affordable and creative venture. Recycled glass is available in an array of colors and patterns. This material is more durable than granite, and environmentally friendly. Using concrete can add a modern and industrial flare to your kitchen or bathroom. Concrete is extremely long-lasting scratch and heat resistant, and non-porous when regularly sealed making it easy to clean and sanitize. The costs of both of these materials vary with color and size, but are affordable options compared to granite.

The materials for the exterior of your home are just as important. Here are some great ideas for materials that are innovative and durable

Horizontal Siding: The most traditional choice is horizontal siding.  Horizontal siding is exceptionally durable, and is available in plenty of colors and textures. This selection is very affordable with prices ranging from $3-$5 per square foot.

The Tres Le Fleur house plan is a great example showing the use of horizontal siding. The clean and elegant style complements the traditional structure of this house perfectly.

Tres Le Fleur House Plan - Tres Le Fleur House Plan - Archival Designs - Ranch Home Style
Tres Le Fleur House Plan: This  house plan is 2,499 sq. ft. and has 3 bedrooms and 3 1/2 bathrooms

Fiber- Cement Panels: Using large 4 foot by 8 foot fiber-cement panels to stack and joist all around the exterior of the house gives it an uniformed look to the outside of modern house plan.

The Montpellier house plan boasts a clean modern design perfect for the fiber-cement panel exterior. The contemporary structure and fiber-cement panels are a great pair to create that modern feel.

The Montpellier House Plan -
The Montpellier : This contemporary house plan has 4,580 sq. ft., 3 bedrooms, and 4 bathrooms.

Stucco: This versatile material can complement many house structures. There is natural stucco that has the ability to breath, or let air and moisture pass through its pores. There is also synthetic stucco that needs a vapor barrier to allow moisture and air, both types are excellent choices for the exterior of your house.

Even though stucco goes well with any house structure, it greatly complements Spanish inspired homes. Our Villa Royale house plan would look immaculate with either synthetic or natural stucco.

Villa Royale House Plan - House Plan - Tuscan - Front View Rendering
The Villa Royale house is 3,073 sq. ft. with 5 bedrooms and 4 bathrooms

Brick: Known for is durability and low maintenance, brick is an excellent material choice. Varying in size, texture, and color, brick can complement countless house structures.

Our Stone Pond house exemplifies the versatility of brick . It enhances the structure of the house and gives the home a unique appearance.

Stone Pond House Plan - Castle House Style - Lakefront Design - Luxury Home Plan
The Stone Pond house is 3,912 sq. ft with 4 bedrooms and 4 bathrooms.

Visit Houzz  to read more about popular exterior materials

We invite you to come visit Archival Designs to discover your dream home design!

Building Green

Currently most of society is concerned with the environment and being “Green” or environmentally friendly, especially when it comes to their homes. A great deal of people are beginning to build “Green” or environmentally friendly, but what does “Building Green” actually mean? According to the National Green Building Standard Certification, there are several components that need to be satisfied before considering your house “Green”.

Healthy Homes: Making the home suitable and healthy to live in. Providing fresh air ventilation to improve the air quality inside the home, and limiting pollutants and contaminants (like mold and mildew) will make your home safe and ideal to live in.  To do this, you must use certain materials that will protect your home from such toxins, such as Plant-based Polyurethane rigid foam for insulation, or Structural Insulated Panels (SIPs), which are fire resistant yet environmentally safe.

Sustainable Lifestyle: Building “Green” does not stop once building does. Ensuring that your home is close enough to businesses, markets, and entertainment will to promote Walk-ability, which is how much you can get done without using a car for errands, or day-to-day business. Another method of upholding a sustainable lifestyle is to reduce home maintenance. Building with durable materials will cut down on maintenance, and waste due to its longevity.

Lower Operating Cost:  Using environmentally friendly appliances and practices that use fewer natural resources will lower the operation cost.  Being mindful of space conservation, and building a small home will be less strain on the environment. These practices are also good to cut down on building cost, as well as monthly utilities. Building a smaller house with a simple layout will be significantly quicker to build, and more cost effective. Cutting down on cost in this area can give you more budget flexibility that allow for durable and efficient materials and appliances.

These  Archival Designs house plans are environmentally friendly or can easily convert to being green!

The Nantahala Bungalow House Plan is an EnergyStar tier 3 house plan! This house plan is 2,055 sq. ft and has 3 bedrooms and 2 1/2 bathrooms. Even though it is considered small the open floor plan and unfinished spaces provide plenty of opportunities to grow.

Nantahala Bungalow House Plan -
Nantahala Bungalow: This house plan is 2,055 sq. ft and has 3 bedrooms and 2 1/2 bathrooms.

The Rustic Lake House Plan is 1,870 sq. ft. with 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms! The small square footage will make this house more cost effective when it comes the building, leaving you more money to build with environmentally friendly materials!

Rustic Lake House Plan - Rustic Lake Style Architectural House Plan
Rustic Lake House Plan is 1,870 sq. ft. with 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms! This house plan has plenty of room for outdoor living as well as inside entertainment.

The Corinthia House Plan is a charming taste of luxury and is very dynamic. This house plan is 1,931 sq. ft. with 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. This Ranch style house is efficient in space and will make building quick and easy, leaving plenty of resources to make this home environmentally friendly.

Corinthia House Plan - Classical - Front
The Corinthia House Plan is 1,931 sq. ft. with 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms. Its simple floor plan is ideal for families just starting out or retiring couples looking to downsize.

The Next Big Thing: Small Houses!

As Millennials (people born between 1981-1997) begin to enter the housing market as first time buyers, smaller houses have proven to be in demand. Millennials want an affordable home that is easy to take care of without sacrificing thoughtful design providing ample storage and entertaining areas.

Cedar Lake House Plan - House Plan - Contemporary - First Floor Plan
Cedar Lake House Plan: This open floor house plan has 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms, with plenty of designated space for outdoor living!

Houses that Millennials search for are less than 2,500 sq. ft. and do not have the traditional design of a 2-story foyer of family rooms. Open floor plans, and house plans that offer a great area for outdoor living are preferred by the majority. Through studies, the NAHB ( found out that although Millennials enjoy an open floor plan, they still required a separate, closed-off area designated for laundry!  These Archival Designs house plans are just what the Millennials are asking for!

The Laurel House Plan: This 1,999 Sq. Ft beauty has everything a millennial would ever want!  The Laurel has 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms and an open floor layout for ultimate design creativity. Its rectangular design makes it a most cost effective build!


Laurel House Plan - Colonial Style House Plans - Expanable House Plans
The Laurel House Plan: This 1,999 sq.ft beauty has 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms and an open floor layout


The Da Diva House Plan: This ranch style house is on the larger side, according to Millennials, with 2,404 Sq. Ft. Da Diva has 3 bedrooms, 2 1/2 bathrooms, and an abundance of space for outdoor living.

Da Diva House Plan - Cottage Style House Plans - Mountain Cottage House Plan - Archival Designs
The Da Diva House Plan: This ranch style house is on the larger side, with 2,404 Sq. Ft. Da Diva has 3 bedrooms, 2 1/2 bathrooms


The Harthaven Place House Plan: This 1,820 Sq. Ft. bungalow is just what the Millennials are asking for. Featuring 3 bedrooms, 2 1/2 bathrooms, and an open floor layout, this house will be very easy to maintain. The Harthaven even includes a separated room just for laundry!

Harthaven Place House Plan - House Plan - Southern - First Floor Plan
The Harthaven Place House Plan: This 1,820 Sq.Ft. bungalow ihas 3 bedrooms and 2 1/2 bathrooms and an open floor layout, even includes a separated room just for laundry!


You can find these house plans and more on our website