Inside the Innovation House

We pulled out all the stops to bring the latest home tech features to our Innovation Home. See the 16 coolest things from the home and be amazed by how smart one home can be.

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Bathroom Countertop Ideas

Good-looking countertops -- whether made of marble, limestone, or concrete -- create high-functioning bathrooms that spill over with style. These popular countertop materials are sure to inspire a bathroom remodel.

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Find Your Dream Backyard

Whether you dream of sunning by a state-of-the-art pool or strolling through a simple cottage garden, there's an outdoor oasis with your name written all over it. Take this quiz to find out where you really belong.

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DIY Patio Ideas

Want to boost the beauty and usefulness of your outdoor spaces? Put one of these inspiring DIY patio ideas to work in your landscape.

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Easy Fireplace Upgrades

Does your fireplace need a facelift? Check out these 20 ideas for updating your fireplace with easy-to-apply embellishments and simple-to-make constructions.

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8 Cutting-Edge Exterior Features

The wow-factor of the Innovation Home starts with great curb appeal. See the eight things that make the home's exterior stand out.

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Budget Curb Appeal

Be the best home on the block for less. These budget curb appeal updates will show you how.

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Popular in Home Improvement

Ranch-Style Home Ideas

A ranch-style house means different things to different people. But no matter if you love the old-school vibe of 1950s-era style or the updated contemporaries of the 21st century, there are curb-boosting ideas that can help your home look its best. Here are our favorites.


    Everything in this slideshow

    • Keep It Loose and Casual

      Bright, cheery, and just plain fun, the facade of this ranch-style home offers lots of inspiration. For starters, the pretty collection of plants, including low-growing shrubs, are a minimalist, elegant complement to the bright yellow color. They also serve to accent the Asian-inspired fence, a low-slung facade that plays up the landscape without completely blocking the view.

    • Play Up Symmetry

      More classic than contemporary, this landscape relies on traditional garden forms for beauty. A double row of staggered-height hedges lines the walkway, supplying both a border and a carpet of pretty green. For added visual direction, the homeowners painted the front door a stunning, rich black, flanking it with elegant containers and flowering topiaries.

    • Ranch Curb Appeal

      Use these tips to enhance your ranch home's curb appeal.

    • Mix and Match Materials

      To relieve the monotony of a single-color facade on a ranch-style home, consider a complementary material that adds texture and pattern -- here, a horizontally oriented stone. Support beams and pillars add a pop of color that picks up on undertones in the accent wall, while an open front porch helps to connect the home to the site.

    • Go Back to Basics

      An all-white color scheme proves the perfect match for this stunning mid-century-style home, helping to maximize its low profile and sense of airiness in the landscape. A short retaining wall carves out a sidewalk-adjacent nook, while a fun inset of shrubs dresses up the driveway.

    • Set a Calming Ranch-Style Aesthetic

      A little bit Zen, a little bit contemporary, this home uses clever details and a restrained color palette for design-smart style. With low profiles and a muted design, the trees and trellis add interest without overwhelming the single-story space. A cheery red directs visitors to the front door, while half walls offer welcome spots for entryway task lights.

    • Provide a Colorful Accent

      One way to dress up a mostly neutral color is to provide an unexpected pop as contrast -- here, chartreuse for the window and door trim. A wide circle walk and inset garden bed filled with a collection of different foliage-focused plants helps to soften the long overhang and low profile of the home.

    • Stick to Your Home's Style

      Mid-century modern in its influences, this sleekly styled home offers a number of enviable curb appeal details. A low-slung retaining wall deftly maneuvers down a slope, with a wide walk interrupting its movement and directing traffic to the front door. Narrow trees offer privacy without blocking the home's profile.

    • Exterior Color: Must-Know Tips

      Considering a new color scheme for your ranch home? Watch and learn the dos and don'ts of exterior color combinations.

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      Mix Cottage and Modern

      Again, a ranch-style home equals a cottage-friendly design, thanks to a few cheery details. First and foremost: A bright turquoise door provides a pop of color and wayfinding for the front entrance. Lighter-colored siding helps the roof -- a darker shade -- from feeling too heavy, while slightly raised flower and shrub beds provide separation between the lawn and the foundation of the home.

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      Give Entryway Cues

      Symmetry and asymmetry balance each other in this restrained entry. To draw attention to the doors, the homeowners painted them a rich brown, which helps to ground them in the neutral color palette. A single side light, a tiered planter, and a bright turquoise chair add unexpected elements and cheery details.

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      Choose Artful Accents

      Complementary materials are another way to accent a ranch style home, particularly one that has large, unbroken elements on its facade. Here, a minimalist trellis provides support for a restrained planting that clamors up the chimney, while an elegant fence borders a small walkout.

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      Create Interest with Pattern

      One way to create interest in mostly monochromatic color schemes is to supply a texture or subtle pattern. The subdued, striped front facade keeps the palette from becoming too bland or boring. A restrained pattern for the front walk -- a few sizes of oversize pavers turned at angles to one another -- mimics the forms of the home.

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      Pay Attention to Details

      Cottage-like in its coziness, this ranch-style home, with multiple volumes and setbacks that indicate different functions, includes a number of details, including shutters, columns, and a small portico, to create visual variety. Its shaded, woodland setting inspired the casual collection of plants, while a deeper hue of paint grounds the large windows.

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      Maximize a Miniscule Yard

      A tiny yard doesn’t mean sacrificing curb appeal, as this ranch-style home proves. With virtually no front yard, the homeowners installed a rock-bordered flower bed with a few sculptural-like plants for visual interest. Bright white trim with gray insets as well as the pattern on the garage helps the windows and doors to pop.

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      Go for Balance

      Many ranch-style homes built in the 21st century mix traditional-style, two-story home elements in a single-story structure. Here, expansive windows add swooping height to the exterior facade. To counter that sense of drama, the homeowners kept the landscaping simple and symmetrical, with a low hedge, a few elegant evergreens and shrubs, and small patches of flowers for color.

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      Use Location as a Curb-Appeal Guide

      Ranch-style homes are a fixture throughout warm-weather climates, and their landscape should reflect those environs, too. Drought-smart plants dress up the home’s foundation, while gently flowing window treatments, pulled back when the sun is lower on the horizon, help to block the harshest rays on the warmest days.

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      Keep It Simple

      The streamlined palette of materials is a hallmark of many ranch-style homes, and this retro-influenced exterior fits that mold. To help the landscape enhance the mostly neutral color scheme, the owners kept it simple, with a base of neatly trimmed hedges lining the front porch and a few slender trees for shade. In addition, the edging on the walkway picks up the same brick style and color from the house for a cohesive aesthetic.

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      Play Up the Plant Palette

      A landscape should work with, not against, a home’s ranch style in order to better boost curb appeal. This Mediterranean-influenced space, complete with clay tiles and wide porticos, gets a stylish boost from the tropical-leaning collection of plants on display.

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      Choose a Single Plant as Accent

      Uniform plantings often get a bad rap, and they shouldn’t: They’re a great way to establish visual cohesion and elegance. This cottage-style ranch home uses elegant, low-growing grasses along both sides of the walkway and as a clever border for shady flower bed. The landscape helps the home, too, by accenting the rich green shutters on the front windows.

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      Vary the Front Yard's Seclusion

      A landscape on a ranch-style home can have different levels of privacy, particularly if more private spots, such as bedrooms, face street-side. Here, low to mid-height shrubs line the walkway, offering a border and visual direction as well as a brighter element for the neutral color palette. To one side, a mid-height tree offers shade and shield to the street-side without completely blocking the view.

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      Pick Plants that Add Color and Energy

      An exuberant mix of greens and burgundy adds visual energy to this contemporary ranch-style home. It's a nice example of using a sidewalk border to enhance a home -- in this case, a more natural palette and collection of details, such as the miniature trellis above the garage doors.

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      Next Slideshow Before-and-After Small-Home Exterior Makeovers

      Before-and-After Small-Home Exterior Makeovers

      See how eight small homes gain serious character with creative exterior makeovers starring color, landscaping, and more.
      Begin Slideshow »



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