Balance is something that happens in nature and many other things as well – including homes and buildings. It is the quality of an object or area that makes it look and feel complete, attractive, and purposeful. Balance does not always mean symmetrical, or the same on all sides. Visual balance is an important part of home design, both inside and out, and something custom home builders must know in order to design the best custom houses that look and feel comfortable and inviting. To understand balance in home architecture, custom builders must understand the different types of balance in home designs and how to create them.

Achieving Architectural Balance When Building A Custom Home

The visual appeal of a home is somewhat dependent on if it is designed by custom home builders to look balanced or not. There are three types of architectural balance used in residential home design, each of which require a different way of handling certain things, such as focal points and the basic design style of the home:

  1. Symmetrical Balance – Any great custom home builder knows that for something to be symmetrical, one side must be the same as the other. There are many traditional home styles built using symmetrical balance, such as Cape Cod and Colonial style houses, and even traditional farmhouse styles, although symmetrical balance is not exclusive to these architectural styles. Symmetry tends to provide a visual feeling of evenness, with both sides of a house looking the same in terms of windows, gables, roofing angles, porches and other design elements. The focus is commonly a main room in the middle of the home, like a great room, and the sameness of the rest of the design on either side of it.

  2. Asymmetrical Balance – It is possible to create balance without symmetry. Asymmetrically-balanced homes commonly display multiple roof pitches and gables, multiple stories in some parts of the house, and windows arranged for function rather than symmetry. Many contemporary styled homes use asymmetrical style – and can be quite creative. Asymmetrical homes may also have more than one focal point or one that is off center. However, this type of home design must be carefully considered, as it is easy to end up with something that seems too unbalanced. There must be a definite design goal, and elements must still blend together – even when used asymmetrically. A great example of asymmetrical balance in home design is certain Victorian style homes – with their numerous roof pitches, long porches and many rooms that come together into an attractive-looking, balanced structure.

  3. Radial Balance – Radial balance is created from a main focal point, such as a great room, tall roof peak or a grand entryway, and the rest of the home radiates out from that center point. Radially balanced designs may or may not be symmetrical. The main idea is that everything extends from that main center point in multiple directions. Some homes designed this way have round or rounded main rooms, although it is equally possible to achieve radial balance with square and rectangular shaped rooms. The focus is on the center point of the home and how the rest of the structure extends out radially from that point.

When planning custom houses, it is important to consider architectural balance and style, and how the two must work together. The best custom home builders can combine any type of balance with most home design styles, which requires careful thinking, planning, and visualization. Custom builders should always have scale drawings made of their plans when experimenting with different balance and building styles. This helps ensure a custom house is built that will look amazing and not so out of balance it looks incomplete!

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