Southwest Style House Guides- Detailing The Pros & Cons To Make Sure Your Choice

Southwest Styles House guides

Just like the name implies, the Southwest house style is one of the most popular architectural styles in the Southwestern United States. In general, the Southwest house style takes the terrain and climate in which it is built into consideration, as the architectural characteristics fits into the landscape. However, there are two major design categories that fits into the southwestern architectural style—Monterrey and Pueblo.

The Southwest house style which is also known by several names—Pueblo, Sunbelt houseplan, Mission Revival, the southern house style is a blend of the Spanish Colonial house style and Native American architectural designs. Southwestern style houses are typically built in areas with hot climates like Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, Southern California, and Texas. But that doesn’t mean you can build a southern style home anywhere.

Southwest house plans offers a unique blend of traditional and contemporary elements that makes it a great option for individuals looking for an adaptable houseplan. Whether you are building your dream house in the city center, rural areas, or countryside, at Archimple, we have the perfect Southwest house plan for you.

History of the Southwest House Style

The history of the southwest house style dates back to centuries when the Spanish missionaries such as Francisco Vásquez de Coronado in 1540 were traveling around the world in search of the mythical city of gold came across the Pueblo people who constructed their houses in cubic shapes with adobe bricks and exposed wooden beams.

In 1609, the Spanish missionaries with the help of its military conquered the Pueblo natives and made Pueblo de Santa Fe its administrative capital of the Santa Fe Nuevo Mexico province. As the Spanish began to establish missions throughout the region and Europe in general, the Pueblo or Southwest house style was the go-to style.

In America, the Pueblo or Santa Fe or Southwest architectural style made its first appearance in New Mexico at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque where it was adopted as the building style for several building projects within the university complex. By 1920, the Southwestern architectural style became a popular house style and had several architects and builders under the Pueblo movement who sought to establish the style as a unique regional architectural style.

Characteristics of the Southwest House Style

With its roots in the Spanish colonial structures of the 1600s and pueblo homes, Southwest homes blend the traditional, charming and contemporary.  Like the Prairie style homes, they are pitched low to the ground, and are usually one or two stories. Among their distinct features are:   

Exterior Details

The exterior details vary with each Southwest house plan. For instance, some plans may feature stucco finishes and flat roofs whereas others have brick and flagstone as the exterior materials. The homes can look traditional in design with attached garages and dormers or appear completely different altogether, such as sprawling sandcastles against the desert background. Other exterior features may or may not include:

  • Front and rear courtyards
  • Screened lanais
  • Hip roofs
  • One or more front gables
  • Arched entryways
  • Courtyards and gardens

Interior Details

The interior details also vary and start with one bedroom and end with five or more bedrooms depending on the layout. The living areas are spacious and open to the kitchen, and a breakfast nook is usually situated nearby with a large window to the side for enjoying the view. Other interior features may include:

  • Skylights
  • Sunken living rooms
  • Corner fireplaces
  • Walk-in pantries
  • A grand foyer with a raised ceiling
  • Open floor plans

Main Materials of a Southwestern Style House

Southwestern houses are typically made from natural materials. It is common to find materials like:

Southern houses are typically made from natural materials. It is common to find materials like:

  • Stucco
  • Brick
  • Wood
  • Copper
  • Wrought Iron
  • Terracotta
  • Clay Tiles

Why We Love the Southwest House Plan

Below are some of the reasons why you should consider getting our Southwestern style home plans.

Encourages Open Space

Since southwest houses pride its style through the use of natural light, it is no surprise that it favor the open floor plan concept. An open floorplan makes it easier to have your entire living area, kitchen, and dining room in one space. You can easily transition from one room to the other easily. Also, the open space or open floor plan allows for the entrance of natural light which increases the home interior appeal.


You can easily blend the southwestern house style with other architectural styles. It offers you room to allow your creativity run wild when it comes to designing the interior and exterior of your home. You can easily have a design blend of southwestern and contemporary architectural designs in your home.


Southwestern homes are typically built in large lots within suburban neighborhoods. This extra spacing provides you with more privacy from the prying eyes of your neighbors. It is common for southwestern home owners to plant shrubbery and other foliage around their property for additional covering and privacy.

How Much Does Southwest House Style Cost?

On average a Southwest house plan can cost around $5000 to $3,500. However, custom plans and blueprints may cost around 5-10 percent of the total home building cost. The average cost to build a southwest house style in the US is around $300,000 depending on your home location, customizations, and square footage.

One thing you should know before building one is that a Southwest home requires more time and more expensive to build. If you are looking to build a southwest home, you should check out some of our southwest floor plans and designs here.

Constructing a Southwest Home Style

Constructing a Southwest home requires the input of a professional architect and builder. When looking to build a Southwest home, you may decide to opt for a ready-made floor plan or a fully custom-designed blueprint for your potential home.

The first step to constructing a custom Southwest home is to get a comprehensive architectural drawing set. This gives you more insight into the type of materials to be used, accurate dimensions of the floor plans, location of the elements, sections, and other construction-related information.

If you are looking for a comprehensive yet affordable Southwest house blueprint or a customizable floor plan, then we at Archimple is here to serve you. We have several Southwest house design collections and floor plans. You can check out our southwest home design collection to find out how we can help you achieve your dream home.

You can click the following links to learn more about what consists of our typical plan set and how we work or can be of help to you and your Southwest home building project. Remember that your home is not just an investment for the future but a reflection of your personality. So, it is important that you employ the best architectural help to make your dream home a reality.

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Last Updated: Jan 18, 2021

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