A-Z Popular Blog Houses Search »
Architectural Materials

Architectural Elements

Night Architecture

Japanese Architecture


Modern Architecture

Lighting Design


Parti Pris

Transition Design

Genius Loci



14 Characteristics of a Bungalow

A bungalow is a low-rise detached house with a veranda. This originates with Bengali style houses in India that spread to the world via the British Empire in the 19th century. Bungalows have since diverged into a large number of regional styles and are particularly associated with the United States, England, Canada and Australia. The following are common characteristics of a bungalow.

Low Rise

A bungalow is no higher than one-and-a-half stories. Most of the space in a bungalow is on the first floor. They may have a half-size second floor or a small attic space. This is the primary defining characteristic of a bungalow.


Bungalows have a front veranda that is covered by an overhanging roof. Large bungalows may have an "L" shaped veranda that wraps around the side.

Overhanging Roof

Bungalows have a slow-sloping roof that overhangs the edges of the house.

Bungalow Columns

Columns are used to support the roof where it overhangs far over the veranda. This configuration is commonly termed bungalow columns, even when used on another style of house. Bungalow columns often have a square shape but exceptions exist.


Bungalows have a wide front and rectangular form that usually works out to be squarish in overall dimension.


Windows on the second floor of a bungalow are often set into a dormer. This can slightly increase the size of the second floor and is a popular type of renovation for bungalows.

Land Footprint

Due to their low rise structure, bungalows use more land for each square foot of interior than a typical house. As such, they are most popular during times of reasonable land prices where large lots are common place.


Generally speaking, bungalows aren't overly large with low ceilings as compared to other styles of architecture such as a victorian house. There are exceptions to this rule as large bungalows with unusually high ceilings can be found.

Privacy & Light

Generally speaking, bungalows feel private as they have deep interior spaces due to their squarish layout and have first floor windows that are easily hidden by a fence or tree. The veranda of a bungalow serves to set front windows back from the front of the house. This results in plenty of privacy but bungalows don't get as much light as a taller structure. To partially compensate, it is common for the windows of a bungalow to be set high in the wall to maximize light capture.


Bungalows can have basements but not all do. The first floor of a bungalow is elevated such that the basement can have windows.


Due to their one floor layout, bungalows are valued by people with disabilities and seniors for their accessibility. Some bungalows are specifically designed with this in mind with a relatively low profile that allows for a ramp with little slope.

American Craftsmen

American craftsman was a design movement between 1880 - 1930 that featured ornate designs and craftsmanship influenced by folk culture. This can be viewed as a reaction against industrialization and the commoditization of the human experience. American craftsman architects often chose bungalow style layouts. As such, the term bungalow and American craftsmen became almost synonymous during this period.


Bungalows are commonly adapted to suit the local culture and climate.

Ultimate Bungalow

An ultimate bungalow is a very large bungalow-like house that may be multiple stories but gives the visual appearance of being a bungalow due to its wide profile.
Overview: Bungalow
A low-rise detached house with a veranda and an overhanging roof.
Related Concepts


This is the complete list of articles we have written about houses.
House Characteristics
If you enjoyed this page, please consider bookmarking Simplicable.


An architectural overview of popular types of house with examples.


The definition of chalet with examples.

Modern Houses

The definition of modern house with examples.

Window Glass

An overview of the common types of glass used in windows with photos.


A list of common types of furniture.

Household Items

A list of common household items.

House Things

A list of household items.

House Characteristics

A list of characteristics that can be used to describe the value of a home.


An overview of architecture with examples.

Adaptive Reuse

A definition of adaptive reuse with examples.

Immersive Environment

The basic types of immersive environment.


An architectural overview of window types with examples.


The definition of structure with examples.

Things In Cities

An a-z list of things in cities.
The most popular articles on Simplicable in the past day.

New Articles

Recent posts or updates on Simplicable.
Site Map