why architecture is important and how your home contributes

photography by Lisa Russman

To create the spaces in which we live, work and play, architects focus on more than design – they’re also mindful of economies, natural environments, political climates and more to deliver the best behavioral, physical, and financial outcomes for inhabitants. 

Architecture is important because it also tells stories. Everything from the layout of a home to the building materials used is a reflection of the time and culture in which it was built.

We learn a lot from historical structures, such as the narrow staircases and light-reducing arrowslits in European stone castles – that must not have been easy to navigate, but it shows how inhabitants valued protection and legacy over comfort! 

We also can learn a lot about the future from Architecture. Why are tiny homes growing more popular? Why are “yurts” making a comeback? The answers reveal a lot about how society today utilizes natural resources and values mobility over permanence. 

When building a home, it’s important to keep in mind why architecture is important, what your home says about you now, and what it might teach others about you later!

Home Layout And Materials Matter To Society 

The flexibility, flow, and format of each home not only determine one’s daily productivity and interactivity – but they also can serve as “branding” for who you are and how you operate. 

When you visit a new friend’s home, what’s the first thing you notice? Size! We instantly feel we learn something about one’s lifestyle based on how small or large one’s home is. 

Then, when inside the home, you might notice bamboo flooring they’ve installed or high-efficiency heating and cooling systems they’ve invested in. You might then assume how environmentally conscious they are or how long they plan to stay. 

The attribute that most often goes unnoticed, however, is the style of the home – which accurately reflects much more! 

Architecture is important because while historical homes in the Garden State vary greatly in design, home builders in New Jersey have lots of room to explore.  

For example, if you live in a Cape Cod colonial, you might enjoy family dinners by the fireplace and the comfort of second-floor bedrooms. If you renovate a Grand Anne Victorian, you might like reading on a porch and intricate design.  Or, if you build a contemporary home with open floor plans, though more minimalist and modern, you might be more community-oriented. 

How Functionality Creates Culture 

Why is architecture important? How we design our homes expresses who we are! Are we creative or reserved? Do we lead organized or organic lives? Are we well-traveled or homebodies? Our homes can tell!  

The functionality of each space also shares the story of who we are, what we do, and how we interact with others. For example, the desire for a mudroom or finished basement might indicate young children with active lifestyles, whereas the addition of a raised outdoor deck suggests homeowners who like to entertain guests. 

A home also speaks to one’s level of security. Do you pull your car into a garage or are you comfortable leaving it in the driveway? Do you prefer window shutters that can be opened or closed? 

Your home’s front exterior can be the most telling. Are there walkways and yard lamps leading up to your home? Is the door tall and imposing or classic and charming? It’s amazing how simple it can be to determine how guests are made to feel when visiting and it’s important to know how others might be encouraged or discouraged from entering your space. 

When building a home, communicate with your architect about why architecture is important to you and what you want your home to say about you and the world you live in today!