When you hear the word ‘ranch’, you think of wide-open spaces and massive one-story homes. The walls were often clapboard and the roofs were routinely pitched. The houses were built close to the ground, mostly without crawlspaces, just like those cattle ranches.
Farmhouses were built with crops in mind, so you’d see high silo walls and raised floors to keep pests and rodents out of the grain. Ranches have ‘flatter’ more linear layouts with big windows so you can watch the cattle from any part of the house. It’s sort of a cowboy house.
The kind of siding used in these ranch-style houses is therefore woodsy and natural. Expect horizontal vinyl to makes the house seem longer and lower. Log siding is popular and barn siding is also common. Let’s check out a few more vinyl siding ideas for ranch-style houses.
Keep in mind that many post-war suburban homes were built in ranch style. It was a family-friendly, affordable style of architecture. So as modern buyers flip these houses and younger consumers look for deals, these homes are being upgraded with ranch-friendly vinyl siding.
1. Green and Yellow Vinyl
Ranch-style houses are sometimes called ramblers because of their emphasis on open spaces. They were largely simple, casual, asymmetric bungalows with L-shaped or U-shaped layouts. but some could be elaborate, with mixed roofing levels and upper stories. The basement level – if it existed – was raw brick, like we see in this newly-built Georgia ranch house
2. Cute Kaycan Comfort
Post-war ramblers were common among suburban GIs. So when you think of those cookie-cutter houses from the 50s, that’s ranch style. This home has the typical sliding windows plus the front door is all glass. It even has front steps and a picket fence! The walls are clad in tan siding and the windows are flanked by dark blue decorative shutters made of paneled vinyl.
3. Ranch Style Garage
Cedar shake roofing and barn siding were standard features of ranch-style houses. So upgraded homes for first-time buyers are likely to be flipped or remodeled by adding vinyl shake siding to the gables or board and batten siding to the walls. Attached garages were a key feature as well, so this house has a new garage whose vinyl siding matches the tan brick.
4. Flipping Massachusettes
Real estate millennials (and now zoomers) understand the thin line between nostalgia and ‘officially growing up’. So as the eldest of them turn 40, they’re finally extending the myth that millennials don’t buy houses … they flip them! This ranch-style house replaced its brick basement with staggered vinyl siding. The house now has split levels and vinyl shake gables.
5. Loads of Light
Massive windows, French doors, and wooden window shutters are also stereotypical features of a ranch-style house. So expect to see prairie windows and doors in your renovated space. The wood in the window shutters was often decorative, but it’s bound to have rotted away over the decades, so replace them with brightly colored UV-painted vinyl paneled shutters.
6. Remodeled Ranch House with Vinyl Shake
Most ranch houses had a joint garage and shingled roofing. They also had basement sections that sometimes served as sunken living rooms. For this remodel, the architect used tons of vinyl siding ideas for ranch-style construction. The basement has been expanded to form a garage. The walls are clad with whitewashed faux-cedar vinyl shake and vinyl stone siding.
7. Front Steps and Deck Steps
Why do so many ranch-style houses have front steps? Well, it was a functional feature of raised ranch homes. Instead of having multiple stories, the living room may be sunken or the basement might be converted into a living area. So you needed steps to access the ‘raised’ entryway. Sometimes, a room was built into the sloping roof as well, forming an attic area.
8. Board Batten Barrel
The idea behind those original ranch-style houses was to maximize square footage at ground level. So horizontal siding was favored, whether it was timber or vinyl. This house has board and batten vinyl siding, but because the battens are so broad and the battens are so thin, the house still looks long and squat. The decorative barrels add to that farmhouse feel as well.
9. Building Down
These days, when we want to renovate a house, we build extra rooms above the garage or in the attic. But with a ranch-style house, it’s easier to build downwards and make the basement liveable. This house has been refurbished as a split-level home. The unbroken clapboard siding makes the house look longer and stretches that pitched roof. The bay window is new.
10. Original Barnyard House
When you’re hunting vinyl siding ideas for ranch-style homes, you could do worse than family albums. This is one of those initial post-war houses, expanded by its residents and eventually rented out. To maintain this mood and ambiance, opt for off-white clapboard siding, which is what they used when they refurbished the walls. Cedar shake roofing works.
11. Modified Ranch House
Front steps? Check. Massive windows for natural light? Check. Large floor space and pitched roofs? Check. And while you can’t see the attached garage, this house definitely has one. So what vinyl siding ideas for ranch style are applied here? Mixed media of course! You have bold blue vinyl shake walls, vinyl stone wrapping the columns, and the lower half of the walls.
12. Garage Definition
A lot of us moved into the garage when we hit teenage. Sometimes, our parents refurbished it to make it liveable. Other times, we did it ourselves as a summer project. For this ranch-style home, the garage was officially extended and the pitched roof was deepened to provide more room. The exteriors were then redone, with vinyl clapboard and vinyl stacked stone.
13. Split-Level Cedar and Shake
Conventional ranch houses had a single story, with a potentially sunken deck area and possible attic bedrooms or bathrooms. But the elongated eye-line and multiple gables mark this home as a split-level ranch home. The siding is mixed media to go with this modernized décor. It’s all vinyl, but the exterior walls alternate blue vinyl shake and red vinyl brick.
14. Nantucket Reno
Traditional ranch houses are U-shaped or L-shaped but modern ranch-style homes could be a tight rectangular shed with an elongated footprint. You can make the home look less boring with mixed vinyl siding. In this renovation project, the garage is clad with blue vinyl shake while the porch is clad with vinyl stacked stone to replace the older vertical barnyard siding.
15. Tritone Vinyl Shake
This may have been a ranch house – once upon a time. You can tell by the L-shaped layout and the low profile. But it’s been drastically renovated, as you can see by all the extra gables and angles. But its ambiance is still soft and sweet, so a good vinyl siding idea for this former ranch house is vinyl shake on the gables, clapboard on the sides, and vinyl stone below.
16. Grid of Windows
If someone asked you the three most noticeable features of a ranch-style house, you’d probably say exposed brick, lengthy front facades, and big windows. This house has all three features – just not in the way you’d expect. So consider replacing sections of the wall with a long series of windows clad with vinyl cedar shake and grouted brick vinyl. It could work!
17. Bay and Brick
Even in cookie-cutter homes made with drywall, the basement sections were often brick or concrete. And the brick stayed visible as part of the house’s signature. For this ranch-style house, the basement is concrete, but a whitewashed vinyl brick porch retains the concept. The exteriors are redone with blue vinyl siding, plus curved vertical vinyl for the bay window.
18. Bright and Pretty
This ranch house is huge. And the multiple gables suggest the layout is more complicated than it seems. But the siding also helps to sub-divide the home, and it’s quite simple. The front of the house is red brick with white grout. Large sash windows cover most of the front, with blue window shutters on each side. You can mimic the brick and the shutters with vinyl.
19. The Slightest Slant
Clapboard siding is the most typical vinyl siding idea for ranch-style homes. So why not spice it up just a little? You should leave this for the rear wall though since using it at the front of the house could give houseguests (and passing drivers) vertigo! Here’s the idea – divide the wall into four segments. Use vertical vinyl siding at the ends and diagonal vinyl in between.
20. Just a Dash of Colour
If you’ve ever repainted your room, you know the difference a color can make. But when it comes to vinyl siding ideas for ranch-style houses, the new color transforms the house. This is because you can’t paint vinyl siding – but you can replace it with a different color of panels, and it’s quicker than repainting! This went from dark to light almost overnight!
21. Perpendicular Patterns
Because ranch-style houses are typically L-shaped or U-shaped, differentiation becomes a key factor. After all, the décor is simple and low-fuss as a rule. So you want to add visual interest without standing out too much. Remember, the first suburban tract houses went to veterans who were all about blandness. Try alternating vertical, horizontal, and brick vinyl.
22. Of Verticals and Horizontals
All the ranch-style houses in this article are in their original state. So all that siding is real wood, brick, and stone. But as you can see, board and batten siding works beautifully and reinforces the low profile of the house. It’s a related effect to how the sideways siding exaggerates the length of the home. And these are both tricks you can reproduce in vinyl.
23. Where Vinyl Beats Wood
Technically, this is more of a farmhouse than a ranch house. The profile is too high and barn-like. But think about it – wooden siding often had mid-seams. You can’t find such long planks at affordable rates. So for this house – or any house – unbroken vinyl siding will make the house look newer, leaner, longer, and cleaner. You can even use the same color!
24. Make the Brick Work
As you explore vinyl siding ideas for ranch-style homes, you may wonder how to mix the old with the new. Here’s how. The brighter projection is white clapboard vinyl while the rest of the wall is red brick with white grout. You can use vinyl brick siding for those sections as well – newer brands produce brick-cast or brick-printed vinyl that looks surprisingly realistic.
25. Curves in Red and White
These homes here are a rustic mix of clapboard and brick. But we want to take inspiration from that first house. The curvy one in whitewashed adobe. Real brick crumbles over time, and white brick needs frequent repainting. So try whitewashed vinyl brick instead. All you have to do is hose it down periodically, and it will never develop mold or darken its grouting.
26. Take Your Lovely L
Usually, social media advises us to take our Ls and go. Quietly. Which very few of us know how to do. But if your L is a cute renovated ranch-style house, then yes, you can shout about it. This one – the top one – has vinyl shake siding and cheerful gardens all around. For U-shaped homes, you can use cedar in some sections and clapboard in others for contrast.
27. Greyed Out Brick
White brick houses scream contemporary couture. But grey brick siding can look even more modern. Especially if the brick isn’t actually brick. This ranch-style house has vertically hung glass windows that are as big as the door, so that’s a lot of natural light coming in. Installing that grey faux-brick vinyl siding won’t dull the brightness of the home – it’ll accentuate it!
28. Narrow Down the Dormers
You can identify the ranch-house origins of this home by its lengthy front and deeply pitched roof. To give this house a modern touch, the old brick chimney has vinyl siding and dormers have been added to make living space in the rafters. But unlike regular dormers, these are narrow and have bright cream-colored vinyl siding that draws attention to their silhouettes.
29. Darks and Lights
It’s common to see lighter vinyls paired with darker stone siding. Sometimes, they’re in the same shade but their differing textures mark the distinction. But in this ranch-style house, the top half of the walls are done in cream-colored clapboard while the lower half is done in red brick. Replace both with faux vinyl siding, faux vinyl brick, and green vinyl shutters.
30. New Contemporary Ranch House
At a glance, this home doesn’t make you think ranch-style. But it has an open layout, huge windows, and sliding French doors with patios on both sides and steps leading to the basement. In terms of siding, the bulk of the home’s exteriors are vinyl clapboard siding. But unlike most houses, the gutters and trim are black so they stand out in a bold but stylish way.
31. Archy Ranchy
From certain angles, this is a typical raised ranch house. The lower level is red and gray brick and the upper story is beige clapboard vinyl (it was initially aluminum siding). You can retain these motifs with vinyl brick for the bottom. The reddish-brown window trim echoes the brick sections. And the new vinyl siding is all insulated so the brick vinyl should be too.
What’s your favorite vinyl siding idea for ranch-style homes? Show us in the comments!