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The Pacesetter Difference

Home elevations refer to the architectural style and visual appearance of a home. A home’s elevation can impact its curb appeal and overall aesthetic, and can also reflect the personality of its owners. Choose your home model and the community you want to live in to see home elevation options.

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What are architectural guidelines?

Architectural guidelines are a set of specific rules, standards, and recommendations established by a homeowner’s association, community, or local government to govern the design, construction, and appearance of buildings within a particular area. These guidelines outline the acceptable architectural styles, materials, colors, landscaping, and other design elements that must be adhered to when constructing or renovating a home. They serve as a framework to ensure that the overall aesthetics and character of a neighborhood or development are maintained.

Why are architectural guidelines used? (Benefits to Homeowners)

Architectural guidelines offer several benefits to homeowners:

  1. Preservation of Aesthetic Cohesion: Architectural guidelines help maintain a consistent and harmonious look within a neighborhood or community. This can increase property values by creating an attractive environment that appeals to potential buyers and residents.
  2. Protecting Property Values: By enforcing consistent design and construction standards, architectural guidelines prevent individual homeowners from making changes that could negatively impact property values or the overall appeal of the community.
  3. Quality Assurance: Guidelines ensure that homes are built using high-quality materials and construction practices. This can lead to better-built homes that are more durable and require fewer repairs over time.
  4. Sense of Community: When homes share a similar architectural style, it creates a sense of belonging and community identity. Residents can feel a stronger connection to their neighborhood, enhancing the overall living experience.
  5. Avoiding Conflict: Guidelines help prevent disputes between neighbors by providing clear expectations for what is allowed in terms of construction and design. This can reduce conflicts and potential legal issues.
  6. Environmental Considerations: Architectural guidelines may include sustainable building practices, energy-efficient design elements, and landscaping guidelines that promote environmental responsibility.

Who determines the architectural guidelines and manages the process and approvals?

The responsibility for determining architectural guidelines and managing the approval process can vary based on the location and type of development:

  1. Homeowner’s Associations (HOAs): In many planned communities or subdivisions, homeowner’s associations are responsible for creating and enforcing architectural guidelines. HOAs are typically composed of residents and have the authority to set rules that homeowners must follow when building or renovating their properties.
  2. Developers: In new developments, the developer may establish initial architectural guidelines to maintain a consistent vision for the community. Over time, these guidelines might be transferred to a homeowner’s association or local government for ongoing management.
  3. Local Governments: In some cases, local municipalities or governing bodies may establish architectural guidelines for certain districts or historic areas. These guidelines are usually set forth to preserve the historical, cultural, or architectural significance of an area.
  4. Design Review Committees: Some communities have design review committees that evaluate proposed construction or renovation plans against established architectural guidelines. These committees ensure that proposed projects align with the community’s overall design standards.

Home Styles Guide

Arts & Crafts

Arts and Crafts architecture is a design movement that celebrates simplicity and the integration of natural materials. Characterized by its emphasis on handcrafted details, exposed materials, and harmonious integration with the surrounding environment, Arts and Crafts architecture creates homes that have a sense of authenticity, warmth, and nature.


Craftsman architecture embodies a dedication to meticulous craftsmanship and practical design. It features distinctive elements like low angled roofs, extended eaves, intricate wood detailing, and a strong emphasis on organic materials. These all contribute to a harmonious and functional architectural style.


Heritage architecture captures the essence of cultural identity and historical significance within its design. It reflects the architectural styles, techniques, and influences of a specific region or community, often characterized by intricate detailing, authentic materials, and a commitment to preserving a sense of place and tradition.


Modern architectural style embraces innovation, functionality, and minimalism. It prioritizes clean lines, open spaces, and the use of new materials and technologies to create functional and aesthetically striking structures. Modern design style also focuses on efficiency and the connection between indoor and outdoor spaces.


Farmhouse architecture has a rustic and charming aesthetic that draws inspiration from rural landscapes. It features a practical and functional design with a focus on comfort, often characterized by gabled roofs, large windows, inviting porches, and a blend of wooden finishes and natural textures.


Prairie architecture is characterized by its horizontal lines and an emphasis on blending seamlessly with the surrounding landscape. This style creates a harmonious connection between the house and its environment, often featuring open floor plans, extensive use of natural materials, and an integration of art into the design.

Modern Ranch

Modern ranch architecture is defined by its single-story, horizontal design that prioritizes functionality and open spaces. It often features simple window groupings with clean lines and even planes, as well as a seamless indoor-outdoor flow. It creates a comfortable, practical, and uncluttered design with a focus on simplicity.


Contemporary architecture is a dynamic and evolving style that reflects the aesthetics and innovations of the present moment. It often features a blend of different design influences like open spaces and the integration of technology and sustainable practices. Contemporary style pushes the boundaries of traditional design while responding to the evolving needs and sensibilities of today’s society.

National Railroad

National Railroad architecture refers to a diverse range of architectural styles associated with the construction of train stations and related infrastructure across the country. It reflects the historical and cultural context of the area, with designs ranging from grand, ornate stations to more functional structures.