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FAQ

How much do Victorian style houses cost per square foot?

Angie’s List has some broad guidelines for the building costs you can expect for houses in the Victorian style:

  • A site-built Victorian with a simple design (no unusual angles in the walls, no unusual features) and basic finishes will cost $280-330 per square foot of finished space. The cost per square foot will be lower if your plan includes a finished basement with heat and air conditioning.
  • Mill work — and most owners of Victorians will want extensive mill work — can run up the price to $380 to $525 per square foot.
  • Luxury Victorians start at about $475 a square foot.
  • Restoration, depending on the complexity of the detail required, can cost between $200 and $1200 per square foot.

Where you live makes a big difference in the eventual price of your Victorian home. Lot prices vary widely. Some cities and states have extensive, expensive permit processes and energy efficiency requirements. You may also have to pay more than a typical price for a title search if you are buying a Victorian to restore.

Are there Victorian style floor plans with a detached garage?  Is it possible?

Any Victorian can be built with a detached garage. You can find plans that include blueprints and construction specs for a detached garage also in Victorian style.

Does Victorian style house usually come with a garage?

Most new Victorians will include a garage, although it may not be attached to the house.

Is Victorian style considered a grand or luxury style of home?  Is the style used for mansions or normally regular-sized homes?

Examples of Victorian-style mansions abound. The wealthiest families in the latter half of the nineteenth century could afford the sturdiest building materials and the finest craftsmanship, and their houses survive, in varying degrees of repair, even today. But Victorian style houses continue to be built in the 2020’s.

Fine millwork has an enduring allure. Because the Victorian style lends itself to a kind of picturesque eclecticism, many future owners of Victorians are drawn to the style because it fits their collections of art or vintage furniture. The Victorian style conveys wealth and stability.

All of that being said, it’s entirely possible to build an affordable Victorian. There are even plans for Victorian style tiny homes. There is a Victorian house design for every budget.

Is Victorian style ever built as a “small” home?  Can it be built economically?

The term we would use for a Victorian “small house” would be a Victorian cottage. Victorian style houses with a small footprint can be built every bit as economically as 6,000-square foot mansion, although it may be more challenging to find a contractor for your Victorian cottage than it is to find a contractor for your Victorian mansion.

Many Victorian cottages would have been considered tiny homes by modern standards. You can pack 200 or 300 square feet with beautiful detail that makes every square inch of your house an architectural delight. Plans for this size Victorian are not hard to find. Every building material and every personal preference can be matched to a Victorian building plan. It’s even possible to print a Victorian cottage, although there is a substantial waiting list at 3D house printing facilities.

Can Victorian style floor plans be open concept?

Victorian style homes of any size can be designed for open interiors, although you will find the greatest number of plans for Victorians with modern kitchens with lines of sight to everyday living spaces. An open-concept living room may require you to forego a formal dining room, formal sitting room, or a library, but there can still be room for other features.

What are popular Victorian style exterior colors?

Victorians can have exteriors of wood, brick, or stone in any exterior color you desire and your deed restrictions allow. Traditionally, Victorians with wooden siding were painted white and Victorians with brick veneers (or actual brick walls) were tan or brick red, but there is considerably more flexibility in color choice for new construction.

Just about the only exterior color for a house in Victorian style that doesn’t work is black. In addition to aesthetic issues, black exteriors make the interior of the house much more difficult to cool in summer. Bright earth tones work best for bringing out the architectural detail of your Victorian house.

Can you build Victorian style house on a narrow lot?  

There are numerous designs for a Victorian style house with great curb appeal on a narrow lot. Victorian style was developed for houses built on the small lots available in major cities in the nineteenth century, and it’s easy to find examples of (and plans for) beautiful Victorian style houses on narrow lots today.

Can this style be built on a wide lot?

A stately Victorian style house can be the perfect use for a wide lot. Narrow-lap wood siding draws the eye to the house, not the lot, and any Victorian of a wide lot can be designed with the towers, bays, eyebrow windows, turrets, dormers, and porches with turned wood posts that are emblematic of the style.

Can Victorian style homes be built on a sloping lot?

It is a challenge to find a design for a Victorian style home to be built on a lot sloping toward the street without building the house back from the street. Victorian style homes to be built on lots sloping away the street can incorporate a basement with doors and windows.

How many floors/stories does Victorian style usually have?

Victorian cottages, anything up to about 1000 square feet, are usually built with just one story. Larger Victorian homes have two, three, four, and even five stories, sometimes with each story done in its own interior design style. Guest rooms, kids’ rooms, and man caves can occupy their own floors.

Do Victorian style houses have a basement?

In the nineteenth century, Victorian houses typically had unfinished cellars. If construction concerns (level of the water table, soil type, propensity for flooding) permit, Victorian style houses can have basements. It’s not hard to find plans for Victorians that do.

Does this style of house ever come with a bonus room?

Some plans for Victorian style homes place the bonus room in the attic or over the garage. But the bonus room can be on any floor you choose.

Do Victorian style floor plans come with energy efficient options?

Building codes require energy efficiency options in most locations in the United States. If you desire additional energy savings, you can search for building plans that were designed with energy efficiency in mind.

Is a porch a common design feature with Victorian style houses?

All the but the smallest Victorian cottages are usually built with wide porches, although you my not see them on brick Victorian homes designed for small city lots.

What types of roof does Victorian style house typically have?

In nineteenth-century England, Victorian style houses typically had slate roofs to complement brick veneers. Some houses had roofs of locally produced clay tiles. The roof of a modern Victorian style home can be constructed with almost any kind of shingle, but solid metal roofs and continuous asphalt roofs clash with the style.

Does Victorian style work well with a rustic interior decor?  Or is it more suited to a contemporary interior?

If you have a Victorian, you probably chose the style because you love the fine millwork and intricate detail. Rustic interiors just don’t work with a Victorian.