The Anti-McMansion

I've never been a fan of "McMansion" houses. They have spread across this country like a plague and have taken away from the unique architectural style of certain regional areas. For example, where I live in New England, we've always been known for capes, ranches, split levels and the colonial style of older homes. McMansions have no business being here. And yet, every time I see a parcel of land become available around here and a new home going up, it's always a McMansion. Always. No offense to anyone who lives in one, but I fail to comprehend their appeal--they're unnecessarily huge, expensive, lack any uniqueness and stick out like sore thumbs. And yet this behemoth has been nothing but successful since it first sprouted up in the 80s. 

Now that my rant is done, I'd like to turn your attention to the humble mid-century modern home. Ahhhh...aren't these great to look at? National Homes was at one time one of the country's largest providers of pre-fab homes. It was founded in 1940 and by 1963, had built 250,000 homes across the U.S. I think these houses are beeeeeooootiful. What I wouldn't give to find a little ranch with a carport and white fence for the right price in my area like the one in the ad above. And the designs were customizable and affordable. If only they'd make a comeback...

Not a National Homes ad, but just had to throw these in here, too. 

All advertisements came from MidCentArc on Flickr


  1. I would love to live in a "national' house like the ones in the ads - instead I live in a one storey rectangular 'shoe box'.. ;-(

  2. My Little Corner - Awww...but isn't a one story rectangular shoebox a ranch?

  3. I was raised (for the most part) in a rancher and lived in one for 17 years (my first house purchase). Took me a while to get used to NOT living in one. There's a lot to love about those simple, functional designs. With the emphasis on "green," who knows? Perhaps we'll get back to living simpler.
    Love the pics by the way.

  4. I hate McMansions too! Glad to see I'm not the only only one!

  5. Looks mighty familiar. My parents bought one of those National homes in 1961. Basically the same unit as the top one in the first picture, though the builder had 'individualized' it into a split-level.

    The interior was fairly fragile, with some walls consisting of only a sheet of paneling. But it was MODERN, which is what my parents wanted in those days.

    Despite the dubious construction the house must have been sturdy, because Google Street shows that it's still there now!

  6. I live in a split-level ranch-style home that I inherited from my mother. I'm very happy with it. Plenty of room for one person!


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