But the difference between classical and contemporary architecture is that few of the traditional building and ornamentation methods are still being used, since modern architecture has integrated modern technology by embracing new methods of building, new materials, and an accent on functionality rather than embellishment. For example, one common feature in contemporary architecture is the mixture of stone, wood, and brick wall materials on the same surface.
The prevailing trends in what is considered architecturally beautiful are slowly changing as more sustainable buildings are erected. The use of local building materials to reduce transportation costs and providing a greater degree of opacity to enhance energy conservation in cladding materials, are some of the criteria of design which are changing the appearance of buildings.
Exposed wooden or steel beams, flat roofs with large overhangs, and split levels to take advantage of the terrain, are also common accents associated with the contemporary style.
Also, the traditional simple and utilitarian interior décor is often embellished with accents typical of Colonial or Mediterranean architectural styles. The simplicity of the basic ranch style design and trim provides a good base for many different aesthetics in interior decoration. Ranch style home plans are not just an architectural style, but indeed a lifestyle. A single level ranch house plan with front porch is ideal for casual, laid-back family living in close relationship with the out-of-doors. And there are small ranch house plans to fit all budgets and individual needs.