Gloria Dvorak - Buyer Agency for Albuquerque Real Estate

Albuquerque Home Types

Albuquerque's climate, with moderate temperatures, low humidity, and sparse precipitation, combined with Native American and Spanish architectural traditions have significantly influenced the construction methods and styles of homes. Some of the features that a newcomer to the area should be aware of include:

Flat Roofs: About half of the homes in the city are southwestern style, flat roof homes.

Foundations: In recent decades, most homes have been constructed on slab foundations. In older parts of the city, construction over a crawl space is common.
Basements: At least one local homebuilder specializes in basements. Otherwise, a house with a basement is rare and can be hard to find.

Southwestern Landscape: The use of rock and native plants in place of lawns has been popular in many neighborhoods for quite some time. In recent years, the city has been encouraging water conservation through the use of "xeri-scaping" (natural Southwestern landscaping), the use of drought resistant plants and rock in place of lawns. (Don't worry, there are still plenty of homes with lawns, if that is your choice.)

Air Conditioning: If you come from a more humid climate, you are probably used to refrigerated air conditioning systems, which cool and filter the re-circulated interior air. Homes with refrigerated A-C are rare in Albuquerque. Instead, most homes are equipped with evaporative coolers. These cooling systems add humidity to our dry air and use less electricity, but are less efficient on humid days, less effective in filtering the air, and require seasonal start-up/shutdown to avoid freezing.

Building Material: One of the traditional southwest building methods that has experienced a renewal of popularity is adobe brick. Composed of a mixture of mud and straw, this construction method results in very thick walls. Since adobe homes are more expensive, adobe "look a like" construction, using frame walls with stucco exteriors are much more in abundance. Other popular southwest materials include brick or tile flooring, decorative Mexican tile, tin (aluminum) roofs, and tile roofs.

Other Styles: Most traditional architectural styles are also available, including ranch, split-level, two-story homes with pitched ceramic tile roofs in Mediterranean or Santa-Fe style and traditional red brick exteriors.