Our plans that are designed to surround or flank a courtyard or outdoor room(s) are organized by their shape as follows:
The Thin House is at least twice as deep as it is wide, and has windows on both sides of the house. A Shotgun House is a type of Thin House.
The Sideyard, like the Thin House, must be at least twice as deep as it is wide. But the Sideyard must also orient most if not all of its openings to one side or the other, leaving the other side mostly blank so as to preserve privacy in its neighbor’s side yard. The Charleston Single House was the original Sideyard house type.
The Side Court is similar to the Sideyard, except it extends a wing at the front and at the back to create a C-shaped design that encloses three sides of a side courtyard, creating greater privacy.
The Corner Court is an L-shaped design that encloses two sides of a courtyard located either at a front or a back corner of the lot.
The Rear Court is a U-shaped design that encloses three sides of a courtyard at the rear of the lot. Because a Rear Court requires a wing on either side of the courtyard, it requires the widest lot. Rear Court designs are therefore more likely to be larger than most.
The Full Court is an O-shaped design that encloses all four sides of a central courtyard. Historically, many Full Court designs were attached to adjacent buildings, but Full Court designs may also stand free in the landscape. Freestanding Full Courts are likely to be quite large because it takes a lot of square footage to enclose all four sides of a moderately sizeable courtyard. There is a another Full Court sub-type that has recently been popularized at Alys Beach in Florida. This sub-type uses the blank wall of the neighboring house to enclose the fourth side of the courtyard. As a result, this type can be smaller than most Full Court designs.