There seems to be some confusion among agents. How would you correctly describe the difference between a Hi Ranch and a Raised Ranch?

Asked by Joseph Runfola, Staten Island, NY Wed Apr 27, 2011

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Suzanne MacDowell’s answer
Suzanne MacD…, Agent, Morristown, NJ
Wed Apr 27, 2011
Interesting question! I just had an appraisal come back badly because the appraiser didn't know the difference between a bi-level (or as you call it a 'hi-ranch', I had never heard it called that before), and a raised ranch. The home in question is a lake front home. A great many lake fronts here are raised ranches to take advantage of the view. The appraiser only counted the upper floor, where the living room, dining room, etc, were located, as square footage, essentially reducing it by half. In fact, at least here in New Jersey, both floors of a raised ranch should be counted as square footage because there is no 'basement' only the first level, which, in this case, consisted of family room, den, laundry room, 4th bedroom and a half bath.

This much I know a raised ranch has the main living area on the second floor, typically consisting of living room, dining room, kitchen, master bedroom, and smaller bedrooms; and additional living space, family room, office, etc, on the first floor. They are often seen at the water's edge, or in extremely rocky areas where digging a basement is not practical. Bi-levels, on the other hand, have two half staircases at the entrance, one that goes up to the living area, and one that goes down to the 'basement' area.
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Gail Gladsto…, Agent, 11743, NY
Wed Apr 27, 2011
Different name used in different parts of the country; they are the same thing.
Web Reference:  http://gailgladstone.com
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allan erps,A…, Agent, Pearl River, NY
Wed Apr 27, 2011
BTW, I disagree with the first answer. Bi-Level = 2 landings f more or less equal proportion
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allan erps,A…, Agent, Pearl River, NY
Wed Apr 27, 2011
The Hi Ranch(Bi-Level) generally will have a landing going upstairs and downstairs when entering the front door. The raised ranch tends to have a large entry landing before going in the home. Therefore when entering, you are on the top level. Hope this helps!

P.S. In our area REALTORS® use both of these terms for the traditional Bi-Level(HiRanch)
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Michael Levy, Agent, Armonk, NY
Wed Apr 27, 2011
A raised ranch is when you walk in the front door & have 2 choices: half a flight of stairs to the upper level & half a flight of stairs to the lower level. Usually the main living space is upstairs: kitchen, dining room, living room, bedrooms. Downstairs is family room, playroom, guest room, garage, etc. Sometimes raised ranches are "upside down" as well. In a high ranch, you walk in upstairs. The upper level lives like a ranch with K,DR,LR,BRs. You can also walk down a full flight of stairs to a lower level, with family room, playroom, garage, etc. downstairs. Hope that helps. Sincerely, Michael Levy, Principal Broker, Grand Lux Realty, 914-273-9688
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