Housing and Lifestyle in English speaking countries
Most people in the USA live in a house or an apartment. An apartment building is a large building with many other homes. There is also a difference between America and Europe in saying which floor you are on. In the US the floor you enter from the outside is the first floor and then you go up to the second etc. In many parts of Europe it’s called the ground floor and then you go up to the first floor.
Other type of housing is a townhouse. The townhouse is a string of houses, attached together but with individual entrances to each home. Houses can have gardens. In the US a garden is a place to grow plants and vegetables. The grassy area around the house is called a yard. Most houses in the US have a front yard and a back yard. If the house has two floors, we call it two-storey house. The space under the roof of the house is the attic. The underground part of the house is called the basement. Some Americans have cottages and cabins. They spend weekends and holidays there. Other types of US houses are bungalows and ranch houses. Bungalow is a single floor family home. Ranch house is a single floor family home with a low roof and attached garage.
Housing culture in the UK is similar to the US, but there are some differences. The British also respect privacy and independence. A typical English house has a front and back garden. It has two floors. On the ground floor there is a hall, toilet, kitchen, dinig room and living room. The staircase takes you from the hall to the first floor with bedrooms and bathrooms. The floor is very often covered with a carpet.
The most usual material is red brick, contrasting with white window frames.
There are three main types of houses in Britain. The cheapest ones are terraced houses. These houses are joined together in long rows. The most popular type of house in Britain is probably semi-detached house. Each one is a part of a pair of houses joined together. They usually have well-kept front and back garden with a lot of space for a car. Large areas of these houses can be found in suburbs. Much more expensive than a semi-detached is a detached house. It is standing by itself usually with a garden all around it. In recent years old cottages have become very popular and not only as second homes. Block of flats and tower blocks , so usual in our country, can be seen in Britain as well, but not in such numbers.
In the village or town?
In the village, nature is beautiful because of all the woods, lakes and fields. There are no factories, it is quiet and the air is fresh. You can do anything there. You can do sports, grow flowers or keep domestic animals. But a big problem in the village is transport. In some places, buses operate only twice or three times a day. Most people have to commute to towns for a work. Shopping is mostly done in towns too. Students have to commute to school as well.
In town there are a lot of schools and shopping facilities. There are more jobs available, better housing, cultural and sporting facilities and hospitals. People often work close to the place where they live and don’t have to commute. But in the town there is o lot of noise, busy traffic, polluted air and water, or even smog hanging above the city. You cannot walk to the woods, so people often go out to the countryside where they have their summer houses and cottages.