Residential design

Personalized homes. Warm. Welcoming.

Shelter designs custom-built new homes and renovations of existing dwellings — including historic properties.

Regardless of a structure’s age, size or location, one aspect of our design is constant: We place the homeowners’ needs and sensibilities front and center.

We embrace an approach called empathetic design. That means we listen, intently, to the homeowners throughout the process. Our goal is to design living spaces that reflect how people wish to use, move through, and feel within their most precious and personal surroundings.

As a result, we’ve built up an eclectic residential portfolio. Rather than showcase a particular “Shelter” style, these projects represent the broad mix of our clients’ individual preferences and personalities.

Our process

Wondering what happens when you work with Shelter’s architects and designers on your residential project? We’ve got a step-by-step process. Knowing what to expect can help you prepare — and enhance your experience. Learn more >

Sustainable design

We consider design an important tool — one that can save energy, reduce pollution, and empower people to make positive environmental impacts.

Our longstanding commitment

Universal design

We create spaces to suit people of all abilities. Eliminating obstacles benefits everyone — and helps people age in place for as long as possible.

Our inclusive approach

Working from home can be part of the plan

The dividing lines between home and work are blurring. Fortunately, when we design a residence, we have commercial experience to draw from.

Need a home office that promotes comfort and productivity? Or a garage that doubles as a small-scale production line? Our firm’s dual focus — creating both living and business spaces — gives us valuable insights we’ll bring to the table.

Our commercial expertise

Stories

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Living (and working?) into retirement: downsize or age-in-place?

Downsize or age-in-place? If you’re thinking to yourself, “My retirement may look different than my parents’ did” you’re not alone.…

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New year reflections: two decades of Shelter

In the fall of 2004, Shelter consisted of three folks in a small room on the upper floor of a…

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Designing with darkness

5 Ways to Embrace the Darkness The awareness of light is anchored by darkness. - Max Jacobson, The Good House…

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