Split level floor plans originated from prairie and ranch floor plans, as well as modern design styles. The characteristics of split level floor plans are it has a two story high section and it is joined by one story high section that is placed a half story in between. This creates three areas of interior that are connected via short flights of stairs. There is also split foyer floor plans, which is basically a ranch floor plan that is elevated above a basement, and the stair entrance are landing between these two floors. The exterior design for split floor plan is usually consisted of brick, wood, and is completed with large picture windows. Even though split level floor plans may resemble Tudor or colonial design, with simple and minimal decoration it can give them a modern touch.
Because of it is modern design and innovativeness, split level floor plans are widely popular in America in the 1950s until 1970s. They require less space than ranch floor plans and it is suitable when building a house where the ground is tilting. This is the reason that split level floor plans are popular in the countryside and hillside where the grounds are uneven.