Concept: Shelter—Needs and Types
What is a shelter?
A shelter is one of the basic needs of humans. People use the shelter to protect themselves from their surroundings, weather, predators, and other dangers. The shelter may be permanent or temporary based on the need, situation, and materials used.
Evolution of the shelter:
- The evolution in the concept of shelter happened gradually.
- The types of houses built traditionally differed from the ones built at present.
- The following factors influenced the evolution of houses—
- Availability of raw materials: Earlier, there were no bricks or cement. The houses were made using wood, stone, and clay. At present, concrete, cement, bricks, and iron are the primary raw materials used for building houses. These have made the houses long-lasting and strong.
- Availability of capital: The availability of money allows the use of different expensive raw materials for making a house on which the house's stability depends.
- Education: Some people are educated in the techniques of building houses at present. We address them as architects. Earlier, people were not aware of the methods of building houses. Hence, only the traditional designs were used, but the evolution of education in this particular field has led to the development of various kinds of houses.
- Modernisation: With the modernisation in lifestyle, there is an increase in the construction of self-efficient houses. One would find all the amenities within the walls of the house. Special facilities like temperature control, modular kitchen, etc., have become very popular.
Common areas found in a house:
- It is the area where food is prepared.
- This room generally lies close to the dining area.
- Gas stoves, exhausts, crockeries, and shelves are some common items seen.
- It is the room which is used to sleep.
- Bed, cupboards, side tables, and night lamps are some common items seen in a bedroom.
- It is generally located in the centre of the house.
- Living rooms are mostly used as a recreation area for the family and for receiving the guests.
- One can find televisions, portraits, furniture, and paintings in this room.
- A spare bedroom which is used for the guests to stay.
- This place is used for showers, brushing, toilets, etc.
- One can see bathtubs, commodes, cisterns, washbasins, etc., in a bathroom.
- The large room at the base of the house is called the basement.
- Not all houses have basements.
- Basements can be used as per the convenience of the family. It can be converted into a game zone or laundry room.
- A room used for storing extra stuff, which is used rarely in the house.
- Any spare room can be converted into a storeroom if required.
- The place where the vehicles of the house are parked is called the garage.
Parts of a house:
- Apart from the rooms, all houses have some common parts like walls, windows, doors, chimneys, roofs, front yard, backyard, balcony, etc.
- Parts of the house may vary from one type of house to another.
- Modern houses may have many parts which are not seen in the traditionally built houses.
Need for shelter:
- A shelter is required to live peacefully.
- It protects us from harsh environmental conditions and natural calamities like thunderstorms, snow, etc.
- A house is also needed to keep our belongings safe.
- A house also protects us from insects and other disease-causing organisms.
Types of houses
Based on the raw materials used, houses can be classified as follows—
- Kutcha house:
- A house built with raw materials like mud, clay, stones, bamboo sticks, etc., is called a kutcha house.
- They are not stable as a pucca house.
- They can collapse easily by natural disasters like floods, earthquakes, etc., and has to be rebuilt.
- Kutcha houses are usually found in rural areas.
- These houses do not require huge capital to build.
- It is a solid construction where the raw materials used are bricks, iron, concrete, cement, sand, etc.
- These houses require large capital investment due to the expensive materials used.
- These houses are not easily affected by natural disasters.
- They do not collapse easily.
Pucca houses are further classified as follows—
- The word ‘flat’ comes from the Scottish word ‘flet’, which stands for a floor or storey.
- A flat is a small space or dwelling in a multistoried building.
- The area of a flat differs from building to building.
- The space in a flat can be divided into the bedroom, living room, kitchen, bathroom, guest room, etc.
- A duplex is a house, apartment, or flat divided into two storeys or sections.
- A duplex is more spacious as compared to a flat.
- The areas segregated are generally similar to that of a flat.
- It is a large house which varies from being single-storied to double-storied.
- A bungalow has generally sloping roofs and luxurious interiors.
- A bungalow, along with the usual rooms, has beautiful gardens, a backyard, and a balcony.
- A palace is usually a grand residence built over a large area with many rooms.
- Generally built and owned by the royal families.
- Many palaces in our country are occupied by the government and have been turned into museums or hotels.
- Some of the royal families still continue to stay in their palaces.
- A residence built at the top of a building, apartment, hotel, or tower is called a penthouse.
- They are provided with luxurious amenities and high-end appliances.
- It is a small old-fashioned house with one or two storeys.
- Such houses are generally found in the village or countryside.
- A cottage is built using the materials that are available nearby.
- It is a house in the countryside away from the city specialising in accommodating people and animals.
- These houses are built in areas where the supply of animal food can be easily fulfilled.
- They can be built with materials used both in pucca or kutcha houses.
Amenity: A useful facility present in a building.
Natural disaster: A natural phenomenon that leads to loss of life and property like hurricanes, tsunamis, cyclones, etc.
Did You Know?
- Hong Kong is a very crowded city where all people are not able to afford houses. Some of them live on small boats called sampans.
- Using brass to make doorknobs in our houses has a reason. The components of brass keep microbes like bacteria and fungi away.
- The style of the roof of a house depends on the climatic conditions. The places which experience heavy snowfalls have slanting roofs, whereas the places with warm climates have flat roofs.
- The traditional homes in Indonesia that are made out of wooden slats are called honai.