A dwelling is a home — where someone lives. Houses, apartments, and condos are all dwellings.

If you know that to dwell means to live somewhere, then the meaning of dwelling won't be a surprise: it's an abode, domicile, or home. Your dwelling might be a house or an apartment. Tents, trailers, and igloos are all dwellings. Anything people live in is a dwelling. If you have no dwelling, then you have no shelter and you're probably homeless.

Definitions of dwelling

n housing that someone is living in

“he built a modest dwelling near the pond”
abode, domicile, dwelling house, habitation, home
show 8 examples...
hide 8 examples...
a fortified Moorish palace built near Granada by Muslim kings in the Middle Ages
Lateran Palace
a palace that served as the residence of the popes until the 14th century
Tuileries Palace
palace and royal residence built for Catherine de Medicis in 1564 and burned down in 1871; all that remains today are the formal gardens
Vatican Palace
the residence of the Catholic Pope in the Vatican City
Palace of Versailles
a palace built in the 17th century for Louis XIV southwest of Paris near the city of Versailles
White House
the government building that serves as the residence and office of the President of the United States
Buckingham Palace
the London residence of the British sovereign
Mount Vernon
the former residence of George Washington in northeastern Virginia overlooking the Potomac river
show 44 types...
hide 44 types...
cliff dwelling
a rock and adobe dwelling built on sheltered ledges in the sides of a cliff
condo, condominium
one of the dwelling units in a condominium
a house or other dwelling in need of repair (usually offered for sale at a low price)
fireside, hearth
home symbolized as a part of the fireplace
the abode of a hermit
dwelling that is usually a farmhouse and adjoining land
a dwelling that serves as living quarters for one or more families
lake dwelling, pile dwelling
dwelling built on piles in or near a lake; specifically in prehistoric villages
indian lodge, lodge
any of various Native American dwellings
(law) a dwelling house and its adjacent buildings and the adjacent land used by the household
semi-detached house
a dwelling that is attached to something on only one side
vacation home
a dwelling (a second home) where you live while you are on vacation
a circular domed dwelling that is portable and self-supporting; originally used by nomadic Mongol and Turkic people of central Asia but now used as inexpensive alternative or temporary housing
beach house
a house built on or near a beach
boarding house, boardinghouse
a private house that provides accommodations and meals for paying guests
bungalow, cottage
a small house with a single story
a small house built of wood; usually in a wooded area
a Swiss house with a sloping roof and wide eaves or a house built in this style
chapterhouse, frat house, fraternity house
a house used as a residence by a chapter of a fraternity
country house
a house (usually large and impressive) on an estate in the country
detached house, single dwelling
a house that stands alone
doll's house, dollhouse
a house so small that it is likened to a child's plaything
duplex, duplex house, semidetached house
a house with two units sharing a common wall
house for a farmer and family
a house built at a gateway; usually the gatekeeper's residence
a house separate from the main house; for housing guests
the main house on a ranch or large estate
a Navajo lodge covered with earth; traditionally built with the entrance facing east
hunting lodge, lodge
a small (rustic) house used as a temporary shelter
lodging house, rooming house
a house where rooms are rented
maisonette, maisonnette
a small house
hall, manse, mansion, mansion house, residence
a large and imposing house
ranch house
a one story house with a low pitched roof
the official house or establishment of an important person (as a sovereign or president)
row house, town house
a house that is one of a row of identical houses situated side by side and sharing common walls
safe house
a house used as a hiding place or refuge by members of certain organizations
a type of house built in New England; has two stories in front and one behind
adobe house, sod house, soddy
a house built of sod or adobe laid in horizontal courses
solar house
a house designed to use solar radiation for heating; usually has large areas of glass in front of heat-absorbing materials
teepee, tepee, tipi
a Native American tent; usually of conical shape
tract house
one of many houses of similar design constructed together on a tract of land
detached or semidetached suburban house
wickiup, wikiup
a lodge consisting of a frame covered with matting or brush; used by nomadic American Indians in the southwestern United States
a Native American lodge frequently having an oval shape and covered with bark or hides
Type of:
housing, living accommodations, lodging
structures collectively in which people are housed

Sign up, it's free!

Whether you're a student, an educator, or a lifelong learner, Vocabulary.com can put you on the path to systematic vocabulary improvement.