These Florida cracker cabins come with big porches, wide open views, and cool summer livin’

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Somewhere along the way, Floridian builders lost the idea that they should build for our uniquely hellish summers. The advent of air conditioning led to a glut of poorly thought out, hermetically sealed boxes that steadily cook our planet as they stay cool.

But what if we told you it doesn't have to be this way? People have lived in Florida since well before American Standard came on the scene. Vernacular architecture (that is, unique home design explicitly made to cater to the local environment) is more than just the stuff of magazine spreads. Think shotgun homes keeping residents of New Orleans cool or the squat, dark adobes of the Southwest.

Florida has its own offshoot, built to keep the summer livable. The trick was building for ventilation, taking advantage of coastal breezes and keeping the sun off the windows as much as possible. This unique style of cabin complete with tin roofs and wide, deep porches came to be called Cracker, after the nickname for Florida's early rancher settlers.

And it's more than just a historical curiosity. There are plenty of homes in Florida that still hold true to the common sense style of building, one's that will look even smarter as the Earth gets hotter. We've pulled together a few gems on the market right now, if you're interested in quitting the futile fight against our swampy home.

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