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Houses get bigger....do you live large or small?

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by richnota, Sep 30, 2008.

  1. richnota

    richnota Gold Supporting Member

    Jan 11, 2005
    Santa Cruz
    Interesting to see how people have taken on so much debt trying to live large (and sometimes beyond their means).

    In the US, the average single family home was 2,349 square feet in 2004, compared to 1,695 square feet in 1974. The size of the kitchen alone has doubled to nearly 300 square feet. Ground-floor ceilings have grown by more than a foot, and bedrooms are now an average of 12 feet by 12 feet, compared to 9 feet by 10 feet 30 years ago.

    Keep in mind the size of the average family got smaller as houses got bigger. I work with folks who squeeze three people into 8,000 square feet.

    How do you fare? Do you live above the home average or below?
  2. Phil Mailloux

    Phil Mailloux

    Mar 25, 2005
    Brisbane, Australia
    Builder: Mailloux Basses
    Well I'm in a different country but the same phenomenon appered here. 20-30 years ago an average aussie house was about 160 m^2 (about 1700 sqf) I have no idea what the right statistic is these days but its befinitely more than 220m^2 if I look at the size of the new homes being built.

    My house is 265m^2 (about 2950sqf) and we're only two, me and the wife, no plans for kids at all (unless you count the two cats). We put a decent downpayment on the house and made sure we could afford the repayments and possible rate increases before we had the house built. There's nothing wrong with poeple wanting more space for themselves. ;)

    Even in Australia I can see people wanting to live over their income levels though. That sub-prime stuff has reached us too and we also have crazy non-sensical loans on people who can't pay back and lose their house. When I first checked out for a loan some years ago, I was the only one getting a salary between me and the wife. The bank told me we could easily get a loan for 250k which would have meant that after my weekly repayments I would have less than $100 to pay off all the bills, food, petrol ect... :eyebrow: How the hell can you morally give out a loan like that???
  3. fitbass3p


    Oct 7, 2006
    Madison, WI
    I currently live in a 700 sq ft apartment, and it's more than enough space for me. Obviously, once I "settle down" and try to start a family, that's going to have to increase, but I've learned to both be content with what I have, and cope with not living in a large space.

    It's crazy, what some of my associates at work that are my age are trying to pass off as "normal size." 25 years old, a 3000 sq ft house for just them, or them and a significant other. Student loans, fancy new cars.......just insane.
  4. fenderhutz

    fenderhutz Supporting Member

    Jan 28, 2007
    Harpers Ferry WV
    My house upstairs 1700sq ft

    My basement 1660 sq ft (unfinished)

    Below average until I get to finish my basement.

    I am living large in other ways that require a weekly meeting at Jenny Craig.
  5. tplyons


    Apr 6, 2003
    Madison, NJ
    I agree, my parents want to add on to the house, however my brother and I have both moved out. Funny, it was enough room for four people, but way too small for two people.
  6. SteveC

    SteveC Moderator Staff Member

    Nov 12, 2004
    North Dakota
    1,130 up and 1,130 down. Finished basement. Built in the mid 50's. Smaller rooms, but very comfortable for the 3 of us. Really nice kitchen and downstairs family room. The main floor bath is small and it only has a single attached garage. The back yard is fenced and Grace loves her play set. We got a nice deal and will make money if/when we sell --- after a few years and things settle down.
  7. JimB52

    JimB52 User Supporting Member

    May 24, 2007
    East Coast
    My house is too big, but we still manage to fill it with crap. Costs a lot to heat and illuminate, too.
  8. shamrock&roll


    Feb 14, 2007
    I'll let you know when I can afford a house in SoCal, but I rent a 100 square foot room with access to a shower and toilet and it works just fine. I don't see the need for a house larger than 1000 square feet for 4 people.
  9. Phil Mailloux

    Phil Mailloux

    Mar 25, 2005
    Brisbane, Australia
    Builder: Mailloux Basses
    That's 31.6' X 31.6', about the size of a 2 bedroom appartment. :eyebrow:
  10. Fontaine


    Apr 27, 2006
    once I graduate I'll be living big, simply because I will be able to afford it, and I feel that it will be well deserved to treat myself after the years of studying. Also from living in a house with 4 guys (including myself), lets just say the place is...clean, and i believe that once someone goes through living like this they deserve to treat themselves.

    Obviously I will not be doing this straight out of college, I'll have to stay in an apartment for a while like now and save my money and make reasonable decisions on what to do with it.

    Main thing is, I'll be able to live most of my dreams.
  11. Wait till you have kids. Not only will they need more space, YOU will too.

  12. ryco


    Apr 24, 2005
    Ours is about 1700 sq ft. Includes a small music studio where my girl gives music lessons.

    1 story open floor plan for living, dining, kitchen. 2 bedrooms (one is my practice space :bassist:), 2 bath, guest room w/ bath.

    This is plenty big enough for the two of us. :cool:

    I work construction on the Oregon coast and have worked on a LOT of mansions. Bah! Just more space to put all your crap. Of course they have housekeepers to keep all this crap clean and maintained. :rolleyes:

    Not for me at all. I was thinkin' I'd love an A frame with big decks. S'the way to go!
    Like the house I have now, too! And it's mine! :hyper: :smug:
  13. nortonrider


    Nov 20, 2007
    Everyone also owns alot more crap today than they did 30 years ago.
    They need a place to put it all. Solution, buy a bigger house.
  14. steamthief


    Jan 25, 2006
    Mentone Beach
    Below average. 1900 sq. ft., 4 BR, 2 1/2 BA, married w/three kids. One BR is my home office/gear room. Feels like it's getting smaller as the kids grow up.

    I'd gladly trade the front living room (which is almost never used) for a bit bigger family room and kitchen. And I'd definitely trade some square footage for a bigger yard. SoCal postage-stamp tract lot, ya dig?
  15. fenderhutz

    fenderhutz Supporting Member

    Jan 28, 2007
    Harpers Ferry WV
    I have 1.1 unwooded acres. Mowing it is not fun.
  16. Phil Mailloux

    Phil Mailloux

    Mar 25, 2005
    Brisbane, Australia
    Builder: Mailloux Basses


    Mine is full of hills and bumps on a soft clay soil, I can't mow it after more than a couple of weeks after it rains or the mower sinks in it. :rolleyes:
  17. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    About 3000 sq. ft, not including the basement (which is pretty "it puts the lotion in the basket" and really shouldn't count) for a family of three, but it's a 120 year old victorian fixer-upper that's only partly fixed up.
  18. smperry

    smperry Administrator Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    Nov 3, 2003
    Bay Area, CA
    Way below the average - 2 adults, 1 1/2 kids, and 2 cats in a 2BR apt that's probably around 1200 square feet.
  19. 2700 sq. ft., but with our son, we need the extra room.

    Ryan requires a lot of single floor room due to being wheelchair bound (cerebral palsy), and now that he is pushing 100 lbs, we need to avoid carrying him up and down stairs at all costs. At our old place, we had no downstairs bedrooms or bathrooms, which became dangerous. Here we have converted a formal dining room into Ryan's bedroom and the 1/2 bath on the first floor is now a full bath with a roll-in shower. We also have two preteen girls in the house as well, so you can imagine the necessity for some additional room for EVERYONE (including a "man cave" for me to maintain some sanity...).

    We could make do with less, but it would be pretty uncomfortable for us, so we deal with it.

    Frankly, there are indeed times when I miss my old 700 sq. ft. apartment...
  20. Munjibunga

    Munjibunga Total Hyper-Elite Member Gold Supporting Member

    May 6, 2000
    San Diego (when not at Groom Lake)
    Independent Contractor to Bass San Diego
    3700 feet for the three of us. It's big enough.

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