November 30 2010 (Jeff Alan)
Five years ago the average home’s square footage was 2,400 square feet according to the National Association of Homebuilders (NAHB), but according to a recent survey by Relocation.com, Americans are now opting for smaller homes.
In the survey, homeowners and buyers were asked to weigh in on what they saw as the ideal home size. Forty-eight percent of the respondents indicated that their ideal home size would range from 1,000 to 1,999 square feet, while 29 percent prefer homes that are 2,000 to 2,999 square feet. On average, homeowners and buyers are seeking a home that is 400 square feet smaller than what they were desired just five years ago.
“We’re definitely seeing more Americans downsizing due to the current state of the economy,” said Relocation.com Chairman and Founder Sharon Asher. “But as more homeowners rethink how much space they need, I think we’ll continue to see more innovative approaches to living well and sustainably within a smaller footprint.”
The survey, which was conducted in mid-October, also found that 54 percent of Americans still desire the suburban lifestyle, wanting a home near the city but still far enough away from the “hustle and bustle” of city life.
Living in an urban neighborhood was preferred by 24 percent of the respondents and 22 percent said they preferred to live in a rural neighborhood.
Living less than 10 miles from work was important to 27 percent of the respondents, while 45 percent reported that they wanted to live within 11 to 30 miles from their workplace. Only 10% reported that they wanted to live more than 30 miles away from where they worked and 18% said that it did not matter, since they worked from their home and had no commute to worry about.
One surprise found by the survey revealed that the cost of a residence was not the main deciding factor when purchasing a home. Only 29 percent of the respondents stated living costs as the important reason when considering a move.
Tags: square footage, homeowners, smaller homes, suburbs, urban, rural, suburban, relocation, downsizing, commute