Author Topic: Big Houses back in demand  (Read 44514 times)

BriarRose111

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Big Houses back in demand
« on: June 14, 2015, 05:37:52 PM »
This surprises me some.  I thought the trend was away from the bigger and bigger homes back to smaller ones, but I guess that trend was short lived.

http://www.startribune.com/after-years-of-downsizing-big-houses-make-a-comeback/307269161/

Indexer

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #1 on: June 14, 2015, 07:38:07 PM »
Great.  A guess no one learned from 2008.

Cassie

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #2 on: June 14, 2015, 08:25:23 PM »
Very surprised. In 1980 with 5 of us we bought a major fixer-upper with 1600 sq ft & we thought we had died & went to heaven. NO garage & 1 bathroom.  Now with just the 2 of us we live in 1400 sq ft with 2 bathrooms.  Awesome sauce!! We could live smaller if my hubby would declutter some of his junk.

Bob W

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #3 on: June 14, 2015, 09:34:12 PM »
I'm guessing the average reader here owns a home over 300k.   In our Midwest area that would equal 3,000sq ft.  So yeah I can see this.   

vern

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #4 on: June 14, 2015, 09:50:18 PM »
Don't I know it!  My brother sells real estate and made a killing last year.

I've told him to be ready for the next downturn but I'm not sure if he's listening.

"Coffee's for closers only."

MgoSam

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #5 on: June 15, 2015, 08:30:11 AM »
Yeah, I'm looking for my first house but prices appear to have shot up here. It's become a seller's market and each house I've liked has gotten snapped up quickly. Looks like I'll need to wait until next year unless I find a good deal.

gimp

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #6 on: June 15, 2015, 09:25:11 AM »
Quote
"Coffee's for closers only."

That bit is classic, and for good reason.

But on topic... people love big. I'm not surprised. Now, when we talk homes and big, I think land instead of the size of the house. I would love to have a huge fucking plot of land with a small house on it. Out of curiosity, how many here agree with that?

iamlittlehedgehog

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #7 on: June 15, 2015, 09:38:02 AM »
Quote
"Coffee's for closers only."

That bit is classic, and for good reason.

But on topic... people love big. I'm not surprised. Now, when we talk homes and big, I think land instead of the size of the house. I would love to have a huge fucking plot of land with a small house on it. Out of curiosity, how many here agree with that?


I'm with you depending on our future family plans. If it is just the two of us I'm all for a small house on a few acres. We live in a 1,100 sq foot house now and that seems more than plenty for for 2 people. But I'm not giving up a second bathroom. That is a non-negotiable.

Bob W

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #8 on: June 15, 2015, 09:48:12 AM »
Quote
"Coffee's for closers only."

That bit is classic, and for good reason.

But on topic... people love big. I'm not surprised. Now, when we talk homes and big, I think land instead of the size of the house. I would love to have a huge fucking plot of land with a small house on it. Out of curiosity, how many here agree with that?

I could live with that.  Although I currently live on 3 acres that seems like 15 due to the amount of undeveloped woods around.  I could definitely feel important and satisfied with a 400-1,200 acre place though.   

The down side would be all the work involved.   

One has to always remember that "people don't own houses,  the houses own the people."

Chris22

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #9 on: June 15, 2015, 09:53:01 AM »
This is the salient point from the article:

“There are people that don’t want really huge houses, but the reality is everybody wants a lot in their home, so they tend to creep up in size.”

I agree with this 100%.  I have no desire for a 3000-4000+ sq ft house, but there are certain characteristics I want in a house and in order to find all of them in an existing house, you need a fairly large house.  Decent closet space, enough bedrooms, storage, a decent sized kitchen, etc.  My last house was 1800 sq ft plus a basement (also 1800 sq ft) and it had a lot of the ammenities we wanted, but it was still only three bedrooms. 


On the subject of land, I grew up on an acre (~50% wooded) and now have a .25 acre and a .17 acre, and both are fine for me.  Just enough yard to mow to be fun, but not so much it's a chore.  I do wish I had room for more garage space (only have a 19x20' garage now, would like a 3-4 car garage but that's not doable on many suburban lots).

MgoSam

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #10 on: June 15, 2015, 10:02:21 AM »
This is the salient point from the article:

“There are people that don’t want really huge houses, but the reality is everybody wants a lot in their home, so they tend to creep up in size.”

That's why I am looking for a smallish house, otherwise I would likely fall victim to Parkinson's Law.

Cassie

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #11 on: June 15, 2015, 04:34:36 PM »
Keeping up with a large house or lot is a drag. It wastes so much time.  Plus all your bills are so much higher. However, conversely having too small a house with too many people is also a drag. I definitely will never go back to 1 bathroom. So awesome having 2!!!!

kite

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #12 on: June 15, 2015, 05:03:19 PM »
900 Sq feet.  We could live in half of it.  I grew up in a family of 12 in 1800 square feet, spouse grew up in about 400 square feet with a household size of 5.  I have no desire to clean, furnish, decorate or maintain more space or heat empty rooms.  We have a decent sized yard in a densely zoned neighborhood.  Just the right amount that folks are nearby but we have a big enough lot that we don't feel crowded.  We have an acre, but typical lots here are 1/10 to 1/4 acre. 
I've considered moves to more land, further out in the country, so to speak, but the trade offs aren't worth it.  We can walk to Church, store, pizza places, pharmacy, inlaws, parents, bus stop and more, all within 2/10 of a mile to 1 mile.

MrsPete

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #13 on: June 15, 2015, 08:19:26 PM »
I agree with this 100%.  I have no desire for a 3000-4000+ sq ft house, but there are certain characteristics I want in a house and in order to find all of them in an existing house, you need a fairly large house.  Decent closet space, enough bedrooms, storage, a decent sized kitchen, etc.  My last house was 1800 sq ft plus a basement (also 1800 sq ft) and it had a lot of the ammenities we wanted, but it was still only three bedrooms. 
This is sad but true.  We're looking for a retirement home, and we essentially want something that doesn't exist:  We want something "starter size" -- we don't want a rec room or a home theater or bedrooms large enough for seating areas -- but we want it to have walk-in closets, a huge pantry, and storage in the specific places we want it.  We want this house to have some aging-in-place features such as a barrier-free shower, one entry with no more than one step, and low maintenance. 

This house doesn't exist, so the choice is to buy a larger house ... or to build.  We're opting for building. 

RFAAOATB

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #14 on: June 15, 2015, 10:37:00 PM »
I want a big house.  Unfortunately my demand for a big house does not match my income and I am to risk averse to make the plunge.  Instead I am paying extra on my mortgage to see what a bigger house payment will feel like.  Although with a big house I just might have to budget in a housekeeper.

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #15 on: June 16, 2015, 06:48:06 AM »
I would love to design a house from the ground up.  I think most houses have so much wasted space and are inefficiently designed.   My house is 1800 sq ft which should be plenty of space, but because of the way it is laid out, there is a lot of lost space.  Over the next few years, we are planning on rectifying that as much as we can with the base structure of our house. 

Pooperman

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #16 on: June 16, 2015, 08:23:33 AM »
Where I live, $300k gets you a 3 bedroom house in need of repairs on 1/10th acre maybe in an decent neighborhood with average schools. This is completely fine with me. To get a "big house" here, you need just about $1 million.

partgypsy

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #17 on: June 16, 2015, 08:24:55 AM »
Quote
"Coffee's for closers only."

That bit is classic, and for good reason.

But on topic... people love big. I'm not surprised. Now, when we talk homes and big, I think land instead of the size of the house. I would love to have a huge fucking plot of land with a small house on it. Out of curiosity, how many here agree with that?

I agree with you. My ideal would be a ranch or 2 story brick house on a biggish piece of land, with a mother in law suite. No plans to move though.

asiljoy

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #18 on: June 16, 2015, 08:31:36 AM »
Quote
"Coffee's for closers only."

That bit is classic, and for good reason.

But on topic... people love big. I'm not surprised. Now, when we talk homes and big, I think land instead of the size of the house. I would love to have a huge fucking plot of land with a small house on it. Out of curiosity, how many here agree with that?

I'd go for a tiny condo in the middle of the city that's close to everything. But, I like people, I like walking to everything I need, and there's just something about reading in a nice large park that makes me happy. But that ain't happening anytime soon.

ShoulderThingThatGoesUp

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #19 on: June 16, 2015, 08:34:56 AM »
Keeping up with a large house or lot is a drag. It wastes so much time.  Plus all your bills are so much higher. However, conversely having too small a house with too many people is also a drag. I definitely will never go back to 1 bathroom. So awesome having 2!!!!
Haha!  That's my one complaint with our small house.  One bathroom.  However, we're making it work. 

In my area, we would have had to spend over $1.5M for a second bathroom.

Seems like it would be a lot cheaper to put on a bathroom addition.

Especially if it would raise the value of your house by 1.5M...

Chris22

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #20 on: June 16, 2015, 08:43:38 AM »
The chief gripe in our new house is that it has 1.5 baths (full bath plus a powder room) instead of 2 full baths (wife and I get ready at the same time in the morning so two showers is nice).  We decided to put a full bath in the basement as part of our basement remodel (removing wood paneling and drywalling, plus adding some storage closets).  Going to cost me about $3-3.5k ($2.5k for the plumbers to rough it in and $500-1k for the fixtures, etc, I'll install).  Realtor claims it will add $20k to the value of the house.  Maybe, maybe not, but it will add $1 Zillion to happiness in our marriage as we won't be fighting with each other for bathroom time in the AM. 

And agreed, you need minimum 2 baths if you don't live alone, because showering/shitting schedules can conflict and havoc will result.

snuggler

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #21 on: June 16, 2015, 08:57:30 AM »
Interesting articles. In my peer group, there are really two types of people: those who want big houses, who are buying now, and those who want to get and stay debt-free, and have decided that getting 'just enough' house is one way to do that. The latter group is much bigger, but many of those folks are still renting very small apartments.

It will be interesting to see how/if this changes over the next 10-20 years. I was under the impression that most millennials are flocking to smaller places in cities, but maybe my perception is skewed by my own experiences.

Chris22

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #22 on: June 16, 2015, 09:06:39 AM »
Interesting articles. In my peer group, there are really two types of people: those who want big houses, who are buying now, and those who want to get and stay debt-free, and have decided that getting 'just enough' house is one way to do that. The latter group is much bigger, but many of those folks are still renting very small apartments.

It will be interesting to see how/if this changes over the next 10-20 years. I was under the impression that most millennials are flocking to smaller places in cities, but maybe my perception is skewed by my own experiences.

Millenials are flocking to smaller places in cities because they are generally young, have no kids, and things like "proximity to good bars" is more important than "in a good school district." 

That will change as they progress in life and start popping out kids, etc. 

Circle of life.

Embok

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #23 on: June 16, 2015, 09:22:45 AM »
Glad big houses are coming back "in", as we're fixing up our now too-big, pre-Mustachian house (after DD moved on to college and Aged P passed on).  Guess we're on the other side of that circle of life.  A big suburban house was never our ideal, but worked well for us as a safe place to shelter family without urban skills while living in a high COL area. But DH and I are looking forward to a move either back into the Big Smoke or out to a beach town.  Need more office space than most, as we each need a full home office, but would be happy with a small yard:  enough room to grill out, have a patio table and a couple of chairs, but not enough to have to spend a lot of time gardening.

Cookie78

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #24 on: June 16, 2015, 09:25:54 AM »
Quote
"Coffee's for closers only."

That bit is classic, and for good reason.

But on topic... people love big. I'm not surprised. Now, when we talk homes and big, I think land instead of the size of the house. I would love to have a huge fucking plot of land with a small house on it. Out of curiosity, how many here agree with that?

Some day I would love this, but not yet. Lots of space, somewhere rural and quiet, huge garden, big shop, small house.

snuggler

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #25 on: June 16, 2015, 09:29:30 AM »
Interesting articles. In my peer group, there are really two types of people: those who want big houses, who are buying now, and those who want to get and stay debt-free, and have decided that getting 'just enough' house is one way to do that. The latter group is much bigger, but many of those folks are still renting very small apartments.

It will be interesting to see how/if this changes over the next 10-20 years. I was under the impression that most millennials are flocking to smaller places in cities, but maybe my perception is skewed by my own experiences.

 

Millenials are flocking to smaller places in cities because they are generally young, have no kids, and things like "proximity to good bars" is more important than "in a good school district." 

That will change as they progress in life and start popping out kids, etc. 

Circle of life.

Unless my friends , peers, and I are serious anomalies, I would be surprised if what you said will be true.  Sure, most millenials are interested in ultimately living somewhere with good schools, but we are also very interested in living close to work and other fun stuff, in living in a low-maintenance place, and in avoiding large debts. We also mock the McMansions of our parents' generation, and have lived very frugally, both out of necessity (due to the economy) and because of high student debt loads. Many don't even want children.

Besides my one friend who wants four kids and grew up very poor, I can't think of a single friend (even the spendthrift ones) who has expressed a desire for the McMansion lifestyle.

Also, proximity to bars can easily be found in suburbs and rural areas. Short commutes, the ability to live without cars, and a thriving arts and culture scene are the things keeping my friends and me in cities.

MgoSam

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #26 on: June 16, 2015, 09:35:35 AM »
Interesting articles. In my peer group, there are really two types of people: those who want big houses, who are buying now, and those who want to get and stay debt-free, and have decided that getting 'just enough' house is one way to do that. The latter group is much bigger, but many of those folks are still renting very small apartments.

It will be interesting to see how/if this changes over the next 10-20 years. I was under the impression that most millennials are flocking to smaller places in cities, but maybe my perception is skewed by my own experiences.

 

Millenials are flocking to smaller places in cities because they are generally young, have no kids, and things like "proximity to good bars" is more important than "in a good school district." 

That will change as they progress in life and start popping out kids, etc. 

Circle of life.

Unless my friends , peers, and I are serious anomalies, I would be surprised if what you said will be true.  Sure, most millenials are interested in ultimately living somewhere with good schools, but we are also very interested in living close to work and other fun stuff, in living in a low-maintenance place, and in avoiding large debts. We also mock the McMansions of our parents' generation, and have lived very frugally, both out of necessity (due to the economy) and because of high student debt loads. Many don't even want children.

Besides my one friend who wants four kids and grew up very poor, I can't think of a single friend (even the spendthrift ones) who has expressed a desire for the McMansion lifestyle.

Also, proximity to bars can easily be found in suburbs and rural areas. Short commutes, the ability to live without cars, and a thriving arts and culture scene are the things keeping my friends and me in cities.

It could be because most of my friends aren't the type that like to go bar hopping, but I am finding that they would like McMansions. They dislike the term, but when they are looking for homes they seem to gravitate towards 2500+ sq, which would be a McMansion in my opinion. Two close friends of mine have recently closed on separate 4 or 5 bedroom houses. One of them is in a serious relationship and I suspect will propose soon, and they do plan on having a few kids, so this would make sense. The other is single, but he bought that home because he got a really sweet deal on it (assumed existing mortgage which was WAY less than assessed value), and I suspect that he will fix it up and flip it while living in it for a few years.

Chris22

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #27 on: June 16, 2015, 09:39:54 AM »
Interesting articles. In my peer group, there are really two types of people: those who want big houses, who are buying now, and those who want to get and stay debt-free, and have decided that getting 'just enough' house is one way to do that. The latter group is much bigger, but many of those folks are still renting very small apartments.

It will be interesting to see how/if this changes over the next 10-20 years. I was under the impression that most millennials are flocking to smaller places in cities, but maybe my perception is skewed by my own experiences.

 

Millenials are flocking to smaller places in cities because they are generally young, have no kids, and things like "proximity to good bars" is more important than "in a good school district." 

That will change as they progress in life and start popping out kids, etc. 

Circle of life.

Unless my friends , peers, and I are serious anomalies, I would be surprised if what you said will be true.  Sure, most millenials are interested in ultimately living somewhere with good schools, but we are also very interested in living close to work and other fun stuff, in living in a low-maintenance place, and in avoiding large debts. We also mock the McMansions of our parents' generation, and have lived very frugally, both out of necessity (due to the economy) and because of high student debt loads. Many don't even want children.

Besides my one friend who wants four kids and grew up very poor, I can't think of a single friend (even the spendthrift ones) who has expressed a desire for the McMansion lifestyle.

Also, proximity to bars can easily be found in suburbs and rural areas. Short commutes, the ability to live without cars, and a thriving arts and culture scene are the things keeping my friends and me in cities.

I'm 33.  I'm probably not a lot older than you (I'm the bleeding edge of the millenials, the "Oregon Trail" generation if you will).  Trust me, you think you have it all planned.  You don't. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O1Z91YkPatw

snuggler

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #28 on: June 16, 2015, 10:39:45 AM »
Interesting articles. In my peer group, there are really two types of people: those who want big houses, who are buying now, and those who want to get and stay debt-free, and have decided that getting 'just enough' house is one way to do that. The latter group is much bigger, but many of those folks are still renting very small apartments.

It will be interesting to see how/if this changes over the next 10-20 years. I was under the impression that most millennials are flocking to smaller places in cities, but maybe my perception is skewed by my own experiences.

 

Millenials are flocking to smaller places in cities because they are generally young, have no kids, and things like "proximity to good bars" is more important than "in a good school district." 

That will change as they progress in life and start popping out kids, etc. 

Circle of life.

Unless my friends , peers, and I are serious anomalies, I would be surprised if what you said will be true.  Sure, most millenials are interested in ultimately living somewhere with good schools, but we are also very interested in living close to work and other fun stuff, in living in a low-maintenance place, and in avoiding large debts. We also mock the McMansions of our parents' generation, and have lived very frugally, both out of necessity (due to the economy) and because of high student debt loads. Many don't even want children.

Besides my one friend who wants four kids and grew up very poor, I can't think of a single friend (even the spendthrift ones) who has expressed a desire for the McMansion lifestyle.

Also, proximity to bars can easily be found in suburbs and rural areas. Short commutes, the ability to live without cars, and a thriving arts and culture scene are the things keeping my friends and me in cities.

I'm 33.  I'm probably not a lot older than you (I'm the bleeding edge of the millenials, the "Oregon Trail" generation if you will).  Trust me, you think you have it all planned.  You don't. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O1Z91YkPatw

We are virtually the same age. I'm also an Oregon-trail millennial. So we are probably equally as good/bad about predicting what our peers will do :).

I can tell you, however, that barring unforeseen and extreme circumstances, there is no way in hell I will ever have a McMansion. I could have comfortably mortgaged myself into one quite some time ago, but have preferred to rent smaller spaces, even as I've added family members. Even when I've considred buying, I have never once been tempted by a huge home.

I would guess that most people who are regulars around here do not suddenly shift to wanting McMansions many years after their entry into adulthood. We want FI and/or ER instead.

Chris22

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #29 on: June 16, 2015, 11:00:20 AM »
Interesting articles. In my peer group, there are really two types of people: those who want big houses, who are buying now, and those who want to get and stay debt-free, and have decided that getting 'just enough' house is one way to do that. The latter group is much bigger, but many of those folks are still renting very small apartments.

It will be interesting to see how/if this changes over the next 10-20 years. I was under the impression that most millennials are flocking to smaller places in cities, but maybe my perception is skewed by my own experiences.

 

Millenials are flocking to smaller places in cities because they are generally young, have no kids, and things like "proximity to good bars" is more important than "in a good school district." 

That will change as they progress in life and start popping out kids, etc. 

Circle of life.

Unless my friends , peers, and I are serious anomalies, I would be surprised if what you said will be true.  Sure, most millenials are interested in ultimately living somewhere with good schools, but we are also very interested in living close to work and other fun stuff, in living in a low-maintenance place, and in avoiding large debts. We also mock the McMansions of our parents' generation, and have lived very frugally, both out of necessity (due to the economy) and because of high student debt loads. Many don't even want children.

Besides my one friend who wants four kids and grew up very poor, I can't think of a single friend (even the spendthrift ones) who has expressed a desire for the McMansion lifestyle.

Also, proximity to bars can easily be found in suburbs and rural areas. Short commutes, the ability to live without cars, and a thriving arts and culture scene are the things keeping my friends and me in cities.

I'm 33.  I'm probably not a lot older than you (I'm the bleeding edge of the millenials, the "Oregon Trail" generation if you will).  Trust me, you think you have it all planned.  You don't. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O1Z91YkPatw

We are virtually the same age. I'm also an Oregon-trail millennial. So we are probably equally as good/bad about predicting what our peers will do :).

I can tell you, however, that barring unforeseen and extreme circumstances, there is no way in hell I will ever have a McMansion. I could have comfortably mortgaged myself into one quite some time ago, but have preferred to rent smaller spaces, even as I've added family members. Even when I've considred buying, I have never once been tempted by a huge home.

I would guess that most people who are regulars around here do not suddenly shift to wanting McMansions many years after their entry into adulthood. We want FI and/or ER instead.

I'm not talking about YOU, I'm talking about OUR GENERATION.  McMansions?  Probably not for most of us, but are we, as a generation, going to continue to flock to small condos in the city near indy coffee shops?  No.  Hell, my own street is currently undergoing a revolution of sorts as all the old people who own homes last udated in 1975 either die off or move to assisted living, and sell their older, modestly sized (2000sq ft, +/-), single family homes to 30-somethings with kids and we are all remodeling them, etc, because even though they're smallish and outdated, they're in a great school district and we have young kids, so that's what we do. 

damize

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #30 on: June 16, 2015, 11:18:13 AM »
I'd go for a tiny condo in the middle of the city that's close to everything. But, I like people, I like walking to everything I need, and there's just something about reading in a nice large park that makes me happy. But that ain't happening anytime soon.

I'm completely in this camp.  Small living space in a high walking rated neighborhood.  Although, I'd rent unless/until I was absolutely sure my wanderlust has settled.

Nate R

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #31 on: June 16, 2015, 11:26:57 AM »
Keeping up with a large house or lot is a drag. It wastes so much time.  Plus all your bills are so much higher. However, conversely having too small a house with too many people is also a drag. I definitely will never go back to 1 bathroom. So awesome having 2!!!!

OK, help me understand.....What's the big benefit of the 2nd bathroom with 2 people?  Does it need to be 2 FULL baths, or is a 1/2 bath helpful?

celticmyst08

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #32 on: June 16, 2015, 11:30:08 AM »
I have no desire to clean, furnish, decorate or maintain more space or heat empty rooms. 

Yep yep yep. I'm not a homeowner yet, but we rent a ~700 sqft apartment, and it already feels like too much to clean, declutter, and maintain. I'd like a second bedroom to use as an office/guest room, but other than that, I don't need any more space. Whenever I watch HGTV (don't judge, it's my guilty pleasure) I always get a kick out of the people who "need" 4-5 bedroom, 3-4 bath houses for just them and their 1-2 kids. All I can think of is, have fun cleaning that.

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #33 on: June 16, 2015, 12:04:51 PM »
I have no desire to clean, furnish, decorate or maintain more space or heat empty rooms. 

Yep yep yep. I'm not a homeowner yet, but we rent a ~700 sqft apartment, and it already feels like too much to clean, declutter, and maintain. I'd like a second bedroom to use as an office/guest room, but other than that, I don't need any more space. Whenever I watch HGTV (don't judge, it's my guilty pleasure) I always get a kick out of the people who "need" 4-5 bedroom, 3-4 bath houses for just them and their 1-2 kids. All I can think of is, have fun cleaning that.

Isn't that the truth? I see these huge homes and wonder why anyone would want to take on the job of cleaning and maintaining them inside and out.

Don't feel bad. HGTV is my guilty pleasure, too. I particularly enjoy House Hunters; or rather I enjoy making fun of the people who have such unrealistic  expectations of homeownership and wants that are bigger than their budget.


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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #34 on: June 16, 2015, 12:20:44 PM »
I have no desire to clean, furnish, decorate or maintain more space or heat empty rooms. 

Yep yep yep. I'm not a homeowner yet, but we rent a ~700 sqft apartment, and it already feels like too much to clean, declutter, and maintain. I'd like a second bedroom to use as an office/guest room, but other than that, I don't need any more space. Whenever I watch HGTV (don't judge, it's my guilty pleasure) I always get a kick out of the people who "need" 4-5 bedroom, 3-4 bath houses for just them and their 1-2 kids. All I can think of is, have fun cleaning that.

Isn't that the truth? I see these huge homes and wonder why anyone would want to take on the job of cleaning and maintaining them inside and out.

Don't feel bad. HGTV is my guilty pleasure, too. I particularly enjoy House Hunters; or rather I enjoy making fun of the people who have such unrealistic  expectations of homeownership and wants that are bigger than their budget.

I LOVE HGTV. When they started putting them on Netflix, I definitely binge watched a season or two of Property Brothers.

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #35 on: June 16, 2015, 12:23:35 PM »
Interesting articles. In my peer group, there are really two types of people: those who want big houses, who are buying now, and those who want to get and stay debt-free, and have decided that getting 'just enough' house is one way to do that. The latter group is much bigger, but many of those folks are still renting very small apartments.

It will be interesting to see how/if this changes over the next 10-20 years. I was under the impression that most millennials are flocking to smaller places in cities, but maybe my perception is skewed by my own experiences.

 

Millenials are flocking to smaller places in cities because they are generally young, have no kids, and things like "proximity to good bars" is more important than "in a good school district." 

That will change as they progress in life and start popping out kids, etc. 

Circle of life.

Unless my friends , peers, and I are serious anomalies, I would be surprised if what you said will be true.  Sure, most millenials are interested in ultimately living somewhere with good schools, but we are also very interested in living close to work and other fun stuff, in living in a low-maintenance place, and in avoiding large debts. We also mock the McMansions of our parents' generation, and have lived very frugally, both out of necessity (due to the economy) and because of high student debt loads. Many don't even want children.

Besides my one friend who wants four kids and grew up very poor, I can't think of a single friend (even the spendthrift ones) who has expressed a desire for the McMansion lifestyle.

Also, proximity to bars can easily be found in suburbs and rural areas. Short commutes, the ability to live without cars, and a thriving arts and culture scene are the things keeping my friends and me in cities.

I'm 33.  I'm probably not a lot older than you (I'm the bleeding edge of the millenials, the "Oregon Trail" generation if you will).  Trust me, you think you have it all planned.  You don't. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O1Z91YkPatw

We are virtually the same age. I'm also an Oregon-trail millennial. So we are probably equally as good/bad about predicting what our peers will do :).

I can tell you, however, that barring unforeseen and extreme circumstances, there is no way in hell I will ever have a McMansion. I could have comfortably mortgaged myself into one quite some time ago, but have preferred to rent smaller spaces, even as I've added family members. Even when I've considred buying, I have never once been tempted by a huge home.

I would guess that most people who are regulars around here do not suddenly shift to wanting McMansions many years after their entry into adulthood. We want FI and/or ER instead.

I'm not talking about YOU, I'm talking about OUR GENERATION.  McMansions?  Probably not for most of us, but are we, as a generation, going to continue to flock to small condos in the city near indy coffee shops?  No.  Hell, my own street is currently undergoing a revolution of sorts as all the old people who own homes last udated in 1975 either die off or move to assisted living, and sell their older, modestly sized (2000sq ft, +/-), single family homes to 30-somethings with kids and we are all remodeling them, etc, because even though they're smallish and outdated, they're in a great school district and we have young kids, so that's what we do.

I understand that we are talking about our generation. My response about myself was a response to your statement: "Trust me, you think you have it all planned. You don't." The "you"s in those sentences seemed to be aimed directly at me and not our entire generation.

And I don't really see how either of our anecdotes proves that one of us is right and the other is wrong.  Of course you, living in the suburbs, are going to see additions in the suburbs, and I, living in the city, am going to see hundreds of successful tiny condo developments in the city. Neither proves the point, although I do think it is worth pointing out that the house remodels you mention are not equivalent to upgrading to a bigger home. Additions, sure, but can you seriously say you've seen more new home additions than new condos? I doubt it. 

My overall point about your argument was that it is by no means a guarantee that as a generation, millennials will all start popping out kids and moving to giant houses in the suburbs. I know plenty who won't go that route. Indeed, there has been a large growth in cities and a large decline in the birth rate as millennials have become adults when compared to previous generations. That alone suggests that we shouldn't assume that millennials will act just like boomers did. They already act very differently than their boomer parents.

Moreover, many surveys and studies have predicted that the growth of cities will continue to outpace the growth of suburbs in the future. For example, see http://www.nielsen.com/us/en/insights/news/2014/millennials-prefer-cities-to-suburbs-subways-to-driveways.html.  The surveys show that millennials care about just what I mentioned: the environment and car-less living, a thriving arts and culture scene, shorter commutes, and not having huge mortgage debts. Many also express a desire to continue living in cities in the future.

So sure, plenty of people will follow in their parents' footsteps and move to the suburbs where every kid has its own room and there's a guest room and man-cave.  But, if I had to make a bet, I'd bet that when compared to previous generations, a much larger percentage of millennials will choose smaller and more urban homes than our parents.

I'd love to be proven wrong though, as that means most of us on this thread would get much better deals on our eventual in-city home purchases! The prices in my city right now is insane because of millenial demand.

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #36 on: June 16, 2015, 01:58:31 PM »
Keeping up with a large house or lot is a drag. It wastes so much time.  Plus all your bills are so much higher. However, conversely having too small a house with too many people is also a drag. I definitely will never go back to 1 bathroom. So awesome having 2!!!!

OK, help me understand.....What's the big benefit of the 2nd bathroom with 2 people?  Does it need to be 2 FULL baths, or is a 1/2 bath helpful?

2 baths is nice when you want to take a dump and your wife is in the shower. 

2 FULL baths is nice when you both have to be somewhere (say, work) and don't want one of you to have to get up early to take the first shower. 

Chris22

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #37 on: June 16, 2015, 02:01:02 PM »
I have no desire to clean, furnish, decorate or maintain more space or heat empty rooms. 

Yep yep yep. I'm not a homeowner yet, but we rent a ~700 sqft apartment, and it already feels like too much to clean, declutter, and maintain. I'd like a second bedroom to use as an office/guest room, but other than that, I don't need any more space. Whenever I watch HGTV (don't judge, it's my guilty pleasure) I always get a kick out of the people who "need" 4-5 bedroom, 3-4 bath houses for just them and their 1-2 kids. All I can think of is, have fun cleaning that.

IMO, with 2 kids, 4 bedrooms is ideal.  Master, 1 for each kid, 1 guest room or office.  2-3 baths is also ideal (Master, 1 for the kids, 1 guest bath so your guests aren't staring at your toothbrush, etc, when they go to the john.

Also, maybe anti-MMM, but don't discount cleaning people.  I pay a lady $60 every other week to clean my place.  That is a BARGAIN compared to dealing with it myself, and my house isn't that big.  That's 2-3-4 hours of your spare time you can buy back. 

Chris22

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #38 on: June 16, 2015, 02:09:55 PM »
Interesting articles. In my peer group, there are really two types of people: those who want big houses, who are buying now, and those who want to get and stay debt-free, and have decided that getting 'just enough' house is one way to do that. The latter group is much bigger, but many of those folks are still renting very small apartments.

It will be interesting to see how/if this changes over the next 10-20 years. I was under the impression that most millennials are flocking to smaller places in cities, but maybe my perception is skewed by my own experiences.

 

Millenials are flocking to smaller places in cities because they are generally young, have no kids, and things like "proximity to good bars" is more important than "in a good school district." 

That will change as they progress in life and start popping out kids, etc. 

Circle of life.

Unless my friends , peers, and I are serious anomalies, I would be surprised if what you said will be true.  Sure, most millenials are interested in ultimately living somewhere with good schools, but we are also very interested in living close to work and other fun stuff, in living in a low-maintenance place, and in avoiding large debts. We also mock the McMansions of our parents' generation, and have lived very frugally, both out of necessity (due to the economy) and because of high student debt loads. Many don't even want children.

Besides my one friend who wants four kids and grew up very poor, I can't think of a single friend (even the spendthrift ones) who has expressed a desire for the McMansion lifestyle.

Also, proximity to bars can easily be found in suburbs and rural areas. Short commutes, the ability to live without cars, and a thriving arts and culture scene are the things keeping my friends and me in cities.

I'm 33.  I'm probably not a lot older than you (I'm the bleeding edge of the millenials, the "Oregon Trail" generation if you will).  Trust me, you think you have it all planned.  You don't. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O1Z91YkPatw

We are virtually the same age. I'm also an Oregon-trail millennial. So we are probably equally as good/bad about predicting what our peers will do :).

I can tell you, however, that barring unforeseen and extreme circumstances, there is no way in hell I will ever have a McMansion. I could have comfortably mortgaged myself into one quite some time ago, but have preferred to rent smaller spaces, even as I've added family members. Even when I've considred buying, I have never once been tempted by a huge home.

I would guess that most people who are regulars around here do not suddenly shift to wanting McMansions many years after their entry into adulthood. We want FI and/or ER instead.

I'm not talking about YOU, I'm talking about OUR GENERATION.  McMansions?  Probably not for most of us, but are we, as a generation, going to continue to flock to small condos in the city near indy coffee shops?  No.  Hell, my own street is currently undergoing a revolution of sorts as all the old people who own homes last udated in 1975 either die off or move to assisted living, and sell their older, modestly sized (2000sq ft, +/-), single family homes to 30-somethings with kids and we are all remodeling them, etc, because even though they're smallish and outdated, they're in a great school district and we have young kids, so that's what we do.

I understand that we are talking about our generation. My response about myself was a response to your statement: "Trust me, you think you have it all planned. You don't." The "you"s in those sentences seemed to be aimed directly at me and not our entire generation.

And I don't really see how either of our anecdotes proves that one of us is right and the other is wrong.  Of course you, living in the suburbs, are going to see additions in the suburbs, and I, living in the city, am going to see hundreds of successful tiny condo developments in the city. Neither proves the point, although I do think it is worth pointing out that the house remodels you mention are not equivalent to upgrading to a bigger home. Additions, sure, but can you seriously say you've seen more new home additions than new condos? I doubt it. 

My overall point about your argument was that it is by no means a guarantee that as a generation, millennials will all start popping out kids and moving to giant houses in the suburbs. I know plenty who won't go that route. Indeed, there has been a large growth in cities and a large decline in the birth rate as millennials have become adults when compared to previous generations. That alone suggests that we shouldn't assume that millennials will act just like boomers did. They already act very differently than their boomer parents.

Moreover, many surveys and studies have predicted that the growth of cities will continue to outpace the growth of suburbs in the future. For example, see http://www.nielsen.com/us/en/insights/news/2014/millennials-prefer-cities-to-suburbs-subways-to-driveways.html.  The surveys show that millennials care about just what I mentioned: the environment and car-less living, a thriving arts and culture scene, shorter commutes, and not having huge mortgage debts. Many also express a desire to continue living in cities in the future.

So sure, plenty of people will follow in their parents' footsteps and move to the suburbs where every kid has its own room and there's a guest room and man-cave.  But, if I had to make a bet, I'd bet that when compared to previous generations, a much larger percentage of millennials will choose smaller and more urban homes than our parents.

I'd love to be proven wrong though, as that means most of us on this thread would get much better deals on our eventual in-city home purchases! The prices in my city right now is insane because of millenial demand.

Yes, but you're still talking to a group that's mostly in their 20s.  Oh, sure, on their surveys, etc, they're all going to stay in the city and not have a car and blah blah, and that's what they want, but then when (statistically most of them) has that kid and starts looking at schools and carting the kid to daycare and blah blah blah, they'll realize why their boring-ass parents moved to the burbs years ago.

Will some buck the trend?  Absolutely.  Will more buck it than in the past?  Maybe, I dunno.  But in general, those that do will generally be statistically insignificant.

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #39 on: June 16, 2015, 02:17:21 PM »
My entire history of homebuying, intentional rentals not included:

2003: 2197sf (me and a girlfriend)
2006: 1358sf (wife and two stepkids)
2006: 1610sf (same)
2011: 1907sf (me and 1-2 renters until I got married again)
2014: 1144sf (me and current wife)

We are now happier and wealthier than ever, living in 40% less space than the last house, and barely half the size of my first one. We could afford McMansion payments in NORAL for 10% of our gross income but we just didn't see the point....

Chris22

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #40 on: June 16, 2015, 02:32:16 PM »
My entire history of homebuying, intentional rentals not included:

2003: 2197sf (me and a girlfriend)
2006: 1358sf (wife and two stepkids)
2006: 1610sf (same)
2011: 1907sf (me and 1-2 renters until I got married again)
2014: 1144sf (me and current wife)

We are now happier and wealthier than ever, living in 40% less space than the last house, and barely half the size of my first one. We could afford McMansion payments in NORAL for 10% of our gross income but we just didn't see the point....

I've always felt pure size is somewhat of a silly metric on which to judge a home.  I own two homes, one is ~1750 sq ft, one is ~1800 sq ft.  The 1700 sq ft house is a tri-level, so one of the three (included in the 1700 sq ft) is half under ground.  The 1800 sq ft house is a ranch, has a full basement, about half of which is finished, so it's really ~3600 sq ft.  The 1800 sq ft house is worth maybe $260k, the tri-level ~$350k, due to the area each is in.  The taxes are 50% higher on the 1800sq ft house due to being in a town with little industry.  Which one is smarter to own?  It kinda depends, no?  Someone with an 1800 sq ft house with a basement (not included in the square footage) might laugh at someone with a 3000 sq ft house, but if that 3000 sq ft house has no basement, is that really worse?  And the floorplan of a house is so important to how it feels as well; I grew up in a colonial that was 3 floors of 900 sq ft (one of which was a finished basement) but the top two floors were so chopped up into small rooms that it felt uncomfortably small (the main room couldn't sit 4 people to watch TV unless 1 sat at the kitchen table). 

celticmyst08

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #41 on: June 16, 2015, 03:06:27 PM »
Yep yep yep. I'm not a homeowner yet, but we rent a ~700 sqft apartment, and it already feels like too much to clean, declutter, and maintain. I'd like a second bedroom to use as an office/guest room, but other than that, I don't need any more space. Whenever I watch HGTV (don't judge, it's my guilty pleasure) I always get a kick out of the people who "need" 4-5 bedroom, 3-4 bath houses for just them and their 1-2 kids. All I can think of is, have fun cleaning that.

IMO, with 2 kids, 4 bedrooms is ideal.  Master, 1 for each kid, 1 guest room or office.  2-3 baths is also ideal (Master, 1 for the kids, 1 guest bath so your guests aren't staring at your toothbrush, etc, when they go to the john.

True, although I would argue that you don't need giant bedrooms/bathrooms. It always cracks me up to see people moaning over "Oh, this room is just too small for little Susie!" when it's as big as my current living room. Also, and maybe this isn't really done anymore, but when my sister and I were kids we shared a room until I was a teenager. Obviously this has its limits and won't work in every situation, but I feel like it's assumed now that kids need their own room even when they're too young to care.

I'd like 2-3 bedrooms too, but I don't care if they're small. I just like the separation/privacy (mainly for guests an/or a home office).

MoneyCat

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #42 on: June 16, 2015, 03:13:50 PM »
I have absolutely no desire to upgrade my house.  ~1500 sq ft suits my needs very well.  In fact, there are several rooms here that I don't even really use, but there were no smaller houses in my community.  I don't really understand why anyone would want a big house.  It's a massive waste of money and time and ends up enslaving you.

zephyr911

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #43 on: June 16, 2015, 03:14:51 PM »
My entire history of homebuying, intentional rentals not included:

2003: 2197sf (me and a girlfriend)
2006: 1358sf (wife and two stepkids)
2006: 1610sf (same)
2011: 1907sf (me and 1-2 renters until I got married again)
2014: 1144sf (me and current wife)

We are now happier and wealthier than ever, living in 40% less space than the last house, and barely half the size of my first one. We could afford McMansion payments in NORAL for 10% of our gross income but we just didn't see the point....

I've always felt pure size is somewhat of a silly metric on which to judge a home.  I own two homes, one is ~1750 sq ft, one is ~1800 sq ft.  The 1700 sq ft house is a tri-level, so one of the three (included in the 1700 sq ft) is half under ground.  The 1800 sq ft house is a ranch, has a full basement, about half of which is finished, so it's really ~3600 sq ft.  The 1800 sq ft house is worth maybe $260k, the tri-level ~$350k, due to the area each is in.  The taxes are 50% higher on the 1800sq ft house due to being in a town with little industry.  Which one is smarter to own?  It kinda depends, no?  Someone with an 1800 sq ft house with a basement (not included in the square footage) might laugh at someone with a 3000 sq ft house, but if that 3000 sq ft house has no basement, is that really worse?  And the floorplan of a house is so important to how it feels as well; I grew up in a colonial that was 3 floors of 900 sq ft (one of which was a finished basement) but the top two floors were so chopped up into small rooms that it felt uncomfortably small (the main room couldn't sit 4 people to watch TV unless 1 sat at the kitchen table).
Oh, I'm absolutely with you. Loving the current house isn't so much about the size as the outdoor amenities and the location. Likewise, I was really happy in my first house but I could have been just as happy with half the square footage - because that's what I actually used. I had a guest room that got used maybe 5 times in three years, an office I never finished and barely ever went in, and another room that literally never got used for anything but storage (and wasn't even needed for that).
I'm not opposed to big houses in general, but the decision to buy more space should be a mindful one. It's especially bad here because space is so cheap, and people buy horrendously wasteful homes just because they can afford to. All these people heating and cooling 3000, 4000sf, even more, for a small family, paying taxes and maintenance and maids... some have entire floors they barely visit... it boggles the mind.

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #44 on: June 16, 2015, 03:19:24 PM »
I shared the OP's link with a co-worker who is planning on downsizing. Told him the stars are aligning and he should move quickly. He's a mustachian-in-hiding.

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #45 on: June 16, 2015, 03:19:51 PM »
Interestingly enough, my parents seem to buy larger so they can have their kids and grand kids stay there.  They are the generation that wants to be with the family.  Not have them stay in hotels. 

My generation and the younger would rather stay in a hotel with their spouse and let the grand kids stay at the grand parents :)

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #46 on: June 16, 2015, 03:23:07 PM »
Yep yep yep. I'm not a homeowner yet, but we rent a ~700 sqft apartment, and it already feels like too much to clean, declutter, and maintain. I'd like a second bedroom to use as an office/guest room, but other than that, I don't need any more space. Whenever I watch HGTV (don't judge, it's my guilty pleasure) I always get a kick out of the people who "need" 4-5 bedroom, 3-4 bath houses for just them and their 1-2 kids. All I can think of is, have fun cleaning that.

IMO, with 2 kids, 4 bedrooms is ideal.  Master, 1 for each kid, 1 guest room or office.  2-3 baths is also ideal (Master, 1 for the kids, 1 guest bath so your guests aren't staring at your toothbrush, etc, when they go to the john.

True, although I would argue that you don't need giant bedrooms/bathrooms. It always cracks me up to see people moaning over "Oh, this room is just too small for little Susie!" when it's as big as my current living room. Also, and maybe this isn't really done anymore, but when my sister and I were kids we shared a room until I was a teenager. Obviously this has its limits and won't work in every situation, but I feel like it's assumed now that kids need their own room even when they're too young to care.

I'd like 2-3 bedrooms too, but I don't care if they're small. I just like the separation/privacy (mainly for guests an/or a home office).

I grew up with my own room that was basically "my space" and as long as I can afford to, I'd like to give my kid the same priviledge.  I also only plan on having max 2 kids, and the resale value on a 2br house is dismal, so a 3br is a minimum IMO. 

On the size, I agree, the smallest non-master BR I have in my houses is probably 10x10 or 10x11.  As long as you can put a queen bed in there, I don't care, but it does have to accomodate that to be useful IMO.  My daughter's new BR is about 12 x 10, it fits her full size bed just fine.

Chris22

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #47 on: June 16, 2015, 03:37:00 PM »
Interestingly enough, my parents seem to buy larger so they can have their kids and grand kids stay there.  They are the generation that wants to be with the family.  Not have them stay in hotels. 

My generation and the younger would rather stay in a hotel with their spouse and let the grand kids stay at the grand parents :)

My parents built their own house about 10 years ago, 1 master on the main floor and 2 BR upstairs.  At the time, my sister and I told them to build another room over the garage* to use as a bonus room/bedroom, and they said no.  Well now my sister and I are both married, and my wife and I have a kid, and my grandma is fortunately still with us, so when we're all home for Christmas they really need 4-5 bedrooms not 3.  My daughter sleeps in the room with my wife and I, and my sister and her husband stays at a hotel.  And my mom hates it.  Well, toldja so. 

*Not even build, just finish.  They coulda trussed the space to allow for more living space, but instead they didn't and now it's just a cavity above the garage, can't be finished or anything.  Probably would have cost $5k to do it at the time, would cost $10s of thousands to do now.

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #48 on: June 16, 2015, 03:50:54 PM »
We just bought an 1100-sq ft 3 bed, 1.5 bath ranch with a 2-car garage. This was the absolute smallest my husband would go, and he is already complaining about the fact that it doesn't have a full second bath. He is worried about shower schedules when my sister (our first visitor in the three months we've been in the house) stays with us for a week. I, on the other hand, am a bit appalled that we have an entire room (though admittedly a small one) dedicated to the maybe 3 weeks a year we have guests, let alone needing another bathroom. Every now and then he asks where we're going to put the imaginary kid we both agreed we don't want to have. We've always been pretty frugal, but we've been trying to level up to "conscious consumers" for about a year now, and I think it's REALLY tough for him to fight the concept of, "well, this is what people expect from us." In his defense, he has been the one leading the charge in breaking our habit of eating out even when I get whiny about it.

Cassie

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Re: Big Houses back in demand
« Reply #49 on: June 16, 2015, 09:45:43 PM »
I grew up with 5 people & shared a bedroom with my sister who was 8 years older.  I also had a family of 5 with 1600 sq ft & one bathroom. One obvious solution is that some people shower at night. Also you never lock the bathroom door & if someone shits while you in shower they had better be dying.   I knew a family with 9 people & one bathroom & they made it work. Now we live in 1400 sq ft with 2 full baths-pure luxury.