Size of New Homes Continues to Edge Up

According to recently released data from the Survey of Construction (SOC), the trend toward smaller home sizes, which started during the market downturn, has since reversed itself. In fact, since 2009, the median size of newly started single-family homes has increased steadily to a record high of over 2,300 square feet last year.

The SOC is conducted by the Census Bureau, partly funded by HUD, and the source of the familiar monthly series on housing starts.  House size is one of several characteristics in the SOC data that NAHB analyzed in a recent HousingEconomics.com Special Study (an excerpt on financing of new homes appeared in a blog on August 7).

In addition to square footage, several other new home characteristics show an upward trend after 2009.  The average number of bathrooms in new single-family homes rose to a new high of 2.56 in 2012 following a period in which it edged down to as low as 2.20 in 2009.  The average number of bedrooms in newly started homes also declined during the downturn, but has since very gradually increased.

Size of New HomesThe pattern of temporary decline in house size during a downturn followed by recovery and resumption of the upward trend has happened before—the last time coincident with the recession and recovery of the early 1980s.  Many experts thought that the decline in the 2000s was due to factors that would prove to be more permanent, such as desire to keep energy costs down.

When the size of new homes began to rise again in 2010, tight credit conditions were squeezing many first time and other marginal buyers out of the market.  As of 2012, housing markets had only recovered to a modest extent, so an atypical mix of buyers in the market could still be a factor behind the ongoing upward trend in the size of new homes.

15 Responses to Size of New Homes Continues to Edge Up

  1. […] Despite improving lending conditions, it is still difficult for some buyers to obtain mortgages, and this fact influences the mix of prospective home buyers. This in turn may be having an impact on the average size of newly built homes. According to recently released data from the Survey of Construction, the trend toward smaller home s…. […]

  2. […] Despite improving lending conditions, it is still difficult for some buyers to obtain mortgages, and this fact influences the mix of prospective home buyers. This in turn may be having an impact on the average size of newly built homes. According to recently released data from the Survey of Construction, the trend toward smaller home s…. […]

  3. […] The SOC is conducted by the Census Bureau, partly funded by HUD, and the source of the familiar monthly series on housing starts. House size is one of several characteristics in the SOC data that NAHB analyzed in a recent HousingEconomics.com Special Study. […]

  4. […] the most recent Survey of Construction found that the average number of bathrooms in new single-family homes was 2.56 in 2012, another new […]

  5. […] noted in NAHB’s analysis of 2012 Census construction data, the recent rise in single-family home sizes is consistent with the historical pattern coming out […]

  6. […] noted in NAHB’s analysis of 2012 Census construction data, the recent rise in single-family home sizes is consistent with the historical pattern coming out […]

  7. […] noted in NAHB’s analysis of 2012 Census construction data, the recent rise in single-family home sizes is consistent with the historical pattern coming out […]

  8. […] the most recent Survey of Construction found that the average number of bathrooms in new single-family homes was 2.56 in 2012, another new […]

  9. […] due to market mix. Renters tend toward smaller units than owner-occupiers. In 2012, for example, the median size of all multifamily units completed was 1,098 square feet. However, for rental apartments the median was 1,081, while it was a larger 1,466 for […]

  10. […] to market mix. Renters tend toward smaller units than owner-occupiers. In 2012, for example, the median size of all multifamily units completed was 1,098 square feet. However, for rental apartments the median was 1,081, while it was a larger 1,466 […]

  11. […] due to market mix. Renters tend toward smaller units than owner-occupiers. In 2012, for example, the median size of all multifamily units completed was 1,098 square feet. However, for rental apartments the median was 1,081, while it was a larger 1,466 for […]

  12. […] due to market mix. Renters tend toward smaller units than owner-occupiers. In 2012, for example, the median size of all multifamily units completed was 1,098 square feet. However, for rental apartments the median was 1,081, while it was a larger 1,466 for […]

  13. […] The SOC is conducted by the Census Bureau, partly funded by HUD, and the source of the familiar monthly series on housing starts. House size is one of several characteristics in the SOC data that NAHB analyzed in a recentHousingEconomics.com Special Study. […]

  14. […] noted in NAHB’s analysis of 2012 Census construction data, the recent rise in single-family home sizes is consistent with the historical pattern coming out […]

Leave a Reply to House Size Edging Back Up | McNair Custom Homes Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: