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Old 10-17-2017, 08:13 AM
 
Location: Philadelphia/South Jersey area
2,879 posts, read 1,408,873 times
Reputation: 10108

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Quote:
Originally Posted by soulsurv View Post
I think it was the way of many of us (boomers) to "one-up" our parents, as they tried to do, remember...? My 1st-generation, Depression-Era Italian parents grew up in row homes in South Philly. No yards - perhaps a teeny patch of green in back where they could grow their beloved tomato plants.

Then the "big move" out to the burbs and a 1500 SF pristine split-level, with a nice, thick lawn and one and ONE-HALF baths You never saw such neighborhood appreciation (in the self-pride sense) as displayed by the city escapees which they did for their children.

Both my brother (two kids) and I (no kids; 2-3 big dogs) had tiny starter homes. Later moved on to the 2000 SF 4 bedroom, TWO and one-half baths with the third or half acre. That was enough for us. Now both greatly downsized: brother because kids are grown and out and me because my job market tanked and could no longer afford the upkeep. I never had the need and he never had the desire for the rather pretentious, gaudy McMansion. Personally, I find them utterly ridiculous, and I resent them for raping the landscape in many farming areas here in my state of PA. WHY do people need that much? I don't get it; and I suppose I never will.

An acquaintance of mine recently boasted that her son, who lives in an enormous home (5 bedrooms, 4 baths), recently had his 3-car garage converted to EXTRA CLOSET SPACE for his two teenage daughters, both of whom have huge bedrooms with huge closets already. What the HECK??!! Go figure.
because we do! why do we have to buy teeny tiny houses because YOU don't get it. Sorry but seriously, how come you get to be the size police and decide what others have to like and not like?

fine you find them utterly ridiculous. I on the other hand LOVE my big house. Yes my sons have their own bedrooms and their own bathrooms.

Yes, no one NEEDS a big house,
no one NEEDS a vacation but do you take one.
no one NEEDS air conditioning but I betcha you wouldn't think of living in Pa without it.

I happy you are living a sparse, "need" only life. that's what you choose. but since you did ask (see bolded). I need that much space because I have a fear of teeny tiny spaces. the give me anxiety and I would not be comfortable if I have to squeeze into a bathroom or a kitchen. One thing I learned from my mother, Your house is your place of refuge. your daily happy place. I like space in mine.

Now if for some reason down the road, I find it's hard to sell, well I guess my sons will inherit a lot of extra cash.
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Old 10-17-2017, 08:21 AM
 
13,964 posts, read 7,434,967 times
Reputation: 25477
Quote:
Originally Posted by Serious Conversation View Post
M
Unfortunately, it is rare to find newer SFHs around that size. In my town, we basically have three categories of homes.

1) 1930s-1950s small homes (mostly in the city) with most <1200 sq. ft. Many of these homes have not been maintained and require significant updating. The city is not a desirable place to live. Many of these homes are very inexpensive, but the smell from the heavy industry, crime, and lack of updated inventory make these not desirable.

2) 60s-90s suburban style development. Many of these homes are well over 2,500 sq. ft. Again, many have not been updated well. These are often overpriced for what they are, and with the weakened local economy, they are unaffordable for many average workers.

3) Anything built since the 2000s and the high end. These homes are generally kept up well, but command a significant premium. Often large homes. There are relatively few of these due to the trend of newer construction being much more expensive.
That's pretty much everywhere, except for the "mostly in the city" part for smaller houses. Most single family homes built before 1960 were pretty small.

Personally, I value location and fit/finish/amenities over house size. My house is 992 square feet. I spent $200+ per square foot remodeling it. I can seat 8 at the dining table. I have two bedrooms with queen beds. My girlfriend and I shower together. We have no issue sharing a single bathroom that has a 3' x 5' shower enclosure with dual shower heads.

The problem with a small house is "stuff". If you buy something, it's to replace other "stuff" you already own. You can't simply keep letting it pile up.
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Old 10-17-2017, 08:51 AM
 
Location: Paranoid State
13,047 posts, read 10,454,884 times
Reputation: 15684
Quote:
Originally Posted by galaxyhi View Post
I never could understand why someone NEEDS a 3 or 4k sqft house. Some retail stores are that.
Economics teaches us that there is no such thing as an economic need, only wants & desires. You want a small house; I want a large one. Neither of us needs them.

Quote:
Originally Posted by galaxyhi View Post
... You've got the equivalent of a Victorian sized mansion!
You're off by an order of magnitude. No mansion is only 3K or 4K square feet. Once you get past 20,000 to 40,000 square feet, you're getting into mansion territory, such as these:







Quote:
Originally Posted by galaxyhi View Post
The trend towards smaller or "tiny" houses fuels the smaller house generation, who doesn't want a "McMansion" to clean and keep up.
You're using the word "McMansion" as a synonym for "large house." It is not. While typically large, a McMansion, in architecture, has a fairly specific definition. It refers to the facade violating several architectural precepts and design principles

Not all large houses are McMansions.

Here are a few that truly are McMansions, not because they are large but because of bad design:












Last edited by SportyandMisty; 10-17-2017 at 09:54 AM..
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Old 10-17-2017, 08:53 AM
 
Location: Tennessee
23,624 posts, read 17,606,575 times
Reputation: 27696
Quote:
Originally Posted by GeoffD View Post
That's pretty much everywhere, except for the "mostly in the city" part for smaller houses. Most single family homes built before 1960 were pretty small.

Personally, I value location and fit/finish/amenities over house size. My house is 992 square feet. I spent $200+ per square foot remodeling it. I can seat 8 at the dining table. I have two bedrooms with queen beds. My girlfriend and I shower together. We have no issue sharing a single bathroom that has a 3' x 5' shower enclosure with dual shower heads.

The problem with a small house is "stuff". If you buy something, it's to replace other "stuff" you already own. You can't simply keep letting it pile up.
Around here, you could probably bulldoze it and build new for that price. Most new construction is $125-$150 sq. ft. Of course, MA prices are going to be much worse.

I have boxes upon boxes of books and other items that have little intrinsic value, but take up a lot of space to store. I haven't even looked in those boxes since I moved back a year ago. For most of us, if an item has been in storage that long and it is not missed, it could be sold or trashed.
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Old 10-17-2017, 09:02 AM
 
10,248 posts, read 12,276,462 times
Reputation: 14124
Article is too specific to be applied nationwide.

I think the mega mansions will sit for awhile. Both my uncles needed years to unload 11-14K sq ft homes. Both got less than asking price (one started at 3mm, sold for 2.2 after 4 years, the other started at 8.8 got 7.1 after 2 1/2 years). Coincidentally that 7.1 sale just got resold in the last month for 5.6mm after another 18 months on the market. Neither home was a fire sale but neither person wanted the expense of ownership either, both moved into condos.

Houses get old, if people don't remodel then they get tough to sell. Buyers usually pay top dollar for new construction or newly remodeled. Taxes, insurance, upkeep on mansions adds up especially when you look at it as only 1-2 people living there. The 7.1 million dollar house listed above had about a 200K overhead (taxes alone were 145K). So every 5 years the place cost you another MILLION dollars.
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Old 10-17-2017, 09:07 AM
 
Location: ☀️ SWFL ⛱ 🌴
2,439 posts, read 1,675,248 times
Reputation: 8716
Quote:
Originally Posted by GeoffD View Post
That's pretty much everywhere, except for the "mostly in the city" part for smaller houses. Most single family homes built before 1960 were pretty small.

Personally, I value location and fit/finish/amenities over house size. My house is 992 square feet. I spent $200+ per square foot remodeling it. I can seat 8 at the dining table. I have two bedrooms with queen beds. My girlfriend and I shower together. We have no issue sharing a single bathroom that has a 3' x 5' shower enclosure with dual shower heads.

The problem with a small house is "stuff". If you buy something, it's to replace other "stuff" you already own. You can't simply keep letting it pile up.
Smaller homes in the North and other areas have more useable space with attics and basements, which are not counted in the square footage. In FL we have a bigger house but no useable attic and no basement. Square footage descriptions are for the living areas only, above ground, not attics or basements. Garages are another area not considered in square footage either. There is lots of wiggle room on some of these so-called small houses.

I'm not singling you out, GeoffD. I'm pointing out that stating square footage isn't telling the entire story. My current house is larger, but with less storage areas than our smaller house. I could smugly say what a small house I lived in which is true, but disingenuous since I'm ignoring the basement and attic spaces that I used.

I have no place to hide "stuff" here, which is actually to my advantage, but it took a while to appreciate it.

Last edited by jean_ji; 10-17-2017 at 09:31 AM..
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Old 10-17-2017, 09:16 AM
 
Location: Paranoid State
13,047 posts, read 10,454,884 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Daisy Grey View Post
My ex wound up selling our last house as a loss.
But... but... but... real estate only goes up, right?
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Old 10-17-2017, 09:18 AM
 
13,964 posts, read 7,434,967 times
Reputation: 25477
Quote:
Originally Posted by jean_ji View Post
Smaller homes in the North and other areas have more space with attics and basements, which are not counted in the square footage. In FL we have a bigger house but no useable attic and no basement. Square footage descriptions are for the living areas only, above ground, not attics or basements. Garages are another area not considered in square footage either, so lots of wiggle room on some so-called small houses.

I'm not pointing this at you GeoffD. I probably have less space to use than some of those listing small square footage but leaving out basement and attic spaces they use. I like it this way, because I have no place to hide stuff anymore.
I vaulted the ceilings in most of my small house. I have a bit of unconditioned attic space but I have to be careful about what I store there. Even with soffit vents and a ridge vent, it gets pretty hot in the summer and it's certainly pretty chilly in the winter.

The water table is really high on my lot. I have a crawl space. A full basement wouldn't be possible.
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Old 10-17-2017, 09:30 AM
 
Location: ☀️ SWFL ⛱ 🌴
2,439 posts, read 1,675,248 times
Reputation: 8716
Quote:
Originally Posted by GeoffD View Post
I vaulted the ceilings in most of my small house. I have a bit of unconditioned attic space but I have to be careful about what I store there. Even with soffit vents and a ridge vent, it gets pretty hot in the summer and it's certainly pretty chilly in the winter.

The water table is really high on my lot. I have a crawl space. A full basement wouldn't be possible.
So you truly have a small house. Vaulted ceilings are a good choice for opening up a small space. I believe you posted pictures before and you maximized a small space beautifully. Thank you for explaining your square footage, it gives a more complete picture.
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Old 10-17-2017, 09:58 AM
 
29,789 posts, read 34,889,516 times
Reputation: 11715
Quote:
Originally Posted by SportyandMisty View Post
But... but... but... real estate only goes up, right?
Aghh that is the challenging part of the equation if one is planning a change in residence either at or during retirement. Trying to coordinate retirement in advance with a market peak is very difficult and avoiding a trough very desirable.
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