Home Size Expectations vs. Reality in the US, Compared with 8 Other Countries

Real estate portal Point2 Homes surveyed 29,000 people in the US and eight other countries on their actual home sizes and compared the answers with their expectations for what a good size home is. Results confirm some expectations, but also challenge the preconceived idea that Americans dream of some of the biggest houses in the world.

Survey data gathered from US respondents was compared to answers from Canada, the U.K., France, Germany, Spain, Mexico, Brazil and Australia – all countries with a wide array of housing options.

Americans already have the second-largest homes on average, out of all survey respondents, surpassed only by Australians, survey results show. On the other hand, their homes are 30% larger than those of respondents in the European countries. When it comes to distribution of space per person, the US tops the list. Americans enjoy 45% more personal space than the British and French, and 70% more space than Spanish respondents. And yet, 38% of survey-takers in the US said they would prefer larger homes.

Despite the fact that home size in the US increased by over 60% in the past four decades, Americans would still like their homes to get bigger. Out of the US respondents who live in homes under 1,000 sq. ft., 74% declared a good sized home should have more space than that. Overall, 27% of respondents said a good sized home should be between 1,001 and 1,500 square feet. On the other hand, answers across Canada and the surveyed European countries show that house sizes among respondents are very close to their ideal size homes. Moreover, Australia, U.K. and Mexico respondents predominantly answered that a good sized home should provide over 2,500 sq. ft. of space. In fact, British respondents’ expectations far exceed those of Americans.

The research concludes that even though home size expectations don’t vary much across US regions, prices do. The question may arise whether Americans can afford the bigger homes they want, given that homeownership in San Francisco and Los Angeles is becoming an increasingly difficult prospect.

About Point2 Homes: Point2 Homes is a real estate search portal and a division of Yardi Systems Inc. It supports home searches in the US, Canada, and many international locations.

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