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New Homes Now 61% Bigger Than 40 Years Ago

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In 2015, the median size of a completed single-family home was 2,467 square feet, according to new numbers from the U.S. Census Bureau’s annual Characteristics of New Housing. That’s 61 percent larger than it was 40 years ago and 11 percent bigger than a decade ago. And, in addition to the extra square footage, today’s new homes are also packed with more features than they used to have. For example, more than 90 percent of new homes built last year had air conditioning and at least two bathrooms. By comparison, a little less than half of the new homes built in 1975 had air conditioning and only 60 percent of them had two bathrooms. But along with becoming bigger, new homes have also climbed in price. In fact, the median sales price of new single-family homes sold last year was $296,400. That sets a new record and partly explains the reason why first-time home buyers have had difficulty finding affordable homes this spring. With the average new home selling for around $300,000, buyers looking for an affordable, starter home in many markets are limited to choosing from previously owned homes – as the majority of new homes are priced beyond their budget. Also in the report, among new homes built last year, 47 percent had four or more bedrooms, more than half were two stories, and a majority had two-car garages. More here.

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