Aussie house sizes shrinking

Adam Smith 31 October 2016

really small houseThe average home size in Australia is shrinking, knocking the country off its pedestal for the biggest average home size in the world.

A report from CommSec shows the average size of a detached home has fallen from 247.7 square metres in 2008-09 to 231 square metres last financial year, Fairfax has reported. Apartments are shrinking as well, the report found. The average apartment size last financial year was 131.3 square metres, down from 143.7 square metres at its peak in 2004-05, Fairfax reported.

CommSec chief economist Craig James told Fairfax a number of factors were leading to the decline in average home size, including changing housing-style preferences and smaller lot sizes.

"Australians are reassessing their needs. Couples and small families are considering apartments. Down-sizers are also moving closer to the city or sea-changing or tree-changing. There is less need for big 4-5 bedroom homes and it is clear across suburbia that consolidation continues to occur – homes being demolished and replaced with apartments, town houses and villas,” James said.

Australia had previously topped global lists for average new home sizes, but has now been overtaken by the United States. US new home sizes averaged 250 square metres last year.

“US houses built in 2015 were the biggest on record and arguably the biggest in the world,” the CommSec report said.

While the average house size in Australia has shrunk, it remains 10% larger than 20 years ago and 30% larger than 30 years ago, Fairfax reported.

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