I was checking out the magazine rack at the grocery store today, and they had a bunch of magazines about living in "small" houses. One defined "small" as anything under 1700 sq ft, and another as 2000 sq feet or less!
I'm sorry, but 2000 sq ft is NOT small!!!
I grew up in a 1000 sq ft bungalow. It was OK sized for a family of 4 (2 br, 1 ba), but my parents are pack rats, so it was rather full. The layout wasn't the best, either. The living room was HUGE, the dining room was large, and the kitchen, and both bedrooms were on the small side.
My first apartment after I got married was 500 sq feet, and it was definitely way too small, because the design sucked. The bedrooms, especially, were wonky, with bump-in
windows that really dictated what sized furniture you could have and where you could put it (e.g., in one of the 2 bedrooms, the bump in window was 1" too close to the wall to allow a full sized bed between the window and the wall.) It was also poorly lit, and the tile floors were FREEZING all winter long. The kitchen was so small that you literally couldn't have 2 people in it at once, and the ONLY counter space was in front of the microwave.
From there, we moved to a 2 bedroom, 1.5 bath, 1000 square foot townhouse, which had an AWESOME layout. It was perfect for our family at the time.
Our next apartment was base housing in Germany. We had a 1500 square foot apartment plus a storage room in the basement. It had 3 bedrooms & 1 bath. That was a great size, but again, the layout wasn't perfect. The kitchen was on the small side, and the livingroom/diningroom "great room" was one large rectangle that never really worked well for us. Even when it was neat and clean, it didn't ever look truly pulled together.
Right now, we're staying in IL's huge, 4 bedroom, 2.5 bath home while DH looks for a job. We're hoping we can afford a 1700-2000 square foot home with a nice sized yard. I thought that was huge!