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What is a reasonably sized house? - Page 2

post #21 of 106
We downsized from a 1400 sq ft house (2200 if you include the leaky basement) to 720 sq ft (no basement or attic) nine months ago. Our old house felt empty since we didn't have "enough" furniture or use all the space.

The new house is fine in the summer, since we spend a lot of time outside, but I felt a little crazy in the winter. Main problems are the pets and toys - they are always underfoot.

We are expecting a baby girl now, and we know the kids (one boy one girl) will want their own rooms eventually, so we'll either be adding on or moving. We only have one functioning bedroom, the other is only 8x7ft with no closet, and we use it mainly as a walk-in storage closet/office and away-room for the dogs.

I think it all depends on floor plan for the most part. This house would be fine if we had just one kid or two same-sex kids, and no indoor pets. I think anything over 1500 sq ft is just unneccessary, unless you have a big family (more than 4 kids?). Once you get over 1500, you're looking at little-used, formal rooms like "dining rooms" and "living rooms" that sit empty or just store furniture most the year.
post #22 of 106
we just moved from 1000 sq ft. size being the main reason

now were in 1550.. its great
i wouldnt call it perfect..Idealy we'd have a 4th bedroom, my kids rooms would be just a tad bit bigger & their bath just a bit bigger.
all other rooms are perfect size i think
post #23 of 106
Our family of 6 lives in a 1 and a half bd 1 bath house. It sits on an acre of land, 1700 sq ft and paid 52k for it. The three kids sleep in the half bedroom while we co-sleep with our newest baby. We lived here for 4 years.

We've gotten rid of A LOT of clutter. Life is simple and it works for us. Although I wish we had a bigger place sometimes.

Dh and I want to take courses on sustainable energy efficient homes at
Cedar Valley College. We'll start our own business and promote energy saving homes.

I do not envy my friends who have 2000+ sq ft homes because they're always complaining about how high their utility bills are.

We ultimately want to build a straw bale house and harvest rainwater.
post #24 of 106
our house is 1700 square feet--4 people and two dogs live here. quite honestly, we could use one more bedroom, but the size is just fine.
post #25 of 106
much depends on lay out, but I think 250 to 300 sq feet per person is good size.
post #26 of 106
We have 1500 sq ft and it is way too big. We figure that in coming years we will grow into it though.
post #27 of 106
I'm pretty happy with 1700 square feet. We could lose a bit and still be okay, I mean if DS's room was a little smaller, our room could be smaller. If it wasn't so broken up, we could lose a bit downstairs too.

I feel this is pretty reasonable sized. I prefer larger sparsely furnished rooms in general - I don't think extra space is bad, if you don't fill it up with stuff.
post #28 of 106
I think layout is very important, as is your clutter and lifestyle, more so then the actual square footage. What is reasonable to me is not necessarily going to be reasonable to you. We have 2 home offices for example as both my husband and I work out of the home. Thus we need more space then the average family where people work outside of the home. I do agree that houses seem to get bigger and bigger these days with a lot of wasted and/or unused space which eventually gets filled with stuff.
post #29 of 106
We are in a 2 br condo with 1400 sq ft and it is a great space. I would be more satisfied if we had a yard though. It is a pain to have to walk up and down just to take the dog out (poor thing is 15 yo with arthritis) and there is nowhere for a garden. We'd also like some workspace for tools and such - ideally a detached garage. We could easily get by with 1500 - 1800 sq ft, but with the other things we want (like land, a large wraparound porch, a playroom, a basement or cellar for storage, and a house with history) we haven't found what we like for much less than 2000 sq ft, and we can't afford it now anyway
post #30 of 106
Our house is just over 2,000 sq ft. If we had one more bedroom it would be perfect.
post #31 of 106
There are three of us and we have 1850 square feet total including the basement which is mostly finished. It is just fine right now, but we would need at least one more room if we ever had another child. (We have a huge garage/shop though, which really helps with storage)
post #32 of 106
We are a family of four with a 1700 sq foot house. We only use two bedrooms at the moment. The third bedroom is for my IL's when they come for extended visits. It seems a little too big of a house. Probably due in part to a huge greatroom that is most of the house, with my girls sharing one room off to one side and dh and I in the other room off the other side. The third bedroom is down the hall. We hardly use our huge master bathroom and I think it's a waste of space. We have a garden tub, separate glass shower, separate toilet room and two sinks (and a make-up counter!). We mostly use the kids' bathroom because it's easier to just clean one bathroom. We bought the house to sell soon after as an investment but ended up keeping it long-term. I think 1200-1500 feet would be ideal.

I agree about the clutter-- if you can keep your house simple and reduce clutter a little space goes a long way.
post #33 of 106
Our house is about 1300 sq ft, 3 bdrms 2 baths. There's currently two adults and one toddler and it feels HUGE. I could see us comfortably having two adults and two teens. I think more than two children would feel really crowded though. Part of our house was added on a few years ago (before we bought it) so the layout is a little awkward. With a perfect layout, I could see 1300 sq ft fitting more people comfortably.
post #34 of 106
Our current apartment is 1076 sqare feet. It is a good size for us now, but it's getting a bit cramped (toys everywhere, the girls' room is pretty small, the office / toyroom / playroom is a bit cluttered). We have a small storeroom upstairs and that does help.

We are moving in a few months to a 1500 square foot apartment which will be our "forever home." It is 4br, bigger living / dining room, extra bathroom. I really think it's all in the layout. Our apartment now has no wasted space, but I just would like to seperate the "office room" from the "toy room." When we move will will be able to have 2 bedrooms for kids + a playroom (and the "office" will just be a corner of the playroom (biggest bedroom so plenty of space). I can't wait to have teh toys out of my living room!
post #35 of 106
Originally Posted by gottaknit View Post
I think it all depends on floor plan for the most part. This house would be fine if we had just one kid or two same-sex kids, and no indoor pets. I think anything over 1500 sq ft is just unneccessary, unless you have a big family (more than 4 kids?). Once you get over 1500, you're looking at little-used, formal rooms like "dining rooms" and "living rooms" that sit empty or just store furniture most the year.
I think this REALLY depends on your lifestyle. We always had a separate dining room, and we used it quite a lot--every Shabbat and holiday, and whenever we had company. I would always want a dining space that wasn't in the kitchen (in fact I would prefer no eat in kitchen and a separate dining room to only a kitchen-diner). And my grandma had a living room and then a den downstairs, and the living room got used all the time--it was where people would sit and talk (it helped that the living and dining rooms where nearly open to each other; we'd finish the meal, then move to the living room). Her house wasn't huge--it was your typical 1950s split--but it was good to have that separation. The TV watchers were separate from the gossipers.
post #36 of 106
Thread Starter 
The house we lived in before this one was 1100 square feet for just dh and me and our cat, but the layout was terrible! So I agree with the layout bit. Our current house is way, way nicer even though it's only about half as large. The only problem is that our living room is the size of a walk-in closet (and our walk-in closet is...well...we won't go there ).

There are some wonderful, thoughtful responses in this thread. Thank you.
post #37 of 106
1500-1600 sq. ft. seems reasonable. We have two opposite gender kids that need separate rooms as they get older for privacy. Also, I absolutely need my own art space where no one else clutters it (sanity issue!). In winter when we're all indoors some empty space to run around helps keep everyone sane.
post #38 of 106
We're a family of 3 or 4, depending on whether DSS is at our house or his mother's, and we are very happy in a 900 sq ft 2 bd/2 ba apartment right now. DH, DS and I share a room, and DSS has his own. When DS is older, he and DSS will share a room. We're looking into buying, though, because we want to have 1 or 2 more DC and so will eventually want a larger place, and the market in our area is very buyer friendly right now. We've looked at a few houses and the one that we think will best meet our present and future needs is a 1200 sq ft. 3 bd/1 ba house. 3 bedrooms means that no more than 2 DC will share a bedroom, and we will have a guest bedroom until as-yet-unconceived DC #3 is ready to leave our room. The living areas are set up there is a somewhat separate family room that can be a computer room/toy room.
post #39 of 106
We are a family of six and our house is 1370 sq. Ft. It is a 3 bedroom/2 bathroom with kithen/dinning/ living room all together. Right now it is a perfect size. We have a very open floor plan and I think that helps. Plus we spend lots of time outside. We are planning to convert the garage into more living space as the kids get older. We have 3 girls and 1 boy. Right now ds has his own room and the dd1 & dd2 share a room and dd3 still sleeps with us and all of her toys and clothes are in our room. There is a 6 year age difference between dd1 and dd2 so we would like to give dd1 her own room soon and then move the two youngest into a room together. I think the most important thing is that a house has to fill the families needs and if it is not working out it's ok to go a bit bigger or make some changes.
post #40 of 106
We're currently renting a townhouse that's around 1200 sq ft, and it's too small for the three of us (plus two cats). Part of that has to do with the layout, but part of it also has to do with things I had to compromise on. For instance, we only have one full bathroom and then a half bathroom - I prefer two full bathrooms. My washer and dryer are stuck in a closet in the full bathroom, which is small to begin with...doing laundry is not a happy occasion. We don't use our second bedroom for much other than storage and the occasional guest, though if we didn't have problems with keeping the temperature regulated in there, we'd use it a lot more.

I can't do much with the living room because of the layout, so we have a lot of space that feels wasted. They would have done a lot better with making the kitchen smaller (because there is a TON of wasted space in there) and making the living area larger. The closets in the master bedroom are ridiculously small, and it's hard to reach back into the sides, so their full potential isn't used, either. Same thing with the linen closet.

We're about to move to a new place that's 1500 sq ft, and while it's still not what I would call ideal, the layout is a lot better than what we have now. I'm one of those people who likes plenty of open space; small rooms look more cluttered and make me feel claustrophobic. Ideally, when we buy a house, we'll have upwards of 1500 sq ft; 2000 sq ft would probably be about perfect for us.
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