Chart: Single-Family Home Sizes Continue Climb Upward
An expected impact of the virus crisis is a need for more residential space, as people use homes for more purposes including work. Recent data confirms this impact on the market continues to occur.
According to fourth quarter 2021 data from the Census Quarterly Starts and Completions by Purpose and Design and NAHB analysis, median single-family square floor area increased to 2,338 square feet. Average (mean) square footage for new single-family homes increased to 2,561.
Since Great Recession lows (and on a one-year moving average basis), the average size of new single-family homes is now 6.3% higher at 2,537 square feet, while the median size is 10% higher at 2,312 square feet.
Home size rose from 2009 to 2015 as entry-level new construction was constrained. Home size declined between 2016 and 2020 as more starter homes were developed. Going forward we expect home size to continue to increase, given a shift in consumer preferences for more space due to the increased use and roles of homes (for work among other purposes) in the post-Covid-19 environment.