fbpx Skip to content

How much house do I need?

How much house do I need?

When you’re thinking about buying or building a home, size is an important decision. The size of a house will determine how much it is worth and how expensive it is to build.

Australian houses are some of the biggest in the world.

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, the average floor area of new free-standing Australian houses is 242sqm. This has been largely unchanged over the last ten years.

But block sizes are becoming smaller, with the average block size for a free-standing home going from 496sqm in 2012 to 432sqm in 2022.

This means that we are building similar size houses on smaller blocks. This could partly be due to increased housing density in our major cities and our desire to live closer to metropolitan areas. It also indicates that people are willing to compromise on the size of their garden. With our busy modern lifestyles, many people choose to spend less of their free time on property maintenance and more time doing what they love.

The size of your house will almost certainly be influenced by your budget and the area in which you would like to live. But here are some other factors you might want to consider.

How many people will live in the house…and for how long?

This may sound obvious, but it is the most logical place to start.

It is worth considering the long-term needs of your house. With kids choosing to stay at home well into their twenties, you may like to consider additional living areas, bathrooms and car parking space. All of which will increase the size of the house you need and your budget.

Likewise, if your kids have flown the coop, you can rethink the need for extra bathrooms and multiple living areas.

How many bedrooms do you need?

The average Australian house has three bedrooms, and the most common size family is four – two adults and two children. So, most families are allowing each child to have their own bedroom.

How many children do you have, and do they each need their own room? Of course, having your own space is important as an adult, but kids can learn important life skills from sharing a bedroom with a sibling. Negotiation, consideration and respecting others are just a few.

Of course, the gender and age of your children may determine whether or not sharing is an option.

Do you need a guest bedroom? If you have family or friends who live interstate, overseas or in regional areas that visit often, you may want a guest bedroom. But is it really necessary if you only get the occasional visitor?

What do you do at home?

It’s important to consider what you do when you are at home. For example, think about your hobbies, if you like entertaining and whether or not you’ll be working from home.

With an increasing number of us working from home at least some of the time now, a home office may be high on your list. This could be a small bedroom, a study nook or a cleverly partitioned section of the lounge room.

If you prefer to go out to socialise and don’t spend much time at home, then entertaining spaces and gourmet kitchens are probably not essential.

Does the layout substitute for space?

If a home is well laid out, size is less important. Look for a clever design that makes life easy, with things like:

●     Clever built-in storage

●     Study nooks

●     Rooms that serve two purposes

●     Having kids and adults areas positioned separately for time apart

●     Outdoor living spaces designed for year-round use

Tiny houses are a great example of clever design that maximises space. These minimalist designs focus on the absolute necessities. They are packed with innovative ways to make the most of the space – from using the vertical space to hidden storage in built-in furniture. Although they may not be a practical solution for every family, they are a great source of inspiration if you are looking for ideas for how to ‘live smaller’.

Don’t make the mistake of thinking that all 4-bedroom houses are created equal. Think about how you’ll use it at different stages in your life, and you may decide that you have more options than you originally thought. Happy hunting!

Related articles from the view

Nov 11, 2020

How many bedrooms do you really need?

It’s at the top of every property description, and probably the first thing you filter for. But do you know how many bedrooms you really need? The answer will depend not just on your current lifestyle, but your future goals. Consider: Is your family growing or shrinking? If you’re a partnered couple with two children,…
Read more
  • General
  • Residential
Jul 20, 2020

Build new or buy established

Whether it’s your first home, you’re upgrading or it’s time to downsize and simplify, one question is always part of the mix. Should you build new, or buy an established property? Both options have their pros and cons, and many people will simply choose the one they’re more familiar with. But with both state and…
Read more
  • General
  • Residential
  • Rural
Jul 26, 2021

Can I convert a garage into an extra room?

If your family is outgrowing their current home, what do you do? Moving to a larger house can be costly, or mean you’re leaving behind your local community. Building an extension is another option, but it’s not always practical. One possibility that’s gaining in popularity. Converting the garage instead. The plan has several pluses. It’s…
Read more
  • General
  • Residential
Jun 5, 2018

Choosing a floor plan for your new build

Building your own house can be a lot of fun. Finally, you’ll be able to put all those childhood games of House to good use as you design the perfect home for you and your family. One of the most important decisions you’ll make in the process is the floor plan. It’s not a decision…
Read more
  • General
  • Residential
Jun 20, 2022

Add value to your home with your tax refund

Doing your tax might seem like a chore, but it can mean receiving a substantial tax refund for many Australians. It can be fun to treat yourself with your tax refund, but there is always that nagging voice in the back of our minds telling us to spend it wisely. Adding value to your home…
Read more
  • General
  • Residential
  • Rural