Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Goodbye McMansion?

A good start.

"There's an awareness now that some of the homes frankly are too big," says Scott Van Duzor, a home builder in Illinois's Fox River Valley. "The McMansion has almost become embarrassing to some people," he says. "They're listening not just to their wallet but their conscience."

It is indeed ridiculous seeing some of these behemoths. No so much the fact that people live in big houses. Hey if you want to worry about cleaning, heating and cooling a 4500 sq ft house with 11 rooms of which 7 are never stepped foot in, go for it. What gets me is seeing these obscenities on 1/5 acre lots with neighboring houses 10 feet away. You have families of 3 or 4 people living in these monstrosities, using up only 20-30% of the living space and at the same time living like sardines with no privacy and practically no yard.

Maybe I'm just a little loco, but I'll take an acre or two of land and give up the 5th, 6th and 7th bedroom, not to mention bathrooms #4 through 6, for the same money.


1 comment:

Dark City said...

I agree with you about the lot size vs. house size. Up here, new developments typically offer three lot sizes (eg. 40, 60, 80 feet wide) and a selection of houses to go on each. The problem is that the developer will not let you pick a house meant for a 40' lot and put it on the 80' lot.

The end result are houses that are 4' apart which is the minimum code requirement. If both neighbours put in AC units then there is no room to push a lawn mower to the backyard. Also, 4' seems pretty darn close to me in the event of a house fire. I can see entire blocks going up.

It's facinating to look at developer strategies over the years. My neighbourhood and most of the others built in the 1970s have 15-20' between houses with 80-100' frontage lots. Also, you would be hard pressed to find two identical looking houses.

More recent developments have the houses packed in next to each other with about 3 distinct varieties that are repeated over and over.