Houses Shrinking but Apartments Getting Bigger
Apartments are getting bigger, reflecting the Covid-driven desire for extra living space, but simultaneously the size of new houses being built across Australia is shrinking.
Nevertheless, compared to most other countries, Australians are still living large.
Overall, however, new homes—both detached houses and apartments—were on average slightly smaller nationally, according to the Commsec Annual Home Size Report.
Queensland was the only state to buck the trend, building bigger houses and apartments throughout 2020-21.
The size of the average new home in Queensland increased by 5.5 per cent over the period to an eight-year high of 205.8sq m.
The Commsec report—based on commissioned Australia Bureau of Statistics data on the average floor space of new homes built in Australia— indicated the average new apartment completed in 2020-21 was at an 11-year high of 138.3sq m, up 0.4 per cent over the year.
Meanwhile, the average free-standing house completed in the same period was 229.3sq m, down 2.9 per cent from seven-year highs.
Across the board, however, the size of the average new home built over 2020-21 was 195.8sq m, down 0.4 per cent from the six-year high set in 2019-20.
“There have been shifting trends in the sizes and styles of homes over the past decade and Covid-19 has been throwing another element into the mix,” James said.
“The big question is whether Aussies continue to embrace working from home, opting to move away from apartments in, or near the CBD, in preference for a larger home in a regional or suburban ‘lifestyle’ area.