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Living Space: Downsize or Super-Size?

If the 1990s was a symbol of rapid housing development and the rise of the McMansion, the leaner times of the last decade have seen a return to more efficient living. It’s normal for Americans to assume that a better economy (and more money) translates to bigger homes, and when the U.S. housing market began its death spiral around 2007 it was no surprise that people started downsizing. What’s interesting, though, is that the necessary migration to more economical living for many helped create a trend among others who <em>decided</em> to leave their McMansions behind for more modest accommodations – even if they could still afford the space. <strong>Societal Expectation vs. Personalization</strong> One reason for the abandonment of the bigger-is-always-better philosophy is the shift from keeping up with the Joneses to finding and maintaining a space that suits us best as individuals. <em>Result:</em> Sometimes bigger is not always better. <strong>Location, Location, Location</strong> Nothing has changed when it comes to the importance of location in real estate sales, but what has changed is our relationship with our communities and the world. The Internet is making everyone more worldly, but for many seeing the world through the screen is not enough. <em>Result</em>: Some are willing to sacrifice space to be closer to urban areas that provide more in the way of culture, entertainment and diversity. <strong>Lifestyle Differences</strong> Few people see cleaning as a fun hobby, but changes in work habits and later start times for childrearing are pushing the desire to clean and maintain a big house further out of the mainstream. <em>Result</em>: Many people these days would rather spend that time working or relaxing and a smaller space affords them those options. But, just as there are reasons to streamline there are also reasons to expand … <strong>School Search</strong> Suburbia has a reputation for developing school programs parents like and it creates a strong draw to America’s cul-de-sacs. They’re often less crowded, better funded and easier to access both in terms of enrollment and a safe, convenient commute. <em>Result:</em> Combine these benefits with more living space and it makes an attractive package for new parents. <strong>Green Space</strong> Having a yard in the city costs a fortune just about anywhere you go and sometimes parks are not conveniently located. Those issues are often more easily overcome on the outskirts where yards and green space are affordable and accessible. <em>Result</em>: People choose a big house that has a big yard to go along with it, or is located closer to more natural and undeveloped surroundings. <strong>Growing Family</strong> This is one of the biggest reasons why people choose bigger homes – when more room is a necessity rather than a luxury. Kids and pets create needs for space beyond the room they themselves require. More warm bodies means more stuff: clothes, food, toys, bigger cars and, well, the list goes on and on. <em>Result</em>: People try to get more home for their money. Regardless of your reason for switching the size of your space, <a title="ATG Stores Homepage" href="http://www.atgstores.com/" target="_blank">ATGStores.com</a> can help you do it in style.
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