Are you a “Space Explorer”? Part One- Square Footage

By
Real Estate Agent with United Country Ponderosa Realty

Are you a "Space Explorer"?  

I'm not talking about space like Carl Sagan's "billions of billions of stars type of space", but the space we live in; the square footage of our home and the size of the land on which it sits.

Some buyers I've worked with recently might be space explorers.  They selected a home from the internet that was 3800 square feet, but once inside the home - it seemed way too big.

I listed a home around 1400 square feet.  Showing feedback from several buyers was that the house was too small.

It's good to be an explorer, how would you know if the home fits, if you didn't go inside?

We perceive our living space in terms of seeing it and being in it rather than in numbers.  Digits don't translate the correct amount of space to everyone's brain and don't always translate to the way the space is being utilized, either.

A 16 X 14 foot sitting area within an open great room might seem more spacious than a separate room of the same size.  Depending on the floor plan, an 1800 square foot house may seem more spacious than one with 2100 square feet.

.

Remember, size is just a number, and it doesn't always translate into quality or useable space.

The other day, I wrote a post about buying jeans.  When you shop for clothes, you have to try them on because your size doesn't fit perfectly in all styles.

It might serve you well to look at several homes with various amounts of square footage.

 

Try them on for size, and then you will find the right fit.

*************************************************************************

Mary Douglas, your Mountain Broker-Associate and REALTOR®

United Country  Ponderosa Realty, Red Feather Lakes, CO

www.redfeatherlakes.com ---800-531-2195

"A Day in the Mountains will always soothe your city soul"

The information contained in Mary's blog is deemed reliable but is not guaranteed, and the opinions and        views expressed in these articles are solely those of the author.

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Website: www.marydouglas-redfeatherlakes.net

 

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Re-Blogged 1 time:

Re-Blogged By Re-Blogged At
  1. Gabe Sanders 10/06/2009 05:15 PM
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Rainmaker
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Carla Muss-Jacobs, Principal Broker/Owner
BuyersAgentPortland.com | (503) 810-7192 Portland Metro Exclusive Buyers Agent | 100% Buyer Representation ~ 100% o... - Portland, OR
Buyer Focused ~ Buyer Results

Good blog.  Sometimes we forget about floorplan.  I think people who "explore" space = job security for buyers' agents! ;-)

Oct 06, 2009 12:09 AM #24
Rainmaker
392,359
Bruce Walter
Keller Williams Realty Lafayette/West Lafayette, Indiana - West Lafayette, IN

Hi Mary!

Great blog!  It does pay to do our homework and know what the houses are like that are on the market, and that the numbers do not always translate to what the buyer is looking for.  We must provide our clients with options.

I liked the tie in at the end to your "shopping for jeans" blog.  By the way, did you see yesterday that many economists view consumer purchases of jeans as a leading indicator?  Guess what-sales of jeans are UP!!!  Maybe you will get the credit for turning the economy around when you went shopping!

Oct 06, 2009 06:46 AM #25
Rainmaker
155,073
Debra Kukulski, Broker Associate
RE/MAX Unlimited Northwest - Cary, IL
SFR,CDPE;GRI;ABR;e-PRO Realtor, Northern IL

First of all, I love the log home in the picture, Mary!  You are so creative with your blogs!  This is a great post and it is so true that the feel of a home can vary greatly due to it's layout and should not be judged on size alone!

Oct 06, 2009 07:22 AM #26
Rainmaker
543,329
Toula Rosebrock
Diane Turton, Realtors, Forked River, NJ - Lacey Township, NJ
Broker/Sales Associate, Realtor, Lacey Township,

ToulaRosebrock,com

Hi Mary:

Great points made here!  Congrats on the feature.

I thought of "Goldilocks and the Three Bears".  Too Big, Too Small, Just Right!

Oct 06, 2009 07:34 AM #27
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442,343
Joe Pryor
The Virtual Real Estate Team - Oklahoma City, OK
REALTOR® - Oklahoma Investment Properties

This puts the emphasis on floor plans. Usable living space is always the key. I have seen space wasted, and it is also important that the floor plan fits the lifestyle use.

Oct 06, 2009 08:37 AM #28
Rainmaker
522,089
Mary Douglas
United Country Ponderosa Realty - Red Feather Lakes, CO
REALTOR, Red Feather Lakes, Colorado

Thank you for the feature.  I am honored!  That star appeared somewhere between the time I turned off the computer last night and logged in this morning.  What a great surprise!

 

Hi Lee and Carol, You're right - it is so much more than a number!  Thank you I appreciate that!

 

Hi James, Clothing never seems to fit the same even in the same size-- so why would houses?? I'm glad you stopped by - thanks for your thoughts!

 

Hi Kathy, I like the phrase you used - "numbers don't necessarily mean livabilty" , you are so right! Thank you Kathy.

 

Hi Chris, I agree with you - your concept of purpose and flow - is right on.  I used to visit the Parade of Homes in Denver - featuring McMansions.  I would hear several people say, "I'm not sure what I would use this for" while we were standing in a room!  Thanks Chris, I appreciate you stopping by.

 

Oct 06, 2009 10:58 AM #29
Rainmaker
522,089
Mary Douglas
United Country Ponderosa Realty - Red Feather Lakes, CO
REALTOR, Red Feather Lakes, Colorado

Hi Damon, I agree it's hard for some buyers to believe that, but I have met many "Space Explorers". At first I was frustrated by them, because I couldn't figure out what they wanted -- then I began to see what they were doing - so they taught me this lesson.  Thank you for stopping by today!

 

Hi Shirley, You're right about the hallways, they seem to take up so much space, that translate into less "useable" space - stairways too! Thanks Shirley, I'm glad you stopped by today, I appreciate your take on it!

 

Hi Carla, I like that!  Space Explorers DO = job security :-)  Thank you Carla!

 

Hi Bruce, You're right, knowing the inventory does help to give our buyers options.  Actually I love Space Explorers - they are willing to look at a lot of options. 

That's so interesting about the jean shopping being a leading economic indicator, and glad to hear jean sales are up and that I had a part in it LOL!!  Thank you Bruce!

Oct 06, 2009 11:21 AM #30
Rainmaker
522,089
Mary Douglas
United Country Ponderosa Realty - Red Feather Lakes, CO
REALTOR, Red Feather Lakes, Colorado

Hi Debra,    You are so right - it's often the layout, more than the square footage that determines how the house "feels". Thank you for the comment on the log home photo, and for stopping by today, it's always nice to see you Debra!

 

Hi Toula,  Thank you for coming by!  It is like Goldilocks isn't it?? Except there are usually more than 3 to chose from LOL!!

 

Hi Joe, Exactly!  and the floor plan has to fit the buyers  lifestyle!  Many would not be content with the log home great room - they would want a formal dining room.  Isn't it great that there are houses for everyone!  Thank you Joe, I appreciate your thoughts on it.

Oct 06, 2009 11:32 AM #31
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Melissa Zavala
Broadpoint Properties - Escondido, CA
Broker, Escondido Real Estate, San Diego County

Mary: What a nice idea for a blog post! I also love the picture that you show of the living room, dining area combined.

Oct 06, 2009 01:34 PM #32
Anonymous
Anonymous

That is a very accurate post!

Oct 06, 2009 05:16 PM #33
Rainmaker
164,427
Christine McInerney
The McInerney Team with Realty Executives Associates - Knoxville, TN
The McInerney Team, Knoxville TN Homes For Sale

I agree with your post, a good floor plan (or in some cases a bad floorplan) makes a world of difference.

Oct 06, 2009 09:49 PM #34
Rainmaker
724,738
Ann Hayden
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Select Properties-St. Louis Missouri - Chesterfield, MO
SelectAnn.com

Mary,

You never know if the warm and fuzzy feeling will happen if you never go in...

Ann Hayden in chilly Wildwood, MO

Oct 06, 2009 10:42 PM #35
Rainmaker
522,089
Mary Douglas
United Country Ponderosa Realty - Red Feather Lakes, CO
REALTOR, Red Feather Lakes, Colorado

Hi Melissa, Thanks for stopping by today, I'm glad you liked the picture of the great room - with the high ceiling I think it feels larger than it probably is.

 

Hi Jane, I'm glad you thought so, thank you for your comments!

 

Hi Christine & Jennifer - OH so true!  The floorplan makes a world of difference, it decides how we move around in the house - or not! LOL  Thanks for your thoughts today, I appreciate it!

 

Hi Ann, You're right and that's funny, because I have been showing houses to a woman, off and on for over a year now.  She is waiting for "that feeling" -Unfortunately for me, I don't know what "that feeling" looks like yet.  Thanks for coming by, Ann - have a great Wednesday!

Oct 07, 2009 07:40 AM #36
Rainmaker
724,738
Ann Hayden
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Select Properties-St. Louis Missouri - Chesterfield, MO
SelectAnn.com

Hey Mary,

I do not know what the feeling looks like either but have witnessed it with buyers many times....

Ann Hayden in psychic Wildwood, MO

Oct 07, 2009 07:16 PM #37
Rainmaker
522,089
Mary Douglas
United Country Ponderosa Realty - Red Feather Lakes, CO
REALTOR, Red Feather Lakes, Colorado

LOL! Ann in psychic Wildwood -- I believe you.  Once the buyers walk in the right house and get that feeling - that's a very good thing.  I'm sure we will find that for this buyer, eventually, don't you think so - oh psychic one?

Oct 07, 2009 10:00 PM #38
Rainmaker
724,738
Ann Hayden
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Select Properties-St. Louis Missouri - Chesterfield, MO
SelectAnn.com

Mary,

The right house with the warm fuzzy feeling is an awesome thing to behold!

Ann

Oct 07, 2009 10:10 PM #39
Rainmaker
257,168
Robin Rogers
Robin Rogers, Silverbridge Realty, San Antonio, Texas - San Antonio, TX
ABR, CRS - Real Estate Broker & Investment Adviser

Hi, Mary:

I hate when buyers give me a strict number for the square footage they want. I secretly search a little under that anyway. For one thing, especially with older homes, the measurement can be very inaccurate. For another, the layout has a huge influence on the perception of the house's size, not to mention its usability. Once I get 'em in the door, the buyers don't seem to mind if the house is 200 or more square feet less than they specified if it works for them.

Cheers,

Robin

Oct 08, 2009 08:09 AM #40
Rainmaker
522,089
Mary Douglas
United Country Ponderosa Realty - Red Feather Lakes, CO
REALTOR, Red Feather Lakes, Colorado

Ann,I think you're right! :-)  Happy Friday - hope you have a great day. Thanks for coming back!

 

Hi Robin, you bring up a very good point about the measurement being in accurate - that's always a possibility.  A strict number is just impossible to work with, and I agree with you - the layout is the key to how the amount of space is perceived.  Thank you for your thoughts on it, I appreciate you stopping by today!

Oct 09, 2009 10:18 AM #41
Anonymous
Anonymous

Spot on Miss Mary!  A few years ago, we were looking for a new home, and as empty nesters, trying to decide what might work. We went on a Parade of Homes tour, that featured 29 homes from 1200 sq. ft. to well over 5000.  We went in EVERY HOUSE, and what we already knew from all of our 20+moves, is that what matters is how they use the sq. footage.  I joked that I would happily live in a house we lived in years ago when our kids were small, because every sq. INCH was thought out so perfectly, yet it was just over 1500 sq. ft.! Hard to imagine that we survived with that, now! Great post!

Oct 10, 2009 05:59 PM #42
Rainmaker
522,089
Mary Douglas
United Country Ponderosa Realty - Red Feather Lakes, CO
REALTOR, Red Feather Lakes, Colorado

Hi Cheryl! I love your new photo! and I am so happy to see you again, I thought you might have won the lottery and moved to Phoenix or something!!  I think you're right though - it is how the space is thought out that makes the difference - and of course your job now is to make it look as spacious and as well thought out as possible!  Thanks Cheryl - nice to see you again!

Oct 10, 2009 07:19 PM #43
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Mary Douglas

REALTOR, Red Feather Lakes, Colorado
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