Size Does Matter

Choosing the right size of home demands some decision making on your part. Do you have a big family? Do you have a flair for entertaining? Are you an empty nester? How much stuff do you own? Do you work from a home office? All of these points will have a bearing on what size of home you purchase. To make the right decision, size up your current needs.

Family Size: The biggest factor in the square footage needs of your home is how many family members live there, and therefore how many bedrooms are needed. A four-bedroom home is a far cry from a one-bedroom home. According to a study done by the Canadian Council on Social Development, one in seven homes are unsuitable in size for the family that lives within them. Children require space, no matter what their age. Whether it be a playroom or a rec. room, children need their own space as much as adults do. With a big family, you will need more than a couple of bedrooms. If you are single or an empty nester, you may be considering a smaller home or downsizing to fewer rooms and less living space. If you’re not going to use a dining room beyond the holidays, consider integrating an expandable table within your kitchen instead.

Storage Needs: Do you have boxes upon boxes of Christmas decorations? Are you a frequent shopper? Do you have more tools than a hardware store? You will need to consider the amount of  storage space for your specific needs. This includes closet, basement, attic and garage storage. Your household will be far less congested and disorganized, creating a calming environment, with your extra stuff hidden away.

Room Use: Working from home or sustaining a hobby will require extra square footage. Depending on the nature of your work (whether you will be receiving clients or storing materials) and the needs of your hobby (an easel for painting, a quilting machine or a dark room for developing photos), you may require only a small room or a large wing off one end of the home to fully integrate your lifestyle into your house.

Visitors: If you love to entertain and relish having your guests stick around for a big breakfast in the morning, you will need to plan for  guest rooms, lots of living space and a big kitchen to accommodate the crew.

Often the size of the home and the price go hand-in-hand. Compile a list of your needs and wishes and start narrowing your search from there. You’ll know when you’ve found the one.

Paul Baron is with Leading Edge Realty Inc. in Scarborough, ON

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