Forget McMansions: W’chester homes are shrinking

Only buyers coming north from Manhattan still covet the larger homes

TRD New York /
Aug.August 24, 2012 02:30 PM

Even in the wealthy suburbs of Westchester, McMansions are going out of vogue. Buyers have returned to the market and builders are erecting new homes for them, but no longer maximizing a lot’s square-footage.

The trend is taking hold in most of the county because of the struggling economy and an increased awareness of environmental concerns, according to the New York Times. Families that spend millions purchasing a larger home don’t have sufficient funds to furnish the extra space and don’t want to pay the higher property taxes or heating and cooling costs. They also don’t want to live lavishly at the expense of the environment.

“The emphasis on how we live is clearly shifting,” Sally Slater, a Prudential Douglas Elliman agent in Bedford, told the Times. Even the homes being built to 6,000 square feet, builders say, would have been 8,000 feet or larger a decade ago.

The National Association of Home Builders has been expecting this trend for some time, predicting that the average size of a new U.S. home would shrink to 2,152 square feet by 2015, 10 percent smaller than 2010’s average. However, Westchester builders note that in the ultra-wealthy towns of Scarsdale, Larchmont and Rye, buyers coming north from Manhattan still prefer the supersize homes. [NYT] — Adam Fusfeld

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