McMansions – A 2000’s Fad?

November 19, 2009

mcmansionThe McMansion.  The poster-child of this decade’s housing bubble.  Huge homes with gaudy, sometimes ostentatious curb appeal.  Tall homes, taking up every inch of the buildable lot next to a 50 year-old one and a half story home a third its value.  A ‘McMansion’ isn’t a well defined type of home is as much as you know one when you see one.  Chicago real estate has plenty of examples in our neighborhoods.

Parallel to the often American motto “Bigger is Better,” the McMansion is now taking a beating similar to the SUV or Hummer did during the oil price spike of 2008.  But what happened when oil prices dropped?  People bought SUV’s again in droves.  What will happen to the future McMansion or large suburban homes when the housing market returns to health?   Will the American consumer go back to their collective motto and again demand a big home with a ton of square footage?

A recent article in Builder Magazine predicts the demise of the McMansion style home.  Not only is a McMansion often anti-‘green’ which is the current trend in home building, the demand for larger homes maybe slipping.  Energy costs are a big part of it but future family and generational demographics may play the largest part.  Baby Boomers are down-sizing.  Generation X and Y buyers are tending to look to urban areas to live near work and play.  The first-time buyer and young professionals are waiting longer than ever to start families and don’t need or want a lot of space.

Certainly, there will always be buyers looking for as much house as they can afford.  It’s just that the next generation of new homes may not reach the size and proportion they did during the housing boom because these factors.  Some demographers estimate that up to 80 percent of new households formed over the next 15 years will be child-free as Baby Boomers empty their nests and career-driven Millennials postpone marriage and kids.

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About The Author

Read All Stories By Mitch Levinson

Mitch Levinson is the author of “Internet Marketing: The Key to Increased New Home Sales” published by BuilderBooks. He is an Internet marketing expert with expertise in search engine optimization, website development, email marketing, social media and CRM consulting services. He is known for creating effective programs that can be tracked through analytics to prove effectiveness and ROI. Mitch is founder and president of MLC New Home Marketing and MLC FlatFee Realty, as well as managing partner of mRELEVANCE, LLC, a Marketing, Communication, Interactive agency with offices in Chicago and Atlanta. He currently leads the Chicago team. A Multi-Million Dollar Sales Producer who earned an MBA in Computer Information Systems and eCommerce, he brings a unique perspective and experience to the field of real estate communications. Mitch combines the two interests in order to help home builders and developers gain a competitive advantage through the Internet and technology. When he isn’t behind a computer, he enjoys participating in sports and coaching his kids’ teams. Mitch resides in Arlington Heights, Ill., a northwest suburb of Chicago, with his family, which includes two rambunctious labs. Visit my Google+ profile.



Very interesting article. I think that people are definitely more environmentally conscience today. This has an effect in the way that they want to spend their money. Big flashy homes may still sell, but I dont think that there will ever be as big of a market for them now that people have become more conscience.

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