Before the Great Recession, the average size of the American home had ballooned to the most square footage in modern history, while the number of occupants living in the household continued the downward trend it had been following for decades. When the economy took a turn for the worse around 2007, however, both of these figures began to reverse. But now that the housing market has once again returned to pre-crash conditions, so too has the size of the average residence – 2,315 square feet as of 2012, according to the National Association of Home Builders.
According to the Miami Herald, one Maryland company is hoping to buck this trend, as they aim to produce homes that are not only significantly smaller than the norm, but also more sustainable. Called "Hobbitat," this enterprise produces cottages in a workshop that can house up to four people in only 250 square feet. The designs can be built between six and eight weeks and transported from the shop to the site in only a day.
The "hobs," as these structures are called, have only 11 percent of the square footage of the median U.S. house, so much less energy is required to heat and cool them, the source reports. Most of the materials used to create the dwellings are repurposed or recycled.
"Despite the fact that a smaller house is one of the best ways to shrink energy costs, this new focus on sustainability doesn't necessarily translate to reduced square footage. People are concentrating on making the most energy efficient home possible without consideration for size," Carri Beer, senior associate for Brenna Architects, told the source.
If you would like to make your home more energy efficient, consider looking into a Maryland home inspection today to learn where you can cut utility costs and help the environment.