Small lot housing the big trend in Perth

Less is more. It’s not often you hear that expression from new home buyers — until now.

New home buyers are increasingly adopting the trend to small blocks, narrow lots and squat lots to meet affordability targets and save paying for unnecessary space.

The average lot size in Perth has decreased consistently over the past seven years. Figures from the Urban Development Institute of Australia show in 2015 average lot sizes were the smallest on record at just 395 square metres, down from 427 square metres in 2014.

But even smaller lots are on the horizon as builders develop innovative home designs to maximise space on narrow lots (with frontages as narrow as 4.5m) or squat lots (that are wider but shorter).

So what are the three key factors driving buyers to small lot homes?

The push for affordability

In the US, this is called the tiny home movement, as people abandon bigger rental properties for microscopic homes. In Perth, we have kept the clean and simple appeal of this trend, while giving you enough space to live comfortably — and affordably.

Buying smaller lots means buyers can enter the property market sooner than expected, making it faster to save for a deposit and easier to make repayments. That’s important because while the average lot price in Perth fell 3.1% to $252,875 last year, the price per square metre continued to rise.

The lesson is simple: to buy sooner, buy smaller.

A shortage of land

As our population grows, the availability of residential land becomes more restricted and the need for high density living becomes more pressing. In recent years Governments have amended residential zoning laws to accommodate this growth.

Prior to the year 2000, the average lot size in Perth was 579sq m. Today, lots can be 100sq m and the forecast is for 80sq m in the near future. While this number is staggering, the majority of subdivisions in 2016 generally consist of lots somewhere between 250sqm and 400sqm. With more zoning changes anticipated in the months to come, the small lot trend is expected to continue.

We’ve changed the way we live

The generation of first home buyers now dominating the property market does not dream as their parents did of a big four-bedroom family home. It’s no longer realistic or affordable to include a spare bedroom or media room where it’s not really needed.

Block sizes that can accommodate homes that have 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms is what buyers are seeking in 2016. First home buyers are dominating the market for new homes and most of them are buying land for what suits them now, not for what will suit them for the next 20 years. This is in stark contrast to older ways of living where families moved into homes expecting to live out their lives in the one place.

When it comes to small lot housing design, few sacrifices are made thanks to the emergence of creative and innovative design which maximises space. Small lot homes are typically more energy efficient and less maintenance intensive, allowing the home owner to also save money and time.

Find out how NOW Living’s range of affordable turnkey house and land packages can get you into your brand new home sooner.

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