“Big is good”, Remember that Mitre10mega advertisement in New Zealand. But big isnt always best.


For years I have watched couples build new homes with 4 bedrooms, at least a double garage, 2 bathrooms, and 2 lounges or living rooms for “resale”. In the end, they often end up selling their home to someone very similar to themselves.

According to an article published by Stuff.co.nz in September 2019 (link below) following our 2018 census, single-occupant households had increased and was second only to two occupant households as the most common household type. 

As such, big is not working to our common household requirements.

As section and site areas become smaller and harder to source and as our growing density can no longer support our dominant housing typology, we need to bridge the gap between what is required and what we dominantly have and, in some cases, continue to create.

There is a fear of small spaces. Badly done apartments and the perception of loss of privacy and freedom puts many people off considering smaller spaces. There is also this perception that for resale, smaller homes are less desirable.

When I was renovating my 60m2 home I had one of the tradesmen ask me if I was going to do more. He lived with his partner and had a baby on the way. I saw what I was doing as suiting their budget and life well. He was well out of the market for a large home and wanted something that worked better than the 1 bedroom apartment he currently lived in.

Our homes are at a record size in terms of square meterage and yet on the opposite side of the scale, our households are at increasingly smaller levels than ever before.  

Small smart spaces are about creating homes that working a great number of household types, not just one.

To find out how Smart Living Spaces can help you with your small smart spaces, book a complimentary chat. https://smartlivingspaces.nz/Book-Your-Next-Step.


Waikato Architectural Designer

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Offsite NZ Member    Licenced Building Practitioner    New Zealand Green Building Council
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