"There appears to be a renewed sense of optimism in housing. Homebuyers, regardless of their stage of life, still want and need larger homes," said Deborah Meyer, the chief marketing officer of PulteGroup. And data from the U.S. Census Bureau backs up her assertion: the average size of a newly built home increased 3.7 percent in 2011 from 2010, which was the first upsizing since 2007, reports Diana Olick.
The demand for larger homes has shifted, however, from exurbs to regional hubs. "In many areas, we are seeing more interest in urban infill locations than in remote exurbs, which is having a pronounced shift in neighborhood design elements," said Kermit Baker, Chief Economist of the American Institute of Architects. "And regardless of city or suburban dwellers, people are asking more from their communities in terms of access to public transit, walkable areas and close proximity to job centers, retail options and open space."