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View Poll Results: What is the ideal house/apt square footage for a single woman in her 60's?
250-750 square feet 16 13.56%
750-1250 square feet 61 51.69%
1250-1750 square feet 33 27.97%
1750-2250 square feet 6 5.08%
2250-2750 square feet 0 0%
2750-3250 square feet 1 0.85%
>3250 square feet: Go for the McMansion!!! 1 0.85%
Voters: 118. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 10-03-2007, 06:55 PM   #21
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Great question W2R! One I am thinking about myself.

Climate is an important factor. I live in a cold climate and need 1250 sq.ft. minimum. If I could spend more time outdoors all year round, I might feel comfortable with 1000 sq. ft. My minimum requirements are: well laid out space, den, storage, garage, one floor. Second bedroom optional but would be nice to have. Great room preferable. Patio desirable. Storage space essential, though I am not sure how much. Maybe the garage will do!
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Old 10-03-2007, 07:04 PM   #22
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I had a 1800 square foot house when I was single .It was three bedrooms and two baths new construction with an open concept and a two car garage no basement . I think between 1600 -1800 is a perfect size not too small but not too large . I 've had basements in New Jersey great for storage .
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Old 10-03-2007, 07:07 PM   #23
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My laundry room is right off my kitchen on the main floor as you come in from the double garage. My basement is dry and so far I still don't have a sump pump - only a sump hole. I really like my 12 foot ceilings EXCEPT when having to change light bulbs or batteries in the smoke detector. Sometimes they can be too high, but, the height does make the house seem larger.
We have always liked our houses facing the south since that usually means that the driveway also faces south - making snow removal much easier with the sun's help.
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Old 10-03-2007, 07:19 PM   #24
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I love high ceilings .My living room is two stories high all windows .The curtains cost as much as my first car and they are very plain .
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Old 10-03-2007, 07:23 PM   #25
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Great question W2R! One I am thinking about myself.

Climate is an important factor. I live in a cold climate and need 1250 sq.ft. minimum. If I could spend more time outdoors all year round, I might feel comfortable with 1000 sq. ft. My minimum requirements are: well laid out space, den, storage, garage, one floor. Second bedroom optional but would be nice to have. Great room preferable. Patio desirable. Storage space essential, though I am not sure how much. Maybe the garage will do!
I live in New Orleans, but will be retiring in Missouri. I will probably spend a LOT of time indoors when it snows, especially the first few years until I learn to drive in the snow safely. Between that, and not having to be away for work, I'll be in my ER house a lot.

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My laundry room is right off my kitchen on the main floor as you come in from the double garage. My basement is dry and so far I still don't have a sump pump - only a sump hole. I really like my 12 foot ceilings EXCEPT when having to change light bulbs or batteries in the smoke detector. Sometimes they can be too high, but, the height does make the house seem larger.
We have always liked our houses facing the south since that usually means that the driveway also faces south - making snow removal much easier with the sun's help.
That is a great tip! Dealing with snow will be new to me, and I hadn't thought of that.
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Old 10-03-2007, 07:27 PM   #26
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I love high ceilings .My living room is two stories high all windows .The curtains cost as much as my first car and they are very plain .
LOL!! Now that you mention it, I remember a house my ex and I had with 17' ceilings in Texas. We had to have the curtains custom made, and they cost a fortune. Then, our macaws chewed on them. But what we lost in the cost of curtains, we made up in the prices of Christmas trees. Right before Christmas, they would nearly give away big Christmas trees since they won't fit in most homes.

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I had a 1800 square foot house when I was single .It was three bedrooms and two baths new construction with an open concept and a two car garage no basement . I think between 1600 -1800 is a perfect size not too small but not too large . I 've had basements in New Jersey great for storage .
That sounds like a very nice house. I don't know if I would need the storage in a basement. If I stored something there, I probably wouldn't ever use it so I might as well throw it out. To me, the basement would be just for peace of mind when tornados were threatening. But then, that's not a small thing for me since I worry a lot and there are a lot of tornados in Missouri. Peace of mind is desirable.

It seems like the group as a whole prefers houses from 750-1250, or 750-1750 square feet. Considering all the six figure salaries and millionaires here, I wasn't expecting that!! I was the lone person who put 1750-2250 square feet.

So my suspicions were right - - I should consider the fact that I would be perfectly happy in a smaller home than that. I guess the fact that I could afford such a huge home in Missouri was causing me to wonder if I should try a larger home.
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Old 10-03-2007, 08:30 PM   #27
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I am single, and my home is a relatively new 1450 sq. ft. I don't want to share walls, prefer a newer home, and enjoy having 3 bedrooms and 2 baths along with an open floor plan for the kitchen, dining, and living area. In my case, I have a huge covered patio and a nice yard with several trees which I hire someone to mow. I fractured my foot several months ago and had to hire someone until it healed. It was so wonderful having that task done for me that I continued with the arrangement even after the cast was off. When my 80 yr old do-it-yourself aunt comes by, I just limp a little. That woman has no fear of getting on a tractor and mowing acres of property any time she decides it needs it!

I like puttering with my big flowerbeds and landscaping but mowing is just a PITA to me.

If I had to move and couldn't find something this size, I would definitely buy smaller rather than larger. I could probably be happy with 1100-1200 sq. ft. but I would probably give up one bedroom in order to have larger living space.

I love the home I have now and can't imagine having anything larger. It seems just about perfect to me.

Enjoy the search!
TG
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Old 10-03-2007, 08:46 PM   #28
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So my experience is that when I was designing my eventual retirement home, the stock market was soaring and money was barely a factor, so it ballooned. I wound up with about 3800 sq feet, and lots of deck space. 3 levels including a walk out basement. I still love it, but if I was to do it again I know there's some rooms I'd cut out or shrink. I've considered downsizing but there's too much I like about the house and I figure the real estate commission hit will be more than the extra utilities, etc. Part of the problem is that I still haven't really settled in and I have some ideas to make some cozy areas, and I still need to do things like area rugs which should also help.

I also live temporarily in Texas. For awhile I lived in apartments from 600-900 square feet and they were way too small for me, especially with my daughter with me some weekends. So I bought a ranch. I was looking in the 1200 sq foot range but to get in a neighborhood and condition I wanted, I wound up with 1800 square feet. All I have in the the front living room / dining room is my computer desk and side table so that's a lot of space I don't need. The rest of the house is a very nice size, great plan, and I often feel more comfortable here in what is essentially a starter+ tract house than in my custom built house. If I was to design a new home from scratch I'd probably start with this house then the other one. Then again, I might decide I wanted my game room and that would start getting it closer to the size I wound up building anyway.
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Old 10-03-2007, 08:49 PM   #29
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btw I think it makes perfect sense to have a standalone house if you like some privacy and quiet. I hear from so many people that they don't like yardwork and maintenance. I suggest hiring a mower or a complete yard service, and they balk at the cost, but yet have no problem paying HOA dues for a condo or townhouse that is much more expensive! That doesn't make sense to me. I happen to like taking care of my yard, but if I didn't I'd just hire it out.
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Old 10-03-2007, 09:03 PM   #30
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btw I think it makes perfect sense to have a standalone house if you like some privacy and quiet. I hear from so many people that they don't like yardwork and maintenance. I suggest hiring a mower or a complete yard service, and they balk at the cost, but yet have no problem paying HOA dues for a condo or townhouse that is much more expensive! That doesn't make sense to me. I happen to like taking care of my yard, but if I didn't I'd just hire it out.
Privacy and quiet are really important to me, so that is what I'll probably do.

I can really relate to ending up with an 1800 square foot home in order to get the condition and neighborhood that you want, not to mention a large enough lot to keep considerable separation between me and my neighbors. I am not sure why these factors should be related to the size of homes in an area, but they are.

Thanks for the story about the 3800 square foot dream house. Maybe that will help me to keep grounded in reality, instead of thinking "I can afford it, so shouldn't I just get it?" I can also afford a smaller home.
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Old 10-03-2007, 09:07 PM   #31
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I am single, and my home is a relatively new 1450 sq. ft. I don't want to share walls, prefer a newer home, and enjoy having 3 bedrooms and 2 baths along with an open floor plan for the kitchen, dining, and living area. In my case, I have a huge covered patio and a nice yard with several trees which I hire someone to mow. I fractured my foot several months ago and had to hire someone until it healed. It was so wonderful having that task done for me that I continued with the arrangement even after the cast was off. When my 80 yr old do-it-yourself aunt comes by, I just limp a little. That woman has no fear of getting on a tractor and mowing acres of property any time she decides it needs it!

I like puttering with my big flowerbeds and landscaping but mowing is just a PITA to me.

If I had to move and couldn't find something this size, I would definitely buy smaller rather than larger. I could probably be happy with 1100-1200 sq. ft. but I would probably give up one bedroom in order to have larger living space.

I love the home I have now and can't imagine having anything larger. It seems just about perfect to me.

Enjoy the search!
TG
I will, and thanks for the input!

Lots of people have heart attacks while mowing, and I get just as much exercise and more, safely, in the gym, instead. At least that is what I tell myself! Besides, there is more to life than perpetual mowing.
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Old 10-03-2007, 10:10 PM   #32
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Having lived for 5 years in a 160 sq. ft. studio apt and having loved every minute of it, I would say less is more when it comes to living spaces. However, now that I have enjoyed living in a bigger space, I would say my ideal home size would be about 500-800 sq ft for a couple and about 400-500 sq ft for a batchelor.
In my 160 sp ft "cozy" studio I had a bathroom, kitchenette (sink, fridge, stove, oven, and a few cabinets) with kitchen table and chairs, a desk with an office chair, a sofa/bed with coffee/bedside table, and bookshelves. What else could I possibly need? If you use multifunctional (and folding) furniture, make use of the latest gadgets like flat screen TVs and laptop computers, a single person does not need much space at all!
Gosh, I even was able to entertain up to 3 people in my studio (though not formally).
Now I understand that it is not for everybody and now that I experienced living in a bigger space I would like to have at least 1 bedroom separated from the rest of the space, a full kitchen even if on the small side, and a dining area outside the kitchen (though it could be a dining/living combo area). So if it was just me a 400-500 sq ft condo would quite easily fit the bill. If it was for my wife and me, I would want a second bedroom to use as an office so that we would not step on each other's toes.
My mom has been living for 20 years in a 950 sq ft condo (3 bedrooms, dining room, living room, bathroom and kitchen) and she finds the place too big for her now (she is single and in her 60's). She wants to downside to a smaller condo, maybe 500-600 sq ft, with only 2 bedrooms, a living/dining combo area, kitchen and bathroom.
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Old 10-03-2007, 10:16 PM   #33
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Having lived for 5 years in a 160 sq. ft. studio apt and having loved every minute of it, I would say less is more when it comes to living spaces.
The smallest I'd heard of previously was 184sf.

I'm rethinking converting the garage (12x20).
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Old 10-03-2007, 10:21 PM   #34
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i use a bathroom, kitchen, florida room, bedroom & one bedroom as the office. i have no idea why i have a 3rd bedroom or a living room.

i'm still undecided about vagabonding or sailing. every so often i consider one of these:


there's one for sale in south florida & i've been tempted to have a look. probably only about 400 sq ft of living space but the views can't be beat. the backyard is huge. and if the neighbor's dog starts to bark ya just toss off a few lines and move.
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Old 10-03-2007, 10:33 PM   #35
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I live in 500 sq ft. It is fine, since I go out a lot. Mainly if I am here, I am sleeping, reading, using the computer or cooking. None of this takes much space. If I didn't have to pay up for it, I probably would want an additional 500 sq. ft.

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Old 10-03-2007, 11:36 PM   #36
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Old 10-04-2007, 08:04 AM   #37
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Big houses are great but remember they come with big utility bills ,bigger insurance bills and more maintenance .
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Old 10-04-2007, 08:14 AM   #38
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In my 160 sp ft "cozy" studio I had a bathroom, kitchenette (sink, fridge, stove, oven, and a few cabinets) with kitchen table and chairs, a desk with an office chair, a sofa/bed with coffee/bedside table, and bookshelves. What else could I possibly need?
Peace and quiet? I dunno. I lived in an apartment before I bought my house, and it was a reasonable place to live. Some of the aspects I didn't like about it were the parking situation, listening to my neighbors boots stomping across the floor over my head, and knowing people were all around me, whether I heard them or not. All of these were more related to the fact that it was an apartment, than due to the size, though.

If I buy a small house, I am going to have some remodeling in my future (ugh). I haven't seen many houses in Middle America with the amenities I want like granite countertops, French doors, crown molding, and a huuuuuge tiled shower, on a third of an acre with no homeowners' association, that were in the 750-1250 square foot range.
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Old 10-04-2007, 08:17 AM   #39
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Big houses are great but remember they come with big utility bills ,bigger insurance bills and more maintenance .
Not to mention property taxes. But then, the area of the country that I am moving to is very low in cost of living, and I could spend more on these things if I wanted to. I just don't know if I really want all that extra space or if it will be more of a pain in the rear than it is worth.
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Old 10-04-2007, 08:25 AM   #40
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i use a bathroom, kitchen, florida room, bedroom & one bedroom as the office. i have no idea why i have a 3rd bedroom or a living room.

i'm still undecided about vagabonding or sailing. every so often i consider one of these:


there's one for sale in south florida & i've been tempted to have a look. probably only about 400 sq ft of living space but the views can't be beat. the backyard is huge. and if the neighbor's dog starts to bark ya just toss off a few lines and move.
Ah, that is the life! I lived on a large trimaran (with someone) for a while when I was 19, back in the 1960's. It was wonderful, for several reasons! But these days, it is such a pain getting a live-in slip. Besides, I am just not as suited to that life any more and I am headed to Missouri.
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