Wednesday, December 20, 2006

More room to keep all our stuff

The new statistical abstract is out from the census folks, and its statistics on construction and housing confirms George Carlin's observation that we've got so much stuff, we have to get bigger and bigger places to keep it all. Specificially, the median home size is now 2,227 square feet, up from 2,057 in 2000 and 1,905 in 1990. While all other categories have dropped or kept even, the largest category of homes, those over 2,400 square feet, has jumped from 29 percent of total in 1995 to 42 percent in 2005, a whopping 45% increase in just a decade and a half.

The use of wood frames has undegone a free fall, from 39% in 1990, to just 7% in 2005. And while vinyl siding has all but disappeared, from 5% in 90 to 1% in 05, the "other" category, which I'm betting includes concrete block, is on a roll, going from 6% in 1995 to 16% in 2005. Bernie Stone, take heart.

Fewer new homes have basements, dropping from 38% in 1990, to 31% in 2005, while split-levels - 4% in 95 - have declined to less than half a percent in 2005. And while pre-fab housing is getting more and more attention and press coverage, it remains a non-starter in the real world, remaining constant at a 3 percent share since 1995, with site-built at 95%

Just thought you should know.

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