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How much house is enough?

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posted on Jul, 19 2009 @ 02:33 PM
I was hanging out with my friend last night over a few beers at his place discussing this thread. He is an A-List Actor (formerly B-List) and he laughed at the sizes of some people's homes that were mentioned here. His only home is 2400 sq feet for his second wife, his two kids and himself. He started bitching about how his house is far too big and if it weren't for the 20 acres and the entire movie set town he built in his backyard he'd downsize in a heartbeat.

Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous, Cribs, etc. is a fallacy for people who are overcompensating, as my friend laughingly said. He told me that some of the people that he knows in Hollywood might have 2 or 3 homes, but most of them are small, overpriced apartments or townhouses in big cities too expensive to afford, but for the most part, most of the people he knows have shacks out in the middle of nowhere and live in hiding and reclusive anonymity like Ted Kaczynsky. His best friend, a famous movie director, even lives in a run-down trailer in the middle of the remote woods, but he does so because it's right next to the best fishing hole in the world.

You can't put a price on happiness and privacy, no matter how successful or rich you may be. Your house is just somewhere where you keep your beer cold and rest your head at the end of the day when you need to get away from the world. As long as a place is hidden from annoying fans, has a couch, and a working fridge, my actor friend says that's good enough for him.

I can see his point.

Post-Script: He also took time to point out that unless you are Will Smith, contrary to popular belief, Actors are not rich...their Agents are, but they generally aren't. The fancy clothes and jewelry that you see Actors wearing at gala events is loaned to them by designers. Actors are nothing more than walking billboards for the rich, but the reality is that their glamor is just as fake as Hollywood movies.

[edit on 19-7-2009 by fraterormus]

posted on Jul, 19 2009 @ 04:43 PM
I have lived in large and small houses. I can't say that I was any happier in one size house than another, but we have been happier because of one lot or another. My husband and I decided quite some time ago that we are "lot" people. The environment means more to us than the house. The worst was the tiny lot with the large house in Wichita. We were so close to our neighbors that they could look in and see what we were doing. We had to make a house check before going to bed to chase out the stray neighbor kids that wandered in thinking our house was calmer than theirs. The climate was hot and dry and we had difficulty getting anything to grow and the trees that did were all bent over from the constant wind. Our current house has a wonderful lot (we live in the SE now) with a pond, pool, trees, flowers. We love it. Unfortunately, it also came with a huge house and now that the kids are in college, we only need half the space. I like the house, but it is just a waste of utilities running three heating/AC units just to keep the temperature comfortable. We are counting the days until the kids are graduated from college and we can pawn off half our stuff on them and retire to a nice little cabin (emphasis on little) on a lake in Minnesota.

posted on Jul, 19 2009 @ 05:57 PM
My husband and I live in a small apartment/duplex. It is a 2 bedroom, 2 bath and we still feel like we have too much room. Our goal is to save enough money to build a "tiny house" on a nice plot of land (enough room for a large garden and for the dogs to run around). Every time we have moved we've gotten a smaller place. When we moved to our current apartment we got rid of around 1/3 of our possessions: books, furniture, clothing, dishes... everything! It felt great.

When I met my husband he lived in a room the size of a walk in closet and could easily have fit all of his belongings in the back of his truck. For awhile I lived in the room with him and we were completely happy with the limited space.

posted on Jul, 19 2009 @ 06:34 PM

Originally posted by paperplanesI believe this is always more of a matter of personal discretion than a general ethic; I know this is a minority opinion. I don't take issue with anyone owning a large space if it is within their means and does not take away from reasonable duties. There can be as much pretension in owning a tiny home as in owning a vast one, and likewise an equal deal of sincerity.

Well said. My house is large. We do not live extravagantly, but I really enjoy large, beautifully designed spaces. I can afford it, so why not?

Sometimes small houses can emit as much smug as hybrids.

posted on Jul, 19 2009 @ 08:52 PM
I have a large house (3500 sq ft), six bedrooms, 3.5 bath. But then i have a family of eight living in it, 4 kids, 2 elderly inlaws and the wife and myself. It's roomy, we don't get in each other's way, yes we have a lot of "stuff" as a family of eight would accumulate over years. Our vehicles are run of the mill, a 2005 Toyota Sequoia SUV, 2007 Saturn Ion, and a 2004 Toyota Camry.

Best of all i can afford it and it's almost paid off.

Size of one's home depends on need and affordability and in some cases ego (See Bill Gates $48 mil home for him and his wife in Seattle WA).

posted on Jul, 19 2009 @ 09:22 PM
How much is enough? I think exterior space is more important than interior. The two of us and two cats live in a 650 square foot house. Plenty of room. When we moved here, one of the first things I did was make the kitchen smaller -- a "railroad" kitchen, meaning two parallel lines -- in this case cabinets& sink, fridge on one side, cooktop/island on the other, and just enough room for two adults to pass by each other.

Exterior space is what we really value -- room enough to grow what we need. We've tried a lot of different planting strategies in the last 15 years, and containers with wheels is the current mode. IF we can assume that the seas will continue to yield protein, it takes about 400 square feet of space to grow supporting vegetables, and that's not including a breadfruit tree (a starch -- like a potato) and three fruit trees.

Of course, we have a shed I built for all the TEOTWAWKI stuff, and a whole lot of tools and fasteners, solar arrays, battery banks, etc. I wish we had a screened in porch to sleep in when it's hot.

We could be very comfortable with about half of the interior space. What does a person really NEED? I'd hate having too much room; it's hard enough to keep this little place clean!

posted on Jul, 20 2009 @ 12:10 AM
I've seen small houses packed with decades of memories, and kids sharing rooms. That's too small for no reason than being miserly.

I've seen houses for a family of three big enough to have a ballroom, not enough furniture for the rooms, and the teenage kid lived in the maids house. That's too big.

The size isn't an ego thing, it's a matter of personal freedom and opinion. If someone thinks my house is too small or too big, it's really none of their business. This isn't communism.

posted on Jul, 20 2009 @ 05:35 AM
Depends on the person. Some people don't fare well in smaller dwellings. The walls feel like they're closing in on them. I cannot stand the feeling of being cooped up, nor do I like having a bigger place with a bunch of stuff in it, because there's not much free space. I like a lot of space.

I was living in a 3-br mobile home last year and it still felt cramp because I had so much junk in it. I now live in a 1-br and much of that stuff is in here and a lot of my stuff is at my mom's and it drives me nuts if I look at the stuff. Been trying to find a bigger place, but so far I keep getting beat out at places. I almost bought a mobile home recently, but someone beat me to it by a day.

posted on Jul, 20 2009 @ 09:33 AM
Too much house is when there are unused rooms or too many doors and windows to secure each night or when you leave the place.

I knew a man who built an eight bedroom house to accomodate his second wife and their combined families. Within less than five years he was divorced and all the kids had gone their separate ways. He liked the location (on a hill, on bushland acreage) so remained there on his own. He used the kitchen, laundry, one of the bathrooms and his bedroom. He was at work all day so the place sat empty most of the time. He couldn't be bothered checking windows and doors -- the security was basically non-existent, other than him locking the front door (basic lock) when he left/when he remembered. He was a bit eccentric and had a sauna installed in one of the bedrooms, yet used it only twice, briefly.

It would be hard to find a creepier, more unsettling house, even in daytime. He couldn't be bothered maintaining the garden and half the downstairs windows were obscured by overgrown plants, vines, etc. All the rooms were half filled with stuff left by his wife and children. In the middle of the upper floor was an unused room created when he'd extended one of the bedroom wings. The unused room was larger than average, had no windows at all and only one door which opened into the large master suite.

One night I drove up there to leave a surprise present. It was heavy and had to be carried in three pieces, which required three separate trips from the driveway (overshadowed by trees and sloping down from the road). The first trip wasn't too bad, but by the third, I was on the point of chickening out because I was by then so spooked by the atmosphere in the house, even though several lights were on. The feeling of not being alone in there was very powerful. I'd never do it again.

I was so glad to get back to our normal sized home with no forbidding empty rooms or unused bathrooms or long frightening hallways.

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