New Homes Started With 4 or More Bedrooms Trends Lower

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The U.S. Census Bureau’s Survey of Construction’s (SOC) estimate of the number of bedrooms in new single-family homes has shown a declining trend for homes with 4 bedrooms or more since 2015. The most recent SOC data show the number of bedrooms of new homes whose construction began in 2018 (new homes started).

Nationally, the number of single-family homes started with 4 bedrooms or more declined from 44.8% in 2017 to 43.5% in 2018. These developments are linked to changes in preferences among home buyers. With more Millennials becoming prepared to buy their first home, the starter home share will rise, which means smaller homes and slightly fewer bedrooms.

Historically, new homes started with 3 or 4 bedrooms have held the highest shares and new homes started with 2 bedrooms or less or 5 bedrooms or more have held the lowest shares. The declining trend mirrors the downward trend of new single-family home size.

As of 2018, the share of new single-family homes started with 3 bedrooms was the highest of all categories, at 45%, with those with 4 bedrooms trailing at 34%. The lowest two categories were new homes started with 2 bedrooms or less and 5 bedrooms or more, with shares of only 11% and 9%, respectively.

Regionally, most Census divisions show declines for the typical number of bedrooms in single-family homes. An exception is the West North Central region, which experienced a slight rising trend.



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