Shrinkflation: Smaller Home Lots & Higher Home Prices

Discover what you need to understand about smaller home lots and higher home prices when you visit home communities with your real estate agent.

We are seeing smaller home lots, but not smaller pricing

While touring new home communities, I noticed that lot sizes are shrinking but the prices are still going up. You may be reading the headlines about the rising price of materials or the low housing inventory, but until you see the new housing communities in person, you can’t understand the impact.

The Package is Shrinking but the Prices Are Not 

Everyone today begins their search online where you see nothing but beautiful model homes with great floorplans and elegant home furnishings. Virtual staging and aerial photography show the homes and community to the best advantage. Then, you come for a tour in person and see that the homes are rather close together.

In real estate, location, location, location is always #1. A very close second is the design and layout of the community. The developer typically owns the land and is responsible for the site plan, amenities, and overall look and feel of the community. The builder(s) are brought in to build and sell houses. Some relationships between the two are more compatible than others. The most successful communities are built on more of a partnership between the two, both with a commitment to the completion of the community as designed.

Looks the Same but Different

Some beautiful communities were designed by a developer with ¼ acre lots to accommodate homes built by a custom builder. When the recession hit in 2008-2009, some of these developers or builders could not survive. New construction came to a halt. After the recession, these communities changed hands and the new developers brought in builders like NV Homes or Schell Brothers or one of several other builders who had survived the recession. This is why you will find the same model, by the same builder, in very different settings.

The newer communities do offer lots of amenities, but the lots are shrinking while home prices remain the same or go up. My husband compares it to a gallon of ice cream. The price may be the same, but it is no longer a gallon! Candy bars and cookies got smaller and there are fewer pieces in a box of girl scout cookies. There is even a term for this I discovered – Shrinkflation!

Is Downsizing the Cause?

Are they shrinking because people are downsizing? Not necessarily. While the lots sizes are getting smaller, the homes themselves are not. The new models have been designed to fit on narrower lots. Homes tend to be deeper, rather than wide. These homes still feature a first-floor owner suite with guest bedrooms on the second floor.

When choosing your next home, consider how and where you want to spend your time. Are you a homebody who values your space and privacy, or do you prefer a great location close to everything the Delaware resorts have to offer? Download our free relocation guide filled with loads of information about the Delaware region. Next, give us a call. We’re happy to arrange some visits to the communities you’d most like to see. 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *