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Why McMansions

Discussion in 'Living Room' started by MTR, 2nd Jul, 2015.

  1. MTR

    MTR Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    This is puzzling me greatly, not losing sleep yet, that one comes when I am building;)

    I am watching some family members go from living in average size homes, comfortably for years.

    Suddenly the children leave home, you would think that in most cases these I guess baby boomers will downsize, as the homes/yards are way too big, and another benefit cash up, most will not have sufficient funds/investments to retire on super alone.

    What I am seeing is quite the opposite, they are selling up and building McMansions, 300 sqm homes/

    My thoughts are that its aspirational, it makes no sense, however its all to do with image, making a statement "finally, I have made it", house my castle, status, this sort of thing. They are happy to live on less money in retirement or work longer so they have their status symbol.

    All to their own I guess.

    MTR:)
     
  2. sanj

    sanj Well-Known Member

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    Aspirational mindset is a big part of it, as is the great australian tradition of making bad financial decisions.

    I must admit the need for so many people to build or live in a brand new house,often at a great cost not only to the wallet but lifestyle is something I've always found puzzling
     
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  3. wombat777

    wombat777 Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    I took the decision to buy land and build after nearly exchanging a contract on a spec-built 3-bedder. A vacant block suddenly became available. Is way more space than I need, however has allowed me to realise an additional $200k equity for an additional $78k outlay.

    Block sizes are decreasing in most new estates. There will be less opportunity for people to build mega-macmansions. I've seen blocks as small as 220sqm. In many Sydney estates the new average block size would be in the 300sqm to 400sqm range.
     
  4. MTR

    MTR Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    Yes Sanj, I do think it is totally ridiculous.

    Though the people I know who have gone down this road always wanted their Dream Home and they were finally able to achieve this, at a cost to their lifestyle.

    I also think Dream Home?? what is this?? one day a dream home, the other day it is an out dated, fugly home. Just saying

    Rather live in a home that is comfortable and surround myself with the things that I love. When I go on trips I buy something as a reminder, my house is full of lovely reminders of some great times. Then of course my children's paintings, frame them, enjoy them, more important than a McMansion. Children get a buzz out of this as well.

    MTR:)
     
  5. twobobsworth

    twobobsworth Well-Known Member

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    300 sqm is considered a mcmansion??
     
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  6. MTR

    MTR Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    When you have 2 people living in purpose built home, this size I think it is?
    This would typically be 4x2 and study, 2 adults do you need this?

    No crime in building this, but my point is it makes little sense, especially if you are sacrificing lifestyle over size. Does size matter??? I don't think so in this case.:oops:
    .

    In USA they build mega mcmansions, also depending which State in South many have extended families living in the home, different culture/different way of living
    MTR
     
    Last edited: 2nd Jul, 2015
  7. Sashatheman

    Sashatheman Well-Known Member

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    My in-laws now live alone in a 5 bedroom house you can call a Mcmansion. The kids all left, so its just them two. They won't ever sell it, because they like this area, are familiar with it, and feel that the grandchildren can stay in all those extra rooms.
     
  8. Perp

    Perp Well-Known Member

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    It depends what your priorities are. I'm a nester, study and work from home, and am a member of a family of introverts. We spend a lot of time at home. A beautiful PPOR - and we've just moved into a new one 3 months ago :) - was our highest financial priority, because it's what we value. All the money in the world wouldn't mean much to me if I didn't live in a home that I loved. I've just spent four years living in a rental home - that was arguably "OK" - but I hated every minute of it. I wasn't unhappy - I'm far more resilient than that :D - but I hated living in that house. I wanted to change everything about it. I didn't even hang pictures, because it never felt like my home, because it wasn't a home I'd ever choose to live in. I didn't have people over, not because I was an iota embarrassed, but because I hated being in that house, so why would I want to subject people I like to spending time there?

    But I spend next-to-nothing on clothes, jewellery, and cars. (Two old Korean cars.)

    There is no right and wrong, just different strokes for different folks. :)
     
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  9. Aaron Sice

    Aaron Sice Well-Known Member

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    I fell for this trap - realised it quick enough and got out though.
     
  10. MTR

    MTR Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    Agree, absolutely.

    My point is if buying a McMansion will cause financial stress today then why do it, why do people do things that will be detrimental to their lifestyle?. If they can afford this then that's a different kettle of fish.

    Impressing people, image, is short term fix, there is more to this.... calling Dr Phil:)
     
  11. Perthguy

    Perthguy Well-Known Member

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    300 sqm! That's bigger than my block! o_O
     
  12. Perp

    Perp Well-Known Member

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    I agree that it's crazy if you can't afford it, but my point was also meant to be that it's not necessarily about impressing people or image. I'd want the same home even if nobody apart from my family ever saw it. I want it because I want it; I really don't care what other people think. And my home's not huge, or extravagant - what I love about it is that it's exactly what I wanted, and is customised for my family's lifestyle and preferences.

    So maybe those people aren't buying larger homes to try and impress people; maybe they've always felt cramped, or they want all the kids and grandkids to be able to visit at the same time, or a million other reasons other than "trying to keep up with the Joneses".
     
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  13. Big Red

    Big Red Well-Known Member

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    I think it is all around impressing people. It is human nature to want to impress others and like buying a new car its a nice thing to have. The challenge as you say is can you actually afford to do it and if you can't then you probably shouldn't.
     
  14. Perp

    Perp Well-Known Member

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    Never figured you as so judgey, Sean!
     
  15. Big Red

    Big Red Well-Known Member

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    Well I think its true. Why buy a Ferrari when a Toyota or Hyundai can do the job? Why have a 6 bedroom house when you need 3 or 4?
    Offcourse we need to justify it to our self as being necessary. I do it, you know wanting to buy a new TV or new something else. This is speaking from my own XP though.
     
  16. Charlotte30

    Charlotte30 Well-Known Member

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    As someone of the older age group here, I built 4 of these Mcmansions over 15 yrs before I realised that it was more about my ego rather than a good investment. So I sold up, and moved from a middle class area to a working class area near the city centre. Initial goal was 4 IP's and 1 PPR and this was achieved within 5 years. That gave me more satisfaction/financial independence than a Mcmansion. I needed to get over looking rich versus being rich.
     
  17. LibGS

    LibGS Well-Known Member

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    In my house, the main bedroom including ensuite and wir is 5 * 7 metres, which compared to where I grew up, is large. All up, including garage, alresco, etc the house is 270smq. One real estate agent doing a "valuation" for us noted that it is compact. EH?

    When we were looking at display homes 5 years ago, my wife and I were stunned at the size of parent's bedrooms. Some were called "parents retreat" or "parent suite" and were twice the size of what we have now.
     
  18. hobo

    hobo Well-Known Member

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    I will be happy to do this (ie upsize rather than downsize, in retirement - or ideally before if things work out!) but it won't be at a cost to lifestyle, it will be part of it.

    My main reason is similar to Perp in that as an introvert, I plan to spend a lot of time at home (when not travelling), and I'd love to be able to sit out on a deck with an amazing view. We are unlikely to find a small 2- or 3- bedroom house on the sort of awesome block I am planning for. :D So it's more about an "upgrade" rather than an "upsize".

    We also have family (and friends) spread around the country/world so would likely have regular visitors who I'd love to have stay with me - added bonus.

    But it definitely wouldn't happen if I thought it was going to limit other lifestyle aspects such as regular travel etc etc. And we likely won't have the option of purpose-building a house, as pretty much all buildable land with amazing views is already built on here (and there are severe restrictions on further hillslopes building these days). So it will be a buy-and-freshen-up scenario, I guess.

    Looking forward to it! :D

    Edit - I should add, the term "McMansion" means something different to me than how it has been used in this thread. I think of it meaning younger people stretching their finances severely when buying a house (usually their first), as apparently they are unable to settle for anything less than a 4-bedroom, 2-bathroom house with double garage, media room, office, separate formal lounge AND rumpus room, landscaped gardens and a fancy light on the oversized letterbox. But I guess the age of the purchaser is the only thing different there.....
     
    Last edited: 2nd Jul, 2015
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  19. Westminster

    Westminster Tigress at Tiger Developments Business Member

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    Never build a mcmansion at an advanced age if it means working longer - how will you enjoy that new house if you are never there as you're at work.
    TBH I've not many any over 50s who have upscaled to their detriment.
    Like Perp and Hobo I'll be building a dream house on a acreage so the size of the house will be quite large but I'm young (cough 40) and we both work from home so we spend a lot of time there.
     
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  20. EN710

    EN710 Well-Known Member

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    o_O Really?
    If I have a big house (and I'd love one), I prefer no one knows about it!
     
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