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Saturday’s Real Estate section in the Washington Post mulls over the premise of “The Not-So-Big House,” a ten-year-old book written by architect Sarah Susanka. Now that developers are eschewing mcmansions—-and even knocking them down in some places—-for smaller homes, the book seems even more relevant than it did in the late 1990s. The Post’s article breaks down why “The Not-So-Big House” trumps the stereotypical, colossal, Exurban home:

  • Bigger monthly mortgage payments
  • More money for flood insurance
  • Bigger energy bills
  • More money to furnish, clean and maintain the space
  • More walls to wallpaper or paint
  • More trim to touch up
  • More bathrooms to clean
  • More bathroom tile to grout
  • More light bulbs to replace
  • More yardwork
  • Higher housekeeping costs
  • Higher cost of living because of surrounding stores.

And finally…and this I consider a stretch: “Think about the holidays: If you live in a fancier neighborhood, you might feel pressured to do more elaborate holiday decorations.”