No Place Like It

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For centuries, everyone from Odysseus to Dorothy has agreed that there's no place like home. Following that mantra, more Americans are forgoing rented digs for homes of their own. Census 2000 reveals that of the 105 million households in America, 70 million, or 66 percent, own their homes; the remaining 34 percent live in rented quarters. In fact, between 1990 and 2000, the growth of owner-occupied homes in the U.S. far outpaced growth in rentals (18.3 percent versus 8.3 percent). 1

Still, today's homeowners aren't settling for just any house. Their abodes are anything but little. In 2000, the typical newly constructed home was 2,265 square feet with 3 or more bedrooms, 2.5 baths and a garage for 2 or more cars. 2 By comparison, the typical new home in 1950 was less than half that size, at 1,000 square feet or less, with 2 bedrooms and just 1 bath. 3 Yet even with the extra space that modern homes provide, people want more. Over the past 12 months, 1 in 4 homeowners renovated or built an addition on to their home. 4 Apparently, Americans need their space.

1 U.S. Census Bureau, 2000

2,3 National Association of Home Builders, 2001

4 Scarborough Research, 2001

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