Monday, August 2, 2021
Home Engineering Construction Are McMansions Becoming Extinct?

Are McMansions Becoming Extinct?


The answer is most likely yes. McMansion is a slang term for a large newly built house that is poorly designed and too big for its surroundings. These houses were first constructed in the 1990’s in America. They are compared to McDonald’s for being built so fast. These types of houses were massively constructed in the early 2000’s, with around 50% vacancy in most cases. After the market collapsed in 2008 the construction of these houses diminished. People are starting to live in smaller homes on average, because of the mortgage crisis. McMansions attempt to replicate historic architecture but end up just retracting from the existing historical architecture. If you are going to build your own house, take into consideration of quality not quantity! There is nothing wrong with building big when its done right.

For a little historical context, 1,200 square feet was the average home size in America in the 1960s. That grew to 1,710 square feet in the 1980s and 2,330 square feet in the 2000s.

What sets a McMansion apart from a regular mansion, according to Wikipedia, are a few characteristics: They’re tacky, they lack a definitive style and they have a “displeasingly jumbled appearance.”  (Wiki says the word McMansion first appeared in the SD Union-Tribune in 1990)

I enjoy being part of Urban Splatter as it continues to create evolving opportunities within the digital realm of architecture.


  1. Ooh, even as recently as 2012, the reports of the death of McMansions persist. Guess what? In a major economic downturn, people scale back. But with interest rates still hovering near the bottom of historic lows, buying big has never been more affordable. Throw in the always improving energy efficiencies, and the natural gas boom, and you’re seeing the resumption of big home construction.

    And guess what? Tract housing has been around since the post WWII expansion. The only difference is that new construction methods have made it cheaper to build bigger. As always, the quality of the home is subject to the quality of the builder. Reputations matter…only problem is that too many folks are so dazzled by beautiful builders’ model homes that they often overlook researching the builder’s reputation. There’s some big, bad eggs out there, but many of those builders are also building awful smaller SF homes, as well as townhouses and multi-family housing.


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