While the average size of a new single-family home has steadily increased and is now at its largest square footage ever, the average size per unit of multifamily housing construction starts has declined slightly. The NAHB reports that in the fourth quarter of 2015, the average per unit square footage of a multifamily housing construction start was 1,138, down from the post-recession high at the start of 2015 of 1,247-sf.
This decreased size is most likely due to the increased market share for rental multifamily homes. As multifamily developers build more for-sale housing units, the average size of multifamily homes will likely rise.
Another aspect of the decreased size is due to the increase in rental demand. Renters typically gravitate towards smaller units than owner-occupiers.
For graphs and a full analysis of the data, follow the link below to NAHB’s Eye on Housing blog.