Buying first home, but is it too small?!

posted 6 months ago in Home
Post # 2
1050 posts
Bumble bee

My main concern would be the one bathroom. Do y’all plan on building another one on? I’d never sign myself up for using one bathroom only between me, Darling Husband, 2 kids and occasionally guests! I’d go insane lol. Other than that, I think it sounds fine! My uncle lived in a cozy 3 bed, 2 bath with a family of 4 + my grandmother for a few months of the year. It worked well for them until the kids got to about 8 years old and needed larger bedrooms.

Post # 3
171 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: June 2016 - Bell Tower on 34th

averyj :  Congrats on braving the house buying process!  

My hubby and I bought a 3 bedroom 2 bathroom single family home in Los Angeles and it was 1,125 sq ft!  We had a child in that house as well as a dog and a cat.  It was certainly small but it had such an incredible yard with a gorgeous covered back porch big enough for a ton of people when hosting parties.  We spent so much time outside.  We actually miss that house when we walk into our 2,700 sq ft home in Houston.  We do love our current home but there was something about the simplicity of the size of our previous home.  It was super easy to clean and maintain and it was in a super cute neighborhood.  I’d do it again in a heartbeat.

My advice would be this: if you are interested in a house of this size, I would just say that organization is key.  We had bookshelves, cabinets, a pantry (small but functional), and other organizational aspects that made living in our home a joy even with its tiny footprint!

ETA: We also bought our house after the previous owner had added a master bathroom.  Many of the houses only had one bathroom in our area which set our house apart when we bought it (up against 4 other offers) and when we sold it.  It took 3 weeks to sell in a slow (at the time) LA market.  If you could add a bath, I definitely would!

Good luck!!

Post # 4
1295 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2016

I think it largely depends on how you use your house.

For me it was super important to have a kid space totally separate from adult living space, so a priority for us was having an area that could be designated as ‘kids area’. The house we just purchased has an awesome little offshoot that is visible from the living room but it’s own contained area that has floor to ceiling shelving. So even though the square footage of the house isn’t huge (~1400 sq ft), that’s one example of how it will work for our growing family really well (we want 3-4 kids total).

It also depends on how much stuff you have. SO and I are fairly minimalist. We have what we need but we ‘purge’ pretty regularly so we dont need a ton of storage space. Plus we’re lucky that we have lots of family and friends nearby so can always borrow tools/yard equipment/etc for the odd times we may need them rather then buy and store everything ourselves.

~1000 sq feet for a family of four sounds reasonable for 5-7 years when the kids are young.

Post # 6
156 posts
Blushing bee

When we first started house hunting I was very open to a 1 bathroom house, but my Mother-In-Law told me a story I couldn’t forget about the time both her and my Father-In-Law got food poisening at the same time…as you can imagine, having two bathrooms was essential.  So yea, I think that house is too small.  Not to mention it’s 1,000 sq ft.  I’ve lived in spaces that big without kids and it felt tight.  Not undoable and space will feel relative to everyone individually.  But if your intention is to make a profit later, I think a 3/1 is a much harder sell than a 3/2, unless you live in a super desirable area.

Post # 10
262 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2017

We don’t have any kids yet, but we bought a 2 bedroom, 2 bathroom house (second bathroom is in the garage). The house (2 bedrooms, 1 bath, kitchen, living room) is 840 sq ft. It is pretty tiny for the two of us and our dogs. The part that bothers me the most is how small our living room is. It’s really hard to have holidays at our house. We always end up in our Florida room in the back of our house if we have guests, but it isn’t a cooled room.

I would say it depends on the size of rooms/layout. My living room and kitchen are separated and there is absolutely no room for a dining table. If the layout was better, I think I would be happier. It also depends if you like to entertain, or not.

I also grew up in a small house. We had about 900 sq ft, 2 bedrooms, 1 bath, kitchen/laundry room, dining/living room and a tiny den. 2 parents and 2 kids. My parents ended up adding on to the house when I was probably 10-ish and it was a lot more comfortable. 

Post # 11
356 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2018

averyj :  Its your first home, congratulations!  You will make it work even if it is too small and the next house will be bigger.  

I think the layout matters more than the square footage. 

Post # 12
8467 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

averyj :  if it’s a good layout and don’t have wasted space then I think it will be fine. I’d rather have a small house that is well thought out than a large house with dead useless space and and awkward layout. 

Post # 13
140 posts
Blushing bee

I think it depends on your expectations and what you’re used to. I grew up in a family of 5 in a house about that size. I had to share a room with my sister and with no basement or attic, we had no “extra” rooms or space. My mother was a master organizer, which you kind of have to be in that situation. After my siblings and I finished college we all moved back home which was particularly difficult. 5 adults in a small house with one bathroom was not fun. It is definitely doable as a starter home with two young kids though. 

Post # 14
658 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2018

My house is about 1100 sq-ft and has 3 beds and 1 bath and Darling Husband and I would like to have 2 kids, but I would imagine we *hopefully* have at least one kid while we still have one bathroom. 

I think it sounds do-able but it’ll be an adjustment for 1 bathroom. Darling Husband and I still struggle with it now and that’s without kids. Our plan is to add-on to our home though, particularly off of our masterbedroom (bascially lengthening the house on both sides) and adding a bathroom *again, HOPEFULLY* before our 2nd kid. 

I think 2 kids, 2 adults with one bathroom would be a huge challenge. You could probably deal depending on the age gap but I would recommend thinking about remodeling/adding on and if that would be within your means. 

Also, all of the bedrooms are pretty adequate sizes as well.. so we aren’t too concerned for future kids having their bedrooms be “too small”. 

Post # 15
9632 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2012

I mean it’s kind of late now isn’t it? Can you even back out without repurcussions?

For me personally that sounds small, but plenty of families live in that or smaller especially in HCOL areas.

Growing up we had one bathroom and it was tiny and upstairs. We lived.

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