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A recent survey by PulteGroup showed that 84 percent of homeowners between the ages of 18-59 have no intentions of downsizing, even among baby boomers. (AP Photo/File)

After five years, homes are getting larger

Homeowners are turning to bigger homes following five years of downsizing trends.

Average sizes of newly built homes increased 3.7 percent last year over 2010, according to U.S. Census Bureau data. That marked the first increase since 2007. And builders are reporting higher demand for larger homes this year.

A recent survey by PulteGroup showed that 84 percent of homeowners between the ages of 18-59 have no intentions of downsizing, even among baby boomers.

"There appears to be a renewed sense of optimism in housing," says Deborah Meyer, PulteGroup's chief marketing officer. "Homebuyers, regardless of their stage of life, still want and need larger homes. Consistent with our consumer research, the survey results show that today's buyers are equally focused on more efficient use of the spaces within their homes."

The need for more space may be coming from the growing number of people living under one roof, as multi-generations move in together.

A recent survey by the American Institute of Architects shows a higher demand for multi-generational housing. The survey also showed more homeowners upsizing their current homes. Fifty-eight percent of architects reported higher interest in additions and remodels, which is up from 35 percent one year ago. Larger kitchen and baths topped the list.

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