The living rooms of newly built homes in Britain are nearly a third smaller than equivalent homes built in the 1970s, according to research that charts how living space has shrunk to levels last seen 80 years ago.
The research, by LABC Warranty, which provides warranties for new-build homes, found the average living room in a house built since 2010 was 17.1 square metres (184 sq ft), compared with 24.9 sq m (268 sq ft) in the 1970s, a 32% contraction.
The study also found that modern-day master bedrooms were on average 13.4 sq m (144 sq ft) in size, compared with 14.7m (158 sq ft) in the 1970s. The research points to a reduction in the number of bedrooms, which peaked in the 1980s at an average of 3.6 compared with just under three bedrooms today - the first time the figure has fallen below three, according to LABC Warranty.
In 2014, researchers from Cambridge University found that, at an average of 76 sq m, the UK’s newly built homes were the smallest by floor area in Europe, some way behind the next worst, in Italy and Portugal, at 81.5 sq m and 82.2 sq m respectively. Danish homes were by far the most spacious, at 137 sq m, followed by Greece, at 126.4 sq m.