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The most popular new home size — 1,800 to 2,400 square feet — accounts for 27 percent of new homes, but that also includes townhouses and other attached dwellings as well as single-family homes.

“People assumed that, during the recession, everyone would just start building smaller homes,” said Lake, noting Standard Pacific’s Manzanita homes range from 2,400 to 3,200 square feet. “But actually, we’re still building big, but smarter.”

New homes also tend to feel like resort living, an outgrowth of “staycations.” Next to the great room, the most requested amenity is a spa bathroom, Lake said.

“We take a lot of cues from hospitality,” Lake said. “Think about the best vacation spot you’ve been to. That’s what people want — particularly the spa bath for their home.”

That includes “the whole idea of a spa,” he added, with such amenities as a soaking tub, steam shower, luxurious cabinetry and natural stone.

“People want huge showers — über showers, car-wash showers,” Lake said. “I haven’t found a limit yet on a shower that’s too big. Everybody wants a seat in the shower, too. It’s another case of dedicating square footage where people use it every day.”

©2013 The Sacramento Bee (Sacramento, Calif.)
Distributed by MCT Information Services

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