Big house with no yard or small house with a big yard?

You’ve moved to a new city and you’re buying a house. This city has only two types of houses that fall squarely into one of these two descriptions:

A) a big house with no yard, like just a couple of feet all around, if that.


B) a very small, “cozy” house with a very large yard; the house itself takes up less than 1/4 of the lot.

Either of them has sufficient interior space for you and your family and belongings, but A will be very spacious and B will be just barely enough.

All other things being equal, including price, which do you choose?

Small house, big yard.

  1. You can always build onto the house.

  2. You never know when shit’s gonna happen that would make it necessary to grow your own food.

It never, ever hurts to have some land.

neither. condo. :slight_smile:

Small house. I can always build on when needed and I love to garden. More room for the dogs to play as well.

Big house, small yard. Less lawn to mow in the summer, less space I don’t use in the other nine months a year.

Shodan the Contentedly House-bound

I have 36 acres in NE AZ, and we put a 3 bedroom, 2 bath mobile home on the land.

Now THAT is a big yard!

I vote big house small yard but where we live, there are about 8 months where you don’t want to go outside and be in your yard.

So, if it were somewhere warmer, I would probably reverse that.

(Note: we actually went with small house, small yard and saved the extra cash.)

There is very little in this world I hate more than yard work.

Small house, big yard. More house=more housework all year round. More yard=more yardwork 4 or 5 months out of the year. Less house=less storage space to fill with crap we don’t need. Less yard=taking the dogs for long walks when it’s 15 degrees instead of letting them go outside to play on their own, no garden in the summer, no pet chickens.

No contest. None at all.

I could write my own post but it would just say the same thing as this one.

I don’t like large houses and I do like having more space between me and my neighbors. But I hate yardwork too! Hard choice. I guess if I can hire someone to maintain my lawn, I’d prefer the large yard.

I wouldn’t be opposed to having a large house, I suppose–it’d be better than the no-house I currently own. I’d probably close off a bunch of it though… I just don’t need all that much living space. Or maybe I could rent it out for extra $$.

This is my take on it too. We had a small house, added a 2nd story, and now its a medium size house on a fairly large (for the area) lot.

I’m more for a medium/medium thing, myself. I lived on a corner lot with a sloping yard for a number of years, and the mowing and snow shoveling were not fun. I now live in a bigger, but not huge house with a smaller, flatter yard and no sidewalk to shovel. I’m digging it. There’s parks and ball fields nearby for that stuff, and since the back yard is kind of treed in, it’s mostly patio and works well for that (except for the #$%&ing mosquitoes!).

A big house means more housework and more heating/cooling, not to mention furnishings. I’m in a close-in suburb, where size isn’t a big deal, anyway. I think the future demands a smaller footprint.

Good question:
Big house - lots of dusting, painting, cleaning, upkeep, heating/cooling bills, etc.
Big yard - lots of upkeep, mowing, planting, trimming, etc.

If you go for the big yard, make sure that is a big BACK yard, and not front yard - you don’t want to be doing all that yard work for an area you can rarely use, just to look pretty for the neighbors. At least in the back yard you can have friends over, strip naked and run around and play hide and go squeak. In the front yard, you can, uh, do nothing.

Big yard. The kids need a place to catch fireflies.

Me too, once upon a time. Now the kids are grown and gone and the house sort of qualifies as “big” without all those hulking teenagers under foot.


But if this is one of those questions where I have to choose then I’m going to go with Very small house with big yard. I currently live in a very small room, so even a very small house will be more than what I have now and will be more than enough for me. I would also simplify the yard to make upkeep easier and I will not move anywhere it snows regularly.

Small house, big yard. Over the years I’ve lived in everything from a small studio apartment to a 3-bedroom house (now). I can always adjust the amount of stuff I have, but I can’t adjust the space between me and my neighbors.

Small house, big yard.

More space for the dogs to play, more distance between me and the neighbours. I like my neighbours, but I don’t need to hear every belch and fart, nor do I enjoy smelling everything they cook.

I would also love some space for a garden and some pretty chickens. Even with severe neglect and minimal work I had fresh tomatoes from my wee patch of veggie garden this year.

We’re already in a small house with a big yard (for the neighborhood). I would definitely insist on it being mostly backyard where only my sense of what needs to be done is important.

I’m not a fan of yard work but I am a fan of a private spot for the dogs to run and play freely.