New data released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics reveals that Australians are living in smaller homes when compared to house sizes from a couple of decades ago.

New houses and apartments measure about 186sqm on average according to the latest figures – these floor sizes are the smallest they have been since 1996.

Looking at figures state-wise, Victoria is home to the biggest houses in 2017-18 with an average floor area of 244.8sqm followed by the ACT, Western Australia and Queensland. NSW came next with an average floor size of 220.3 square metres.

The rising apartment development sector is responsible for the dwindling floor area in homes. Eight years ago, apartments accounted for 27 percent of new builds; today, they stand at 46 percent.

However, Australians are increasingly choosing smaller spaces because they want to live a simpler life. There are others who want to live closer to the city and are willing to live in a smaller space.

Interestingly, Australia is only next to the USA in having some of the largest homes in the world. The average freestanding house in Australia had a floor area of 230.8 square metres in 2017-18; though this was smaller than the year before, the size was still 8 percent larger than houses from 20 years ago, and almost 30 percent bigger than those built 30 years ago. Not many McMansions are being built in the country today.