recently completed a study for a home builder client who engaged them to find out where residents actually spent their waking hours in their home.

This work involved a survey of 100 family households – each holding two working adults and at least one child living at home – in Sydney, Melbourne and SEQld.  The survey period covered a typical week.  Most households surveyed spent, on average, about six hours – 360 minutes – awake in the house each day, including the weekends.

The results of this survey are as follows:

Rank House area Average time spent per day
1 Kitchen area 38% 137
2 Family/TV room 17% 61
3 Porch/Balcony 10% 36
4 Bedrooms 8% 29
5 Bathrooms 6% 22
6 Study/office 5% 18
7 Yard 5% 18
8 Shed/Garage 5% 18
9 Formal living room 4% 14
10 Formal dining room 2% 7
Total 100% 360



Obviously, some areas of the typical family home are no longer needed.  The classic examples being the formal living and dining rooms. Having sold acreage properties in Worongary, Tallai and Mudgeeraba for nearly 20 years, Karl Grossman from LJ Hooker says,

‘An easy way to add value to a home when selling is to convert the dining room to a study by changing the furniture to a desk, chair, and some shelves. We can say an extra bedroom is worth $20,000 on average and a study is worth an extra $10,000. But a formal dining room isn’t really something that buyers look for these days.’

The kitchen is increasingly acting as a food assembly area rather than a place where many actually ‘cook’ – and the kitchen still rules. The kitchen is the place where everyone congregates, rather than the kitchen’s traditional functionality.

Other recent research by us – this time questioning potential buyers after they had visited a home display village – found that one of the first things a home buyer does when looking at a new home design is to check out where their family and friends can congregate.

This area, often by default in most houses, is the kitchen space, followed by the family room, and balcony or deck.

A home that has these three spaces in a continuous, free following expanse more often than not has the most appeal for home buyers.


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