Marin Rental Homes and the Death of the McMansion

CNBC blogs today about the death of the McMansion.  So what does this mean for the Marin rental market?

The start of the blog reads:

They've been called McMansions, Starter Castles, Garage Mahals and Faux Chateaus but here's the latest thing you can call them - History.

In the past few years, there have been an increasing number of references made to the "McMansion glut" and the "McMansion backlash," as more towns pass ordinances against garishly large homes, which are generally over 3,000 square feet and built very close together.

What sets a McMansion apart from a regular mansion, according to Wikipedia, are a few characteristics: They're tacky, they lack a definitive style and they have a "displeasingly jumbled appearance."

Well, count 2010 as the year the last nail was hammered into the McCoffin: In its latest report on home-buying trends, real-estate site Trulia declares: "The McMansion Era Is Over."

Just 9 percent of the people surveyed by Trulia said their ideal home size was over 3,200 square feet. Meanwhile, more than one-third said their ideal size was under 2,000 feet.

"That's something that would've been unbelievable just a few years back," said Pete Flint, CEO and co-founder of Trulia. "Americans are moving away from McMansions."

So what does that mean for our local market here in Marin?

My team and I have noticed the trend ourselves as well in our rental listings.  Tenants these days are looking for value.  Do they still want that designer kitchen?  yes.  Do they want it along with 5,000 sq ft?  Not neccessarily.

The rental market this summer has been spotty - we've had very busy weeks and fairly slow ones.  We've rented several high end homes, but we have several more to go.

The bottom line is that a well done, well-priced home will always rent.  It's a matter how much and how quickly.  But I will have to agree that if you had asked me in 2005 if a 4,500 sq ft home presents a higher value than a 3,800 sq ft home, you would have had an enthusiastic and loud YES!  That answer today is not neccessarily going to be the same.

My team and I speacialize in the Marin rental home market and are happy to help anytime.  Call our office at (415) 507-9600 or check us out on-line at



August 20, 2010 03:53 by Darcy
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