Yard sizes have reversed a 25-year trend toward smaller outdoor spaces, according to data collected by the online real estate website Trulia. This reflects a growing interest in larger and better-designed outdoor spaces, writes Patricia Clark of Bloomberg, who explains that yard sizes began to shrink in the 1990's as buyers demanded larger homes, and builders cut back on outdoor spaces in order to maximize the size of homes. But as buyers are demanding larger and better-designed outdoor spaces, builders have started to shrink the typical home in an effort to save on material costs, and Clark cites one survey that found that more than half of prospective buyers would trade interior space for a bigger yard. Preference for designed outdoor space is also increasing, according to the U.S. Census Bureau’s annual report on the characteristics of new housing. Ninety-one percent of single-family homes completed in 2016 had a patio, porch or deck, up from 86 percent in 2010.

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