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Average home is more spacious now than ever – here’s why that’s a problem for the environment

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Around the world, more people are living with more space at home than at any other time in history.

 

This may be surprising – cramped, dingy rooms are as familiar in Shanghai as they are in London. But on average, the space per person in Chinese homes has increased by nearly 30 square metres in 40 years, and by four square metres in the UK over the past 15 years.

 

This trend is linked to something called the “second demographic transition”. Put simply, as countries develop, individual incomes rise and people prioritise higher order needs, such as privacy, autonomy and the fulfilment of personal ambitions.

 

The average floor area in homes around the world has grown steadily over the last 60 years. Katherine Ellsworth-Krebs, Author provided

 

Think of that feeling when you just need time by yourself (...)

 

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