How big is that house, really?
Square footage is a moving target, professionals say
A home’s square footage is a number easily misrepresented, especially when determining ever-ambiguous "liveable space." Measurements can be taken in numerous ways, and what to include in those measurements — garages, basements or porches — is often unclear.
"There are customs … that vary from community to community," Dreyfus said. "There’s no universal way of arriving at that number."
In the Real Bay Area, we are all locavores. As a result we deeply respect the right of local communities to make the right decisions on things.
For example: If you put an extra mattress in a garage in Redwood City, of course that should be counted as part of the sqft! But that would never be acceptable in, say, a far-away land like Atherton.
But fear not… realtors are here to help!
Article 12 of the Code states, "Realtors shall be honest and truthful in their real-estate communications and shall present a true picture in their advertising, marketing, and other representations."
Violating any part of the Code could mean expulsion from the organization or fines.
As well know, Realtors are the paragon of truth telling. I, for one, would welcome our Realtor overlords… for they would definitely be fair and just. And nothing is more fair and just than this:
"If you put furniture in it, it’s livable space," said Harrison, noting that common sense and a required training process can help clarify the term for Realtors and real-estate agents who post on the site.
Remember my mattress in the garage example? Even if the mattress is leaning against the wall, it will count (maybe you’re a former astronaut relocating to Redwood City – climate best by government test after all.)
But according to Harrison, misrepresentation in real estate doesn’t happen often.
"Very rarely does anyone go in and put in a ficticious square-footage number," he said.
Also, since sellers are almost on the verge of taking the next step by requiring bids being placed without even seeing the house, why bother worrying?
After all… housing prices can only go up, so what’s a few sqft.
How would you measure a home?