How will the Kiwi lifestyle change as small home trend grows?

The Kiwi quarter-acre dream is a thing of the past.

New figures from Statistics NZ show just how small the average New Zealand home is getting.

In 2009, the average home’s floorspace was around 198m2. That number includes things like apartments, houses, townhouses and retirement units.

One decade later, and the floorspace has shrunk by more than 15 per cent, with the average now 167m2.

David Nagel, QV's General Manager told 1 NEWS that's a direct result of challenging market conditions.

"It's because of affordability issues - large homes cost more to build so if you want to have a house you can afford, people are tending to think smaller these days," he says.

"As we see a lot of population growth in New Zealand, that's forecast to continue over the coming years so these people have to live somewhere."

Mark Southcombe, from Victoria University's architecture school said that reduction in space is typically down to smaller bathrooms.

“Do we really need 3 or 4 bathrooms in a house? So that's the sort of thing that is economised."

He said he's already seeing properties as small as 18 square metres pop up on the market.

"They might start out okay with one person and with the idea the whole city is your living room.” he says.

“You're just coming home to sleep more or less, but the minute there's a second person in that house or sometimes a third, suddenly it causes problems."

However, Andrew Eagles, the Chief Executive of the Green Building Council says it's not all bad news.

He thinks that if smaller homes are designed well, they can save people money and the environment.

"It does mean the homes are going to cost less, smaller mortgage, less monthly payments and less monthly costs for energy bills - and energy bills are going to go up, so this can be useful for Kiwi families.”