20 McMansions That Are Just a Little Too Much


Finding and purchasing the perfect home for your family is one of the most important things you’ll do in your lifetime. It requires finding the right location, size, features, and of course, the right price you can afford. There are many families who want more than just the average size and average priced house, however, the typical mansion-style homes are often too large-scaled and out of many homeowner’s price range. Well, that’s where the McMansion comes into play in the world of real estate. For many, McMansions are the perfect answer to those homeowners who want more space, higher end features and elements in their home, yet don’t desire to own an over-the-top, custom built mansion. It’s a happy medium, and it’s exactly what these homeowners are finding in McMansions.

From where did the name “McMansion” derive?

If you aren’t familiar with the term, McMansion, you are probably not alone, although you have probably seen many of these homes that started popping up in the 1980’s. The term may sound like a type of burger joint, but it isn’t, rather, a McMansion is a type of home that earned its name when these larger scaled homes started popping up pretty much anywhere, just like the infamous burger joint, McDonald’s has always done. It is also a derogatory word adopted by architects and architectural critics back in the ’80’s, to describe these “neo-eclectic” style of homes that are often found mixed right in, in the middle of a suburban area along with your average style of homes, such as the typical ranch styled  and traditional two-story homes. Out of nowhere, an over-sized, higher-end home that doesn’t quite fit the look of all the others, pops up. This home is most likely a McMansion, and according to WiseGeek, the sporadic locations in which these McMansions pop up is much like the famous burger joint McDonald’s, they’re here and there, and everywhere and because of this, the quirky name stuck.

The idea behind the McMansion

Over time as growing families were looking for more spacious homes with all the amenities of a more pricey home without the high end cost, more contractors took advantage of the big improvements in home building that were on the rise, and began to construct homes that allowed families these larger homes with features and amenities that would otherwise, cost them a fortune. WiseGeek says that upper middle class families could get more square footage and a higher end home for the price of typical two-story home in the city, only these were just a little further out. Now, McMansions are showing up all over Suburbia and they aren’t as accepted by bigger named architects and major home building contractors.

What’s not to like?

While upper middle class families wanted all the luxuries and amenities of a upper crust lifestyle without the hefty price tag, architects and other critics claim these over sized homes are unnecessarily large and are in a sense, thrown together to the point that they are not high quality, and simply put, poorly designed homes. According to Thoughtco, architects and architectural design critics claim these mass-produced McMansions are often recognized by several common features, which include:

  • Over-sized home sitting on too small of a lot.
  • Major home features are poorly placed on the home. Windows, porches and doors are often dis-proportioned to the size of the home.
  • Roof tops are often gabled roofs, or the builders use other bizarre types of roofing that often looks, off.
  • Builders overuse certain materials in the homes, like faux stone and vinyl, especially vinyl siding on the exterior and around windows.
  • Inside, the homes are often designed with over-sized rooms and spaces that are just not practical. You’re likely to find extraordinarily large living rooms, atrias, and other rooms that are grand in size, but not common spaces families typically use, making it wasted space.

What homeowners should consider before purchasing a McMansion

There are negatives and positives to buying any home. But when purchasing a home of this size, there are additional things you’ll want to think about before you lay down that enormous down payment you’ll surely be responsible for. McMansions are known for offering their owner lots of amenities that you want in this day in age. You’ll be sure to find lots of granite top counters in the kitchen to work with, and when it comes to the appliances, you’ll find there are all the latest and most innovative today. You’ll also have plenty of garage space for your vehicles, and can range from a two-car garage to even three and four. Your home will likely be wired for all the latest technological systems for security, home theaters and more.

Despite all the perks you are probably seeking in a large home, Thoughtco warns buyers that McMansions are highly priced for what you are really getting when it comes to high quality building and materials. They are often made to look expensive, often simply to satisfy the upper middle class home buyer who is just anxious to move into a home of this size and start claiming his financial status. These homes are said to be more of a real estate investment as opposed to homes that are architecturally aesthetic and high quality. Despite the radical difference in quality compared to true custom built mansions, these homes all come with inflated mortgages, which most people who own them, don’t seem to mind since they typically have the money to afford the monthly interest payments. Something else you can count on being overly inflated, is the heating and air bill that will surely come with having to heat and cool all the over-sized, rooms in the home that you may find are hardly even used.

To get a better look at some of these enormous homes that many refer to as, “mansion wannabes,” take a look at the following 20 McMansions that are just a little too much.

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