As if Americans didn’t already spend a lot of time inside during winter, this year, cabin fever will be at an all-time high as COVID-19 continues to spread. It’s leading to a trend no one saw coming: big homes are back.

New data from Realtor.com suggest that Americans crave more space in their homes, despite recent trends toward smaller homes that are more environmentally friendly. That’s why, now more than ever, shoppers in the real estate market are taking a closer look at the price per square foot of the houses they’re considering.

“[A]reas just outside of the urban centers of the largest metros offer homebuyers more space for the money. Potential buyers who’ve been dreaming of more space for work and play don’t have to look far to save 29% per square foot on average or get 25%-65% more square footage for the same price as a home closer to downtown,” said Realtor.com Chief Economist Danielle Hale. “For a 2,000-square-foot home, this could mean 500-1,300 additional square feet.”

In an effort to stretch out, here are some of the best suburbs outside of the largest cities in the U.S. that will get you the most room for your buck.

The Spacious 3: Where Big Homes Are Most Affordable
Homeowners seeking value and size should look no further than Illinois, Texas, and New Jersey. Suburbs in these states placed in the top three according to Realtor.com when comparing listing prices to the median price per square foot.

3. Palos Hills, Illinois
Median listing price: $379,000
Price per square foot: $139

If you’re living in America’s third-largest city and looking for space, you might come up empty-handed. However, take a trip southwest and you’ll encounter beautiful Palos Hills. This Chicago suburb has a median listing price of nearly $380K with a median price per square foot of just under $140. Expect savings of around 24% when purchasing a home here.

The town is a huge draw for young professionals due to its recreational activities, density, and nightlife options—not to mention its proximity to the economic powerhouse Chicago. Palos Hills offers a unique mix of convenience, diversity, strong education, and most of all, space.

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