What are squares? Understanding floorplan and lot size measurements

20 June 2022 - 6 min read

Unless you work in construction, the various measurements used across house and land listings can become pretty confusing. In Australia, you’ll find most real estate or home builder websites advertise a home’s area as squares and the lot size as square metres. Understanding what are squares and what are square metres (and the difference between the two) can really come in handy — particularly if you’re building a new home and need to work out what can fit on your lot!

What is the difference between squares and square metres?

So, what are squares? Squares are the most common unit of measurement referenced when it comes to overall house size, and one square is equivalent to 9.290304 square metres (confusing, huh?). 

Square metres on the other hand, are more commonly used to describe the total land size of a lot. An easy way to calculate this is to multiply the length of a block by the width.

How to calculate a square metre

Both squares and square metres are good to be familiar with if you’re buying, selling, building or undertaking a renovation project.

At Porter Davis, we advertise the size of our homes in squares. For example, our Astor Grange 54 is named as such because it is sized at 54 squares. If you wanted to calculate the size of this home in square metres, you would take 54 and multiply it by 9.290304 which gives you a total measurement of 501.6sqm. Alternatively, you can always leave the mathematics up to an online conversion tool.

If you wanted to work out how large your block would need to be to build a particular design, you can work out the minimum land size requirements using the following example. An Astor Grange 54 can only fit on blocks at a minimum width of 15.2m and minimum length of 32.2m. To convert this to square metres you’ll need to multiply the length of your block by the width: 15.2 x 32.2 = a minimum lot size of 489.44m2.

While in Australia comparable real estate in an area heavily influences the listed sale price of a home, these days many valuers also take into consideration the per-square-metre price of property. What this means is house prices will fluctuate based on how many square metres your land is, and even how you have utilised the space.

How to calculate a house square

To calculate how many squares your home is, you’ll need to start by working out the total square meterage.

First things first, break down the area which you are calculating. If you want to determine how many square metres your house is, doing your calculations room by room will make this a much easier task. Measure the width, followed by the length, and then multiply these. Say your length is 3.9m and your width is 2.1m, your equation for the room will be 3.9m x 2.1m = 8.19m2. It’s that simple! 

Once you have the measurements for each room you add these together and voila! You should have the total square meterage of your home. You can now take this number and divide it by 9.290304 to get the squares. To help you further understand how many square metres are in a house square, we’ve broken down some main measurements in the table below.

Home Area

The ability to calculate house squares is an important skill, particularly handy if you’re undertaking a DIY project and need to order materials. If you are ordering materials, adding a 10% contingency is always a good idea to ensure you have enough.

How many squares is a standard home?

According to research by CommSec, the average new free-standing house built in Australia over the 2018/19 financial year was just 25 squares (228.8sqm), which is due to the large number of people opting for smaller, lower-maintenance apartment and townhouse options.

Despite this low median, Australians are still building some of the biggest houses in the world, falling just behind the US. In fact the average size of a Victorian home is 26 squares (246sqm), which lands well above the nation’s average.

Whatever sized home you’re looking for, we have designs that range from 15 squares, all the way up to 57 squares! Whether you’re looking for something more low-maintenance, or something with all the bells and whistles, browse our home designs gallery today to find the right fit for you.