Not So Big House
A blueprint for the way we really live

What makes a house Not So Big?

Not So Big doesn’t necessarily mean small. It means not as big as you thought you needed. The ideal size for your Not So Big House depends on your financial situation, the size of your family, and your personal preferences.

As a rule of thumb, a Not So Big House is approximately a third smaller than your original goal but about the same price as your original budget. The magic is that although the house is smaller in square footage, it actually feels much bigger. It’s not about living in a small house and getting used to feeling cramped. A Not So Big House feels more spacious than many of its oversized neighbors because it is space with substance, all of it in use every day.

About the Not So Big House Book Series

Sarah Susanka’s best-selling first book, The Not So Big House, has given homeowners the language they need to ask for the house that they want: a house that values quality over quantity, and emphasizes comfort, beauty, and a high level of detail.  Each book in the series, from Creating the Not So Big House to Home By Design, to Not So Big Remodeling, is unique and expands upon this message with fresh writing and new projects to illustrate the Not So Big Principles.

Not So Big Principles

Sarah’s Ideabooks on Houzz

Home Professionals Directory

Sarah is pleased to provide a searchable directory of home professionals who embrace the philosophy of designing and building Not So Big.


Looking for a professional to help you design, build, or remodel your home? The Home Professionals Directory is the best place to find someone who is aligned with the Not So Big books and principles.

Home Professionals

If you are involved in home design and improvement and your work is in keeping with Not So Big aims, there is no better way to connect with your ideal clients than to register for the Home Professionals Directory.

Not So Big House News & Events

  I would like to introduce you to the Libertyville Showhouse, which was built in 2011 in a northern suburb of Chicago.  This brief introduction will give you a taste…

The Libertyville Not So Big Showhouse on School Street
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  In the mid-1990s, when I’d been working as a residential architect for more than a decade, I had an epiphany one day while driving though the suburbs of Des…

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Several years ago, I collaborated with my friend and fellow architect, Tina Govan, to design a house here in North Carolina, on a truly spectacular lakefront property, with panoramic views…

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Latest from Sarah's Blog

Improving Our World, One House at a Time

September 24, 2021

Once in a while a piece of unexpected publicity arrives in my inbox or over social media that tells a story that no one else has considered until that moment. This is the case with fellow architect Duo Dickinson’s recent article, “The Impossibility of Equity.” I have known Duo for…

Featured Not So Big House Videos

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