DENVER (KDVR) — Colorado housing development is not only getting denser – homes are shrinking, as well, despite costing more than ever.

The Centennial State’s growing population over the last decade stressed the housing market as the number of units being built failed to meet demand. Prices exploded as deep-pocketed investors, buyers and renters moved in and less wealthy residents were pushed out.

Across the state, local and state elected officials have promoted a vision of a more tightly packed and highly stacked population to bring housing prices back down toward Earth. Since 2016, the housing market has already naturally led to smaller Colorado homes.

The St. Louis Fed tracks the median home size in Colorado by square foot since 2016.

Homes were largest in July 2016 and June 2017 – between 2,530 and 2,570 square feet. Since mid-2017, home size has been reduced. By February 2022, the median size for a Colorado home was 2,027 square feet – roughly a studio apartment’s worth of space smaller than just five years ago.

On average, homes are about 350 square feet smaller now than the mid-2010s.

In 2016, homes had a footprint of about 2,494 square feet. This year, homes are 2,140 square feet.

The homes, however, cost more than the larger ones of the past.

Colorado homes have never cost more per square foot than now, according to Fed data. This March, Colorado homes were listed for $286 per square foot, on average. This is the highest in history. A home with the median square footage in 2016 would cost just over $414,000 given the average price per square foot in that year. This year, a home with the smaller median square footage will cost $200,000 more.