Creating a real standard for real estate professionals.
The HMS is a tool. And, if you let it, it will change the Real Estate and Appraisal industries forever, for better. For use by all professionals whose job includes providing and understanding square footage information for single-family homes. See what ANSI on steroids looks like. 100 pages with sketches and instructions on measuring today's designs. A standard whose time has come...
The real estate industry must join the rest of the standardized world...
One industry - one language
THE Home Measurement Standard
The enclosed measurement theory and associated principles is recognized by HUD, FHA, VA, Fannie Mae, and Freddie Mac.
This “standard” was designed and created to be a comprehensive measurement method for the appraisal industry, the real estate industry, assessors, insurance adjustors, architects, and all professionals who create and publish residential square footage for the public.
The enclosed standard describes practices and procedures that allow for the reconciliation of differences in current methods of determining residential square footage.
It helps to promote and protect the public’s interests and helps real estate professionals create consistent, reproducible calculations of square footage in single-family dwellings.
It also provides a specific language, which aids in the communications between the real estate, appraisal, and mortgage industries.
Use of this standard, along with a written “Statement of Square Footage” (disclosure form) helps to assure the public’s trust by establishing, improving, and promoting universal creation and communication of residential square footage information.
With the introduction of the HMS 2021, we hope to unite all users and consumers of square footage methodologies with the goal of enhancing consumer protection.
The key goal of this standard is to improve the entire real estate industry through the improved creation and communication of residential square footage, which helps to establish consistency in the one number at the heart of every residential valuation – square footage.
In this, the information age and the era of technology, it is our sincere hope that the real estate industry will find a way to standardize, mandate, and educate all professionals about the creation and communication of residential living area.
Hamp Thomas, author of The Home Measurement Standard
Residential square footage standard for use by real estate agents, appraisers, assessors, architects, home builders, insurance agents and adjustors, and anyone who cares about the professional reporting of a home’s square footage with the ANSI standard, which features 16 pages total including three pages of the written standard and five sketches for an extremely complex topic. The HMS has over five times more data and removes all the subjectivity the ANSI leaves unaddressed.
The new "Name" is measuring residential square footage.
The HMS is the most comprehensive residential standard ever created.
Consumers deserve to know the fair size of their homes. The same home built in Texas and North Carolina should be the same size. Currently, it’s highly likely they would be different sizes, depending on who builds them and who measures them, and what method they use to calculate the square footage. The MLS and public records systems offer over 100 different names for finished living area and MLS systems. Appraisers and tax records all speak in different languages, which leaves consumers at extreme risk of paying too much.
In a Zillow world where real estate values are based on a price-per-square-foot formula, using the square footage details from county tax records. Those tax records are created with zero interior inspections and are inaccurate about 95% of the time. Accurate square footage details are not their goal and not required for their purposes.
The real estate system has been lost. It was created without any clear path for the future and consumers will now pay the price to fix it. Without an industrywide measurement standard, the chances of square footage errors in public records are guaranteed.
Every component of a sf home is measured by a national or international measurement standard. But, once they are combined there is no one standard required by all those who use that data.
It’s time for the real estate industry to join the rest of the standardized world and for agents, appraisers, assessors, and everyone who uses square footage top use the same method and practices, and all of us use the same categories for reporting square footage that allow for fair comparisons and consumer protection.
Consumers deserve to know the fair size of their single, largest, lifetime investments...
The ANSI 2020 update started in early 2020 and in April 2021 we are still waiting on its release. The changes that appear to have been approved and anticipated are minimal at best. Appraisers and agents wrote in asking ANSI about one specific topic where they hoped for a simplification of a measurement in rooms with sloped ceilings. But, the new sketch that appears to be in the standard may be even more complicated and leaves this measurement with the same degree (or perhaps even more) of problems that it had before.
What we hoped to replace with one simple line has been replaced by an expanded text that leaves this measurement even more debatable. Two people can measure it in different ways and both claim adherence to ANSI.
That’s too complex for something that could be easily resolved with one simple Yes or No statement. Either Yes add for the exterior walls, or “NO’ do not add for the width of exterior walls. Something that seems very simple to those who actually take the measurements is being written by home builders who perhaps do not understand the practicality of the measurement. That brings us to the heart of the problem. Many people have talked about this over the years but don’t want to speak it out loud since they have no other measurement “standard” options. Well, now they have a choice, we can say the things out loud that used to be exclusively spoken behind closed doors.
ANSI was created and is always lead by the National Association of Home Builders. The director (since the start of ANSI) made the comment that ANSI was created to be simple enough to be understood by teenagers. While it’s a nice though, the topic of measuring square footage is very complex and much too complex for the vast majority of teenagers. If this was 1950 style homes maybe we could get away with a simplistic standard. But, with todays designs and construction methods, a measurement standard must have much more than sixteen total pages.
2021 requires a new standard and consumers deserve more.
Why so many different names in MLS and tax records? Who comes up with these names?
MLS committee members or local tax employees who want to make their association appear better or smarter than all the others, come up with unique variations on the words finished sqft. They want to be ahead of all others and all this information is controlled locally. The National Association of Realtors has no mandatory reporting guidelines for MLS and sqft.
Do they not understand consumer protection and makes MLS look unprofessional.