As strapped Americans develop a conscience and, er, sense of taste about living, the practice of razing existing homes to make way for super-size replacements is slowing, reports the Christian Science Monitor. Languid McMansion sales have brought quiet back to historic neighborhoods, drowned out for years by bulldozers and upset preservationists.
"The idea that you're going to make a lot of money tearing down an old house to build a new one, that's gone," says one real estate economist. And new home constructions are becoming more compatible with the older houses surrounding them. "There's an awareness now that some of the homes frankly are too big," says an Illinois builder. "The McMansion has almost become embarrassing to some people."