The American dream is shrinking. For the first time in at least a decade, builders are substantially reducing the size of new houses.

 According to the National Association of Home Builders, the average size of new single-family home in the third quarter of 2008 averaged 2,438 square feet, down from 2,629 square feet in the second quarter. The survey also found that 89% of builders are building or planning to build smaller homes than they had been.

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