# flooring / how big is 20 squares (metres)?

• posted on October 15, 2006, 6:15 am

Hi all,
I have been looking at a house, they are quoting it as 20 metres/or 20 sqaures.
I always get confused how this is calculated for the purposes of changing the floor.
It is a decent size single storey house, lounge room is 5m x 5m, 3 bedrooms 3x3, kitchen plus 2 bathrooms.
Are the hallways and bathroom/kitchen included in that 20?
Can anyone shed light on how these realtors work?
Thanks!

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• posted on October 15, 2006, 10:16 am

Put it in English (American) measurements and maybe one of us can help you. Metrics dont work for construction, and floor tiles come in 12 INCH (one foot) squares. I suppose in metric countries the tiles are 277.23095433333333cm or 34086.92100673476094573377784mm or some such nonsense.
You said your room is 5m x 5m. Is that 5 miles by 5 miles or what? Thats a huge room.
Oh wait, that might be 5metrics by 5 metrics.
Either move to America or toss your metric rulers in the garbage and go back to measuring with your FOOT (the one on the bottom of your leg).
If all else fails, a dollar bill is 6 inches long, use that to measure.... Oh wait, you dont have dollar bills you probably have pounds, which makes no sense at all because there is no dollar bill that weighs anywhere near a pound.
My ancestors moved to America to avoid goddamn metrics.

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• posted on October 15, 2006, 1:46 pm
snipped-for-privacy@no.com wrote:

I don't think I would say bad things about my ancestors like that.
Lets see 10mm = 1cm etc. Or 12 inches = 1 foot, 3 foot = 1 yard 1753.33 yards = 1 statue mile (nautical miles are different) how many acres in a sq mile? add in rods, oz, pounds, quarts etc. What an illogical mess.
--
Joseph Meehan

Dia duit

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• posted on November 9, 2006, 12:28 pm
Joseph Meehan (sligojoe snipped-for-privacy@hotmail.com) said...

... and don't forget that a "hundredweight" is 114 pounds!
If one needs a simple rule-of-thumb conversion in order to get an idea of what a metric area is, there are about 10 square feet in a square metre (it is actually 10.7584, but 10 is easy for a ball park figure).
--
Calvin Henry-Cotnam
"I really think Canada should get over to Iraq as quickly as possible"

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• posted on November 9, 2006, 3:21 pm
On 09 Nov 2006 12:28:18 GMT, snipped-for-privacy@remove.daxack.ca.invalid (Calvin Henry-Cotnam) wrote:

Volumetrics are mostly base 2. What's illogical about that?

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• posted on October 15, 2006, 10:27 am
ODB wrote:

5m x 5m is 25 sq meters 3m x 3m is 9 sq meters
So you would have a total of 52 sq meters. Also be sure to allow for waste and for the two bathrooms.

--
Joseph Meehan

Dia duit

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• posted on October 15, 2006, 12:40 pm
ODB wrote:

Realtors could either add internal area of each room or just take perimeter of house. Area should only include heated space which means unheated basements and garages are excluded. Either way, don't believe realtors! Look around and compare. What size rooms suit you. What you have described is small by American standards but might be big in UK. Frank

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• posted on October 15, 2006, 1:48 pm

I take it you are in Australia and the metric system is used there?
Many of us are in the U.S. and are unfamiliar with how these items are sold there. Decades ago, there was a push to convert to metric here. Boy I wish they did it but that fell through.
For the US, vinyl and carpet are sold by the square yard but it is not just a raw calculation. Waste is generated depending on say the vinyl pattern. With carpet, it has to be laid direction matching. Minimizing piecing can generate lots of waste but makes a nice job.
You didn't ask about it but maybe of use. Roof covering is sold by the square. A square is 100 square feet. But the bundles here are 1/3 of a square which means 3 bundles to the square.
Google has a nice conversion feature where in the search bar you put in somewhat natural language and it does the conversion. Not sure if this will help you. But I'm bet a lot of people will see this and think holy shit. That's cool :-)
Input: 25 square meters to square yards
Result: 25 (square meters) = 29.8997512 square yards

http://i10.tinypic.com/2dr984y.jpg
Input: 750 ml to quarts
Result: 750 ml = 0.792516154 US quarts

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• posted on October 16, 2006, 3:03 pm

Except that architectural shingle are frequently sold at 4 bundles per square to keep the weight per bundle to a reasonable figure.

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• posted on October 17, 2006, 3:12 am

Never looked at them. Thanks for that tidbit.

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• posted on October 15, 2006, 1:56 pm
ODB wrote:

Sorry I missed the second part of your question. I see it has been properly answered.
--
Joseph Meehan

Dia duit

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• posted on October 15, 2006, 5:15 pm
In the US, the size of a house in calculated by measuring the outside of the exterior walls, so when we say a house is 2,000 square feet, we're referring to the "footprint" of the house. The second floor is measured the same way, but we don't include stairs or spaces that open up to the ground floor.
If your house is 20 square meters, that measurement probably includes the space taken up by the walls, closets, halls, baths, etc. For flooring, you probably need to measure the individual rooms and then add a waste factor, usually about 10% (more or less for different flooring types). This type of calculation is much simpler if you convert everything to yards, feet, and inches and do your calculations using mirror images of Roman numerals.
did you hear about the Viagra shipment that was hijacked?
the police are looking for hardened criminals....
ODB wrote:

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• posted on October 16, 2006, 2:00 am

In Australia before the 1960s it was common to quote the size of a house in "squares" . I thought that this definition had long ago disappeared.
One "square" was equivalent to 100 square feet. A house of 20 "squares" was 2000 square feet.
Since this country converted to the metric system of measurement a long, long time ago, the area should be quoted in square meters.
To convert square feet to square metres multiply by .093
20 "squares" = 2000 square feet = 186 square metres. A reasonably sized 3 bedroom house.
The average size house in Australia has gone from 130 sq metres in 1970 to about 220 sq metres today.
I suggest that you get your real estate people to quote in square meters only. If you need to get any tradesmen in to do any work, or you need to get the place surveyed, or you need to inform your bank to secure a mortgage, they will all work in square meters.

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• posted on October 16, 2006, 4:38 pm
Avery wrote:

Yeah, that sounds a _lot_ more likely that my idea of it being equivalent to 400 square meters and which seems far more likely for a 3-bedroom house. Funny thing is that this "square" measure is still used in the US for exactly one purpose that I can think of: measuring the area of a roof for materials (X bundles of shingles covers a square). I just went through the trouble and expense of re-roofing my house this spring and that definition should have stayed with me considering the amount of financial pain involved.
--
John McGaw
[Knoxville, TN, USA]

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• posted on October 17, 2006, 12:06 am
wrote:

The term "squares" pertaining to houses actually dates back quite along time and was probably first used in Britain (where else?) It was based on the idea that the average room in the average house was 10ft x 10 ft.
Of course this did not always translate to other places, such as Australia, where houses quickly became larger. The practice of quoting house size using this somewhat archaic measure still persists. Many of the real estate web sites still use it. It is stupid, confusing and probably technically illegal since the conversion to the metric system.

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• posted on October 16, 2006, 3:28 pm
ODB wrote:

Really, the safest thing to do is to ask a local realtor what the local law (or custom) dictates for such measurements and to try to get the answer in writing. I puzzled for a bit and came to no firm conclusions about what the 20 squares might mean. Clearly the lounge at 5 X 5 covers 25 square meters so the fallback (as I imagine it anyway) is that the area of the home is listed as equivalent to a 20 X 20 square or 400 square meters and that would suggest a very generously dimensioned home for three bedrooms (3600 square feet for the metrically obtuse reader).
Locally in the US there seems to be two schools of thought on what area measurements really mean, perhaps more if you get into rounding procedures. Most realtors will simply say that the area they quote is "finished" space but that is vague enough to allow many interpretations. Does it mean the sum of the areas of all rooms? Where does that leave the hallways and closets and such? Is it the area derived from outside measurements? Where does that leave the area covered by all of the inside and outside walls? As if buying a home wasn't confusing enough...
--
John McGaw
[Knoxville, TN, USA]

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• posted on October 27, 2006, 12:54 am
Why do people make life difficult for themselves! The metric system was adopted in Australia in the 1960's to simplify awkward old British Imperial systems of measurement & currency. The term 'square' belongs to the British Imperial system, and as correctly described by Avery above, 1 'square = 100 square feet. Therefore, it has no correlation to the metric system in Australia or for that matter any other metricated society, unless one reaches for their abacus and calculates that the conversion of 20 'squares amounts to 186m2. So what does that achieve? Wouldn't sticking with square metres be less confusing and time consuming?
Me thinks that the term lingers on in Australia to confuse the consumer who in most cases wouldn't know a 'square' from a 'round' and consequently the charge of a service based on an outdated Imperial measurement such as a 'square'. Bazza
Bazza