What Does 3/2/2 Mean in Real Estate?

What Does 3/2/2 Mean in Real Estate?

The American Dream home goes by the abbreviation “3:2” or “3:2:2” and if you don’t know what these mean, you are probably not ready to become a homeowner. Not because you don’t have the financial means for it but because you haven’t done proper research, and when it comes to real estate, making your first and final decisions to invest in a house rest on it.

Simply put, a “3:2” house has 3 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms, and a “3:2:2” house is one with 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, and 2 car garage. According to a Trends Report by the National Association of Realtors (NAR), the most popular property in the market right now is a 3:2 home. 91% of people between the ages 30 and 39 bought homes with 3 or more bedrooms, making this layout a popular choice. The average square footage that Americans prefer is 1,850 of a single-detached family home.

There are plenty of other layouts such as 3:1, 4:3:2, 2:1 with 1C, etc. The first number represents the bedroom in the sequence, the second is for the bath, and the third is for the garage.

Is 3:2:2 a Good Investment?

Whether you are planning to buy a house to stay in it or rent it, you are more likely to benefit from a 3:2:2 home than a 4:3:2 home. When investing in a property, the one thing that most people have on their mind is whether they will be able to sell it for a profit or not.

3:2:2 vs. 4:3:2

As mentioned earlier, people mostly prefer a 3:2:2 home, which is why you will rake in more on selling this home. Moreover, if you use it as a rental property, you will make more income compared to a 4:3:2 home.

The reason behind this is that a 4:3:2 home is costly. If you buy a fixer-upper, the property will cost more after flipping it, and this could extend the sale period. The longer the house will stay on the market, the more difficult it will become to sell it.

Yes, everyone loves a roomy house plus, more bedrooms for the kids is a blessing. Its sale will fetch you a pretty price. However, the extra room translates to more wear and tear, which means additional repair expenses. Overall, you will be spending more out of your pocket, and there’s no guarantee that you will recoup the amount in the sale.

3:2:2 vs. 3:1

Attached bathrooms hold great value. According to NAR, in 2020, 18% of people bought a house with one bathroom, whereas 61% of people bought a house with 2 bathrooms. That’s a huge divide, and once again, 3:2 houses take the lead.

If the house has 1.5 bathrooms, which translates to one full bathroom and a second half-bathroom with no tub or shower, it will still be more desirable than a 3:1 house.

Desirable Layouts – The Future of Your 3:2:2 House

A sketched layout of a house

If your aim is to invest in real estate by buying a 3:2 house and then sell it or rent it out, you need to know who your target market is. Following is a list that will tell you what house layout is popular in which age range:

One Bedroom

  • All Buyers: 1%
  • 22 – 29: 1%
  • 55 – 64: 1%
  • 65 -73: 1%
  • 74 -94: 1%

Two Bedrooms

  • All Buyers: 16%
  • 22 – 29: 16%
  • 30 – 39: 9%
  • 45 – 54: 13%
  • 55 – 64: 21%
  • 65 -73: 23%
  • 74 -94: 26%

Three Bedrooms (Or More)

  • All Buyers: 83%
  • 22 – 29: 84%
  • 30 – 39: 91%
  • 45 – 54: 87%
  • 55 – 64: 77%
  • 65 -73: 76%
  • 74 -94: 73%

One Full Bathroom

  • All Buyers: 18%
  • 22 – 29: 30%
  • 30 – 39: 19%
  • 45 – 54: 16%
  • 55 – 64: 17%
  • 65 -73: 12%
  • 74 -94: 12%

Two Full Bathrooms

  • All Buyers: 61%
  • 22 – 29: 59%
  • 30 – 39: 61%
  • 45 – 54: 54%
  • 55 – 64: 61%
  • 65 -73: 68%
  • 74 -94: 69%

Three Full Bathrooms (Or More)

  • All Buyers: 21%
  • 22 – 29: 11%
  • 30 – 39: 20%
  • 45 – 54: 29%
  • 55 – 64: 22%
  • 65 -73: 20%
  • 74 -94: 19%

As you can see, the highest percentage can be found in 3:2 houses with buyers in every range preferring to live in a house that has 1 master bedroom, 2 side (children’s and guest) bedrooms, and two full baths.

If your 3:2 house has two stories with the master room on the top floor, senior adults are most likely your target market because they want privacy and having one bedroom on one floor is more acceptable to them. On the other hand, young families prefer the bedrooms to be on the same level because they either have a family or are planning to start one.

In a 3:2 ranch house, people want the master room to be either separated by the hallway or a wall, or located in the back of the house so that it’s away from the street.

Now that you know about the different layouts of houses available on the market, let’s look at where to find them:

What Is MLS?

A real estate agent holding a cutout of a 2-story house

The definition of MLS is “Multiple Listing Service,” which is an online database that shows houses for sale. The goal of this database is to help real estate agents connect sellers with buyers.

MLS has no governing body and it cannot be trademarked. Usually, real estate agents analyze their local areas and gather information to create their own MLS. This is why there are thousands of regional databases, which comprise listings that can be found on different realtor websites.

Brokers and real estate agents who want access to a specific MLS have to pay a membership fee. In return, they receive information on various houses in an area, which includes listings, details like property features and square footage, and photos. Not everyone can have access to MLS. According to rules set by NAR, only licensed brokers and realtors can use MLS to market houses. Moreover, when a house is sold, the agent must enter the commission earned into the database so that it can be shared with the broker.

One of the biggest benefits of MLS is that realtors get access to a large amount of data and then can search through it according to the city to show their customers houses in different locations. In the 1800s, this data was shared during in-person meetings of agents and brokers. Today, the modified network is called MLS.

In real estate, you will find that most listings have abbreviations. Properties are described as RESI, which means residential, SFR, which means single-family residence, A/G PL, which means an above-ground swimming pool, 1C-A, which means 1-car attached garage, and SFB, which means show for backup. This last one tells you that though the property already has a buyer, the owner is open to other offers, in case the contract falls through.

Types of housing

We have already discussed the house layouts represented by numbers in the form of a ratio. Now, let’s take a look at the types of models:

Two house features at the top of every buyer’s list are location and the type of house. The more facilities and amenities available nearby, the more interested the buyer will be in the house. As for the house type, the choice is usually based on the number of members in a family.

Single Family Residence (SFR)

A house that stands all alone. It usually comes with a garden and a backyard and is specifically made for a single family.


Single units are located in a community and usually share floors and walls with other units. They are typically run by the Homeowners’ Association (HOA) and have a monthly maintenance fee.


An apartment and a condo are completely different. Apartment refers to the housing unit that you rent out in a building.


A townhouse combines a condo and a single-family home. It has various floor plan designs but one thing that sets it apart is that it shares a wall with another property.

Full duplex

The structure of a full duplex is the same as a townhouse and condo. Two properties are identical in design and layout and share a common wall. However, there’s no HOA fee involved.

Half duplex

This refers to two homes under one roof. Any improvements and maintenance are negotiated with the other half owner of the duplex.

Patio home

Also known as a country house, this is a single-family home surrounded by other small properties on the lot. A patio home has a monthly fee for various amenities like landscaping, exterior maintenance, snow removal, etc.


A co-op is not a condo. It’s simply referred to as a small percentage of the title that you own for a building. There are several other owners and all share the responsibility of keeping the property in good condition.

Your basement layout

A house basement

A basement is one of those rooms in the house that’s often overlooked. In fact, most people don’t even include it in their search. A basement holds significant value because it is a multi-purpose room. You can turn it into anything you desire. Some people use it as an entertainment room or a full bar, and others like to leave it as it is for storage

Most basements have a full-size door located on the side of the house, whereas others are accessed through a flight of stairs going down, inside the house.

If your basement is fully furnished, has an exit, and an egress window then you can count it as one of the bedrooms. Here are the different types of basement layouts:

Partial basement

A partial basement is located under the house and usually has a crawl space.

Full basement

A full basement is usually a part of the upper level of the house and is located under the garage.

Crawl space

A crawl space refers to small areas between the home’s foundation, which is filled with soil. You can crawl on it to access plumbing, HVAC systems, and other hard-to-reach areas in the house.


A slab is connected to the house’s flooring and cannot be accessed. This usually entails that the house does not have a basement.

Final Word

As you read above, a 3:2:2 house is better in every way. It has the ideal number of bedrooms and bathrooms, along with car garages. For a single family with 3 to 4 members, this house layout is perfect. Whether you are buying this kind of property to live in it or sell it, you will benefit from it greatly. Since most adults are now in search of a 3:2:2 home, you will be able to easily rent it out and make a good amount of money in the process.