Here’s How Much Barbie’s DreamHouse Would Cost in Real Life

A Barbie DreamHouse sells every two minutes. Curious what it would cost to build one of your own? We did the math so you can start saving for a down payment.

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barbie dream housevia amazon.comFirst introduced in 1962, the Barbie DreamHouse is the domicile where Barbara Millicent Roberts (aka Barbie) and her entourage have been launching dreams for nearly six decades. The DreamHouse has been renovated and reimagined more than ten times over the decades. The first Barbie studio was created solely out of cardboard except for the pink plastic hangers in her closet. Over the years, the DreamHouse has transformed (think townhouse, mansion) but remains a hot commodity—one sells every two minutes. Check out some more things you never knew about this wildly popular doll.

What is the footprint of Barbie’s latest DreamHouse?

When the fashion icon turned the big 6-0, her dream team decided she needed new digs to mark the milestone. Her reinvented DreamHouse, which retails for $179, has three stories, eight rooms, an outdoor area, a rooftop pool and slide, a working elevator, and a garage. The first floor features a dining room and a kitchen with modern appliances; the second floor includes a bathroom and a living room, while the third floor showcases a master bedroom with a dream closet and a den that transforms into an office. Other highlights include a patio, fire pit, and garden. See what Barbie looked like the decade you were born.

What is the square footage?

barbie dream housevia amazon.com

In order to find the square footage, we multiplied the width (40 inches) of the DreamHouse by the depth (15.5 inches) and got 620 square inches. We then multiplied that by three (the number of stories) to obtain a total of 1,860 square inches. Next, we divided by 144 square inches (one square foot equals 144 square inches) to get the total square footage of 13 square feet. Since at 11.5 inches, Barbie measures about 1/6 the height of an average person, we multiplied 13 by 6 to arrive at 78 square feet as our final estimate as to the size of a real-life DreamHouse. Shari Sagan McGuirk, a partner at Sagan Harborside Sotheby’s International Realty in Massachusetts, notes that according to the National Association of Realtors, the average size of a home is 1,900 square feet—so Barbie’s DreamHouse is about 4 percent the amount of space that a real person (no offense, Barbie) would dream of.

How much would the Barbie DreamHouse cost in real life?

McGuirk enlightened us on what it would cost to build Barbie’s DreamHouse in New England, imagining an East Coast move for the 61-year-old icon. In her experience, local builders charge from $250 up to high-end at $650 per square foot, shares McGuirk. Based on how many bells and whistles Barbie adds or deletes, her East Coast, 78-square-foot DreamHouse will cost anywhere between $19,500 and $50,700 to build. Of course, you’ll still need to factor in the land. McGuirk just listed a 10,000-square-foot lot in a suburb of Boston for $250,000, which would accommodate a lot of Barbie DreamHouses. The question is…will they fit all her shoes? Either way, you can always trade in one of your vintage Barbies worth a fortune for a down payment.

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Stacey Marcus
Stacey Marcus is a regular contributor to RD.com where she covers subjects ranging from penguin secrets to Jeopardy! conundrums. Stacey’s work has also appeared on FamilyHandyman.com and TheHealthy.com as well as in top regional and national outlets including Boston magazine, Boston Common Magazine, Destination I Do, Ocean Home Magazine, and Playboy.com. She earned a BA in Communications from Simmons University.