The American Institute of Architects recently came out with its Top 10 list of upcoming Home Design Trends. Here is what we all have to look forward to in homes built in the next 10 years:
- Technological integration will become more prevalent, with dedicated support for personal devices, along with automated controls for temperature, security and lighting.
- Increased consumer awareness about environmental health issues, leading to more widespread use of low or no volatile organic compounds (VOCs) for paint and composite wood, natural fiber upholstery, carpets without polyvinyl chloride backing and air purification systems.
- Design strategies that strengthen homes against natural disasters, including elevating residences, windows with impact glazing, dedicated safe rooms and backup power generation.
- Increased use of energy-efficient and other sustainable design elements and products such as solar panels, water reclamation systems and tankless water heaters.
- Aging-in-place and universal design elements to accommodate an aging population, including wider hallways, added handrails and one-level living spaces.
- Kitchens serving as the focal point of the home, highlighted by open design concepts.
- Heavy emphasis and investment in outdoor living spaces.
- Need for space devoted to home offices, reflecting changing work patterns.
- Infill development promoting smaller, better designed homes.
- Strong preference for urban lifestyle characteristics, resulting in higher-density development that provides additional amenities to residents.
Many of these can be found in today’s homes and neighborhoods. The focus is not necessarily going to be on evolving technology, as one would think, but more on supporting the large influx of baby boomers that will soon be reaching retirement age. This will necessitate designing homes and neighborhoods for aging-in-place or multi-generational families.
With many Millennials delaying marriage and children, there isn’t a wide need for new housing for them, as many are content with renting. This will shift the focus to remodeling existing homes to meet their changing needs.