Much has changed over the years; remember the days of mauve carpeting and white cabinets with oak trim? Yes, they were once the ‘fad,’ but worse, these relics of the past still haunt some of the homes coming available as we enter the spring real estate market.
There are also design, storage, and maintenance issues, which matter to owners and shoppers in 2022. It’s not surprising to see many properties circa 1920-1970 get demolished with more efficient and practical homes replacing the tired abodes.
The most knowledgeable people in real estate have suggested to those selling homes during the last year, “Don’t fix anything,” they explained that buyers don’t care about upgrades because purchasers will make significant renovations themselves.
But, not everyone is selling; many owners are planning to update their living spaces. With advancements in design, material, and technology, plus changes in geopolitical events over fuel sources and the all-too-familiar pandemic, some are considering improvements they can make to increase their level of comfort and lifestyle.
This month, we’ve gathered new ideas and concepts that will blossom during the remainder of 2022; these insights will show changes in taste, necessity, and desire for better and more efficient living.
Here is what’s trending, and it is only the beginning!
Working At Home
One of the changes we noticed over the last 4-5 years is the birth of the home office. Once a den, a room doubling as a library, or a space where a tiny desk was found, owners are transforming the spaces into attractive and useful rooms. The remote office is an essential amenity, and people are going all out to blend comfort and convenience into a room or suite they spend much of their day.
Walls are adorned with art, built-in cabinetry, or lots of windows to let the sunshine in, often offering a view of the grounds. And these spaces must look good since many professionals are video conferencing with clients and colleagues.
An investment in a home office isn’t just for those displaced by COVID; many people are converting space (a spare bedroom, a storage room, or basement) for a start-up internet business, studio, or mailroom. With the likes of Shopify and Amazon, to name a few, entrepreneurs are keeping expenses low by converting underutilized space into a money-making asset.
Homes Go High-Tech
Companies that install and operate Smart Home Technology see an eruption in business, with no end in sight. The use of products that manage security, environmental, and telecommunication functions in residential properties is only beginning to launch, and homeowners are wondering how they lived so long without such products and services.
Time has never been so valuable, and in modern households, the future will focus on programming, voice-activated commands, and monitoring the status of the entire property regardless of location.
Entertainment and Outdoor Spaces
Another great concept homeowners are exploring is attached or free-standing spaces and buildings dedicated to social gatherings. From a partially enclosed patio with a full kitchen and bathroom, a converted shed or barn, to an elaborate and opulent venue among the garden, these modern-day detached ‘Drawing Rooms’ (coined during the 18th century) are in vogue and can be breathtakingly beautiful and practical.
Families and friends have grown to enjoy time at home for safety and security; from this perspective, keeping the chore of entertaining at a specialized location alleviates worry while keeping your primary living space tidy and undisturbed.
Call it what you’d like, a solarium, sunroom, patio, or four-season room; there is a huge demand for customized glass enclosures attached to primary residences. These fabulous additions have come a long way from the leaky, unprotected glass rooms of prior generations. Having the ability to heat, cool, and shade from harmful UV waves, these structures are perfect for breakfast or gathering on a summer night or winter eve.
Many homeowners are looking to personalize their spaces, moving from plain flat drywall to textured finishes, murals, tile, stone, or brick. Looks that resemble places traveled are becoming popular for kitchens, baths, and living areas. Sculptured plaster, wide-plank wood floors, and the use of Chinoiserie-formed scenery, add an air of originality and a unique aesthetic to an ordinary room.
There are also upticks in elaborate wallpaper, which resemble long-lived antique styling. Bolder and colorful designs are being brought back to bedrooms returning a feeling of sensuality and grace. Emotional warmth and luxury are compounded by ensuite spas and dressing rooms that make time with a partner enduringly romantic.
It affects our moods and peace of mind; people are paying more attention to the feel of their environment. Grays seem to be diminishing, with a rise in playful tropical colors and designs. The bold red walls of yesterday are being painted or papered. Greens, pale orange, relaxing pinks, and soothing shades of blue will replace the vibrant bolds that have surrounded us for the last ten years. For home offices, we see dark colors; deep blues and hues of black are on the horizon.
Brown is Back
Not only in paint but with antique furniture and accent pieces, interest in the warmth and quality of well-made furnishings has caused homeowners and designers to take a second look.
Bathrooms will be outfitted with semi-antique and antique chests of drawers serving as vanities, stools, library steps, and cellarettes (antique wooden containers used for storing liquor), will decorate just about any space. Expect to see dining rooms graced with banquet tables.
Collectables are also finding their way into spaces decorated with contemporary furnishings and are seeping into the look-books of professional designers.
There is also interest in Mid-century design, and many homes will incorporate its minimalist style into their décor.
White and stainless steel kitchens will always be available for those serious about their cooking, just less of them. Today‘s trend is about open shelving and walls boasting intense colors, mimicking the foods we eat. You’ll see more deep greens, yellows, oranges, and reds added to a rustic atmosphere that will remind us of the farm-to-table movement. Stone and antique elements like well-worn tables and vintage signage will also make their way into these transformed gathering places showing authenticity.
Surfaces are essential, and the use of organic and earthly materials is leading the way; terracotta, unpolished granite, concrete, and travertine have taken over the polished look of yesterday. The essence of natural unfinished materials is creating interest and causing intrigue.
At the same time, high-end appliances will remain a staple; but hidden behind creative coverings as not to distract from the genre of the room. The top-of-the-line kitchen equipment won’t be going anywhere.
As for space, the traditional butler’s pantry is making a comeback; it allows for storage and a prep area that allows the ambiance of a new kitchen to shine.
The separation of the outdoors and interior space is becoming indiscriminate. Homeowners want to bring the outdoors inside, but at the same time, their interest is to replace old windows and save on energy. Expanding the view inside a room adds enjoyment, relaxation, and comfort. Sliders and French doors allowing light and scenery will remain a constant, but adding another bank along the wall might also be on the agenda.
Bathrooms and home spas are the most private rooms in the house. These sanctuaries allow distance from daily living through piped-in music, sounds of nature, or tribal echoes, which revitalize the soul. In combination with plantings and fixtures resembling ancient Greece or a fancy hotel, more time will be spent spoiling oneself.
There is a movement to remodel with oversized tubs, glass-enclosed showers, and in some cases, open shower rooms; the change from simple to elaborate can also be seen with the installation of marble walls, high-placed windows, adjustable lighting, and luxurious linens.
They’re found in offices, bathrooms, bedrooms, dressing rooms, kitchens, and wherever additional storage is required. Finally, we see greater use and interest in their utility without suffering aesthetic value. Built-ins offer visual elegance; no longer does the china, silver, and crystal have to be stored in cases that take away from a room’s footprint.
The Mud Room
Even here, effort and resources are being expended. This daily entrance used by families is the gateway in and out of a home. We will see more consideration going into a room responsible for keeping the rest of the house neat and organized. Access to an adjacent laundry room with ‘slop sink’ shelving and storage will be a must-have.
Today’s homes are about personality and comfort—along with style. Conscientious homeowners want their essence and taste reflected in every room and building on their property. Pride has replaced plain and straightforward construction; now, it's about doing the job well and emulating
an owner's vibe.
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