Since March 2020, we have seen so many changes in our world. From running out of hand sanitizer on grocery store shelves to wearing a mask anytime you are in public, from late-night talk shows broadcasting from home to professional baseball in an empty stadium. Our world sure looks a lot different these days.
Another thing that has changed, is what it means to have a "home" and some people have changed their perspective on their idea of what a 'dream home' looks like. Not too long ago, buyers preferred smaller homes and open concept spaces conducive to gathering with friends and family. After a few months of being cooped up inside, those features may not seem so appealing. Home buyers may prefer more space to spread out, and a home-office could be a must-have in the future.
Real estate developers are likely taking notice and considering options that a post-pandemic world may demand.
After doing some research, here are just a few suggested areas of home design where trends may shift in the coming years:
Home office / Study space / Zoom rooms
Many businesses implemented work-from-home policies for their office workers over the past few months. Some people have opted to work remotely entirely. Add that to the fact that schools are offering on-line curriculum and some parents and students are choosing to learn-from-home. With all of this in mind, the home office may become essential for many buyers. Home builders and developers may even consider more than one dedicated space for privacy while multiple people are working/studying at home.
Prior to the Covid-19 Pandemic, smart-home technology was already one of the fastest growing trends in home design. However, smart home technology will likely move from a wish-list item to a must-have item. Hands-free items may become the standard instead of a luxury item.
Home buyers may required that the home office or study be pre-wired for telecommuting with high-speed internet and wi-fi access. Keyless entry, along with lighting and security that is motion-activated helps families feel safe. Touchless faucets in the kitchen, motion-sensor garbage cans, and automatic toilet flushing help reduce the spread of germs. Air filtration and air quality monitoring could become more common too. Not to mention thermostats, sprinkler systems, and garage door openers that can be controlled through the cloud, eliminating touch points.
Many people have started growing their own food since mid-March. This will likely lead to home buyers considering their backyard size and layout ensuring they have the ability to have a vegetable garden. Additionally, with more time on their hands due to reduced commute time - home owners are looking for activities that allow them time outdoors. A backyard space allows for privacy and social distancing while still having outdoor activities.
Home size increase
With so many families spending time at home together lately, there's never been more need for personal space. Plus, if someone is sick they need some personal space to self-quarantine from everyone else at home.
Increased storage space
Home owners have changed the way they shop. In order to minimize trips to busy retail and shopping areas, home buyers have stocked up on essentials and need space to store those items. From canned goods and other food staples to other household supplies, home owners will want additional closet space and storage systems to keep things organized.
Shift in floor plan layout
For many years the open-concept floor plan has been the desire of buyers. However, now that families are spending more time together, the demands for privacy have increased. Kids doing school work, parents working from home, and more meals being prepared in the kitchen - all lead to a noisy atmosphere filled with distractions. Buyers may opt for a home that has dedicated space for some of these activities, leading to more closed off space and a less open floor plan.