There are so many options when it comes to building a new home. So, we called in the experts to hear what the trends are in new builds.
Our clients continue to request open concept floor plans, which merge the outdoors with the indoors. As such, we are building homes with more windows, larger, all-glass doors, and more seamlessly integrated indoor/outdoor living areas. Our clients have asked for flexible rooms that function as both home office and home entertainment spaces. They want custom, cleverly disguised storage solutions and personalized organizational tools. They want spa-like master retreats and comfortable getaway nooks. Larger, more connected and more functional kitchens are in demand as well. By virtue of their openness, today’s floor plans lack many of the traditional storage closets built in decades past. Kitchen cabinets and pantries are being used to meet storage needs, providing traditional kitchen storage as well as storage solutions for sports gear, tech accessories, homework supplies, cleaning equipment, and more.
Arts and Crafts bungalows have been popular for about the last 15-20 years, but lately, we have been getting lots of requests for more modern styles. Contemporary, mid-century, and mountain-modern home styles are becoming increasingly on trend.
Luxury vinyl tile is becoming more popular, especially in basements, bonus rooms, and utility rooms. I’ve even seen whole houses finished with it. It’s been regarded as “cheap” or “inferior,” but it’s really not. It’s a fantastic product – easy to maintain and easy to clean. Many are stain-resistant and waterproof. There is no worrying about scratches. I think it will become even more popular because manufacturers are developing more styles and colors options.
We see clients consistently wanting to make more thoughtful choices when it comes to matters such as sustainability, responsible living, and decreasing maintenance and lifecycle costs on their buildings. While we receive a variety of requests, generally, it seems that our clients are increasingly interested in “right sizing” their homes (and each of the rooms therein). We no longer see many requests for ridiculously huge master suites and the like, but rather for sensibly sized rooms and amenities. We do not design many homes with dedicated formal dining or living rooms, and many (but not all) of the homes we do tend to have fairly open plan layouts, at least for the more public parts of the homes. We also see a trend toward more, and more thoughtfully designed, outdoor space, and this holds true in rural, suburban, and even urban homes. Many clients are also contemplating ideas revolving around aging in place and/or the notion of in-law suites.
I love the look of painted brick, and it seems to be the biggest trend in new housing. It’s complemented by dark accents and decorative garage doors, giving a home that modern farmhouse look. This is a move toward consistency on the outside instead of a mixture of contrasting materials we have seen in the past. The trend of outside living is a huge plus as well. Building several outdoor areas and creating indoor/outdoor living spaces are popular. The housing industry is always changing, and I really enjoy the direction we’re going.
We are seeing an increase in modern farmhouse, vintage industrial, and an occasional Georgian style when it comes to linear moulding and door styles. Really what it amounts to is most homeowners are leaning toward straight, squared-off designs in trim. Solid wood doors seem to be on the rise in various designs and species of wood used. Plain square-edge designs are being used on every part of the staircase in a lot of new homes; this includes the stair treads, handrails, balusters, and newel post. Wall treatments are a big thing with the use of shiplap/nickel gap covering the wall in place of sheetrock. The shiplap/nickel gap is generally painted, but some of our customers are choosing to stain and use various species of wood.
A trend in new residential construction is vinyl flooring. Shaw has introduced a beautiful LVP (luxury vinyl plank) collection, and it has been widely embraced for the benefits and styles it has to offer. LVP offers realistic visuals (such as their 7-inch plank wood with several stunning colors and textures available – even a stone look!), but also resists water and scratches, making a functional statement that’s hard to ignore. Another trend is gray paint colors with warmer undertones. Warmer gray tones are always a timeless neutral choice for interior walls. My top go-to grays are by Sherwin-Williams: Repose Gray and Amazing Gray. Warmer grays help create a space that’s versatile with homes that have a mixture of modern and traditional blends.
We are seeing greater emphasis on functional spaces, such as kitchens, bathrooms, and laundry rooms. In these areas, the trend has been more cabinetry, built-ins, and room to operate, such as a large kitchen island for food prep or folding space in laundry rooms. In terms of architectural style, I’ve seen a consistent trend toward more contemporary homes over the past 10 years. People want more windows and clean/simple lines and spaces, without the fuss and expense of over-the-top décor. With contemporary design, the function of the space wins out over any allegiance to style, so the end result is a comfortable, elegant home.