Saturday, December 27, 2014

10 Home design trends we'll see in 2015.

As our calendars flip closed on the last page of the year, it’s time to start thinking about the promise of 2015 and prognosticate what the next 365 might bring. Things are sure looking great in the real estate and mortgage world, but what changes might we see in new homes and remodeling in 2015? 

Here are 10 home design trends we'll see in 2015 and beyond:

Single-family homes will get smaller.
Continuing a trend that started since the real estate boom when builders and buyers followed the mantra “bigger is always better”, floor plans will continue to recede to more modest square footage. According to a survey by the National Association of Home Builders for 2015, 63% of new homes built will be between 2,000 and 2,399 square feet. 22% will still be sizable at 2,400 to 2,999 square feet but only 1% will be between 3,000 or more square feet, a desirable size in past markets. 13% of new homes will be between 1,600 – 1,999 square feet, which was considered too small in years past.

Living rooms are going away.
An interesting trend we’ll see in homes built in 2015 and beyond is the absence of living rooms. So instead of a little-used separate living room, floor plans will look to utilize that square footage in other ways. According to the NAHB survey, 52% of those living rooms will merge into other spaces like great rooms and family rooms attached to the kitchen, 30% will just go away so other rooms can be enlarged, and 13% will become parlors/retreats/home gyms/libraries, or music rooms. Only about 5% of blue prints will keep living rooms as we’ve seen them in the past.

More green features.
As consumers grow more conscious of their environmental footprint (and energy and water costs rise!), builders and contractors are tailoring home features to suit them. More new homes will see low-e windows, tankless water heaters, low flush toilets and low spray showerheads, cooling ceiling fans, and even rooftop solar panels for water heaters and electric systems.  

From a design standpoint, contractors, architects, and interior decorators will incorporate more natural elements into their projects in 2015, like using environmentally-friendly engineered hardwood for floors, cool vertical gardens, and water features indoors.

Smaller garages.
As square footage becomes a little more reasonable, more floor plans will include a two-car garage instead of the garages built for three or more cars we’ve seen in past years. 

Kitchen functionality.
When it comes to the kitchen, some design trends will continue while some will take a sharp detour. Built-in eating spaces like breakfast nooks will continue to be popular as will breakfast bars, center islands, large walk-in pantries, pull out drawers and dedicated recycling centers. While in 2013 and 2014, deep double-bowl kitchen sinks were in, 2015’s version will be just as large but single-bowl.

Don’t expect to see trash compactors, fireplaces, butcher’s pantries, or built-in wine coolers in next year’s kitchens.

Outdoor living.
One of the most refreshing trends in home’s in the past couple years will keep going strong in 2015: the affinity for outdoor living spaces. We’re not talking about closed in porches (which are out) or pools (out) but outdoor fireplaces, covered seating areas that rival any living room, and elaborate brick ovens and fully-functioning kitchens will be a huge draw for home buyers in 2015.

Master bedrooms will get special attention.
The sleeping area for the king and queen of the house will get a boost in 2015 and beyond. Builders will continue to put the master bedroom on the first floor of two story homes whenever possible. They’ll also enhance elaborate walk-in closets (realizing they are huge selling points) and integrate technology into the bedroom.

And if the master bedroom looks so good, the master bathroom has to keep up. Master bath showers will become even bigger and have more luxury features. Interestingly, there will be far less built-in tubs with a showerhead but more detached soaking tubs that look like something out of a spa.

Repurposed and heritage materials used in creative ways.
Personalization will be alive and well in 2015, as homeowners will be able to customize their design using local and heritage materials (like signs, family photos, antiques and heirlooms). There will also be an emphasis on mixing materials like repurposed wood, brick, and metals in fun and funky combinations. Look for a lot of wood or brick accent walls in 2015.

Changing colors.
Cabinets, tile patterns, and wall colors will go back to funky 1950s and art deco motifs, with a lot of charcoals and black and white in the mix. Gray will supplant tan as the default wall color for a lot of new homes and remodels. But don’t worry – there will be plenty of color on the walls in 2015, it just will come in the form of bold splashes of more natural colors on accent walls.

Trends that we’ll leave behind in 2014.

So as we flip the calendar well into 2015, what design features will we look at and say “That’s SO 2014!”? Builders and decorators are looking to move away from vaulted first floor ceilings, home offices, dedicated media rooms, sunrooms, mudrooms, formal dining rooms, skylights, and those huge garages in 2015.


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