By Melissa Dittmann Tracey, REALTOR® Magazine
Coinciding with a sluggish housing market, home owners have changed their preferences about how space is used and designed in their homes. Function over extravagance has reigned in recent years, along with affordability, when it comes to home features, according to the latest American Institute of Architects Home Design Trends Survey for the second quarter of 2010.
Here are a few highlights from the report, based on nearly 300 residential architects who were surveyed about the design preferences of U.S. households.
Home offices: More people are working out of their home or telecommuting, prompting more home owners to want a dedicated workspace in their homes.
Outdoor living areas: Home owners want to expand their living space into the outdoors and are seeking to incorporate more outdoor living elements into their lifestyles, AIA Chief Economist Kermit Baker said in a public statement about the survey.
Mud rooms: The need for additional closets and other storage space, as well as the increasing informality of space in the home, is driving more home owners to want mud rooms, according to the report.
Energy-saving features: Home owners are seeking energy efficient products and systems that will reduce their rising utility costs. Those energy efficient products and materials that have boasted the greatest increase in interest in recent months include items such as double and triple glazed windows, tankless water heaters, and low maintenance materials.
- Media rooms/home theaters
- Exercise/fitness rooms
- Hobby/game rooms
- Home workshops
- Kid’s wings/guest wings
- Interior kennels
- Interior greenhouses