2015 was a very strong year for home remodeling in New Jersey, and it looks like 2016 will bring more of the same. Because more and more homeowners are choosing to remain in their homes rather than pick up and move, there is a growing trend toward improving older homes to make them more comfortable and livable.
On one hand, thousands of baby boomers are retiring every single day, and a good portion of those are empty-nesters, whose children have gone off to college, the military, or the workforce.
On the other end of the spectrum are younger home buyers who purchase older homes and remodel them to make them their own.
Whether you fall into one of these categories, or somewhere in between, here are some trends to look out for in 2016.
Home Design & Remodeling Trends for 2016
Since the economic downturn that began in 2008, homeowners are more reluctant to live beyond their means and splurge on a giant home. These days, there is a trend toward homes with higher end materials and fixtures, but less square footage than homes of the past. Homeowners are seeking higher quality, more efficiency, and more functionality.
Today’s typical homeowner is on more of a fixed budget, so she wants to maximize what she is able to get from her remodeling project. Eschewing a larger living space in favor of a gourmet kitchen, for example, is a decision she is more likely to make today than say five years ago.
As formal dining rooms disappear, kitchens are getting larger. According to Houzz, the typical American kitchen now has between 200 and 250 square feet, which is the largest average square kitchen size in the world.
Now, more than ever, the kitchen is the center of the home. New home builders and remodeling companies alike are now designing homes around the kitchen.
We’re seeing larger kitchen islands that replace kitchen tables in some cases. We’re also seeing a continued uptick in open floor plans that are suitable for everyday living and entertaining.
We don’t expect this trend to slow down anytime soon.
Baby boomers are retiring at an accelerating rate, and homeowners over 55 years of age represent 50% of home improvement spending, up from 30% a decade ago.
Aging in Place can be defined as living in your home safely, independently and comfortably, regardless of age or ability level.
This translates into home features such as barrier-free shower entries, wider doors, elevators, ramps, ADA appliances, and more.
A homeowner who is remodeling at 60 years of age can now reasonably expect to be in the home for another 20-30 years, so it just makes sense to plan for the future.
Contrasting Materials & Textures
New materials and modern interpretations of old materials are more accessible to homeowners now than ever before. This is one reason we’re seeing an uptick in things like metal range hoods, exposed reclaimed hardwood beams in great rooms, and textured accent walls.
Contrasting materials and colors are somewhat personal. For homeowners looking to make a house uniquely their own, these elements can add a lot of personality. However, for homeowners who may be planning to move within the next few years, you may not want to do anything too drastic with materials, colors, and textures.
We really enjoy these unique aspects of home design and remodeling, and love talking with our clients about their unlimited options when renovating their homes.
How Can You Improve Your Home This Year?
Whether you are looking to just make a few updates and upgrades to your home, or you are thinking about remodeling an entire room or your whole house, 2016 is a very exciting year for home design. With resourceful websites such as Houzz and Pinterest, endless home improvement shows on television, and a web full of ideas at your fingertips, there really are no limits.
If you are looking for ideas, we invite you to contact us to schedule a consultation. We’re always happy to answer questions and get you started in the right direction!