2022 New Year, New Trends

A new year is upon us, but the news is old: We’re still not back to “normal” since the onset of the pandemic, and people are continuing to think about their homes in a whole new way. That is, they’re spending a lot more time there, and wanting their homes to perform a lot of functions.

“If they’re not buying new, they’re upgrading,” says Janet Owen, a sales associate with Berkshire Hathaway Chicago. “They want a wonderful environment to be in, for remote learning, working from home, working out from home, entertaining. They need space for everyone to do what they need to do.”

Here are some of the trends Owen sees for 2022:

Adding on
People are looking for more space. Owen says she’s seeing a lot of local homeowners looking to buy the lot next door so as to extend their indoor and outdoor space. They’re also adding floors to the tops of homes, as well as adding decks and side gardens.

Exercise rooms
A dedicated spot in the basement or spare room for a Peloton, weights, yoga, pilates or treadmill.

Flex rooms
These rooms, also called bonus rooms, are spare bedrooms that can be used for many different purposes: An office, a craft room, an exercise room or even a media room.

Bigger bathrooms
Bathrooms are incorporating whirlpools, saunas, steam rooms—all the things a homeowner might have enjoyed traveling to a top hotel or at a health club.

Bigger kitchens
It’s not a new story, but with people going out to eat less often, they’re looking for super functional kitchens they can really cook in, perhaps the entire family together. No more a “trophy” kitchen that rarely gets used. And the kitchen needs to be a comfortable space where friends and family can hang out. “People are looking for big, beautiful kitchens with both casual and entertaining spaces,” Owen says.

Luxurious outdoor spaces
The trend toward indoor/outdoor living continues to be strong, with fully-decked-out outdoor kitchens, lush landscaping, pools, game courts such as bocce or basketball, and comfortable outdoor living areas. “Even smaller homes on smaller lots are putting a priority on lovely outdoor spaces,” Owen says.

Healthy homes
“Everyone is trending toward a healthier lifestyle, so whenever you can incorporate that into your home, that’s a plus,” Owen says. “Everyone is recycling and paying attention to being and staying healthy. That’s been going on for quite a while,” she says, and shows no sign of abating. That will mean recycling stations in kitchens or mudrooms, as well as the use of low-VOC paints and sophisticated air-filtration systems.

And more trends we anticipate:

Black accents
For doors, window frames, appliances, and more, in either a matte or shiny finish.

Patterned hardwood floors and patterned hardwood on ceilings treatments, as well as reclaimed, antique wood floors.

More curves
Think barrel-vault ceilings, arched openings, and curvier furniture.

Metal roofs
They can be used for the entire home, or as an awning roof over windows or a porch roof. But Taryn Lund, senior project manager at BGD&C says, “for the level of home we build we don’t feel it’s the right material. We typically do slate roofs, but have also used terracotta tiles.”

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