: People want homes that are more flexible, more versatile.
According to MSN Real Estate, the buzz word for 2012 is flexibility! MSN Real Estate contributor, Christopher Solomon talked to industry experts to find out what’s hot for 2012.
Easy access: According to a study by the American Institute of Architects (AIA), Accessibility is huge as baby boomers are getting older and parents of boomers are getting older. Baby boomers are thinking about what their homes need to look like if they’re going to be able to age in place. What does this mean? Ranch homes, main level master homes, homes with grab bars in the bathroom, wider doorways, fewer stairs and perhaps even wheelchair ramps.
A bigger garage: Larger garage spaces used to accommodate SUVs and extended cab pickups. Now homebuilders are being asked to make room in the garage for all the “stuff” growing families put in them, from tricycles to golf carts and everything in between! Another trend for the larger garages is to use part of it as a ‘man cave’ of sorts — space where you can fit two cars, in addition to a sofa, TV, weights, punching bags, etc.
Flex spaces: People want homes that are more flexible, more versatile.
Rooms dedicated to one purpose are less popular now, according to AIA. As homes shrank in the past few years, homebuyers required that rooms serve multiple functions. Also referred to as “resource centers”, these spaces can be nooks carved out of other rooms that include a desk, printer, room for a laptop and even some cubbyholes for mail and bills. Typically these spaces are adjacent to kitchens and operate as the home’s command center, serving homework, family organization, bill paying, and more.
Homes within homes: Almost one-third of American adults are “doubled up”
or living in the same household with another adult generation according to the US Census Bureau. Whether its to fit the needs of “boomerang” kids who have come back home to live after college or aging parents who moved in with adult children, home builders are responding to this trend with flexible floor plans that allow for independent living on different levels, dual master suites, separate entrances, and multi-car garages.
Green Living: Homebuyers across the nation are asking for greater energy efficiency. New home builders are meeting this demand with high performance homes that feature compact fluorescent bulbs, Energy Star appliances, dual pane low E glass windows, tighter building envelopes, and more.
Home plans that fit today: Another trend AIA sees is “home plans that work for today’s buyers”. Here are some examples:
- Laundry – Floor plans that have direct access to laundry rooms from the master suite.
- Costco pantries – Large pantries off the garage for storage of all the bulk items purchased at warehouse stores.
- Drop zones - These are small spots, usually near the kitchen, that are dedicated to dropping off your cell phone, keys, purse, mail, and more.
The house that flows: Industry experts mentioned a trend that continues to remain popular – the open plan. As homes have gotten smaller in recent years, an open plan is a way to make a home seem larger than it is with a continuous space and open sight line that extends from kitchen to dining area to living area. Growing in popularity are great rooms that open directly to outdoor living areas allowing abundant natural light.
Outdoor living: Fire pits, water features, outdoor kitchens – the demand for outdoor living areas are one of the fastest growing trends in the nation.
If you are ready to take advantage of the best time in the last fifty years to purchase a new home or if you have any questions about homes for sale in Anchorage, Alaska please don’t hesitate to contact me or visit my website at www.kathyjfernandez.com!