Reconsidering your home’s location, functionality, & amenities
Trends in home buying and new construction typically take a few months or years to gain traction, but below are a few post pandemic forecasts.
Single family homes rule! With shared lobbies, mail rooms, and elevators, and a lack of outdoor space, high rise condominiums suffer, at least in the short term, from post pandemic fear of close contact.
In a related trend, the distant suburbs or more rural communities will be popular. If the work at home movement continues, and many companies have announced working remotely as a permanent option for employees, residences further from the city center are more desirable. Eliminate the five days a week, time-wasting commute, and buyers opt for larger lots and more space for their families.
For those who can afford it, a second home is an attractive option. With a good Wi-Fi connection, employees can theoretically work from anywhere. If that country home is within driving distance, all the better.
Inside the home, change is afoot as well. Months of sheltering at home have made homeowners realize the flaws in their current floor plans.
Remember the foyer? In the coming years, homeowners want a front hall that is distinct from the rest of the house, creating a transitional space between the exterior and the heart of the house. It includes a designated rack or closet for visitors to place their shoes and coats and a hand sanitizing station or at least a powder room adjacent to the entrance hall for hand washing. The home’s back entrance has a similar buffer zone.
With parents and children working from home, the beloved open concept took a hit. It was hard to concentrate, take conference calls, or work on large scale school projects with everyone huddled in one room. After tearing down walls for over a decade, we will be building them back up. Doors—the new must have.
A home office is standard in new construction, but a minimum of two designated home offices will be essential as the occasional work at home day becomes five days work at home. And this is not just a spare bedroom— but a full-on office complete with a desk, built-in cabinets, bookshelves, a seating area, work table, and a background suitable for Zoom calls.
Boomerang millennials and elderly parents may not be moving back to their own homes anytime soon! Multigenerational harmony is best preserved with a guest house or large guest suite with its own bath and living room. A space that can be completely isolated from the rest of the house in the event a family member has to quarantine is preferable.
The global health crisis has forced permanent sometimes painful changes in how we live, and the pandemic will leave its mark on where we live as well.