pandemic caused many homeowners to spend more time at home than ever
before, and they came to experience a variety of pain points along the
way. Being quarantined prompted many to find new ways to work, relax,
entertain, and create more personal space at home.
the same time, home sales went through the roof. It was a great time to
sell your home, but when those sellers became buyers, many weren't able
to find another home to purchase. As a result, some homeowners decided
to stay put, opting to make their current space more livable, while
others are working on fixing up the homes they bought.
Considering all that happened in 2020, it's no surprise that home renovations are on the rise in 2021. According to a report by Houzz,
home renovation spending has increased by 15 percent in the past year.
But what projects are most popular among homeowners, and why? We
assembled a panel of experts to share and explain the top home
renovation trends of 2021.
kitchen is the home's hub, and according to Houzz senior economist,
Marine Sargsyan, it is consistently the most common project that
homeowners undertake when they renovate. "While median spend has been
flat for the past three years, it has been interesting to see investment
on major remodels of large kitchens jump so significantly in the past
year," she tells us. On average, homeowners in the U.S. spend $12,000 on
a kitchen remodel.
course, a shortage of materials and labor have impacted the cost of
reno projects in general. But Sargsyan also believes the pandemic played
a role as well and led homeowners to think of ways to better utilize
space. "Kitchens, in particular, became the command center for the home,
where more meals were prepared and eaten on a daily basis, and it
became a new location for work, schooling, entertainment, and more."
Bathrooms Became Private Sanctuaries
you found yourself hiding in the bathroom to get a little alone time at
any point during the pandemic, then you'll understand why the bathroom
was the second most popular room to renovate in 2021.
what does a bathroom remodel entail? According to Sargsyan, at a
minimum, it includes replacing the cabinetry or vanity, countertops, and
toilet. And while the amount spent on primary bathroom remodels has
held steady at $8,000 on average, she says major upgrades of smaller primary bathrooms has increased by 20 percent, as homeowners try to maximize every inch of their homes.
This comes as no surprise to Lynn Schrage, manager of design services at Kohler,
considering how much time we've spent at home. "For many, the bathroom
acted as the only private space away from children and family, and the
need for a space that provides relaxation and respite increased almost
overnight," she explains. "And so did the need to remodel and refresh
the bathrooms to fill that need—especially with travel plans canceled."
Open Floor Plans Started to Fall Out of Favor
Leigh Spicher, national director of design studios for Ashton Woods Homes,
says she's loved the open floor plan concept, but admits that she's
seeing a trend to bring back defined spaces. Regarding the living room,
Spicher says formal entertaining is coming back—and even though the
living room itself is less formal, it's always tidy and ready for
guests—and may even host a craft beverage station.
homeowners fully embracing the family room, Spicher says you can expect
to see them pull up the carpet and use hard floor surfaces, such as
durable plank tile or even enhanced vinyl planks. "Massive entertainment
centers are also being ditched in favor of artful entertainment, like a
TV that can be hung on the wall, eliminating large pieces of furniture
and built-ins," she explains.
Guest Bedrooms Became Destinations
to Spicher, the guest bedroom should include more than just a
queen-size bed and a side table. Her clients are opting to create a
space reminiscent of a favorite destination. Here are some of the guest
bedroom trends she has noticed over the past year:
Adding a coffee bar or mini fridge.
Including a desk for guests who work remotely and will need a private place to have a Zoom call or check emails.
Introducing an interesting wall treatment or specialty lighting.
for the destination, such as adding coastal, farmhouse, metropolitan,
or southwest elements that are specific to your home's geographic
Personalized Primary Bedrooms
a place to retreat to so you can relax and recharge makes renovating
the primary bedroom the sixth most popular interior
renovation. According to Sargsyan, homeowners are spending an average of
$1,800 on this area.
dramatic color choices and wall treatments are a growing trend in the
main bedroom. "I love that this points to a space where we can have
sanctuary from all else and embrace design choices that are personal to
us," Spicher says. "This includes anything from 3D applications to the
walls, like board and batten, to bold color choices, like a bold green
and even black."
Investing in Landscaping
are also renovating their exterior spaces. In fact, Sargsyan says
outdoor projects have jumped 6 percent since 2018. Outdoor beds/borders
and lawns are the top two outdoor reno projects for 2021. "Outdoor beds
and borders are wonderful ways to help define outdoor spaces and allow
for flexibility when it comes to changing plants and flowers on a
seasonal basis," explains Fernando Wong of Miami-based firm Fernando Wong Outdoor Living Design, and one of the judges on Clipped, a new HGTV gardening show on Discovery+.
notes that outdoor beds and borders also guide the eye throughout the
space, and direct the flow of traffic. "An outdoor bed is also perfect
for adding a splash of color that can easily be maintained, while
decorative borders allow you to integrate natural materials, such as
stones and wood."
Outdoor Living Rose in Popularity
to Sargsyan, homeowners are investing 25 percent more in 2021 versus
2020 on patios, terraces, and decks. "From remote working to dining, all
things al fresco are very much in vogue, and more and more of our
clients are prioritizing patios and terraces as part of their outdoor
updates to create new outdoor rooms and experiences to enjoy and
entertain," Wong says. "These spaces extend the flow from the indoors
out, and homeowners have quickly realized that the right landscaping,
furnishing, and styling can make all the difference in how they use the
space each day."
Also, while you
may be accustomed to seeing decks or porches behind homes, his clients
are utilizing space on the side and even in the front of their homes to
both add curb appeal and create spaces to relax. "Enclosed porches and
decks are smart additions to make year-round entertainment possible, and
styling these areas with natural plants and florals bring the outdoors
in, while bringing in a sense of softness and dimension," Wong explains.