A number of trends evolved in late 2013 which are likely to continue in 2014. Here, we share a few of these trends with you.

1. Special place to unwind

bathroom spa

Increasingly, homeowners are investing in their property to create a sanctuary where they can get away from it all. Specifically, they are designating a specific space for tranquil design, a space to relax and unwind. This is being seen in bathroom design with spa bathrooms and in transformations of areas once considered ‘dead space’ like under stairways.

2. Kitchen focus

Kitchen focus

In 2014, the kitchen will continue to serve as the focal point of the house. Homeowners often want their kitchen in the centre of an open floor plan, especially as they start to use their kitchen space as a multi-tasking room. By having the kitchen centred and open with dedicated IT areas, parents can help children with homework, talk or pay bills — all while making meals.

3. Sustainable designs

Sustainable designs

As we continue to see a rise in the cost of living, changes to housing affordability and unpredictable climate conditions, long-term sustainable designs are increasingly desirable. Considerations to best minimise energy consumption such as windows positioned to attract winter sun to heat the home and appropriate eaves and awning design to keep the harsh summer sun out of the house should definitely be considered in your design. A well designed home can considerably reduce energy consumption.

4. Flexible floor plans

Flexible floor plans

As lifestyles have evolved, the needs within our living spaces have also changed. We are seeing more homes designed with sliding doors, pocket doors, and other types of movable partitions allow flexibility in living arrangements. The once popular dedicated living and dining rooms are being replaced by large multi-purpose family areas. In addition, houses are starting to include an additional room that can be used for office space or be adapted to a variety of needs to suit the growing family.

5. Outdoor entertaining space

Outdoor entertaining space

As people look to engage in more home-based entertainment and to enjoy the summer months, we’ve seen an increased interest in incorporating outdoor space within the overall home design. The yard and garden become a large part of the floor plan with bi-fold doors leading to patios and decks. These outdoor “rooms” are now including kitchens with sophisticated sinks and grills.

5. Increase in storage space

Increase in storage space

Homeowners are demanding more storage space. Newer homes feature enormous walk-in wardrobes, spacious dressing rooms and plenty of easy-to-reach built-in cabinets. Specialist companies are focusing on making sure these spaces meet the homeowners’ needs. Garages are also getting bigger to accommodate storage and the ever-popular SUVs and other large vehicles.