May 6, 2021 by Julia Weaver
Originally published on Redfin
As the pandemic swept across the country, we found ourselves spending more time than ever surrounded by the same four walls of our homes. COVID-19 forced us to do almost everything at home from working and exercising, to schooling and socially distanced gatherings. The pandemic slowly changed what we need out of our homes, and residential architectural styles and trends quickly adapted.
We spoke with 9 expert architects, from Vancouver, CA to Miami, FL, to find out what residential architectural styles they predict you’ll see in popular home styles across the housing market.
Multifunctional spaces are on the rise in residential architectural styles
We’re already seeing urban residents transforming their homes to support the multifunctional purpose for working at home. Besides the first rule of my practice – to do more with less space – I’m seeing the design aesthetic reflected in furnishings we select or create for dens/second bedrooms that are also offices, open kitchens central to interactive lifestyles, built-ins that maximize storage in every room and ultimately result in contemporary minimalism.
– Paula McDonald Design Build & Interiors
Floor plans that offer functional, shared spaces with private space for each family member
The pandemic has taught us all to be adaptable and creative to complete our daily tasks, yet stay safe. Our homes must also be more reflective of the more multifunctional purposes they serve and be designed as a place to come together but offer individualized private, functional space for each person living there.
Building an eco-friendly home in a location you love
After spending the past year in the confines of their older and outdated homes, many of our clients are using Connect Homes to replace their existing house. Instead of entering the national housing frenzy and moving to an unfamiliar new neighborhood, our clients are choosing to build a house they love in a location they love. People are looking for modern homes that have open, bright spaces that are efficiently and sustainably built.
Upcoming residential architectural styles will create more space with fewer materials
Post pandemic residential architectural design will feature more diverse spaces in and around the home, public and private spaces will be the norm as we separate our living and working, and we will do more with less material in interesting ways as material costs soar.
– Michael Waechter, AIA, at Waechter Architects
Timeless design that brings joy and inspiration
As people have spent more time in their homes, we have seen a greater appreciation and desire for better residential architectural design. Spaces that are well-proportioned, flow well, oriented to take advantage of views, and natural light and ventilation. These well-designed spaces bring joy to our daily living and enhance, inspire, and enrich our lives. Thoughtful design is timeless and transcends passing trends.
– Philip “Pip” White, founder and principal at WhiteSpace Architects
Functional design is on the rise rather than what’s trendy
The upcoming trends we see are requests for timeless homes that are healthy, durable, energy-efficient while also being cost-effective. There’s less concern about the current “trend of the day.” Clients want a home that is uniquely theirs, connected to its site and locality, and embracing the opportunities each property brings. We hear more and more about the desire for dwellings to be resilient and adaptable to life’s changes, eventually enabling a dignified aging-in-place for its owners.
– Alan K. Barley, AIA, at Barley Pfeiffer Architecture
We’ll embrace smaller indoor spaces and large outdoor areas
I expect that we will react to our shared in-home quarantine experience with both an emphasis on personal privacy within our dwellings, giving us elbow room around our loved ones, and greater demand for spaces that welcome our friends when it is safe to do so. The result may be homes that upend the long-standing indoor “great room” in order to re-engage the public with expansive covered, screened porches for safe outdoor greetings and entertainment, while also providing more individual, user-focused rooms within (more home offices, more private bedrooms, fewer shared bathrooms), in an echo of designs that were common generations ago. While steeply climbing construction costs may limit the sizes of our new homes, or even constrain us to remodeling only, by maximizing space in a smaller house and a robust outdoor area incorporated into the mass of the home, we can accommodate the need for more personal space, whether it’s about social distancing or about sibling rivalry.
– Christopher Clayton, LEED AP at Housecall Architecture PLLC
Expect to see timeless architecture alongside modern design features
World-renowned architects like George Maher and Frank Lloyd Wright created timeless masterpieces that blend old-world craftsmanship with modern design features. Their utilization of open spaces, warm woods, natural light, and organic design elements are as fashionable today as they were nearly 100 years ago. As such, the Stewart Inn offers as much tranquility as it does in warmth and elegance.
Residential architectural styles may only see small changes
Many developers and designers spent a lot of time rethinking both residential and office environments at the start of the pandemic, for good reason. However, many are taking a more cautious and pragmatic approach so as not to move too far off what could be a more normal market by the time new development comes on line.
– David Cheney, Principal, CORE architecture + design