With HGTV, Pinterest, and other media affecting buyer desires, they are in a strong, informed position to drive housing and real estate trends for 2016 and beyond. Concerns about climate change and new construction technology will also play a role in changing demand in the real estate market, according to RealtorMag.com.
Home buyers are trending towards modern home design, but with organic flourishes that temper the starkness of the lines. Distressed and re-claimed hardwoods add warmth and visual character, which means they will help boost home valuation.
Increased concern over germs and bacteria are bringing back copper as a metal of choice in kitchens and bathrooms given its antimicrobial properties. Manufacturers are responding to demand by improving the facing properties allowing for a wider diversity in color. You can also expect this to be a trend in appliances.
The modern casual trend will also push more open room designs with a stronger emphasis on incorporating the kitchen into the family lifestyle. Hues will also soften (Pantone colors of the year for 2016 – Rose Quartz & Serenity).
Affordability, seasonal variations, and the ability for workers to telecommute are driving another trend towards small houses on wheels. RVs do not appeal to this crowd because they’re expensive, fuel-inefficent, and the aesthetics are not to their taste. These houses are often designed to be off the grid with solar panels, rainwater reclamation, and energy efficient appliances.
Construction Technology Trends
The demand for new digitally constructed materials is growing as it offers home buyers new opportunities to distinguish themselves. An example is glass which can be constructed with patterns and LED technology for a level of personalization in countertops that isn’t possible with traditional materials.
Home buyers are also looking for a more luxurious look on a budget. New construction techniques are allowing them to get the look of high end stone or terra cotta veneered onto a cheaper base structure. As 3D printing evolves, more opportunities will be made available to custom print specific and personalized materials directly at the construction site or during a remodel.
With an increasing water shortage in California and a greater volatility in the environment as a whole, buyers are keenly aware that they want to make sure their investment is secure against the future. Many new home buyers in areas affected by drought are looking for water reclamation in their new home purchases and smart irrigation features to avoid wasting water.
In addition, they are looking for homes better capable of dealing with environmental disasters such as quakes and hurricanes. Sustainability of the materials used is also a key concern as they are more keenly aware of their environmental footprint.
USA Market – Moderate Growth
Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of REALTORS®, is projecting a 4-5% growth rate for the USA housing market in 2016, down a bit from its best year in a decade for growth which is projected to be a 6.5% increase, year over year.
RealtorMag.com cites references the following indicators: “pent-up demand, sustained job growth, and improving inventory conditions will be the main triggers pushing the expected gains in new and existing-home sales this year.” They also point to “rising mortgage rates, home prices that still outpace wage growth, and a fragile global economy” as the key factors that will restrain growth.
Generational buying trends are also projected to affect the 2016 market. The long projected millennial pool will grow in 2016, as well as “financially recovering GenXers and older baby boomers who are entering retirement.”
The millennial market will especially be affected by rising rent prices, sustained job growth, and increasing credit access which will make home affordability a key factor in driving home construction trends.