For affordable, urban living, condos are where it’s at. With more and more people moving to cities, builders are meeting their housing needs by building new condominiums. This is resulting in two construction trends: housing density is increasing and condos are more affordable than ever.
Not only that, but builders are responding to the preferences of buyers by meeting and often exceeding quality standards and regulations outlined in local building codes as well as rating systems like HERS (home energy rating), SEER (for air conditioners), ICF and Fortified (for hurricane resilience), and more.
They’re also including the kinds of amenities that people really want: nature preserves and trail systems, neighborhood gardens, club-like communal spaces with WiFi, and even lifestyle directors. Master-planned concepts are geared toward a particular market, meaning that builders are aware of local trends and respond by including desirable amenities, like entertainment for kids, eco-conscious living, and a focus on wellness. But let’s talk about design trends, because that’s the really fun stuff. Condo builders always have their fingers on the pulse of what’s hot and trending, so here are the exciting condo design trends you can expect in 2019.
With more families moving into condos, the floorplans are getting bigger, similar to single family homes. Many of these wider layouts include in-law or nanny suites, which range from a bedroom with en suite bathroom to a mini apartment. This is great for families with live-in nannies, but it’s also great for families who often have overnight guests.
In very high-end condo buildings, owners have the option to purchase additional units designed specifically to house their staff, and these units are not for sale to the general public.
The modern farmhouse style popularized by several HGTV shows will still be going strong in 2019. Unfitted kitchens, or kitchens with furniture-like islands and shelves, are popular again, with some preferring hybrid fitted/unfitted kitchens (often meaning some appliances are still hidden and bottom cabinets are fitted). Open shelving is a much-loved design trend continuing from last year.
Condo kitchens are also growing again, but this time it is the areas used for relaxing and entertaining that are expanding. Elissa Morgante, co-principal of Morgante Wilson Architects in Chicago, explains, “The extra square footage will be devoted to features such as expansive banquettes, oversized islands and bar seating, rather than to work space, as in previous years.”
Thanks, in part, to the proliferation of HGTV remodeling shows, condo buyers want materials that are more luxurious. The result is a richly layered interior design that includes wood, various metals, custom colors, and unique textures. Lux vinyl flooring and other creative materials are also in the mix.
When it comes to wood flooring and accents, honey-toned and golden-hued woods are making a resurgence as a design trend, replacing the gray anddeep, dark wood flooring we saw in previous years.
Another 2019 condo design trend is to leave no surface unadorned. This means taking advantage of a large surface that generally gets a coat of paint and no more — the ceiling. Statement ceilings grew in popularity in 2018, and that trend is growing even stronger in 2019.
“Many buyers may overlook the impact of the so-called fifth wall, so we work with them on identifying designs that can help accentuate a room,” adds Julie Whitley, director of architecture design at Chicago-based Red Seal Homes. “Adding decorative interest on a ceiling can bring a completely unique detail to the space by increasing the depth, dimension, and texture.” Crown molding is certainly one way to do this, though increasingly condo owners are featuring unique materials and patterns on their ceilings with incredible results.
Smart Home Integration
With so many people moving out of the traditional office setting and working from home part- or full-time, it’s important that they have their technological needs met. Builders are addressing this trend in two ways, says Alison Girard, director of marketing for Brookfield Residential’s Playa Vista community in Los Angeles. “These include inside the home, where they are creating home offices or other flexible spaces and equipping the entire residence with smart-home technology. Outside the home, builders are offering community centers with amenities such as co-working space, internet cafés, package delivery, and outdoor WiFi parks with tables for laptops.”
That is a dream come true for a telecommuter, and it will be standard for more and more condo communities this year.
Condos to Meet Your Needs
Perhaps the most exciting trend of 2019 is that builders are really listening to buyers and understanding what they want and need in a condominium home. Millennials aren’t the only people looking for affordable housing. With the increased demand by buyers for affordable, urban living that offers amenities to support their lifestyles means that builders are building condos communities that meet and even exceed those needs.
Ready to start shopping for a new condo featuring the latest design trends? NewHomeSource is ready to help you to search for condos in the area where you want to live and make your new home search easier than ever.
For the last 16 years, Rachel Kinbar has been a writer of articles, blog posts, white papers, essays, infographics, web copy, sales copy, scripts, poetry, lyrics, and more. She has keen research skills that she applies to a wide variety of topics, and she especially loves topics related to design, history, and sustainable living.