Through the end of 2022 and into the beginning of 2023, we’ve seen numerous shifts in the new-home-building landscape. Some, like the return of a somewhat more stabilized market, were fairly predictable. Others, like continually climbing interest rates were less so. Add to it all a seemingly more stable supply chain and the inflation appearing to begin to level off, and things have been a bit all over the place. But it seems builders—and buyers—are figuring out the “new” new home market.
As we reflect on some of the trends we observed in 2022, we find that many continue to be popular in the current year. Here are a few of the recent—but ongoing—trends to watch in new-home building.
Enhanced virtual experiences
With the events of 2020, many builders were forced to rapidly build out improved online experiences. Detailed floorplans that were once locked behind registration walls or even completely unavailable are no longer a nice-to-have but rather a baseline expectation. Virtual walkthroughs have come a long way.
We expect this trend will continue and builders will expand their online presence to better serve potential buyers and provide an enhanced, more informative, and immersive shopping experience all around.
For more than a decade we’ve watched the adoption of more sustainable materials trend upward. Many green materials have become the norm, and new products continue to emerge. We expect green building to be less of an “option” and more of the standard as we move forward, with buyers using green technologies throughout HVAC and other built-in components, as well as their building materials across the board.
In 2020, we saw a fast adoption of outdoor gatherings—and homebuyers modifying their homes to accommodate them. Since then, outdoor spaces have become practically standard in new-build homes, but buyers have an array of options to enhance those spaces and make them even more usable. Built-in kitchens, expanded patios, predefined seating areas, and covered porches are just some of the more common upgrades that have become available. While buyers can add these later, it’s hard to beat the cost and convenience that comes with including outdoor living areas in your new build so you can start enjoying them on day one.
For years, builders and home buyers alike loved open concept floorplans. But in recent years, room-defining walls have begun to reappear, and it just makes sense for how we live. Parts of previously open areas are often converted into a multipurpose room that can flex as an additional office or schoolroom, among other things. While the flow from the kitchen to the living area remains open in most floorplans, we’ll likely continue to see multipurpose rooms and less completely open main floors as the year continues.