Over the last two years, with a shift towards working from home, we have noticed a significant change in key inclusions during the design process from our clients. With more available free time coupled with adapting previous homes to double up as a place to work from, we have seen a change in client’s priorities. These are just a few examples of this shift in attitudes to what is important for them when designing their dream homes.
As there has been a general shift towards working from home, either in part or full, we have seen a massive emphasise or clients hoping to create designated office space in their homes, either within the main dwelling or a separate designated outbuilding.
Due to the increase on video calling this in turn has led to more robust internet systems such as fibre cabling and Starlink and often a combination of the two.
Swimming pools and garden kitchens
With this shift, this in turn has freed up time our clients are at home due to mitigating the time spent commuting.
With this extra time available we have seen an influx in leisure facilities with the largest increase being outdoor swimming pools. With the recent improvement in heating systems such as air source heat pumps, and insulated pool covers the power requirements for a swimming pool have made them far more appealing to clients. This has also had a knock-on effect of clients wanting to create a far more social space in the garden with pool houses and outdoor kitchens all centred around the pool and summer entertaining.
At home bars
With an increase in clients wanting to entertain at home we have seen far more clients installing drinks stations for socialising before meals. Whereas in the past there has been a focus on open plan kitchen/dining rooms, there has been a shift to creating dining rooms with designated drinks serving areas so that guests can socialise whilst meals are prepared in a separate room. These stations are often concealed in joinery, so they create a lovely piece of furniture when not in use.
At home exercise and wellbeing facilities
With the mitigation of commuting, our clients are advising that without passing what was their local leisure facilities on the way to work, they would much prefer the convenience of having the amenities at home. These include at home gyms, saunas, steam rooms and tennis courts.
We are often finding these are located in basements or separate outbuildings to create a feeling of privacy a serenity away from the main home.
At home cinemas or snugs
Whereas traditionally our clients combined TV/family rooms with the main drawing rooms, we have found a shift towards creating a designated, cosier room for watching movies and television. This in turn has led to an increased focus on technologies within these rooms such as built in speaker systems and feature lighting that you would traditionally find in small cinemas.
By creating a separate area, this has inadvertently led to drawings rooms becoming for guest entertaining and rooms saved for special occasions.