Tile remains the most popular backsplash material according to the Houzz Kitchen Remodeling Survey, but people are increasingly selecting metal tiles and other sheet materials including stainless steel, glass, and stone slab—it looks sleek and makes for easy cleaning.
Black Is the New Gray
Gray and “greige” will remain popular, but black is the new color darling for 2014. In a Houzz poll, 74 percent of homeowners admitted to being a fan of black rooms, from bathrooms and kitchens (with crisp white fixtures) to interior doors and exterior siding. We’re even seeing people paint the outside of their house black as a way to modernize an older home.
Smarter Homes, Smaller Systems
Previously, “smart home” options were limited to a single system that ran the whole house, but today homeowners use their smartphones to control a variety of independent systems throughout the home. From lighting to locks to appliances, smaller systems are easier to upgrade and replace.
Upgrading the Man Space
The man cave is emerging from the basement in many homes, often serving as a multipurpose space that isn’t hidden away behind closed doors. This room is frequently open to the rest of the household, but is still the guy’s domain to set up and use as he sees fit—hopefully with the loving support of the women in the house.
Urinals aren’t just for public restrooms anymore. A recent Houzz poll showed that nearly two thirds of respondents would include a urinal in their home.
Losing the Lawn
Tired of mowing the lawn? You’re in luck. Native groundcover plants and more creatively landscaped green spaces (yes, even including synthetic lawns) are increasingly popular as people opt out of traditional, water-dependent expanses of grass.
Wood Grain Is Back
Wood is extremely popular as people skip the paint and opt for natural beauty. In fact, butcher block was the third most popular choice for counters, and hardwood was most popular flooring in the Houzz Kitchen Remodeling Survey. Expect more live-edge wood (i.e., carpentry with natural edges) in 2014 for both furniture and countertops.
Tech in the Living Room
As the living room is becoming a virtual-reality center, people are redesigning their spaces accordingly, with many skipping the coffee table entirely so they don’t have to rearrange furniture when it’s their turn to bowl on Wii Fit.