With November upon us, 2014 is on its way out. And what a year it was! Heavy snowfalls buried us in winter, record-breaking high temps scorched us in summer, and now we’re looking forward to another frigid season (if you put any stock in the Old Farmer’s Almanac‘s predictions).
Another notable feature of 2014 was the tendency of homeowners to remodel rather than sell. The housing market may be recuperating, but it seems everyone would still rather stick with what they’ve got than venture out into the shaky marketplace.
So, what did people do when they decided their homes could use an upgrade this year? Here are a few of the most popular trends we noticed in home remodeling in 2014.
Goodbye, Bath Tubs
For one, people are bidding adieu to the traditional shower/tub combo we’ve all grown to count on.
Because more homeowners are living in smaller homes in urban or downtown areas, they’re opting to maximize what space they have by installing stand-up showers without tubs. Lipless showers you can walk right into—sans curtain or door—were especially popular.
Hello, Charging Stations
With everyone wielding at least a gadget or three, it’s no surprise that discreet charging stations were popular add-ins this year. Many homeowners installed what’s called a “U-Socket,” which has two built-in USB ports to fuel iPhones, Kindles, and iPads. It also has a sensor that makes it automatically shut off once the device is all charged, which prevents the device from sucking up extra energy.
These charging stations can be hidden inside existing cabinets to keep a tangle of white cords from marring an otherwise sleek interior design.
Goodbye, That Wall Between the Kitchen and the Living Room
This was an exciting trend: knocking out that wall between the kitchen and the dining or living room. This completely changes the vibe of the home, creating a vast open space conducive to gatherings .
This trend speaks to the changing role of the kitchen. Once a hub exclusively for cooking, this vital room now often functions as a homework center, a board-game venue, and a family gathering place.
Hello, Sustainable Materials
Homeowners of 2014 nodded to Mother Nature before choosing their cabinets and lighting, more frequently going with earth-friendly materials without added formaldehyde or non-toxic glues, binders, or finishes. LED lighting, once too expensive to be accessible to most people, is also affordable enough now that many used it for under-cabinet lighting or recessed lighting.
Furthermore, there was a higher demand for fiberglass doors, which are five times more energy efficient than wooden doors, as well as home automation systems to regulate and conserve energy consumption.
It’ll be interesting to see what home renovations 2015 brings in! No matter what, we’re sure our community will keep counting on Squeeky Clean for power washing, gutter cleaning, deck restoration, and many of the home improvement jobs listed above!