We do not see the impact of the pandemic on the home design industry. It wasn’t apparent before when we were hoping the vaccines would end the pandemic. But as months went by, we began to think that we had to live with the coronavirus in our midst. We thought that like the flu, we would have to learn how to co-exist with it. Now that this reality is facing us, we have to take stock of what our homes mean to us and the whole home design industry.
Last year, people stayed mostly at home, doing stuff with kids, working, organizing, decluttering, and waiting for the day until you’re allowed to be together again. But alas, the threat of new variants is putting pressure on an already strained health care system, and the new normal that the world is hoping to see might be a few years down the road from here. So it’s time for the home design industry to pivot to co-existing with coronavirus permanently.
Designing with Comfort and Functionality in Mind
In the past, people spend less than 10 hours of their days inside their homes. They are mostly at work or socializing with friends and family. They’re drinking with buddies after work and only going home when it’s time to sleep. The next day, they’ll be off to work at 7 AM. The cycle goes on and on. So, the homes were mostly functional in nature. People need a place where they can eat, relax, and sleep. But that’s about it. Everything else they want to do, they will do outside—gyms, coffee, entertainment, etc.
Today, homes should not only be functional, but they should provide a sanctuary. They should give comfort to people who are isolating, quarantining, and grieving. And in the future, people need a kind of home that they can bunker in when times are tough like these days.
Home Celebrations Should Be a Focus, Too
But that’s not just how the pandemic impacted the industry. Since the pandemic started, people are hosting more home celebrations instead of dining out. They aren’t renting venues anymore. Their backyards are just as functional for a party. So, what do they need in terms of home design? They need to look for outdoor shades for sale, an awning being the most popular type of this now in-demand roof-like cover that extends from either a window or an exterior wall to cover the entire back patio or deck.
With a well-shaded outdoor space, homeowners can continue hosting and organizing parties safely at home. Since outdoor spaces have the best ventilation, they also make for the perfect venue for home celebrations now and in the future. As the coronavirus continues to mutate and pressure people to change the way they live, the home design industry must also adapt to these changes.
Making Hygiene and Sanitation Easier
It’s impossible to talk about the changes in the home design industry without considering the new hygiene and sanitation protocols everyone must go through when they get home. Frequent handwashing, for example, will change the home design in such a way that a small washroom should be situated near the main door of the house so homeowners can wash their hands or take a bath if they want.
The kitchen will also be a core focus of interior designs. The biggest impact of the coronavirus is that it made hygiene and sanitation as important as breathing. Most of the activities you do at home involve the kitchen, so you must sanitize every nook and cranny of this area.
So what are the changes in terms of the kitchen design? Some of the big changes are air purifiers, bacteria-proof wall paint, automatic soap dispensers, and easy-to-sanitize granite or aluminum kitchen countertops.
The Home Office Is the New Norm
There’s no beating around the bush: the house is now a home office, whether you like it or not. This highlights the need for separate spaces that will be free from disturbances. Even with small homes, the prevailing idea is to separate the living space from the workspace. This means that having a home office will be as normal in a home as the kitchen and living room.
The future of the home design industry will rely on what kind of new normal the world expects to have after the pandemic. But it’s also looking a lot like people will need to use their homes for entertainment, work, leisure, and relaxation. If this holds to be true, then you may want to take a long hard look at your home and consider what to change, upgrade, and replace.