Millennials are taking over the housing market. And with this new wave of buyers comes an array of new design trends, as younger generations prioritize technology, flexible spaces, and low maintenance home features. Gena Kirk, VP of Design for KB Home, has her finger on the pulse of emerging design trends and gave us some insight into what millennials favor.
ASPIRE: What are the most popular design features among Millennials?
- Modern/Transitional Design
- The millennial design style is more modern/transitional than traditional. They are gravitating to matte black finishes in plumbing, lighting, & door hardware throughout their homes.
- Kitchen & Bath
- In the kitchen and bath, an overwhelming number of millennials prefer shaker cabinet styles in white and gray, with black or gold decorative cabinet hardware.
- Smart Home Technology
- Young buyers rely heavily on smart appliances and tech products; anything they can control with their smartphone to enhance their daily lives in their home.
ASPIRE: How do these trends manifest in terms of color?
Gena: Millennials are loving neutral colors like grey and navy these days. The “it” color for millennials is “greige,” which has become a warmer grey that is less blue and more beige. It is used for everything from walls to cabinets and flooring. Brass is back but it has taken on a contemporary look in the form of nice brushed gold. We are seeing it in lighting and plumbing fixtures. Millennials also love mixing mediums – matte black appliances with brushed gold faucets and lighting, for example, provides a modern look.
Millennials seek a flow in the design of their homes and prefer a single consistent design. Luxury Vinyl Plank is popular because it creates an expansive, uninterrupted look that is low maintenance and waterproof.
ASPIRE: What areas of the home do millennials prioritize when spending their money?
Gena: We find that millennials are seeking flexible spaces in their homes. They like flexibility in their rooms with a bedroom that also serves as an office or lofted rooms that create new spaces. Millennials also are buying homes with smaller square footage than customers in the past. Where we do see them spending a little extra is on features that offer a bit of luxury such as quartz countertops, touchless kitchen faucets and magnetic showerheads.
ASPIRE: Are most millennials driven by style or price of products and materials?
Gena: Millennials are interested in designs and features that highlight health and wellness and are low maintenance. Fixtures that are antibacterial or non-touch are popular and they are interested in products that will save them money and have lasting style. We find that lighting and appliances that are ENERGY STAR-certified are more popular, as well as smart home technologies.
ASPIRE: What kind of Smart Home technology do millennials gravitate towards?
Gena: It’s no surprise that millennials gravitate toward any technology they can control from the phone as they want to be able to access their home wherever they go. Systems that are popular include the KB Smart Home System which uses Google Home to control features such as the doorbell, thermostat and lighting. It is an added benefit if these smart home technologies are also money-saving, innovative and promote healthy living.
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