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More time at home means more opportunity for you to design your personal kitchen, bath :: WRAL.com

Every year we consider the colors and styles homeowners are gravitating towards when personalizing their new home kitchen and baths. The 2020 season, more so than ever, has given us the most poignant glimpse into how everyday living can affect our design choices. 

The global pandemic we continue to experience has resulted in families spending more time at home, altering both their needs and wants with regards to aesthetics, technology, innovative design options and energy-saving features.  

Buyers may have also found a little extra time to spend on Pinterest or watching HGTV to get inspired on the design of their new home.

“I have buyers that come in after months of being stuck at home with social distancing/COVID restrictions and they have learned what they don’t like,” said Rachel Anne Phelps, design consultant for Drees Homes.  “Through staying home, COVID has helped buyers learn how they truly function at home and that carries over to their choices they make with me.”

So, in the spirit of how form and function merge to create a space that your family desires to spend a lot of time in, let’s take a look at what homeowners are currently asking for in their kitchen and bath design!

Lighting

As evenings may include more home-based activities like menu planning, reading, board games or puzzles, proper lighting is of the utmost importance. Undercabinet lighting and stacked cabinetry lighting remain popular in the kitchen as well as the classic look of clear glass options in the bathroom.

Other lighting must-haves include exposed bulbs, sconces everywhere, and drop-down pendants, especially in the ever-popular black and chrome.

“We are also seeing larger pendants and linear lights over the islands in the kitchen,” said Phelps. “A lot of homebuyers

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Urban flight means home improvement trends will become a sustained shift

People walk into a house for sale in Floral Park, Nassau County, New York, the United States, on Sept. 6, 2020. Home buyers eying for cozy backyards and more office space are staging bidding wars in the suburbs surrounding New York City amid the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Wang Ying | Xinhua News Agency | Getty Images

As some Americans flee cities and move into suburban or rural areas during the coronavirus pandemic, some analysts are predicting home projects and repairs will shift from a trend to long-term habit.

That could add up to more sales for Home Depot, Lowe’s and other retailers with a wide variety of home improvement items, from paint and tools to kitchen appliances, according to a Wells Fargo Securities research note. Those retailers have already seen strong sales and growing profits during the pandemic, as Americans spend more time in their homes and dollars they would have otherwise doled out for restaurant bills or summer vacations.

The suburban shift could also benefit auto-focused retailers, such as Carvana, AutoZone, O’Reilly Automotive and Advance Auto Parts, according to the note.

In the research note, Wells Fargo senior equity analyst Zachary Fadem spelled out factors that have driven some people out of cities. Among them, he said, about 65% of early Covid-19 cases were concentrated in dense cities. People have sought out more space as they work and learn at home and as aspects of city life from public transit to high-end restaurants are unavailable or unappealing.

He pointed to recent earnings reports by retailers that soared past Wall Street expectations, citing de-urbanization as one of the causes.

A survey of about 1,000 consumers by the Wells Fargo analysts found that more than 88% planned to increase their retail spending in the second half of the year

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