Home remodeling in the 2010’s is much different than it was even 20 years ago. Then there was a construction boom that continued beyond the turn of the century. At that time it was a scramble to meet demand to source materials and labor. There were long delays in the start of a home improvement project because of shortages. The pressure was to deliver, and quality suffered. With the housing bubble burst, companies sought cheap products to maximize sales, again adversely effecting quality.
In looking at the big picture of various economic, environmental and cultural factors along with increasing consumer demands, there are market shifts can be predicted to be more than just a passing fad, but are emerging be a new standard for the home remodeling business. Here are three rising standards:
Energy Efficiency and Water Conservation
As technology increases, so does our personal need for electricity. Appliances are now “smart” and are on standby so they can be controlled via smart phones. Your thermostat can be alerted to turn off empty home mode to be ready for your arrival, you can activate your washing machine or preheat the oven, tell your robot floor cleaner to go to work while you are at work, and your refrigerator can let one know there is a problem. People are setting up home security that alerts you and starts recording when movement is detected. You can even see who is at your door, unlock it (http://www.cookremodeling.com/use-your-smartphone-for-a-smart-keyless-lock/) if you wish, and give a voice response no matter where in the world you are as long as your phone is connected so they think someone is home. All these conveniences makes being energy efficient more important. Energy efficient lighting, appliances, (http://www.cookremodeling.com/energy-star-appliance-ratings-now-more-stringent/) windows, a good building envelope seal/insulation is a wise investment.
Not only does our need for electricity increase, so do the cost of utilities increase over time, especially when it comes to water. Water is being called the new gold as water sources in some areas have been depleted. Innovation is coming about to reduce water use and waste. Water sense certified toilets, faucets, showerheads, as well as gray water systems, e.g. capturing the water used in the bathroom sink for the water used to flush a toilet are becoming a necessity. There is a smog eating roof tile (http://www.cookremodeling.com/smog-eating-roof-tile/) product that cleans the water, mineralizing it for plant vegetation and people are storing rain runoff for irrigating their yard.
As homes are better sealed, indoor air quality is much more important. Educated homeowners are asking for zero to low VOC products (paint, glue, caulking) and formaldehyde free cabinetry made in the USA when specifying selections for their home remodeling project. Even with careful selection of products, our world is full of plastics and other coatings that off gas. It is important for the HVAC system to have a good air exchange system to bring in fresh air.
Homeowners want to invest in a home remodeling project that delivers long lasting results. They need a low maintenance home that facilitates their lifestyle. They are looking for a design that includes aging in place elements so a home is ready to embrace all stages of life for better safety and maximize independence. More people are wanting to go green and buy local.
Happy Home Remodeling!
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