Greg Hardwick:

At HardwickGC, we do not really follow trends, because each home we build is completely customized to the homeowner’s specifications. We start over with every home, based on what that homeowner wants in the design, the interior amenities, and specifications. However, I have been able to identify some new things that many people seem to be looking for in 2021. Three things that are really surging this year are home automation, dedicated spaces and resort living.

Home Automation

The first is home automation, and that is something we are doing in almost every new home right now. We are also building home automation retrofits into some of our more extensive renovation projects. Things like programmable thermostats and garage doors have now become standard nowadays. What we are talking about is complete integration for homes, with automated systems that control lighting control throughout the whole house, adjusting automatically based on when spaces are being used. We are seeing many people put in dedicated theater rooms and dedicated entertainment areas with distributed video and sound throughout the entire home. The automation is extending to outdoor living areas, and they range from voice control from somebody just turning on and off a lamp with Alexa all the way to full keypad distribution throughout the house that controls almost anything, including TV stereo sound distribution. Many people are automating their shades to adjust for the lighting throughout the day and evening. Geofencing the technical term that just means that the components in the home are aware of whether or not you are in the house. Fencing systems can adjust to alternate lighting throughout the home so it appears that somebody is turning lights off and on throughout the day and throughout the night. Geofencing is really a lot further along than it was even last year, and it has got a lot of room for potential. Home Automation is undoubtedly one thing that we are almost integrating across the board at this point.

Dedicated Spaces

Second, we are getting increased requests for specialized spaces for specific purposes. As people spent a LOT of time at home during quarantine in 2020, they realized that they wanted more dedicated areas, and now we are building these things in when we renovate or build new custom homes in Orlando. When you are when you are doing a 5,000 to 10,000 square foot home, generally, there is always going to be an office. Naturally, there is always going to be a dining room. Often, the homes we are building are for people with young kids, so they will always have a playroom. We create homes for so many unique needs, so there is not an across-the-board COVID design trend that we have seen. However, I will say that three new homes that we are involved with right now have some type of core entertainment area and, in some cases, a dedicated theater room. People are looking to create a space for entertainment and gathering at home.

Resort Living

In general, the overarching trend we are seeing with our clients is that they are trying to make more of a resort life for the entire family. Realizing that travel and going out is not what it used to be, many of our clients are placing the highest priority on creating a life at home that feels like a resort vacation. It’s not any one specific interior or exterior feature, rather, it’s the whole resort-like environment for not only the people that live in the home but for children and grandchildren who may be visiting. When it comes to their homes, people are yearning for a true resort experience, with showstopping pools, outdoor dining areas, several comfortable lounging areas, and entertainment areas that rival the best movie theaters. Here at HardwickGC, we are enjoying pushing the envelope to give our clients the resort environments they are looking for. Being at home is truly the biggest trend in 2021, and it’s our honor to make HOME a place where our clients love to be!