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Front Page - Friday, April 29, 2016

2016 trends appeal to current owners and future buyers

REALTOR Association President's Message

Nathan Walldorf

After selling real estate for 10 years, I’ve seen many different home feature trends. In the ’80s, there were brass fixtures and wallpaper. In the late ’50s and early ’60s, Pepto-Bismol pink and baby blue tile were popular. I’ve even seen gold speckled mirrors from the ’70s. Many things that were popular then are not so popular today.

If you decide to invest in remodeling your home, or in building a custom home, it’s important to consider what a future buyer might want. In addition to accommodating your current personal taste and style, you want to make choices that will make the most of your investment. Here are the latest trends in residential real estate, most of which should be popular for years to come.

Open floor plan: People today want a floor plan in which the living room is open to the kitchen. Home owners don’t want to be stuck in the kitchen or be unable to talk to their family or guests. Design experts at Nurzia Construction Corp. told Realtor Magazine that, “adding windows better melds indoors and outdoors” in a kitchen to also make it feel more open.

Multiple master suites were recommended highly by Nurzia Construction to Realtor Magazine. With more than one master suite, a home can work for the primary family and an aging parent or adult children who have not yet moved out of the house.

Storage: Home buyers want a walk-in closet not only in the master bedroom but also in the guest bedrooms. Good storage can also include a spacious pantry. I often see home buyers be pleasantly surprised at finding such a pantry in the kitchen.

White kitchens are back: The public used to like rich stained wood kitchens. The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) has reported in Best of American Living Awards that the latest trend is a white kitchen with rich wood floors and bold hardware.

Healthy home designs and energy efficiency: Home owners are starting to build with and use materials like the ones sold at Green’s on Amnicola Highway – materials that don’t have chemical additives. Many people are also using reclaimed materials to add character to their homes. Everyone is trying to increasing the energy efficiency of their homes. This is a trend that should only grow over time.

“Bathrooms that feel like living spaces” are what Houzz editorial writer Mitchell Parker calls one of the design trends for 2016. People are building spa-like bathroom spaces that can include cathedral ceilings and chandeliers. Your bathroom might not need to be that grand, but the public wants remodeled bathrooms in your house when you sell it in the future.

Last but not least, statement light fixtures. The Huffington Post says light fixtures can be like artwork hung from your ceiling. They can add atmosphere to a room, so be sure to think about the art hanging from your ceiling.

I hope this list of home feature trends is helpful as you think about building or remodeling your home. Contact a Realtor today to help you find your dream home or lot, or for resale tips when it comes to remodeling.

The Greater Chattanooga Association of Realtors is “The Voice of Real Estate in Greater Chattanooga.” The Association is a regional organization with more than 1,500 members, and is one of more than 1,400 local boards and associations of Realtors nationwide that comprise the National Association of Realtors. The Greater Chattanooga Association of Realtors services Hamilton and Sequatchie counties in southeast Tennessee, and Catoosa, Dade, and Walker counties in northwest Georgia. For more information, visit www.gcar.net.