We have been living indoors for several months now.  As a professional interior designer in Bergen County, New Jersey (one of the hardest hit counties in the country), my clients are interested in knowing my thoughts on how our homes are going to change once the restrictions are lifted.

No one ever lived like this in their homes 24/7 before, so, yes, we have had a huge change.  I look at this time as an opportunity.  I think if you are fortunate to have a well-designed home, you can truly appreciate what you have.  You know that it is not just about making things pretty.  It is about how you live…bringing wellness into your home. However, if there are things that are now glaring at you, now is the time to think it through and plan for what you can do now.

Here are four big ideas I see in our future.

  1.  We have been forced to slow down.  This is super hard for some people.  “Doing nothing” goes against our American high productivity ethic.  Thinking about what we can do in our homes, it seems that creating a sanctuary-like space is a great idea for now and going forward.  Small, relaxing, or reading corners could be incorporated.  What could your bathroom be like to create that oasis?
  1. We find ourselves working from home now.  For me, I have always had my office/design studio at home.  It is dedicated to my work and well designed for what I do. 

But many people have had to carve out a small area of the dining room to get a place to work.  We have all smiled at the little kids in the background or the cat walking across the laptop in the videos.  Even the work from home newscasters have had similar issues!

But this may become a new thing.  As companies figure out the new way to work safely, a home office is becoming a REAL thing.

You may need to create a space that has sound control, pleasing backdrops for video calling with good seating, lighting, furniture, and storage to meet the rising demand.

Privacy needs to be reconsidered in this new model of work.  The big open plan layouts everyone on TV design shows requests may be a thing of the past.  Separate spaces may be in—for work, for decontamination, for caring for someone who needs isolation, for storage of necessary materials, and more.

  1. Healthier spaces will become more important in the choices we make at home.  We are getting so good at personal hygiene and sanitation.  But it would be easier if we could install materials that are inherently germ-resistant in our floors and other surfaces.  Easy to clean fabrics and the stuff our rugs are made from will become more important now.

Those smart toilets that wash and dry you were spoken about a lot when we couldn’t get toilet paper…but that may become the way to go in the future.  Faucets you don’t touch will be providing water for washing our hands as a common item in both the bathroom and the kitchen.  We have it now.  More people will request this in the future.

  1. Speaking of technology, we are probably going to have a surge in drone deliveries pretty soon.  That makes me think of a special disinfecting and unwrapping space that lets you receive the online shopping and deliveries that we have made so popular today.  It will be a new space for designers to work on!

Pantries will be expanded to include items bought in bulk so you will never find yourself without a necessary item.  You will probably add a refrigerator/freezer into that space so you can store additional foods and produce as well.

One thing for sure, many new positive ideas inside our home will result over the long term to shape how we live tomorrow.

If you are thinking about what you want to change in your home, we are here to help!  It’s great to brainstorm while you have the time!