Many YBH clients are building small homes. While the houses are modest in square footage, expectations to keep them luxurious are at an all-time high. I asked the design staff at YBH to share their clients expectations when building a new, smaller home.
The Well-Appointed Kitchen
The kitchen will always be the star of the home. The kitchen is where we most often see the home buyer’s raised expectations in quality of finishes from granite counter-tops, to pine floors, to bead board accents. Kitchens are the rooms where people want to see finer details, notably islands, custom cabinetry and quality appliances. We’ve seen islands get bigger in homes where people are downsizing. Islands provide additional seating and a place where more people congregate while the home owner is cooking or entertaining. Our home owners expect quality in their new home, higher-end appliances and custom cabinets are a standard requirement for them. They want appliances to be the same as those that would be found in a home twice the size and quality cabinets that have hardware and glides that will withstand the test of time.
Smart Design in Small Homes
Beyond the kitchen, people who are moving to small homes understand they are giving up physical space—but they don’t want it to appear that way. Our clients don’t want wasted space. They rely on YBH designers to find ways of using space efficiently. We underscore the need for smart window design to help with the perception of more space. Incorporating more windows throughout the home helps close the gap between indoor and outdoor living while giving the home the illusion of more room. We create open floor plans uninterrupted by physical walls, allowing spaces to look and live larger than they are.
Storage: The Understated Luxury
Downsizing, no matter at what level, can be a freeing but worrisome experience for a home owner. While understanding the need to get rid of things with the move, clients want to hold on to nostalgic items or holiday decorations they might not need every day. Therefore, a luxury home owners will not give up when downsizing is storage. Attic trusses are one way to make up for the loss of traditional basements or storage spaces that take up square footage. This space is often underutilized and is a great place to incorporate extra space that can be used as a loft or for storage. Clients who are downsizing have usually experienced a few homes. They’ve often been through family life and are now empty nesters. They need to shed what they don’t need but keep the important things.