5 Housing Design Trends for 2023—Everything Old is New Again

It never fails. Any publication I like prints the latest top five design trends of the year and I think oooh yes, I’m in, click! Invariably I end up reading them totally underwhelmed. While this post also does not offer any new design epiphanies, it is still useful to know what helps sell a home. Regardless of whether you’re simply vision-boarding your first home purchase, planning for that eventual remodel or thinking of trading in your home for an upgrade (or downsizing), here are five of the top home design trends of 2023.

Sustainability & Eco-Friendly Design 

We’ve talked about it a lot on this site and sometimes it feels a bit preachy, but from a purely practical standpoint, using eco-friendly materials and energy efficient materials serves you. Solar roofs, water capture systems and LED lighting, along with professional xeriscape-designed outside spaces, all go a long way to adding value with buyers as well as increasing the current energy efficiency of your home. It’s what we call a win/win. 

Flexible, Multifunctional Spaces

Having rooms that can operate in a myriad of ways appears to be the latest lasting trend. Think a home office that doubles as a guest room or home gym. The key to achieving that kind of adaptability is the proper use of lightweight furniture and thoughtful storage components. In 2023, the functionality of a room has been extending into modular and adaptable designs both for furniture placement and movable walls.  

Incorporating Nature Into Your Design Choices

This is nothing new and it’s not likely to go away anytime in the near future. Joseph Eichler and Frank Lloyd Wright in the 1950s were both famous for pulling the outside into their architectural design—just think about the famous Falling Water home. Sure, the pandemic seemed to put a highlighter on how much we need nature to relax, but study after study show the health and well-being benefits of connecting with and spending more time outside. In 2023, this focus will only continue, and upgrades like outdoor kitchens, fire pits, and comfortable seating areas that are both practical and usable command a premium.  

Natural & Organic Design Elements

Along those lines, natural wood, stone, and leather add warmth and texture to interior spaces. This nod to nature goes hand in hand with biophilic design, an approach that incorporates plants, water features, and natural light into the home in an effort to connect people to nature. It creates calming, restorative spaces that can enhance productivity and well-being.

Smart Homes–With a Personal Note

The integration of tech into homes has been a growing trend, and it’s going to continue in 2023. There are benefits, to be sure. Smart homes give homeowners more control over their living spaces, thanks to features like voice-activated virtual assistants, automated lighting and temperature control, and home security systems.

But technology can definitely have its drawbacks. I can’t tell you how many homes I’ve toured in the winter in Reno where the vacant home and “smart” thermometer have failed (which can have catastrophic effects with pipes freezing) or homes that have the latest and greatest tech, only to have it become obsolete in a few short years. I have a house that was the epitome of cutting-edge tech when it was built. Unfortunately for me, the tech pretty much stayed in the 90s and parts and technicians that know how to service it are nowhere to be found. Even worse, it can’t be serviced, repaired, or even really replaced since much of it is in between the walls. It reminds me of an old boyfriend’s wise words: “The more electronics there are, the more there is to break.”

The Bottom Line

True great design is timeless. Regardless of age, wood, simple clean lines and neutral colors have stood the test of time. Any opportunity you have to incorporate nature into your life, whether it be through water features, nanowalls (fine, French doors for those of us not blessed with an endless budget) and natural light take it. The best description I’ve read to date is timeless design can be defined as an interior that will never go out of style, it has a staying power and it is created not to be temporary. A timeless design, in fact, will last for years and can be brought up to date with changes in accessories and accents.

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