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Twelve months have now passed since our first stay-at-home orders. The time we’ve spent at home together has shifted the way we think about and use our homes. Given the change in perspective, buyer expectations have also changed.

Here are the top 6 ways COVID-19 is impacting the way new home buyers are personalizing their floor plans.

1) Home Office
In many households across the region, both parents and students are working from home. Not only are buyers looks for living spaces that provide flexibility, privacy, and access to technology, but they are also seeking high-function spaces that look good on webcam.

117 Far Meadow Drive - Payne Family Homes

2) Multi-Purpose Spaces
The longer we stay at home, the more our homes are getting used in new and different ways. As a result, new home buyers are seeking flexibility in the way their living spaces can be utilized. A single living space may double as the dining room and the board room, or the classroom and the game room. The key to making living spaces function for a multitude of purposes is abundant natural light, effective artificial lighting, available storage, and internet connectivity.

LP Meridian II Large Island with Undermount Sink

3) Healthy, Antimicrobial Living
Touchless has never been more important than it is today. Smart home features such as touchless lighting, touchless faucets and plumbing fixtures, and even COVID-fighting HVAC ranks high on new home buyer must-haves.

SF Ashton Ranch Display Screened Porch

4) Technology Integration
Home automation can extend tremendous peace of mind – see who’s at the door, turn off/on the lights from your smartphone, gain energy efficiency with innovative mechanical systems, and much more. Building your home with smart features in place provides immediate convenience as well as added security. Plus, today’s families are relying more heavily than ever on Wifi and internet connectivity for school, work, and play.

AXW Meridian II Kitchen Pantry

5) Expansive Kitchen
The kitchen has always been the heart of the home, but the pandemic has made us pause to reflect on what we must have versus what we want to show off. Kitchen design is shifting to include genuine needs that look great – expanded cabinetry, larger island, touchless faucets, high-efficiency appliances, layered lighting, and walk-in pantries are among the most popular features in today’s kitchen design.

117 Far Meadow Drive - D Walter - Payne Family Homes (74 of 84)

6) Aging in Place
Careful thought is going into how multiple generations of a single family may coexist in their new home. Main floor masters or double owner’s suites are becoming popular amongst families that bring grandma and grandpa home to stay. Finished lower levels allow older children the privacy of their own space with the functionality of additional family gathering areas. Bonus rooms and outdoor spaces expand living areas and allow for more social activities. At the same time, Payne Family Homes does offer specific floor plans with wheelchair-friendly options for enhanced accessibility – see Starmont and Roosevelt.

While the changes we are observing in new home design and construction are driven to some extent by our new normal, these trends are not so far-fetched that they will fade anytime soon. Visit a Payne Family Homes neighborhood to make our house your home.