Home builder cites emerging trends in 2012

John Wozniak, the 2011 president of the Home Builders Association of Greater Chicago and president of Chicago area home builder J. Lawrence Homes is looking toward 2012 with much anticipation. Based on activity in their seven new home communities, here are four trends J Lawrence Homes sees emerging this year.

Economics of Owning

Midlane Country Club, Pinehurst model, J. Lawrence HomesJohn notes that many predict the much anticipated bottom for the for-sale market and an increase in new home buyer activity. There are a number of economic factors that point to a potential housing recovery in the next couple of years, and when that happens, prices and interest rates will rise. With home builders having significantly slowed the rate of building over the past few years, there is a smaller supply, which could be outpaced by demand. The next 12 months will probably offer consumers the best buying opportunities for a new home in a decade.

Kitchen focus

Features like pantries, workstations and eating space have become very important to our buyers and J. Lawrence predicts an increased focus on the kitchen, just as they are seeing an increase in dining at home.

More and larger bedrooms

As predicted by J. Lawrence Homes, 2011 saw a change in buying habits, with more buyers saying they were selecting a home for the long term. Homes with small bedrooms or too few bedrooms won’t be attractive to buyers in 2012. Buyers purchasing for the long term need the flexibility of extra bedroom space.

Streamlined Space

Open floor plan at J. Lawrence HomesWhile some have said the dining room is dead, and others say we’ve seen the last of the living room, which point to a greater demand for open streamlined space. Buyers want the flexibility of a great room or an open layout, rather than specific, individual spaces. That way they can carve out the space to function in a way that suits them best, now and in the future.

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