Smaller homes and new interior trends
Apartment sizes across leading metros have shrunk to a great extent. So, what are the key causes that can be attributed to this trend?
Shrinking of apartment sizing is mainly driven to create better affordability of homes for the home buyer in cities today. When the layout of the home is optimised by cutting out all spatial luxuries and excesses, an optimized carpet area is created. This creates a more attractive ticket price for the home buyer!
Home buyers today are young, well-travelled families in cities, requiring a space tailored to their needs. Large spaces needing a lot of maintenance on an everyday basis, is almost a bane of working families with young children!
For these reasons, an increasing trend of spatially optimised 1bhks ,2-2.5 bhks can be seen across the cities wherein all excesses and inefficiencies in terms of length, width and room height can be noticed. 9 ft clear height has replaced the erstwhile 10 ft room heights. The 10 ft x 10ft bedroom with specifically located doors and wardrobe niches are almost a norm.
With the average apartment sizes shrinking by nearly 17% between 2014 and 2018 – how are the home layouts changing addressing the changing needs especially of the millennials?
With shrinking home sizes, a lot of space saving concepts in furniture, color choices come into play. Drastic changes in overall civil structures offered to the home buyer have also seen drastic changes, for example- thinner walls made of siporex/ gypsum stud walls are now seen increasingly in homes from reputed builders.
Such homes almost mandate the use of lighter furniture with cleaner lines. Home styles prevalent in Singapore, Hong Kong, New York, now fit perfectly in the Indian home! Rightly so, for the well-traveled millennial buying new flats today. This is further driven by international furniture players like ikea bringing in the modern home aesthetic into the Indian home.
Purely in terms of layouts, multi functionality of furniture, optimization of storage beds, wardrobes, kitchens is a rising trend.
From a home interiors point of view, dining sets with benches, tufted center tables create multi utility in the living dining spaces. Use of mirror panels to bring oomph with an increased depth can be seen as an element in many a dark corridor!
Bright colors on highlight walls with an overall light wall scheme bring a sense of space to rooms. Even slim LEDs help in creating thin false ceilings instead of the multi layer hotel type ceilings
For children’s rooms, an increasing trend on trundle beds with split levels or a bunk bed can be noticed. Split height furniture instead of complete wardrobes in light shades decrease the bulkiness while providing table surfaces to keep books, bags, laptops
Many master bedrooms can be seen with sliding wardrobes, hydraulic storage beds, dresser mirror units incorporated above side tables to create modern aesthetic with clean lines while freeing up wall space to make lighter rooms.
The biggest change might be in the use of electronics like dishwashers and washing machines, home automation for energy saving. Fewer or no balconies almost necessitate use of home appliances.
What are the elements/spaces/layouts that have been eliminated by the designers/architects/planners with apartment sizes shrinking?
Heavy furniture, opulently carved pieces are making way for sleek modern looks that make your home look young and spacious. One can notice an increasing trend in non-wood finishes on furniture. White based glossy surfaces bring a modem aesthetic without the heaviness and bulkiness of carved furniture.
So in a nutshell, a handy box of tips for your new compact home would be
1. Use lighter colors
2. Incorporate space saving, multi utility furniture
3. Use mirror panels, glossy surfaces to bring depth and sparkle
4. Incorporate floating units, sofa with legs , furniture lifted off the floor
5. Minimize false ceilings, cornices, carved and curved furniture which are best suited for bungalows, hotels and lavish spaces