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AIA survey finds spacious kitchens, accessible bathrooms growing in popularity


The American Institute of Architects recently released results from the Home Design Trends Survey for the fourth quarter of 2010, finding consumers are demanding larger kitchens and more accessible bathrooms.

Kitchen size had been trending downward the past few years, but Q4 marked a turnaround. Kermit Baker, AIA’s chief economist, writes the larger kitchen is based on the lifestyle needs of modern families:

With less pressure on size, some special function areas within the kitchen remain popular. At the top of the list are pantry space and recycling centers … With growing numbers of electronic devices being used, areas for recharging these devices (as well as general computer work) also remain popular features within kitchens.

In stride with the aging population, the survey reports a greater emphasis on accessibility and universal design in bathrooms. However, the most popular bathroom features are about sustainability and energy efficiency:

“… Topping the list of bath products were water conserving toilets – both those directly using less water as well as those with a dual flush option. LED lighting is another bathroom product seeing continued, strong growth in popularity.”

If you’re an architect or contractor, are these findings consistent with what your clientele is demanding?