Designing a new home in 2021

Moving to regional Western Australia is set to become a reality for more and more people in 2021 as they leave the city in search of a rural lifestyle.

For many it’s the freedom of working from home that’s making the move possible. For others it’s the desire for more space, fresh country air and less stress.

As a result, new home design will have a lot to live up to.

Here are five design features to consider if you’re planning to build a new home in regional WA in 2021.

  1. Work space

When we think about spending time at home, it’s no longer just the weekends that are important. If you’re able to work from home, chances are you’re also picturing what your new 9-5 might look like. With fewer hours in the office and less time commuting, you’ll need a space that will enable you to work through your to-do list as quickly and efficiently as possible.

While we may well see the classic study make a comeback, a well-designed home office space doesn’t have to take up a whole room. Desks built into recesses can be concealed with bi-folding doors when not in use, and multi-purpose spaces are a great option if flexibility is needed. Designing a room that can multi-task is ideal if work arrangements are likely to change and evolve. A studio space, independent of the main house, is another option.

  1. Generations together

Maybe you need to accommodate the adult kids who have yet to fly the coop or their grandparents who have relocated to the country with you. Designs that allow several generations to live comfortably under the one room will be an important part of the mix for many homebuyers. Then there are the friends who will no doubt want to enjoy a taste of your new life in the country, booking their weekend retreats at your place.

The traditional granny flat provides space and separation, while an apartment-style living and bedroom space, or a dedicated guest suite with that all-important third bathroom, are also great options. When the family dynamic changes, the extra accommodation could be used to generate an income.

  1. Relaxation spaces

More than ever we’ll want to be sure that our new home meets our lifestyle needs. Music rooms are tipped to make a comeback, along with spaces for books and reading, either as a dedicated library or within a multi-purpose area such as a games room or second sitting room.

  1. Best use of space

Building a new home is the ideal chance to assess what we really need and want. For many, it could even mean a move away from the bigger-is-better approach of old. Do we really need that double garage or could the space be put to better use? Will the two-car household become the exception rather than the norm?

Let’s not forget that the average house size in Australia is reportedly the biggest in the world. Will this continue or will people be looking to simplify their needs? Or simply make better use of space?

  1. More greenery

Expect to see more of the outdoors making its way into our homes, with designers incorporating prominent places for indoor greenery. This might be a vertical kitchen garden, or vines tumbling down from shelves beneath a high or raking ceiling.

Just outside the walls, covered gardens will enjoy protection from the elements thanks to automatic pergolas controlling lighting and ventilation. An extension of the indoor rooms, these pockets of greenery will help keep us connected to nature.