Trends come and go with the seasons. Sometimes, they can be completely random, born of changing tastes and styles. But other times, they can serve a completely pragmatic purpose. 

Interior design and home amenity trends usually fall under the latter.

If you’re reentering the homebuying game after a while, you’ll be happy to hear that most things have changed for the better. Modern interior design and amenities have evolved to match homebuyers’ needs and lifestyles, making it an exciting time to be a homebuyer.

Check out the top 7 interior design and home amenity trends we’ve been seeing in 2017, and start getting excited for your own house hunt!

1. Downsizing Your Home, Upgrading Your Life

People’s living preferences are changing. That’s especially true for people nearing the retirement age who are no longer flying south for retirement and increasingly looking to downsize their homes.

But they’re not downsizing the family home for nothing. They’re doing so to reduce costs, live in newer construction homes with affordable luxury, and enjoy more active lifestyles.

Think you might be ready to downsize? Get ready for an active and exciting new chapter of your life.

2. It’s Not Easy Being Green

Eco friendly is now buyer friendly. New homes and multi-unit buildings are increasingly being constructed with the environment in mind, using renewable, energy-efficient materials. Some buildings are even earning official LEED certifications for their environmental commitment.

In many cases, these green materials can help reduce utility costs, making living more affordable. So don’t listen to Kermit. It really can be easy being green.

3. Goodbye, Granite

Remember when granite countertops were the must-have feature in any new kitchen? Well, like scrunchies, CDs, and flip phones – they’re on their way out.

When looking for a new home with the latest amenities, you’re more likely to see quartz (and for good reason). Quartz is arguably one of the most durable options for a kitchen countertop. Made from one of the hardest minerals on earth, quartz countertops are not mined like granite or other stone surfaces. They’re engineered in a factory, so designers can style it in almost any way.

Stylish, durable, and trendy: Quartz countertops are in.

4. Pet Owner Paradises

We already love our dogs. But new multi-unit condo and suburban communities are making it even easier to do so with amenities tailored for dog owners. These include features like community dog parks, doggy day care, and even washing stations. With as many as 44% of all households in the U.S. that have at least one pup, this new amenity trend is sure to make many homeowners happy!

5. Taupe is the New Grey

Just a few years ago, grey took over beige’s status as the most popular paint color for the modern abode. But brown tones are making a big comeback, and instead of taking over entirely, they’re mixing with grey to create today’s hottest paint color: taupe.

This new color follows a return to warm décor in 2017 interior design trends. Especially as people are downsizing their homes, taupe offers an element of coziness that can make your space feel like a cup of hot chocolate on a cold winter day.

6. Pop the Cork

No, we’re not talking about breaking out the bubbly. Homes are increasingly becoming more and more filled with technology. To return some warmth to their spaces amidst all of this “cold” tech, many homeowners are opting for warmer, more tactile materials like cork.

Cork is a versatile material that can be used anywhere from your flooring, to your seating, and even your countertops. And as a bonus, cork is naturally renewable, exceptionally durable, and low maintenance.

7. Walk it Out

If you peruse any homebuying site these days, you’ll probably notice a “walking” or “walkability” score. That’s no accident. More and more homebuyers are looking for a place to live that’s within walking distance of restaurants and shopping. Real estate developers are taking note and planning their communities with that in mind.

So can you picture yourself living with these design features and amenities? As buyers continue to make their preferences known, these trends are becoming increasingly prevalent in the market.

But before you dive headfirst into the process, check out this cheat sheet to buying a home when you’ve been out of the buyer’s market for a while.

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