Outdoor kitchens? Survey says yes

By Kelly Leighton | May 3, 2017 | 2 min. read

Outdoor kitchens are all the rage these days.

According to the American Institute of Architects Home Design Trends Survey for the fourth quarter of 2016, which highlighted kitchen and bath trends, 45 percent of architects reported that outdoor kitchens are showing an increase in popularity, the most of any other trend.

“Homeowners continue to find new ways to add value to their homes by creating more functional space, which is apparent in the rise in popularity of outdoor kitchens,” said AIA Chief Economist, Kermit Baker, Ph.D. “Kitchens have become a hub for the home. Now homeowners want to bring some of that activity to their outside space.”

In addition to outdoor kitchens, current trends for the kitchen include a computer work/recharge area (42 percent in 2016 compared to 49 percent in 2015), a butler’s pantry (34 percent in both 2015 and 2016) and a wine refrigerator and storage (32 percent in 2016 and 31 percent in 2015). Undercounter, smart and upper-end appliances are also new “must-haves” in kitchens.

Bathrooms are also important to homeowners. More than 60 percent of homeowners are updating their bathrooms for adaptability/universal design, while 57 percent want a stall shower without a tub. Fifty-four percent want a large, walk-in shower, while 30 percent seek heated floors (a decrease of 10 percent from 2015).

Doorless showers still remain as popular as they were in 2015 (65 percent in 2016, up 1 percent from 2015), though water-saving toilets have decreased in popularity from 31 percent to 25 percent.

While the majority of architects reported that most remodeling is in additions and alterations (54 percent), 51 percent said remodeling the kitchen and bath is next, at 51 percent.

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