Home Building Trends To Watch For in 2022

Home building trends constantly evolve. From new tech to improved materials and techniques, here are five big trends to watch for in 2022.

If you haven’t built or remodeled a home lately, you’ll discover when you do that a lot has changed. Here are a few building trends we’re seeing today.

Online Shopping

Alex Toth, general manager of Opendoor Homebuilder Partnerships, sees more individuality among potential buyers. “With the overall shift from offline to online and the ability to have anything at the click of the button,” he says, “families looking to build are definitely customizing and personalizing their layouts.”

Added Matt Mosher, co-founder and CEO of Dzinly, a home improvement platform that focuses on exterior design: “We’re in a new era of architecture. We constantly skip through all these ideas at the speed of light. We see so many cool new trends, and companies respond by catering to that demand.”

Access to online resources is not just helping consumers choose styles and features, either. In every facet of home building and remodeling, technology has helped create a new landscape of apps, photo galleries, design tools and communications platforms. So next time you plan to build or remodel, you’ll have all sorts of choices on your phone or tablet.

New Homes Are Smart

Smart home tech is continuing to advance,” says Toth. “One of most interesting things is that smart home features are piquing the interest of two-thirds of those seeking to build a new home, and ranked higher than outdoor amenities like parks and pools, according to our recent research.”

Programmable thermostats, smart appliances and built-in charging stations for phones and electric cars are a few of the smart home features in high demand.

Green Building Is Growing

Energy efficiency and sustainability are growing concerns, and the home building industry has taken note.

“Data from our new build buyer survey shows one of the top three most important features is energy efficiency,” Toth says. “In addition to things like solar panels and lights, builders are also incorporating a lot more sustainable materials in their homes, like reclaimed and recycled wood, steel and the like.”

As building energy codes get tougher, builders have embraced third-party energy testing to provide buyers a scientific analysis of their home’s energy rankings. Independent raters visit homes throughout construction and issue a final report prior to move-in using the Home Energy Rating System (HERS).

Complete green neighborhoods are popping up all across the country, too. One example is EcoVillage by GreenHalo Builds in Stillwater, Minnesota. Neighborhoods like EcoRidge promise homes that are built with high efficiency standards, with the ability to add solar (or co-op neighborhood solar arrays) and community amenities like rain gardens to improve water and electricity conservation.

Another exciting green development that reduces building costs and improves energy efficiency is 3D printed homes. One of the nation’s largest builders, Lennar, has already introduced an entire neighborhood of these unique and beautiful homes. They offer less waste, more design freedom and top efficiency.

Individual Style

As with fashion trends, home building trends reflect the broader move toward personal style and individuality. Your home can reflect who you are through textures, mixed materials and color.

This modern aesthetic includes a decided move away from lots of fussy detail. “We’re seeing that really squared edges and clean moldings are extremely popular right now,” says Mosher. “We’re changing round columns to square, getting rid of detail instead of adding it, and on radius components we’re seeing the demand for unadorned arches.”

Mosher also noted, “We’re seeing a lot of paneling. An existing house can even take premade panels directly over existing surfaces without a lot of additional labor. People want to step out of the box so are choosing things like metal panels with cool patinas, large barn slabs of wood, panels using thin slats of wood and interesting shapes that are not traditional.”

Outdoor Living

While this trend isn’t new, being mostly stuck at home for the past couple of years has launched renewed interest in making outdoor spaces as livable as indoor spaces. There is great interest in outdoor kitchens, water features, dining options and automation, like drop-down TV screens and retractable bug screening.

“Over the last few years with COVID, we’re seeing a huge push to improve outdoor living spaces,” says Mosher. “We probably get three or four requests a day for new porch ideas, lots of requests for outdoor lanais, sunrooms and the like. I’d say the most popular is a space with complete roof covering and open air on the sides, with some type of fire feature and automation.”

Wendy B. Danks
My 40-year-plus career in marketing and communications was both fun and rewarding, not least of which was the 20 years I got to manage the largest Parade of Homes in the United States. But through it all, I was happiest when I had pen or keyboard in hand. Whether an ad, a press release or magazine article, I found a home with words.