Imagine that it’s movie night. The nearby movie theater is an AMC, and you’ve come to associate the theater with your favorite snack experience…
Yes, popcorn is a thing, but this AMC has a Coke Freestyle machine. You try not to get so excited about such a small and simple pleasure…but the delight of filling your cup up with the perfect blend of soda and syrup has become something you really look forward to!!
…The year is 2014…
Now, fast-forward to 2021.
The biggest difference between life today and life eight years ago isn’t just the tech…or even the pandemic. On a day-to-day basis, the biggest change we’ve seen is how we use our homes.
- Home is now the office.
- Home is now the daycare.
- For a while, home was even the schoolhouse!
Home is also the place where, now, we’ve invested in some of the simple pleasures that make our lives SO much better. We don’t have to look forward to movie night at the theater just to drink our favorite Coke…we don’t have to book time at the spa for a steam shower…we don’t have to go to the French restaurant down the street for an induction-cooked meal.
Now, all that and more is in the home.
9 Home Luxuries-Gone-“Normal” That You’ll Love
Technology has moved fast, but some of the following home luxuries are actually based in old-world technology that’s gaining popularity again today…and then, yes, some of them are totally new.
Once you invest in any one of these things, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it in your home before!!
1: Whole-home water filtration systems
Water is the lifeline of your home. You drink it, use it to cook, bathe in it, and clean everything in it from dishes to clothes.
Clean and quality water have a daily impact on your health, comfort and sanitation. Contaminants like the chemicals, sediments and organic matter that make it through the tap of city water have NO business in your day-to-day.
Tap-specific water filtration systems have been popular for a while…but now, a whole-home water filtration system is more robust and EXPONENTIALLY more convenient.
If you want filtered water for your kitchen, for example, why wouldn’t you want it for all the bathrooms, too? Why wouldn’t you want to wash your clothes in it, also?!
2: Superior refrigerators
Both manufacturers and energy experts agree that kitchen appliances have BIG potential to be designed better. The refrigerator uses the most energy of all because it’s always on.
One energy-specific development in new and high-end fridges has been parallel insulation…without getting TOO into the technical specs, this involves new compressors and defrosting systems along with special low-energy consuming modes.
All of this optimizes your refrigerator’s consumption while also keeping the temperature more constant.
Design trends have helped capitalize on this technology, too. For example, French door refrigerators with bottom freezers are absolutely the design favorite these days…and water and ice dispensers (and touch screens) are now standard on many of these, too.
Keep reading to see how these and other appliances design a kitchen for better cooking!
3: Steam ovens
Steam ovens have been continually trending upward in popularity. This has long been a favorite cooking method in Europe, but for a long time it was ONLY used in restaurants in the States…
With costs coming down and more manufacturers touting the benefits of steam cooking, steam ovens and other steam-cooking devices have become WAY more popular. Some of the top benefits include…
- Steam cooking retains more nutrients in your food
- Food also keeps more of its color when cooked in steam ovens
- Steam ovens also eliminate the need for oil (making for MUCH healthier cooking)
Keep reading about steam ovens and other 2021 kitchen trends!!
4: Steam showers
Relaxation and regeneration should be part of your bath experience every day…you should be given the space and comfort to unwind in the one room where you start and end your day.
Luxury steam showers have appeared more and more in homes recently, especially in the last two years. Perhaps steam showers are a tiny bit “trendy” right now…but their benefits cannot be overstated.
Steam therapy brings a higher quality of living. It’s proven to contribute to good physical health and allows you to tap extraordinary bonuses like color therapy and aromatherapy to allow you to take charge of your well-being…
Keep reading about steam showers and other 2021 plumbing trends!!
5: Induction cooktops (and energy savings)
Induction cooktop technology is ABSOLUTELY worth your while! It’s been the favorite of serious chefs for decades, and now induction cooking is edging up on gas’s lead in the residential market, too.
This is actually a century-old technology, but with a new focus these days on wellness and sustainability in the home, induction has gained greater traction.
Some benefits include…
- There is NO energy loss when you cook on induction cooktops.
- These cooktops are also SAFER and family-friendly.
In the next 20 years, it’s the induction cooktop’s enhanced sustainability that will likely drive it to the forefront of the market.
Keep reading about induction cooktops and how to select appliances for your kitchen remodel!!
6: HVAC and indoor air quality
Just the THOUGHT of mold and bacteria multiplying in your ducts sounds GROSS…
Now think about it being circulated through your ductwork and blasted into your rooms!!
That’s just nasty.
For anyone with allergies or other breathing issues, or otherwise struggling in his pulmonary pandemic we’re ALL so tired of, indoor air quality can be a serious health threat.
If you’ve heard of ultraviolet lights for installation in your HVAC system, keep reading. These lights have been shown to kill 97% of bacteria otherwise resistant to antibiotics…they have also been shown to “significantly reduce airborne fungi in air handling units.”
Doesn’t that sound like something you would want?!
Keep reading to learn more and about how to test your own indoor air quality…
7: Universal design
The pandemic has definitely changed the conversation families are having on where older family members should live after retirement.
Not only have families pulled their loved ones out of senior care homes, but new healthcare technologies have made it easier to keep family together for longer.
As a result, several design features that once would have seemed like something you would ONLY see in a senior care facility (and with NO regard for finishes, colors or design…) are now being integrated beautifully into homes.
- Tubs converted into low-threshold walk-ins
- Curbless showers in general
- Shower benches
- Wheelchair-friendly kitchen counters
- Unobtrusive grab bars
If you’ve ever dreamed of luxurious backyard living with a glittering pool, you aren’t alone!!
In fact, you’re one of the thousands of Texan homeowners who’ve considered a pool installation in the last two years.
Many households in the area already have pools, of course…but those who don’t came to seriously reconsider this investment after the first bout of rolling lockdowns.
In fact, overall, families are spending so much more time in their yards that a pool could be the best investment on this list.
“Hello,” backyard vacation!
9: The “little things”
Along with all these design trends and great appliances, there are also smaller choices that homeowners are making for a bigger return on enjoyment…
For example, if you liked the sound of that Coke Freestyle machine, why not invest in one (or another brand of soda mixer) yourself? What an installment that would be for the entertainment room!!
Or how about wine dispensers? YES, that’s a thing now!!
There are even paints that specifically absorb odors. Think about the room in your home that needs THAT the most…
The world was required to stay at home most (or all) of the time through much of 2020. It was an announcement that VERY few people expected, and virtually no one imagined would go on so long…
When we all stayed in, we became reacquainted with our homes.
We didn’t have a choice when it came to the pandemic…but we DO have a choice when it comes to bringing luxury into our homes now in the ways that will mean the most to us.
Think: if you were required to stay at home ALL the time right now for another six months, would you have everything in your home that would make you comfortable in that time?
We once got SO far from home that all these things were only ever considered amenities enjoyed elsewhere. But now, this stuff is coming back INTO the home to stay.
Check out the most recent edition of our design magazine for more on these amenities and more!!