Knowing these trends and being able to discuss them with buyers and sellers will give Realtors a distinct advantage. Suggesting modern features to sellers to add to their homes before listing existing properties will also give agents additional power.
The 2010s were known for several trends, including bold and bright colors, chevron patterns and, most significantly, farmhouse style. In prior generations, design and style trends were popularized by movies, home furnishings publications and word of mouth.
Since the 1990s, home improvement and remodeling shows have communicated to the masses not only styles but how to achieve them. Many of the programs even featured computerized mock-ups of the renovations so that homeowners could see the before, the during and the after.
New trends required new terminology, which real estate agents will encounter when showing houses from the 2010s. The man cave has been around for a while, but the “she-shed” is a new innovation, as are terms such as “millennial pink” and “Gen Z yellow.” Realtors who can recognize and discuss these trends and include these terms while showing have an advantage over those who do not.
Kitchens from the 2010s
Kitchens and baths are the areas where change is most evident. Coffered ceilings, simple, clean lines and all-white kitchens are seen frequently in kitchens dating to 2010. Innovations still evident in kitchens in these homes are open shelving, kitchen cabinets with clear glass or frosted glass doors.
Chrome and stainless steel, referencing a modern, industrial style, appeared in a clean, fresh way during this time. While dining rooms remained desirable in new homes, busy two-career families ate meals in kitchens with islands, breakfast bars with seating and more informal dining areas with built-in banquettes and tables.
Not to be overlooked is the introduction of the farmhouse sink — a porcelain sink, often white, oversized and with an apron front. Black and white kitchens surrounded the white farmhouse sink, and Shaker cabinets, with simple, clean lines, became commonplace. Well crafted, with simple lines, the Shakers saw their craftsmanship, without ornamentation, as “an act of perfection.’ This style blends with both traditional and more modern homes and has been around since the 1800s, earning the term “timeless.”
Another kitchen cabinet trend from 2010: Storage that imitates hutches or sideboards, with bun feet and furniture-style detailing. Although built-in, these unique cabinets give the appearance of separate pieces of furniture. Painted finishes are combined with naturally finished wood.
Combining different colors of painted cabinets, therefore contrasting base and wall cabinets, created a new look in kitchens. Another innovation was using thermofoil cabinets, a non-porous covering for medium-density fiberboard (MDF), which is molded to the wood base via a process involving heat. Durable and inexpensive, thermofoil cabinets offered home renovators a myriad of options.
Bathrooms from the 2010s
Bathrooms typically follow kitchens in design and materials. Baths from the 2010s were increasingly spa-like, with freestanding tubs and rain showers in glass-enclosed shower stalls. Brushed nickel and polished copper were metals seen in cabinet hardware and plumbing hardware for both kitchens and baths.
Baths from the 2010s included technology and entertainment, including flat-screen televisions and computers. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) introduced dual flush toilets to conserve water and operate more efficiently.
Towel warmers, along with heated floors, while not new, became more commonplace in the 2010s and will definitely help sell houses. Custom slab one-piece sinks and hammered brass or glass bowl-style vessel sinks made an appearance in bathrooms. Rustic farmhouse-style vanities and storage combined with glass barn doors on showers were also commonplace in this period.
Real estate agents who appreciate the finer details of modern houses will be stronger when working with clients. Knowing these trends and being able to discuss them with buyers and sellers will give Realtors a distinct advantage. Suggesting modern features to sellers to add to their homes before listing existing properties will also give agents additional power.