Ok, I have to come out and just say it: dining rooms are becoming a thing of the past. And, this change is impacting kitchens – which, no can argue, are increasingly the hub of today’s home.
In response, kitchen design is making the transition from food preparation/eating space to living space more seamless. Appliances are hidden or tucked away, such as microwave drawers, undercounter refrigerators and freezers, and trash and recycling containers. Homeowners disguise major appliances with custom panels that match cabinets – not just in high-end homes, but in those at many price points.
The walk-in pantry is becoming standard in both new builds and updates of older kitchens. The appeal is easy to understand because of the extended use of the kitchen and our attachment to countertop appliances. Adding this feature draws a very positive response from buyers, and I see them consider it a real plus when valuing a home.
Kitchens haven’t escaped the smart-technology trend occurring throughout many of today’s homes. Smarter kitchen appliances – such as Wi-Fi-capable ranges that connect to an app on your phone – can now suggest recipes, be remotely started, and even detect and alert you to service issues.
Some new refrigerators let you set expiration notifications for your food, see current contents from anywhere and plan a meal based on the available ingredients. You’re still able to post photos, to-do lists and calendar reminders on your fridge, except now it’s not with magnets. Pictures are shared and calendars sync’d on smart, connected screens built right into the door of your refrigerator. Some even connect to, and let you control, your other smart home devices like lights, thermostats and doorbells –even stream music – all through voice commands.
What does all this connectivity in today’s kitchen design deliver? Hopefully, less stress and more time spent with family and friends. Maybe even more time for exercising off pounds gained from all goodies your fridge or stove suggest you should make.