Kitchen & Bath Design News

DEC 2018

Kitchen & Bath Design News is the industry's leading business, design and product resource for the kitchen and bath trade.

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Page 33 of 67

WHAT WERE THE top trends for 2018? What is the kitchen and bath sector anticipat- ing in 2019? This is the traditional time for our Trend Spotting department to wrap up the current year and look forward to the new one. Here are the thoughts of leading industry pros from around the country. These are the individ- uals who weighed in: • Jean Brownhill, founder and CEO of New York City-based renovation matchmaking service Sweeten; • Designer Cheryl Kees Clendenon of Pensacola, FL-based In Detail Interiors; • Mary Hannah Fout, senior marketing man- ager at Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery; • Manuel Gutierrez, consulting economist for the National Kitchen & Bath Association; • David Pekel, president of the National Association of Remodeling Industry and owner of Pekel Construction & Remodeling in the Milwaukee, WI area; • Nino Sitchinava, principal economist at Houzz. ECONOMIC TRENDS On the plus side, Houzz's Sitchinava says, home- owners are spending again. "Over the last few years, we've seen consumer confidence reaching record levels, a near complete recovery in home equities and a larger share of current homeown- ers staying in place as opposed to moving." NARI president Pekel sees the same: "Business is strong. More and more homeown- ers are deciding to stay where they are and re- model. Overall, the biggest trend we're seeing is people wanting to update space – either building in aging-in-place designs to accommodate acces- sibility and safety, or just building more beautiful environments." He sees these trends continuing into 2019, with larger, barrier-free showers and more clear space in bathrooms and kitchens. Homeowners are also spending more on their remodels, Sitchinava notes. "Our 'Houzz & Home Study' shows that the leading reason homeowners cited for going over budget was that they decided to buy more expensive products or materials." That's a choice designers, retailers, contractors and manufacturers can all embrace. "These trends bode well for home upgrades and customization, and we expect kitchens and bath- rooms to continue to receive significant attention in 2019," the Houzz economist predicts. NKBA's Gutierrez points to lab or as the key economic challenge for the industry: "Unquestionably, worker shortages were the dominant issue for a majority of businesses in 2018. Difficulty of attracting workers, either pro- fessionals or tradesmen, was front and center throughout the year. With the economy quickly absorbing new entrants to the work force [and] the unemployment rate hitting record lows month after month, businesses faced difficulty throughout the year in filling p ositions." Top Trends for 2018 and Beyond BY JAMIE GOLD, CKD, CAPS Smart home technology, mixed metals, new faucet finishes, more personalization in finishes, flexible appliances and dramatic layering of light- ing are some of the up-and- coming trends experts expect to see for 2019. Warm gold and copper finishes are popular. Kohler introduced a suite of voice-controlled products in 2018. Voice control is trending strongly in home automation, as seen in this U by Moen shower with Amazon Alexa integration. Appliance manufacturers continue to incorporate connectivity. Photo: Courtesy of In Detail Design/Designer: Cheryl Kees Clendenon/Photographer: Greg Riegler Photo: Courtesy of Kohler Co., available at Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery Photo: Courtesy of Moen Inc., available at Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery Photo: Courtesy of Jenn-Air, available at Ferguson Bath, Kitchen & Lighting Gallery 34 Kitchen & Bath Design News • December 2018 TREND SPOTTING

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