KBB - January 2015 - (Page 50)

Industry Outlook By Chelsie Butler Experts share their insights into what's ahead for the kitchen & bath industry B usiness is booming! Well, at least it is in the kitchen and bath remodeling market. People are feeling financially secure these days, and this is strongly based on improved job security and the fact that existing home values continue to rise. Homeowners are ready to do more major renovations in lieu of pieces and parts, and this includes the younger generations as well. The National Association of Home Builders' reported that its Remodeling Market Index (RMI) reclaimed the high-water mark of 57 in the third quarter of 2014, which is the sixth-consecutive quarter for an RMI reading above 50. An RMI above 50 indicates that more remodelers report market activity is higher (compared to the prior quarter) than report it is lower. K&B Design Trends Not surprisingly, some things have remained the same since last year's Industry Outlook, and some things have become higher up on homeowners' wish lists. In terms of both spaces, people are looking for appliances, plumbing fixtures, countertops and cabinets and vanities that require less maintenance and cleaning. Safety and health concerns are also important, and manufacturers are responding with such innovations as touchless toilet technology, anti-microbial surfaces and more variety in induction cooktops. Technology is always innovating and blowing our minds, and kitchens and baths are now catching up to the level of technology seen in other rooms in the house. Not only can many appliances, tubs and showers be accessed and programmed via smartphones and tablets, voice-recognition technology has also joined the mix. Homeowners still like the idea of a spa-like bathroom - a room in which to retreat and relax. Luxury shower systems that are easier to use are growing in popularity, as are more contemporary floating vanities. Kitchens these days are being designed with the whole family in mind; being open to other rooms in the house reinforces interaction, and smart storage options can be customized to various users. Homeowners want something that reflects their lifestyle and are using the kitchen as a space in which to do everything - not just prepare food. Clean, simple lines with- 50 + K BB out all of the extra ornamentation are in, as well as painted finishes for cabinets and neutral colors. In terms of outdoor kitchens, the luxury market is installing whole spaces rather than including a few select pieces. Aging in Place and Sustainable Design These are two areas that seem to touch all the generations. Aging in place has become a necessity for not only the mature and Baby Boomer generations, but also for Gen X and Y, who may be sharing the same house with older relatives. Curbless and even barrier-free showers are popular accessible options in bathrooms, and easy-to-reach drawers are replacing cabinets for microwaves and storage. Although some say being "green" resonates more with the younger generations, this is still something on many homeowners' minds today. This is being seen in water-saving fixture and energy-saving appliance choices, as well as environmentally friendly LEDs replacing many other types of lighting in baths and kitchens. Those are some of the trends I have been learning about and researching, and experts from major industry associations also share their expertise on the following pages. Maria Stapperfenne National Kitchen & Bath Association (NKBA) President What's your outlook for the K&B remodeling market in 2015? My local market, northern central New Jersey, is seeing a lot of really good activity and people willing to spend. Ninety percent of my market is remodeling, and they are all saying business is hot with good, profitable work. This could change tomorrow though, as the stock market has been volatile, but as of right now I am hearing lots of great things. My business is bustling with both high- and low-end orders. January 2015 / www.kbbonline.com / The Official Sponsor of KBIS www.kbis.com http://www.kbbonline.com http://www.kbis.com

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of KBB - January 2015

Contents
Online Contents
Editor’s Note
Show Director’s Note
People & Places
Dealer Dish
Tech Savvy
Business Practice
Sustainable Design
Universal Design
Solutions
Favorites
Before and After
Industry Outlook
KBIS 2015 and Design & Construction Week
Trends
Products
Design
Living Joyfully
Bittersweet Symphony
The Glamorous Life
New Lines, New Look
Learning Corner
Last Word

KBB - January 2015

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