KBB - January 2014 - (Page 22)

Industry Outlook By Chelsie Butler Find out from the experts what's ahead for the kitchen and bath industry Consumers have been reeling from a recession that supposedly ended at least three years ago, and it looks like 2014 may be the year their confidence takes a steadier uptick. Two of the major sectors in which they are expected to spend are construction and remodeling. As kitchens and baths are two of the most popular interior design projects among homeowners, the K&B industry is expected to gradually improve in the year(s) to come. Kitchens are taking center stage as the heart and hearth of the home, while the bathroom is looked at as a personal oasis for homeowners, rather than just a place to quickly get ready for work. People are taking more pride in their spaces and taking a stand on what kind of design works best for their lifestyles. As heavy contemporary and traditional styles take a backseat, transitional design is moving to the forefront. Younger generations are breaking the rule of buying products that last because of a need for change sooner. Technology and green design are also highly important to those generations, while aging-in-place or universal design is a trend all across the board that will soon become the norm. While there will always be the copse of do-it-yourselfers that crops up, as consumer confidence grows homeowners are again trusting their projects with professionals and not just viewing their services as a luxury. Kitchen and bath designers are not only creating beautiful spaces for their clients, they are also designing functional projects that match their lifestyles and needs. What's New in K&B Design for 2014 Everyone should be recycling where they can, period. This year will be the year we pick up the stragglers, as zero concern for the environment is passé and, really, unacceptable. Kitchen cabinetry has been and will 22 + K BB continue to incorporate storage for trash and recyclables. Water conservation is a growing concern, and more homeowners are specifying water-filtration systems in their kitchens - be it in the sink or refrigerator. In bathroom design, as long as a home has at least one tub, the other(s) can make way for an upgraded shower system - with watersaving fixtures, of course. If a tub is a necessity, more homeowners are choosing stand-alone versions that take up less space. LED lighting is showing up everywhere - from refrigerators and dishwashers to sinks and vanities. White kitchens and stainless steel appliances have been popular for a while, but some manufacturers are taking a risk by introducing splashes of color to the industry - even if they are predominantly in shades of gray. As the older generations grow in number, universal design is no longer an afterthought. It is a must that designers do their research and incorporate the necessary elements in their kitchen and bath projects, dependent on the needs of their clients. Universal design is easily adaptable to these spaces through zero-threshold doorways; larger, open showers equipped with hand-held devices; pull-down shelves and cabinetry; microwave and refrigerator drawers; and wider passageways. As more consumers almost blindly rely on technology, this will have to be incorporated into everything they do. In the kitchen and bath industry, smart appliances can control themselves, and soft-close hinge hardware will be the norm this year and moving forward. Refrigeration is becoming finely tuned to the homeowner's desire for freshness, and bathroom mirrors include televisions so you can watch the news while getting ready for work. That's a brief recap of what I have seen and heard about the construction and remodeling business, as it pertains to kitchen and bath projects. K+BB left the bulk to the experts on the following pages to give more insight into their thoughts and predictions for 2014. January 2014 / 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 2014

KBB - January 2014
Contents
Online Contents
Editor’s Note
Show Director’s Note
Celebrity Design with...Taniya Nayak
All Abroad
Trends
Industry Outlook
Tech Savvy
KBIS Countdown to Design & Construction Week
Products
Design
Cover story: Historic kitchen revisits its roots in major update
Learning Corner

KBB - January 2014

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