Ten Trends in Multi-Family Housing
Aug 4, 2021 Featured, Interior Design

Ten Trends in Multi-Family Housing

Investment in multi-family housing is increasing this year and expected to reach $148 billion, a 33% gain over the 2020 estimate.  This increase is due to favorable economic conditions as well as demand as the scarcity and price of single family houses increases dramatically.

From a design perspective, both tenants and owners are becoming more discriminating about where they live and work with their decisions based less on square footage and more on amenities.

Design: JNS Design

So, what are the trends that Sensory Six sees in multi-family housing? Here are our top ten:

1.  High End Design.  Many renters and owners will pay extra money for features that make their day-to-day lives more luxurious, easier and convenient. In addition to high end interiors, they want the kind of amenities you would find in a five-star hotel such as valet parking, concierges, and rooftop lounges.

2.  Outdoor Amenities.  People who live in multi-family housing like living with others and also want to spend time outdoors. They gravitate to buildings with features such as pools, cabanas, and gardens. 

Design: Sensory Six 

3.  Technology.  More touchless technologies tha enhance security and delivery of services are being incorporated into multi-housing spaces. Features like automated doors and fixtures are becoming standard. People want to control their environment so smart applications that monitor temperature, security, and lighting are becoming must-haves.

4.  Versatile Common Spaces.  In addition to home offices in individual units, developers are incorporating co-working spaces, conference rooms, and multimedia capabilities to accommodate the increased number of people working from home. Additionally, they are adding maker spaces with extra HVAC ventilation and benches for crafts, along with music rooms designed for optimum acoustics.


Design: Sensory Six 

5.  Pet-Friendly. The majority of households have pets, and it is a deciding factor on where people chose to live.  Some developers are attracting tenants with items like wash and grooming stations and obstacle course parks.  In addition, pet-friendly floor surfaces are specified with materials that are easy to clean, durable, and aesthetically pleasing.

6.  Multi-Use Buildings. Once popular primarily in large cities, multi-use buildings have now spread out to smaller cities and suburbs.  People want restaurants, services, and retail stores within their building, and it is not uncommon now to see these occupying the ground floor.

7.  Natural Design.  Multi-family housing is emulating single-family home design with more natural and earthy colors, use of plants, increased natural light, and artistry in finishes, lighting, furniture, and art. The desire for authenticity is often seen in a preference for local materials and craftsmanship.

Design: Banko Design

8.  Health.   Developers are incorporating air and water purification systems for both residences and common areas, as well as advanced lighting designed to replicate circadian rhythms. Physical spaces where residents can exercise or relax remain in high demand. As far as new finishes, bronze, copper, and brass have more antimicrobial properties than other materials and are being featured prominently.

9.  Renovation of Industrial Structures.   Adaptive reuse of industrial spaces has driven an entire multi-family aesthetic named “industrial chic,” which features high ceilings, big windows, and classical architectural details.

10.  Personalization.   Renters and buyers of multi-housing spaces are personalizing by choosing finishes, flooring, or cabinets color prior to moving in. Personalizing a space to suit their own aesthetics is important to people, and research has shown they are more likely to renew leases or select a particular building. This is particularly true among Millennials who make up the largest group of renters. 

Design: Sensory Six 


Need help in designing a new multi-housing building or renovating an existing one?  We would love to share our ideas with you!


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