The Wall Street Journal asked William Duff, Founder and Managing Principal at William Duff Architects, to weigh in on the top residential design trends of 2020.

This is a summary of an article by Alina Dizik for The Wall Street Journal.

What do dream homes mean in a global-pandemic world?

‘Homeowners want versatile, well-lighted spaces that are soundproof and can be closed off from the main living area, perhaps via sliding or pocket doors.

They are interested in the notion of separable space—having the option to be part of the living space, says San Francisco-based architect William Duff. In some instances, families request two or more nooks to accommodate quiet areas for everyone in the home, including children needing space to do classwork. In past projects, he says, home offices were set up in a spare bedroom as an afterthought.

Overall, construction costs in 2020, to date, are $700 to $900 a square foot, compared with $600 to $800 in 2018 for high-end homes, says Mr. Duff. “People may spend more money on elements of their homes because they are valuing them in a different way,” he adds.

He says homeowners are upping spending on areas that don’t have a wow factor for visitors. They want top-of-the-line HVAC systems, in an effort to make indoor life safer and more comfortable. Other choices are solid-wood doors for quiet, and custom, built-in storage throughout for more space.’

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