2020 was the year we reimagined the function of home. Our homes became an all-in-one destination: where we lived, worked, rested, connected, and played. With many entertainment venues, offices and restaurants shuddered, home became our office, as well as our outlet.
While many of us have been anxious to leave 2020 behind, we must be sure to carry forward the lessons we learned in 2020 that fundamentally changed the way we designed and delivered on the promise of home.
Here’s what we need to consider as we recreate the definition of “place” in the new year.
Give Yourself Space to Work
As many continue to work from home, finding ways to compartmentalize and transform a unique space for home office will be essential. The location of the work set up is paramount. It must be a place free of distraction, but also one that provides a level of comfort and fuels productivity.
It’s also about finding a balance between work and inspiration, especially when your home becomes a mixed-use space. Simple design choices can go a long way to bring life to your designated home office. Make sure you have a desk chair that’s supportive and comfortable. Fill your office with personal touches like plants, photos or paintings. Ensure you have a well equipped and easily accessible set-up, including drawers, files, a printer and other office essentials.
And don’t forget about drawing clear boundaries in your physical space. At Broadstone Archive, our studio apartments feature retractable frosted glass walls that offer a temporary separation between workspaces and living areas. A physical manifestation of boundaries let others in your home know when the wall is up or the door is closed, you’re at work.
Creating a focused space yields big results. One study found there was a 47% increase in productivity when working from home when individuals took time to dedicate a specific place to do work.
Create a Space to Recharge
The new normal has challenged the theory of work-life balance. When you work and play in the same place, there’s bound to be burnout.
Just as we suggest creating space for you to work, it’s equally as important to cultivate places in your home where you can recharge and relax. This could be planting a garden in your backyard or on your apartment patio. Design a coffee bar in your kitchen. Create a spa-like atmosphere in your bathroom and stock it with your favorite personal care products.
No matter the size of your home, it’s easy to carve out “play” spaces, then set up strict boundaries: no work, relaxation only.
Introduce an Air of Luxury
At Alliance Residential, we pride ourselves on infusing luxury throughout spaces, even in the most subtle of ways, from unique interior color palettes to bold design schemes. You can easily adopt this in your own home.
Take small things in your home and introduce luxury and comfort. Choose a rich paint color or eye-popping wallpaper and create an accent wall. Repurpose an old bookshelf into a mini library complete with a cozy reading chair. Freshen up your cabinets in a bold shade and install new hardware.
Find Ways to Stay Connected
After all we’ve endured, we are still craving connection. In 2021, we can use our homes to create that sense of place where people want to build relationships and foster connection.
Extend your view of home into the outdoors. Use shared outdoor social spaces – plant a community garden or create a patio seating area from which you can converse with neighbors. Embrace local walking paths near your home. If you are able, utilize low-risk amenities like grocery stores, hair salons and retail shops.
Our “new normal” made the technology an essential lifeline. Recent studies show that 92% of renters say high-speed Internet is important to them. Ensure you have the right technology in place, not just for working from home, but also for personal priorities. A beautifully designed space would not be complete if you can’t utilize a reliable Internet to stay connected with loved ones or stream the latest thriller series.
As a pinnacle of a modern multifamily property, Broadstone Archive boasts technology features like Google Fiber, Dwelo smart home technology, and a community app. Smart display technology adds a sense of productivity and boundaries (for work and life) with timers, music playing ability and more.
Make it Yours
Creating a multifunctional home is about crafting spaces that feel best for you, no matter the size. They could be inviting, engerizing, or relaxing. But ultimately, it should be where you look forward to experiencing life every day.