Financial considerations and Americans’ evolving lifestyles are driving preferences in home design.

According to the latest Home Design Trends Survey by the American Institute of Architects (AIA), houses and lots in the United States are continuing to shrink, as is homeowners’ desire for high-end features and amenities. What’s growing is a wish for greater accessibility within the home, which goes hand in hand with an increased interest in more open floor plans and layouts that allow flexibility to accommodate Americans’ evolving lifestyles.

While it’s typical for new home sizes to decrease during recessions, the AIA notes that the current downward trend in lot sizes, square footage, and interior volumes began before the current recession and housing bust. Interestingly, signs indicate that new home sizes are continuing to decline even as the market begins recovering. Fifty-seven percent of the architects polled for the survey reported decreases in home sizes, compared with 21 percent who reported increases. Driving this trend for smaller homes are concerns about rising energy costs and the rocky economy, combined with a desire for reduced property maintenance.

Read the full article here in the Residential Architects website…