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Backyards The Most Sought-After Home Feature

According to new data from Zillow, it has identified the top five home trends to watch—including the return of mirrored walls and closed floor plans. 

All-in-all, the term “backyards” was mentioned 22% more often than they were compared to last year. Other terms that have seen a boost in mentions include “patios” (13%), and “pools” (11%). Backyards are now highlighted in 1-in-5 Zillow listing descriptions. 

One term/trend that was not seen this year was “chef’s kitchens” which was replaced by “functional outdoor space.” 

"The rising popularity of outdoor features suggests the pandemic has changed the way we want to live for good, priming the backyard for a 2023 evolution," said Amanda Pendleton, Zillow's Home Trends Expert. "When the pandemic forced all entertaining outdoors, homeowners reclaimed their backyards from the kids or the dogs. Now they're rethinking how that space could serve as an extension of their home in new, creative ways." 

As for other trends, kitchen islands are en vogue at the moment, as the term spiked 19% more than last year. 

"As we redefine the spaces in our homes, kitchen islands are being designed to accommodate dining and entertaining activities in the kitchen rather than the formal dining room," said Kerrie Kelly, Creative Director at Kerrie Kelly Design Studio. "In 2023, we will see a surge of larger and even double kitchen islands using unique colors and materials." 

In addition, mirrored walls are becoming another trend as it makes tight spaces feel more spacious, and the keyword appeared in 12% more often than last year in Zillow’s listings. 

Another is the trend of closed floor plans making a comeback as remote workers desire—or are required—to have a quiet space to work. Listings that mentioned privacy increased 7% over last year. 

In other news, Zillow is predicting that more homeowners under 40 will tap into their equity, mainly in the form of cash-out refinances, to pay for home renovations or improvements. Other keywords and trends that are expected to rise in 2023 are “sustainable,” “smart,” “drought resistant landscaping,” and “energy-efficient.” 

Click here to see all of Zillow’s research. 

About Author: Kyle G. Horst

Kyle Horst
Kyle G. Horst is a reporter for DS News and MReport. A graduate of the University of Texas at Tyler, he has worked for a number of daily, weekly, and monthly publications in South Dakota and Texas. With more than 10 years of experience in community journalism, he has won a number of state, national, and international awards for his writing and photography. He most recently worked as editor of Community Impact Newspaper covering a number of Dallas-Ft. Worth communities on a hyperlocal level. Contact Kyle G. at [email protected]
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