12 Ways the Home Changed for the Better in 2020

From much-needed home improvements to a new view on how we use indoor and outdoor spaces, there are numerous ways we’ve made our homes better during this otherwise trying year.

Well-Designed Outdoor Spaces

well designed outdoor spaces 2020 trend

A typical year might see us either overlooking the great outdoors, or seeking it outside of the confines of our home. This year—the notorious 2020—has caused us to crave fresh air like never before. Doing so means making the most of our surroundings right in our front and backyards. From miniscule stoops to large, lush lawns, we’ve found ways to sit outside and enjoy talking to friends and neighbors at a safe distance, read a good book, eat meals, play games and more. Home renovations have seen an uptick in added porches and balconies. Existing designs welcome creative ways to maximize outdoor living, like foldable patio sets, hammocks, tabletop fireplaces, and outdoor sound systems.

Related: 10 Easy Home Improvements to Combat Seasonal Affective Disorder


Creative Home Gyms

creative home gyms 2020 trend

When the pandemic hit, fitness equipment sales went through the roof. Fitness fanatics and those looking to boost their mental and physical health knew the importance of breaking a sweat. Garages were cleaned out to make room for workout stations. Unused bonus rooms were transformed into stylish exercise studios. And the basement finally became more than a dingy, dark storage space.


Multi-Use Rooms

multi use spaces 2020 trend

Can a living room also be a home office without sacrificing style? Can the playroom also be a hub for virtual learning without leading to distractions? If the pandemic has taught us anything about our time at home, it’s that we’re more creative than we think! Despite designating rooms for individual purposes, we’ve learned that, through the use of stylish partitions, extra organization, kitchen islands with built-in seating for more activities, and modular multi-functional furniture, style doesn’t have to be one-dimensional.


Bringing the Outdoors In

bringing outdoors inside 2020 trend

Biophilic spaces have changed the home for the better during the pandemic. People intuitively search for ways to boost their mental health by connecting with nature. Larger windows and sliding doors create a seamless transition from outside to inside, while the addition of houseplants and nature-inspired patterns on pillows, wallpaper, and more ensure a feeling of groundedness.

Related: These Are the Most Popular Houseplants in America


Spa-Like Spaces

spa elements 2020 trend

The spa is a space to retreat from all things busy and overwhelming, but with the pandemic closing down spas for the better part of 2020, people have gotten creative in their homes. From simply adding more candles throughout the home to ignite a soft glow, to transforming the bathroom with essential oil diffusers, eucalyptus draped from the showerhead, and bathtub caddies that invite you to stay and soak a while, our desire for tranquility and self care has been reimagined within the home.


Grounding, Happy Colors

happy colors 2020 trend

Scroll through the anticipated 2021 paint trends, and you’ll notice an overwhelming theme: warmth and wellbeing. PPG’s “Transcend,” offers a midtone, shaded, brown sugar beige with a gingerbread undertone—ideal for any space in your home that could use some luxurious warmth. And “Earth’s Harmony” from Dutch Boy is a dreamy hue, reminiscent of the “perfect blue sky,” that will help you break free from daily demands and enjoy the moment.

Related: 10 Paint Colors You’ll See Everywhere Next Year


Hygienic Design

smart appliances 2020 trend

Smart appliances have popularized for more than just their efficiency in the home. In 2020, touchless appliances, like sinks and trash cans, along with motion sensors for lighting, and self-cleaning toilet seats allow us to stop germs from spreading within our humble abodes.


Better Kitchen Flow

kitchen organization 2020 trend

For many, working from home and virtual learning for the kids has created an uptick in home-cooked meals. With more food filling up our shelves in the pantry and refrigerator, things can easily get cluttered. The kitchen has shifted as a result, becoming an intentional, stylish workspace. Pantries are neatly organized with labeled jars filled with dry goods. Overflowing drawers filled with old cutlery and unused items have been emptied and organized to hold only items that work and are used. On top of that, the kitchen has seen an upgrade in style. A chandelier and floor runner add warmth. A fresh paint color adds personality. A high-tech espresso machine adds functional style.


Intentional Hygge

Intentional Hygge 2020 trend

The Danish concept of “hygge” offers a welcome reprieve from the chaos that ensued this year. Hygge, which translates to a feeling of coziness, has been reimagined to work with minimalist design. The result is cozy, clean spaces that combine organization with comfort. Clutter only lends itself to chaos, so transforming spaces into cozy corners has become more of an intentional project. Large, faux fur throws are neatly stacked in wooden baskets next to the couch. Rustic decor like a reclaimed wooden table adds warmth without overwhelming a room.


Better Workshops

better home workshops 2020 trend

Whether fortunate enough to have built a workshop shed in the backyard, or innovative enough to transform a portion of the basement or garage into a space to DIY, 2020 has seen a surge in people learning how to fix, make, and dream up creations all on their own. The result is quality tools that are well-organized and often displayed in a functional-meets-stylish way to honor the space in which we spend our days off tinkering and creating.

Related: 7 Ways to Set Up Your Home Workshop


Hotel Inspiration

hotel home inspiration 2020 trend

One of the best things about traveling is taking advantage of luxurious hotel amenities. But with tourism taking a backseat as a result of the pandemic, homeowners have gotten creative and brought the amenities into their own living spaces. Bedside tables host luxurious hand creams and lip balms. Bathroom countertops feature hand-poured candles and bath salts in fancy jars. Plush bathrobes hang from the door, while a stack of fresh bath towels are perfectly placed on an open shelf.


Intentional Organization

intentional organization 2020 trend

Organization has become trendy, to say the least. With the home serving so many purposes, we need as little distraction as possible. Closets have gotten makeovers that utilize aesthetically pleasing storage solutions like wicker baskets to store items neatly and off the floor. Utility closets have transformed from an explosion of items to ones hung up and grouped together using wall-mounted units. Entryways now offer functional design that ensures items are neatly hung, stowed away, or placed on a bench off the floor.


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