The concept home for the 2012 International Builder Show—held recently in Florida—took a slightly different approach this year, focusing on the particular needs and desires of three of the housing industry’s most dominant markets: Baby Boomers, Gen X, and Generation Y.
The trio of homes (rather than single home) created this year address the gulf between traditional new home communities—single family units with similar aspects and similar price points—and the way that the nation’s households have changed in nature and composition over recent years. The homes also address the changing needs of various demographic segments, such as the tech demands of the younger generations, or the move into retirement spaces being made by the Baby Boomers, the latter dubbed by the concept home designers as “Gen B.”
The Gen B home accommodates the changing lifestyle needs of the Baby Boomers, who want to retire into vibrant and active lifestyles, and whose households may include the return of older children into their home. A separate guest suite is perfect for visiting guests and family members, and the pool bar and full outdoor kitchen create an ideal oasis for both casual and elegant entertaining. Yet the home is also created for “aging in place,” allowing Boomers to make a transition from active retirement to more intensive aging in the very place they call home. This is achieved through single-story plans with flexible spaces and open access, which allow people of various mobility and ability to navigate the home with ease.
The Gen X home caters to the demographic of 52 million individuals born between 1966 and 1985, who are currently moving into their peak earning years, and are often simultaneously raising children and caring for aging parents. Large, flexible living spaces allow a larger family to gather, and incorporated technologies keep the home streamlined and up-to-date through thoughtful details like a dedicated electronics closet for the home’s various systems and components. The home also includes a first-floor master bedroom, and a second-floor in-law suite for adaptation to the needs of multi-generational households.
The Gen Y house caters to the desires of the nation’s younger generation, also known as “Millenials.” Research on this generation shows that they prefer smaller, more urbanized homes that can easily adapt to a variety of activities, such as work, play, or exercise. Thus the Gen Y home is smaller, includes a number of eco-friendly materials and building processes, and focuses on extreme flexibility for the generation’s mobile, tech-centric living. Details like in-home space for telecommuting workers, an enclosed inner courtyard for fitness, and a budget-minded single-floor plan allow Gen Y to enjoy their own new homes on their own terms, and within their own financial abilities.
For more information on the tri-generational concept homes developed for this year’s International Builders Show, visit the Concept Home website at: http://www.builderconcepthome2012.com .