Find all the tips, advice and new home inspiration with our Home Blog
Being able to choose appliances, colours and the interior design of your home is a fun and exciting way to help achieve this and make the home really yours.
From style tips to modern conveniences, we asked several industry experts what’s currently trending in the home market, and what we can look forward to in the future. Read on to hear the latest 2016 home trends and forecasts!
The rustic trend is getting into full swing in 2016. Concrete, timber, stone and even bricks have gained historic weight with a worn, aged look. It is no longer an oddity to see brand new tiles tell a compelling lifelong story.
Christie Wood from Beaumont Tiles says to look for inspiration from past eras with styles such as a glazed brick look or mottled and crackle detail woven amongst timber and brick tiles.
“This year we also see mixed motifs and patterns reinvented by combining them with shapes and textures,” Christie says.
“In terms of colour directions, we are seeing bolder hues like blues, greens, and cool greys. Soft pastels have emerged as the power colours for the year and metallics are particularly important for tiles.”
The future? Big tiles.
It’s an area of experimentation and requires special manufacturing and laying techniques, but tiles are getting bigger and thinner and they are globally loved. The standard larger tile of 600mm x 600mm is blossoming to a gargantuan slab size of 1000mm x 3000mm!
Schneider Electric believes 2016 in the year of ‘right here, right now.’ Instead of waiting to control a system or product when you’re right in front of it, adopt apps that give you control at your convenience.
General Manager Ben Green says utilising smart lighting by installing an app on your smartphone or tablet can help reduce your carbon footprint, provide information on your energy use and can even help you set energy usage targets.
“The integration of all your home automation systems means that your control system can become your living room lifestyle partner that will synchronise and simplify your home living with one button,” Ben says.
“With more and more connected devices within the home, many of which are likely to be competing products and systems, integration and scalability will be a big focus in 2016.”
The future? Apps!
There are a range of apps you can use to help make your home a smart one:
Clipsal SILC – Control individual lights, groups of lights or groups of groups with just the touch of a button.
Wiser Link – An energy monitoring system that acts like your very own energy coach. It has the ability to send notifications when you’ve reached or exceeded your monthly energy targets, or suffered a power loss – so you can say goodbye to nasty power bill surprises.
PUSH Controls – Bringing all these devices into one interface will make life a lot easier, so look for systems that can offer connections between individual devices, or that offer an all-in-one solution. PUSH Controls can be used as a single interface to control climate, blinds and energy management, and more.
Colour remains one of the most integral parts of interior design. If you don’t get your colours right, the rest of the room could fall apart.
Haymes Paint has released their new Colour Library to better showcase the ever-changing range of colours available these days.
“The Colour Library allows us to move away from putting a date on colour and helps us build an evolving palette that can be changed according to personal style and taste,” says Haymes Paint Colour and Concept Manager Wendy Rennie.
Volume 1 of The Haymes Colour Library is The Curate palette. This palette incorporates the pairing of unexpected colour combinations, showcasing a considerable shift for colour directions in 2016.
The palette encompasses electric blues, bright corals, rich tans and soft greys. Drawing its influence from natural materials such as leather, rope, linen and ceramics, with the bright colours channelling a playful and more contemporary approach to colour and design.
The future? More colour!
The Colour Library contains seven volumes of colour themes, each with its own story and palette of up to nine colours. Keep up to date with everything via the Haymes Paint website here.
There has been a significant rise in induction cooktops over traditional ceramic cooktops in the past few years. Induction cooking offers consumers a faster heat-up time, they are easy to clean and are considered safer than a regular cooktop.
Omega Senior Product Manager Michael Sultana says any technology that offers convenience to the consumer is proving popular.
“As well as induction cooking, people buying self-cleaning ovens is growing rapidly,” Michael says.
“The technology enables the user to set the oven to pyro function to assist with cleaning.”
The future? Black Glass finish.
There has been a big shift towards Black Glass finish products rather than stainless steel, in particular for ovens and gas tops.
“There has been great interest in the new Blanco Silgranit sinks, available in a range of different colours including anthracite, white and our new colour rock grey,” says Michael.
“It adds a very modern look to your home.”
A minimalist and sleek style lends itself to modern bathrooms. Along with big tiles, free standing bathtubs and above-counter basins remain popular in home design.
The future? Cleanflush design.
Along with a minimalist design is the need for minimal cleaning. Off the back of this, Caroma has released its new and innovative Cleanflush system to help reduce the housework and get that cleaner clean.
The rimless bowl removes the hiding place for germs and Caroma’s latest flush and flow innovations gives you a more powerful whole bowl clean.
Caroma Research and Development Manger Dr. Steve Cummings says hygiene is a crucial concern for every modern home.
“We sought to revolutionise our product with this in mind,” says Dr. Cummings.
“More than just a rimless toilet, our integrated Cleanflush solutions delivers superior flushing performance and makes manual cleaning much more efficient.”
The Cleanflush is a classically versatile design that works in both contemporary and classic bathroom environments. Complete the look by integrating matte black tapware and accessories against a clean white pallet to deliver the ultimate in trend setting bathroom spaces.
The future is already here! If you love your outdoor alfresco, composite decking as an alternative to timber is the latest trend to hit Australian shores. Cement composite decks are categorised by a clean, contemporary design, giving any home that architecturally-designed look and provides home owners with the option of colour choice.
While the use of composite decking products as an alternative to timber is still relatively new in Australia, it’s catching on and the trend shows they are becoming increasingly popular.
James Hardie Marketing Manger Christian Hansen says the main reason is that timber decks require regular upkeep, including staining and painting, whereas composite deck products are virtually maintenance free.
“Our research shows that 60 per cent of decks laid today are replacement decks. This is likely to be because timber decking doesn’t last and because homeowners now prefer low maintenance options like HardieDeck,” says Christian.
“The boards are designed to be coated in durable paving paints normally used on verandas, pathways and driveways,” says Christian.
“This provides home owners with the option to paint the boards any colour to match or complement other elements of the house like wall colour, roof colour, or other tiled paving. Or they can simply paint their deck in their favourite colour.”
Alternatively, the boards can be clear sealed for a raw, natural look to achieve a contemporary architectural feel.
Home design has come a long way in the past few years. From smarter, more efficient homes to better use of space, everything has been updated to ensure we have more modern and practical designs.
The future? Luxurious additions.
Hotondo Homes Building Designer Natalie O’Shea says what home buyers what in a home is always evolving, but a growing trend right now is having a swish master suite.
“This can include two walk-in-robes, dressing spaces and an ensuite,” says Natalie.
“Having a really good parents’ retreat is at the top of many peoples lists.”
“We are also finding a huge swing towards having a butler’s pantry in lieu of a regular walk-in-pantry. People like the idea of being able to hide away the mess of cooking while entertaining. A lot of the time if your kitchen looks messy, it makes the rest of your house messy too, so a butler’s pantry is a great way to avoid this.”
Solar technology in its various forms continues to be a strong talking point for governments, businesses and consumers.
The start of 2016 has seen the popularity of battery energy storage solutions hit full swing. These battery storage units, when paired with solar power systems, provide consumers greater flexibility of solar generated power and an increased autonomy from the main power grid.
David Sharp from Chromagen says the ongoing development and forecasted uptake indicates promising signs of these units becoming more efficient and cost effective in the future.
“We have seen many consumers opt for solar power systems with ‘battery ready’ inverters,” says David.
“It allows them the flexibility of integrating storage at a later stage.”
The future? Low costings.
Recent times has also seen the increased offering in the marketplace of no or low upfront cost solar power systems based on similar very successful overseas models. These offerings provide Australian consumers with an easier, low risk path to integrating solar power into their homes with the savings from solar generated energy offsetting the cost of the system over a contract period.
2016 home trends and forecasts – what do you think the future holds? Let us know in the comments!
How do INDUCTION cooktops work?
“INDUCTION works through the transfer of magnetic energy to generate heat. By using ferrous cookware the stovetop reacts to the connection, causing ‘induced’ currents. The heat is then distributed evenly on the base of the pan, which allows food to cook evenly and efficiently. To see if your current cookware can work with INDUCTION, simply place a magnet on the bottom, if it sticks it’s INDUCTION ready.”
How safe is INDUCTION in comparison to other cooktops?
“INDUCTION cooktops are the only form of cooking that does not require a heat source from a flame or from an element. This makes it extremely safe as the only surface that is getting hot is the pot itself. When you remove your pot from the cooking surface, there is minimal residual heat left and the cooktop immediately goes into standby mode, which means that it’s not drawing any additional power. No heat is generated without the magnetic connection from the compatible cookware. This makes INDUCTION the safest cooktop on the market.”
How energy efficient is INDUCTION technology?
“INDUCTION cooktops are more energy efficient than gas or traditional electric cooktops. The heat is only distributed when a magnetic field is created, and the heat that is generated is proportional to the size of the pan. Because it’s so quick and efficient you are spending less time at the cooktop. When we compared INDUCTION to gas and electric cooktops; gas is 50% efficient, electric is 65% efficient, whilst INDUCTION is 95% energy efficient!” READ: What is a Smart Home?
Are INDUCTION stovetops easy to clean?
“Because there is no heat generated under the glass, if there is a spill it generally doesn’t bake onto the glass surface. If by chance you do have a spill, simply lift the pot and wipe it away with a damp cloth. There is no additional components, like trivets or burners that require additional care. It’s as simple as using a warm soapy cloth to maintain its appearance.”
How much do INDUCTION cooktops cost?
“The initial cost of purchasing an INDUCTION cooktop may be slightly higher than the traditional cooktops we’ve all grown up with, however the investment you make will serve you and your family for years to come.”
Things to consider before switching the heat…
“You may need to consider power connections. Most induction cooktops generally require a connection to a higher power supply. There also may be some cookware in your cupboards that won’t work. Make sure you do the INDUCTION test to see if your aluminium, copper, glass and earthen ware are INDUCTION compatible.”
OMEGA INDUCTION STOVETOP – MODEL NO. O164Z
BLANCO INDUCTION STOVETOP – MODEL NO. BIC603S