6 in 10 UK adults agree the kitchen is the focus of their home.*
For many, it’s the heart of the home, for others the pinnacle of their home’s design and for everyone, a necessary practical hub. The kitchen really does have a lot to deliver.
It’s also typically the most valuable room in any new or refurbished home. And this naturally makes it a crucial factor in the homebuyer’s decision. Dislike for the kitchen could mean a big investment when moving in, or could put off the buyer altogether.
So what kind of kitchen attracts homebuyers? And what features make a difference to such a considered purchase? We explore kitchen trends in 2019…
Modern Meets Rustic
Sleek, minimal cabinets in neutral shades such as grey or taupe are being paired with their opposite: rustic, natural flooring. In 2019, the handle-less, modern kitchen is still as relevant as ever yet homeowners don’t want a space-aged look.
An appreciation of contrast is growing: an openness to mixing modern and classic styles for a more welcoming feel. Natural wood softens practical kitchen units, contrasting with the elegant integration to create a more inviting space.
A step further than modern rustic is the kitchen that fully embraces a natural feel. In this modern age, people are increasingly seeking connections from nature to create calm, inviting environments in the home.
Wood, stone, rattan and greenery come together beautifully in light and airy kitchens that feel underdone yet entirely in harmony. The concept is raw and unrestrained: a blend of organic, natural colours that inspire a feeling of ease and relaxation in the home.
For the last few years, navy has dominated the kitchen design scene and its class still makes an impression. Adding strong colours in a new or refurbished home poses the risk of clashing with buyer tastes yet navy is neither imposing or restricting.
With marble, quartz or wooden worktops, the effect is subtle and sophisticated. Buyers can still add their stamp by sticking to the minimal palette or adding more colour – navy is just that versatile.
Image credit: Rory Corrigan
From safe navy to its more daring sister…black. Being afraid of the dark is fast becoming a thing of the past with there being more than one reason for black’s comeback. The shade is subtle and dramatic all at once. It always adds contrast and yet needn’t define a room’s décor.
Whether it’s in the units, fixtures, furnishings or flooring, black can be brought into the kitchen in small or big ways. It pairs beautifully with natural worktops and white splash-back tiles; can be combined with any colour on the walls or in accessories. In a matte finish, it’s very much on-trend.
6 in 10 people agree that open plan living spaces suit people’s lifestyles these days.* The trend has been growing since the post-war years, as traditional formality has given way to more casual attitudes in the home.
In this age, rooms are multifunctional and entertainment is all the time. As screens have become a constant presence, open plan living is more important than ever to help people stay connected with one another. Read more in our article: The Vogue for Open Plan Living
With the trend towards bolder kitchens comes the vogue for stand-out tapware. Quality fixtures and fittings take any house from good to great, and they’re especially noticeable in the kitchen.
Matte black and brass taps are the styles to watch this year. More unique alternatives to the shiny chrome designs that are so often specified, these finishes are sure to turn the heads of homebuyers.
Once a rare novelty, these days sought-after. Underfloor heating really adds that luxurious touch to any kitchen. The benefits to the homeowner are many: energy efficiency, low running costs, freed up wall space, more even heating.
Above all, UFH helps to create the cosy feel that homeowners look for. It’s compatible with trending natural floor materials too, for the perfect combination of comfort underfoot: see our guide on fitting wood flooring with underfloor heating.
Three pendant lights hanging above a kitchen island or dining table – relatively simple details that can really change-up a space. Lighting in the kitchen is no longer just about practicality.
There is place for bright lights – under the cupboards and over food preparation areas – and there is equally a place for dimmer, more atmospheric pieces – above dining and entertainment areas. Pendant lighting has never been more at home in the kitchen.
With 6 in 10 homeowners looking for modern appliances in their next home, those on show need to make an impression. Rising in popularity are pared-back, elegant appliances that seamlessly integrate with the space: induction cooktops, handle-less models and smart controls; matte finishes and minimal details. Appliances are no longer just for function.
And the brand makes all the difference. Today’s homeowners are more savvy than ever when it comes to quality and the value of what their purchasing. Think big names such as Bosch, Neff and AEG, along with Smeg and Rangemaster for more retro looks.
And last but not least, there really is no style without substance in a kitchen. Storage ranks top of the shopping list for today’s buyers with 7 in 10 agreeing they would like plenty of storage space in their home.*
Wide and deep drawers, pull-out racks, open-shelving, rails to hang pots and pans – these small features add a lot of weight to any kitchen’s appeal. And this is where the kitchen island comes into its own: a multi-functional element that offers another dimension to the space with even more room to store, prepare, eat and entertain.
*Statistics are based on our 2018 survey of 1,010 adults looking to move or buy their first home in the next few years. See more insights here.