WASHINGTON – Results from The American Institute of Architects (AIA) second quarter Home Design Trends Survey shows homeowners are becoming increasingly interested in reconfiguring spaces for their pets as well as for their in-laws and au pairs.

The latest survey results—focusing on home features—shows architecture firms receiving a major bump in interest from clients in reconfiguring both interior kennels and au pair/in-law suites as home spaces that can function as separate living quarters.

“Outdoor living areas and home offices remain popular special function rooms in a booming market,” said AIA Chief Economist Kermit Baker, PhD. Hon. AIA. “But an increasing number of homeowners are also focusing on their pets and incorporating them into their housing designs.”

Among the second quarter survey’s findings:

  • Architecture firms reported client interest in pet rooms/interior kennels increased to 30 percent from 20 percent a year ago.
  • The popularity of au pair/in-law suites also grew in this quarter’s survey with 41 percent of respondents reporting interest, which is up from 36 percent last year.
  • Outdoor living areas topped the list of home features growing in popularity, with almost 58 percent of respondents reporting to firms an increased interest.
  • Client interest in adding a home office increased to 39 percent from 33 percent a year ago.      
  • Overall, the home design market remains robust with custom luxury homes showing the strongest improvement among new construction sectors. Aggregate second quarter findings, include:
  • Client interest in custom/luxury homes increased to 24 percent from 18 percent on net in the second quarter.
  • First floor master bedrooms remained a top request among clients, with half of firms reporting increasing inquiries.
  • Residential architects report continued strong interest in accommodations for multiple generations in homes they design.
  • Increasing popularity for in indoor ramps and elevators. 

Second quarter survey results can be reviewed online. The AIA Home Design Trend Survey is conducted quarterly with a panel of more than 500 architecture firms that concentrate their practice in the residential sector.