Mother Earth Living

Home Location and Additions Change in Down Economy

Homeowners and buyers are shying away from areas removed from easy public access and are instead focusing on developments around denser areas.
By Matt Hirschfeld
December 2008 Web
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The AIA has more than 83,000 members. The organization surveys home trends throughout the country on a quarterly basis..
Photo Courtesy The American Institute of Architects

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Homeowners are considering infill development, access to public transportation and sustainable home maintenance now more than ever because of the current housing crisis . The American Institute of Architects (AIA) Home Design Trends Survey says that homeowners and buyers are considering options that will have a much higher resale value.

More accessible home locations is one of the highest priorities in the third-quarter of 2008 survey. The economic recession is also causing people to look at access to public transportation as an alternative to personal transportation.


Infill development

Access to public transportation

Mixed-use facility

Dedicated to open space

Traditional neighbor design

(% respond. report. popularity of feature “increasing” minus % report. “decreasing”; Q3)














Home exteriors are also becoming more sustainable and durable, while more superficial and unnecessary additions are experiencing sharp declines.


Durable exterior materials

Sustainable roofing


Upscale entry doors

Accent lighting

(% respond. report. popularity of feature “increasing” minus % report. “decreasing”; Q3)















The AIA Home Design Trend Survey is conducted every quarter with a panel of 500 architecture firms that focus their work in residential areas.

More about eco-friendly homes that save some green

• Design your sustainable dream home on a budget. Know the 10 things every eco-home should have.

• See how this Northern California home pays for its own electric bills.

• Weatherize your home and collect stimulus money.

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