​The Home During the Pandemic

Safe at Home

As people around the world face the realities of self isolation, our homes and how we perceive them have changed. Values are changing, our lives and habits are in flux, and our homes are also changing under this influence. Topics like privacy, energy efficiency, and even overall design are in the spotlight.

Inside The Home

Working and studying from home has become the new normal, and it’s predicted that many won’t be returning to the dreaded commute when things begin to normalize. For many, the home office is here to stay. 

Because of this shift, the home office has changed drastically since 2020 began. Since the home office has become a more permanent fixture of the house for many, it is no longer shunted to a corner of the den or kitchen, but now has a prominent role in the home. 

While comfort is essential, an office that is too casual may impede on productivity. The need to separate from the rest of the daily bustle in the home and to convey a sense of “off limits” to all other normal and natural home sounds and interruptions is critical. A distinction has to be made regarding the physical boundaries of this working space. The most effective way to do that is with the design of the space itself.

Acoustical considerations, especially for those with busy families and kids, will be top of mind when it comes to the office. The home office has started to look more practical, with its own sound-insulated room equipped for focus and creativity. 

Less Open Concept

Cholera and tuberculosis outbreaks transformed the design and technology of the home bathroom, giving us tile instead of wood fixtures. That time in history also gave rise to the vestibule, a transition zone from the outside to the inside of the home to keep things even more sanitary.

Will we see a resurgence of sanitary measures in the home? Perhaps we’ll see less open concept spaces, and more separation between rooms to keep germs at bay. 

In the aftermath of the pandemic, the entrance area might look more separated so that we can leave our shoes, clothing and belongings in a separate area, rather than carry dirt into the living quarters. Kitchens and dining rooms could become more closed off with walls.

Disasters Pass, Living Goes On

Staying home so much has led many of us to reconsider the role of our homes and how our homes can take care of us. More and more people are recognizing that their home is a sanctuary and a safe place, especially during a time of crisis.

If there is an environmental silver lining to the current situation, it is the opportunity to reflect on more sustainable and energy efficient ways of living. 

Now, more than ever, true meaningful action begins at home.