Top 10 Home Design & Remodeling Trends for 2013

The experts at award-winning design-build and remodeling firm Neil Kelly Company reveal their predictions for the top interior design trends for 2013.

Top 10 Building Trends for 2013

Headquartered in Portland, Ore., Neil Kelly Company’s team of 20 highly experienced design professionals have remodeled more than 30,000 homes. Here, they share their collective knowledge based on working with material suppliers and vendors from all sectors of the industry to come up with the following design trends for this year.

While every homeowner has specific ideas on style, the overall trend is toward simpler living and low-maintenance design, but with accent marks of color and splash that don’t overpower. According to these experts, this aesthetic extends from clean and simple kitchen cabinetry to “bulletproof” countertops, pre-finished wood flooring and solid “pops” of glass, color, and sparkling textures. The trend toward simplicity is also manifested in a growing demand for safer, healthier, and more sustainable homes.

Building Trends for 2013


10.  Kitchen Cabinets  

A clean, simple, contemporary look will be popular with homeowners looking to economize and eliminate unnecessary clutter and fussy details that equate to high maintenance and complicated living.  For those who don’t want to spring for new cabinetry, re-facing or refinishing cabinets offers more bang for the buck.


9.    Countertops

Granite has been dethroned. While granite isn’t going away entirely, and still has many die-hard fans, the new king of countertops will be quartz composite. It’s the closest thing to a no maintenance, bullet-proof countertop material available today.


8.    Hardwood Floors

Pre-finished and engineered wood flooring will become more popular than the gold standard of site-finished flooring.  Pre-finished woods provide a hard, durable finish, are an installation time saver, and eliminate the sanding dust dilemma. Engineered wood floors are also compatible with under-floor heating systems – a big plus in cold climates.


 7.    Glass Backsplashes

Glass mosaic tile is on the way out. Taking its place are glass/stone/tile mosaic composites that can add more texture and visual interest plus tie in more readily with stone or quartz countertops. Be on the look-out for back-painted, solid glass panel backsplashes in contemporary settings that provide an ultra-clean, almost ethereal look to a polished, modern kitchen setting.


6.     Stylishly Simple Sinks

Goodbye double sinks; hello deep single-bowl sinks. With accessories such as fitted colanders and dish drains, deep single-bowl sinks have all the benefits of a divided sink plus the large size to actually fit that roasting pan or those baking sheets into the sink all at once. Stainless is still popular, but the quartz composites are a great value and durable option.


5.    Color Palette

Charcoal is the new black.  In 2013, this silky color will be everywhere as it blends the right amount of chocolate, grey and a touch of green.


4.    Bathroom Stone 

Synonymous with luxury, Calacatta marble will find its way into both traditional and contemporary bathrooms. Calacatta is a rarer stone than Carrera marble, but is quarried in the same region. It is valued for a whiter background and bolder grey veins.


3.    Texture and Sparkle

Bedazzled may find its way into home décor and design as homeowners seek a blend of classic textures and hues with pops of bold color and elements of sparkle.  Glossy glass tile backsplashes and sparkle on Polished Nickel fixtures will trend in 2013.


2.    Living in Your Home Longer

With many certified aging-in-place specialists, Neil Kelly designers predict a growing trend to help aging baby boomers safely “grow old” in their homes for as long as possible. Watch for easy kitchen and bath upgrades to enhance functionality, comfort, and safety.


1.    Healthy Home, Healthy Living

Green and sustainable design is here to stay.  The number one trend for 2013 will be to create a healthy living environment, free of toxins and harsh chemicals.  More and more homeowners are taking advantage of federal and state incentives to evaluate their home’s energy efficiency and overall performance.  Upgrade trends include the use of low VOC materials to improve indoor air quality, testing combustion safety, and radon mitigation.


Sidebar:  3 Lighting Trends to Watch

Kathleen Donohue – a Neil Kelly Company designer who received a 2012 Outstanding Remodeling Award from the Oregon Remodeling Association and two 2012 awards from the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI) – shares three lighting trends for 2013.

1.   “The biggest lighting trend I’m noticing is the switch in undercabinet task lighting to LED – in both the tape lighting and the versa-bar fixtures – in the warm white (3000K) version. The color rendition is great, the lighting produces almost no heat, and the bulbs last (almost) forever.  We’re also using more of these fixtures for interior cabinet lighting and above cabinet as indirect lighting accents.”


2. “I think we will be seeing more use of LED bathroom task lighting for many of the same reasons they are so popular as task lighting in kitchens: no heat output, long lasting, great color rendition, and small, low profile fixtures that will allow great flexibility.”


3. “Pendant-type fixtures will continue to be popular, bringing light down to a human scale in large spaces with vaulted ceilings.  Again, LED lamping with warm white color rendition will be in demand.  LED offers great opportunities to layer lighting in kitchens and bathrooms, using indirect, task, and ambient lighting for a professional-looking result.”




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