Home improvement projects are finally on the rise. This makes now a more exciting time than ever to take on a renovation project and create that dream space.

We polled over 50 home improvement experts to find out what trends are in store for 2011. From eco-conscious decisions to tech-savvy upgrades, we collected the must-know trends for the upcoming year right from the source—industry insiders. This is what they had to say…

Home Improvement Trends

Home Updates

1. Staying Put
Due to the housing market, homeowners will choose to stay in their homes and invest in updates rather than upgrade by moving. While renovations that add value to the house will be important, homeowners will pursue designs that embody their personalities and transform their home into what they love most.

2. Mini-Renovations
Homeowners will realize that small updates to their home can dramatically change the look and feel of the space. For example, repainting existing shelves and cupboards or installing decorative crown molding can have a large impact without the need for a major remodel.

3. Curb Appeal
In the past, many homeowners have focused on renovating their inside living spaces. In 2011, there will be more exterior facelifts to the home, spanning projects from installing new roofing and siding to simply painting the front door.

4. Simplified Spaces
Larger projects will be less about adding new space and more about simplifying and reorganizing existing space. Homeowners will consider moving or removing walls in order to open up rooms and maximize the space they have.

Green Living

5. Eco-Lighting
More homeowners will light their homes in eco-friendly ways in 2011. Natural light, through the use of skylights and large windows, and energy-efficient LEDs will become more common ways of illuminating the home.

6. Sustainable Materials
Homeowners will be more aware than ever of the components that make up their homes. Recycled and reused materials will be used throughout the house. Natural resources that can be harvested without harming the environment, like cork and bamboo, will play a larger role in flooring and furniture.

7. Healthy Homes
While homeowners will be more concerned with promoting a healthy environment through green homes, they will also take time to make their homes safer for their families. Look for the rise of low-VOC paints, more accessible than ever, and products that increase indoor air quality in 2011.

8. Green Plumbing
Water efficient faucets, toilets, and showers, as well as tankless water heaters, will be installed in more homes. Homeowners will embrace greener plumbing systems, such as gray water recovery and solar options.

Efficient Spaces

9. Hybrid Spaces
As more and more people work from home or bring their work home with them, hybrid rooms, such as home offices, will become increasingly important. Other multifunction spaces will merge the purposes of existing rooms and become a family destination, such as “kitchen lounges.”

10. Smaller Spaces
In order to save money while still breathing new life into their homes, homeowners will concentrate on maximizing the usefulness of the space they have. Emphasis will shift from large indoor spaces and expansions to designing limited spaces to have multiple functions.

Tech Takeovers

11. Smart Homes
Experts predict more smart appliances, lighting, meters, and home automation this year, but caution homeowners to understand the systems they install. Technology is a large part of our lives and it will continue to evolve in the home.

12. A/V Systems
Smart phones and media devices have changed when and where we listen to music. On-demand movies and television have changed our viewing expectations. Homeowners will be more willing to spend a portion of their budget on entertainment technology, including audio systems, big screen televisions, and home theaters.

Nature Indoors

13. Outdoor Extensions
Rather than extend indoor living spaces, homeowners will bridge the divide between outside and inside spaces. When expanding the home, building new decks and porches will become more popular in 2011.

14. Natural Inspirations
Bringing nature inside the home will be a theme this year. People will balance their increasingly tech-heavy lives with inspirations from the natural world. Through the use of color and organic materials, homeowners will evoke nature through smart design.

Value Awareness

15. Efficiency & Conservation
Energy efficient lighting and appliances, as well as faucets and fixtures that promote water conservation, will be used not only for greener living, but cheaper living. Homeowners will start choosing greener options simply because they are more cost-efficient in the long term.

16. Consumer Collaboration
Consumers will educate themselves on the choices they are making and become pros at hunting down bargains. Expect homeowners to be active participants in the home improvement process rather than passively taking expert advice.

17. Home Worth
Luxury renovations will take a backseat in 2011 as homeowners pursue projects that provide the biggest bang for the buck in terms of increasing their home’s value.

18. Recycled & Redone
By visiting more flea markets, buying more antiques, and reupholstering or rearranging existing furniture, homeowners will save money and go greener by choosing the old instead of the new.

More Color

19. Neutral Bases
Gray continues to be a popular choice for a neutral color. Homeowners will target big pieces and walls with neutrals, but inject color into accessories and smaller pieces.

20. Vibrant Splashes
Pantone announced the 2011 color of the year: Honeysuckle. Small doses of vibrant colors like Honeysuckle will be embraced by homeowners to large effect this year. These splashes of bright color will uplift and revitalize the home.

Want to see this information as an infographic? See our 2011 home improvement trends infographic.

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