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There are  over 700 million active users on Instagram, reports Business Insider, and around 50% of users follow a wide range of companies to influence their idea of style and design. The wide array of images of everything from kitchens to poolside relaxation areas have led homeowners to gain  a greater awareness of trends and to find the inspiration they need to turn their own homes into an oasis. If you have bought a plot of land for a new build, what features should you consider to ensure your home incorporates a few current trends while bearing the fruit of a ‘design for life’ concept?

Green Spaces Within A Home

With scientific studies showing that  plants in homes can boost productivity and lower stress, many homes are boasting green spaces that serve to divide spaces – including vertical or ‘living walls’ graced with plants that are easy to maintain even with little sunlight. As stated by country living specialists  Bayberry by Blenheim, country-like natural spaces are increasingly making their way into modern home design. This effect can be achieved through luxury landscaping, central courtyards or other spaces that bring a little of the outdoors world inside.

Outdoor Entertainment

Green spaces may be making their way indoors, but it works the other way around too. Homeowners are also wishing to enjoy the most of the great outdoors on porches, outdoor dining spaces, and party areas by the pool – with everything from bars to decked zones for sun loungers/Balinese beds. Bars are more than a simple annexation to indoor home structures. Some are stand-alone structures boasting electric doors/shutters, which can be closed during rainy or windy weather with a touch of a remote control panel.

Connected Spaces

The ‘open kitchen’ concept, which unites the kitchen with the living room and entrance hall, continues to attract design buffs. The idea goes beyond that of enhancing communication: it is also based on the wish to enhance the flow of natural light through the home. This trend, in turn, is leading to the penchant for glass walls and floor-to-ceiling doors. Different types of glass (e.g. toned glass, Low E glass and insulated glazing units) can be used for improved cooling/heating effects, with the positioning and type of glass determining which option to go for.

Sustainable Materials

Recycled and reclaimed materials are now highly coveted, with reclaimed wood being a favorite for flooring. Eco-friendly wood, such as bamboo and other materials certified by the Forest Stewardship Council, are also popular, as are newer recyclable building materials such as cork and recycled metal. Spaces like kitchens are boasting a blend of these materials, with mixed metals forming a modernistic contrast to traditional floors made with environmentally-friendly wood.

Green, connected, and outdoor spaces are just a few features being given priority in currently newly-built homes. Sustainability continues to play a strong role in everything from choice of mat