Houses have a life of well over 50 years, which means there will be a significant number of homes in existence today in 2062 as well. Living in these homes will be much the same as it is today. What will be different? There are two areas that I believe will be significantly different.
The first will be an amazing amount of technology built into new construction. Homes will have "smart" technology for both maintenance and convenience within. While lighting and utility controls will be "normal" in every new home, the biggest technology areas will be in the kitchen and entertainment.
First, kitchens will be made for ease of food preparation as most foods will be made and purchased to be served from their containers and will only need to be heated or processed in some manner. A large range, oven and preparation counters will be reduced in favor of more food storage of prepared, "almost ready to be served" food.
Larger microwave oven type devices will do everything from heating to grilling to baking. Service items will be disposable, reducing the need for dishwashers.
In the game room, there will be computer consoles at each and every seat for the person to enjoy his or her favorite entertainment. Entertainment will be "games" and activities that can be played with anyone else in the world. Visiting will be popular, and friends and families will get together to visit through the consoles with anyone, anywhere at anytime.
The second major difference in the housing market will be a different way to finance living quarters. Many will look upon housing as a commodity and not an investment. The attitude of many dwellers will be "it costs me a certain amount to live in this home and I want others to maintain the property and take the financial risk."
While mortgages, the type of which we know today, will still be in existence, look for more and different types of financing such as leasing, modified renting and lease/sale options.
Much of the housing will be smaller in square footage, with some portion of the home or patio being contiguous with the property next door. The home occupier will want to be free of the worry of maintenance, able to move without having to sell a home, and free from the perceived burden of a long-term mortgage loan.
John L. Strobeck is owner of the Tucson housing market research firm Bright Future Business Consultants.