UberAir plans to run air taxis in at least three big cities by 2020; namely Dallas, LA and Dubai. If these prove to be successful, a transportation revolution could be sparked which could lead to the rise of airborne cities. Add artificial intelligence, environmental issues and the sharing economy and it seems fairly clear that the way in which we live, where we live and how we live could be forever changed by a dramatic evolution.
“The speed of technological development is just too rapid to ignore and because of the long-term nature of property investments (people own homes on average for x years) planning now for the future is critical” says Crispin Inglis, CEO of online real estate agency PropertyFox. He believes that homes could look vastly different as early as 2025.
“So if you are renovating, buying or building a home – or if you are a property developer – designing for the future, rather than the now, is the smart thing to do.”
PropertyFox has analysed some of the biggest trends, issues and tech currently impacting us and believes by 2025 our homes could have evolved in some of the following ways:
Water, water everywhere!
Once Cape Town emerges from the current crippling drought, the city’s water woes will be far from over. South Africa is listed in the top thirty water scarce countries and relying only on municipalities for water supply will not be sufficient. Home owners will have to consider installing rainwater tanks and double reticulation grey water systems. The popularity of large gardens and swimming pools will disintegrate and bathtubs may be a thing of the past too, with showers that automatically turn off after two or three minutes.
Roommates that you will always get along with
Amazon Echo’s SmartHome assistant, Alexa, will become the best roommate to date. Instead of finishing the milk, hogging the bathroom or bringing home her smelly boyfriend, Alexa will read you the news, answer the trickiest questions, take your phone calls, control the lights, open the curtains and update shopping lists. Alexa (the bot) will become a valuable member of the family so home owners will need to kit out their houses to be smart enough to allow Alexa to reach her full potential.
Garages – a thing of the past
It is possible that ‘helipads’ rooftops will come into existence. If air transport does not take off, Uber, Taxify and lift sharing apps will most certainly contribute to a large decline in car ownership. As a result, garages won’t be needed so we could see smaller plots or the garage areas being converted into other uses.
Homes built for sharing
Perhaps the portion of the property previously used to house cars will now be a separate entrance to welcome Airbnb guests who help cover the bond and running costs of the home?
Another possible modification could be that some aspects of a home, like storage, become purpose built for sharing. Currently, many people rent out their homes for short periods over December and January and they have to laboriously pack up all their personal possessions so that the house feels like a holiday home to guests. A neat solution is to install rotating cupboards that can move the host’s private possessions to the back at the click of a button, with pristine empty shelving, guest towels and linens moving to the front for guests.
The ‘cool kids’ may agree to live further away
With the combination of air taxis, self-driven cars, car sharing apps and Uber, there will be fewer cars on the road by 2020. This will more than likely mean fewer traffic jams and the city’s trendy crowd will be comfortable living further out of town with new areas springing up, full of good restaurants and bars.
With food prices continuing to balloon, people may start to grow their own produce. With gardens shrinking, it is likely that rooftops and vertical spaces will be transformed into vegetable and herb gardens.
In order to keep ecommerce purchases delivered by drones safe, there may be special landing hatches on the roofs, possibly refrigerated ones for food deliveries. As the drone arrives, you’ll be able to open the hatch remotely via your smart device or Alexa could possibly do it for you too.
It will cure your fear of commitment
Dave Nemeth (Trend Forecaster) believes that a ‘cool’ future feature will be an ‘on command interior design’: “Through LED and projection technology you will be able to change the look of your house on a daily basis. One day you can project rose gold wallpaper onto your lounge feature wall, and when that trend moves on you can go ahead and switch to a smoky blue paint effect. Where you place your TV will also be less of a big decision as mobile projectors will allow you to stream Netflix on any wall or surface around the house“.
Buying and selling (everything) is likely to all be app-based.
What can you expect to pay for a home in 2025?
The average price of a house similar to the one described will escalate as follows:
- Cost of an average home in 2017: R4.6 million.
- Cost of an average home in 2025: R7.5 million.
- Cost of an average home in 2017: R4 million.
- Cost of an average home in 2025: R18.4 million.
- Cost of an average home in 2017: R15.675 million.
- Cost of an average home in 2025: R55 million.
- Cost of average home in 2017: R4.2 million.
- Cost of average home in 2025: R7.6 million.
- Cost of average home in 2017: R3.825 million.
- Cost of average home in 2025: R5.4 million.