• One thing is for sure -- the definition of what makes a home has evolved drastically.
  • Energy efficiency and urban farming are green trends that buyers are actively seeking.
  • The rising costs of living nationwide are driving many to look into multigenerational housing.

The landscape of real estate evolved in 2015. As we move into a new year, it’s the perfect time to reflect on popular topics and trends. And one core theme is certain: the definition of a home is no longer a cookie-cutter description.

Spotmatik Ltd / Shutterstock.com

Spotmatik Ltd / Shutterstock.com

5. The silver tsunami

Baby boomers are looking for custom and efficient housing solutions. This group has received a ton of buzz this year as they transition into retirement villages, lock-and-leave communities and condos or remodel their existing homes to fit the next chapter of their lives.

Luxe amenities, no maintenance lawns and low-cost utilities are all pluses with this generation.

Tammy Strobel / Flickr.com

Tammy Strobel / Flickr.com

4. Tiny custom living spaces

After the bubble burst, consumers needed to cleanse their palates of McMansions and excess. This need created the perfect climate for the minimalist lifestyle to gain popularity.

Tiny homes — or homes under 500 square feet — have become a popular option for those on a tight budget who want to live a big life.

The fascination with small spaces grew as elaborate tree houses and “she sheds” also became popular for backyards. Everyone wants a tiny shelter to escape to. Who wouldn’t want a special space?

littleny_197889203

3. Green hipster urban farming

Solar panels, water-saving features, high-efficiency insulation, recycled construction materials — all of these were items of interest in 2015.

Consumers are taking green solutions seriously when considering their housing options, and of course, agents must, too. The ability to grow organic food and raise chickens are also popular requests.

Communities that offer farmer’s markets, artisan shops and better quality options for farm-to-table food are becoming new considerations for buyers who are looking to relocate.

Csondy / Shutterstock.com

Csondy / Shutterstock.com

2. Multigenerational housing

Families are now larger and need more flexibility for housing because of the rising cost of living across the country. The growing cost of rent, student loans and assisted living has priced many single individuals out of independent living options.

Many mid-level buyers are looking for homes that will offer room to grow for parents, grandparents and returning adult children.

In-law suites, garage apartments, efficient kitchens and laundry rooms are attractive renovations for families joining forces to achieve a better quality of life.

Xavier Arnau / iStock.com

Xavier Arnau / iStock.com

1. Millennial homebuyers

Who wishes they had a dollar for every time this phrase was used in the media? This buzz-worthy generation is the next wave of homebuyers, and they require a revised skill set when approached for sales and customer service.

This generation is smart, frugal, tech-savvy and ready to buy. Are you the agent to sell them their next home?

What do you think? Did we miss any 2015 trends? Please comment below, and share what you thought the big trends of 2015 were.

By day, Rachael Hite helps agents develop their business. By night, she’s tweeting for listingdepot.com.

Email Rachael Hite.