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3 hot home-design trends

Maximize your space for socializing, storage

At San Francisco's annual Pacific Coast Builders Conference in June, which is always chock full of new products and ideas, a group of architects and other home design experts discussed what's new and hot in home design trends. Some of it represents a bit of a departure from past years, and if you're thinking of building or you're planning on a remodel -- either for yourself or to make things more attractive for a potential buyer -- these trends might offer some valuable insights to help with your planning. Garages are doing a lot more Many home designers are looking at ways to design smaller homes with spaces that serve multiple uses, and that's now including the garage. With space in many homes at a premium, it's not too much of a stretch to consider cleaning up that vast cold expanse of concrete and making it more than a place to park the car. Garages are now sharing space with exercise areas, hobby rooms and other uses. One of the most important uses for the garage is st...