Home theatres were once a status symbol in real estate, but could be set to vanish from floorplans.
Just as the formal dining room has disappeared from Aussie houses, one major builder is predicting so too will the home theatre.
Floorplans change according to the social milieu.
The tradition of gathering the family for a Sunday roast killed off the separate dining room, and in the era of COVID-19, the desire for a dedicated study has become more important to homeowners.
Builder Burbank found home offices and guest bedrooms have become increasing popular with their customers, and as a consequence, home theatres are featuring less in new constructions.
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But within that trend are priorities specific to each state and how hard hit they were by lockdowns over the past two years.
Victorian and New South Wales buyers were more keen to include dedicated studies – given Melbourne was the most locked-down city in the world – compared to customers from Queensland, South Australia and Canberra, Burbank found.
Burbank's national design manager Damjan Jeremic said homeowners wanted spaces they could use more frequently than a purpose-built media room, with seating and a projector.
"Home theatres have generally fallen in popularity since their wide acceptance from say 2005 to 2015," he said.
"Most volume builders don't display their homes with theatres anymore either and generally display the space as a secondary or formal living space.
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"Even pre-COVID we started noticing that customers would select floor plan options on double storeys that convert the theatre into a guest bedroom which I think is a better alternative for our customers."
Mr Jeremic said an extra bedroom on a ground level was a resale-boosting addition.
Burbank surveyed 500 customers and found 54 per cent intended to stay in their new property for at least eight years and strived for longevity in the design they chose.
"We're seeing evidence that many people are reassessing their priorities when it comes to building a new home as they juggle the rising cost of living and back-to-back interest rate rises in recent months," Mr Jeremic said.
"Their decision making is influenced by cost-of-living factors, which is apparent in the fact they want to live in their homes longer, are tailoring them to the future and are looking to make savings wherever they can, both in the construction and ongoing operating costs."
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