Interior Design Trends for New Home Builds in 2020

Here’s what’s trending in interior design, decor, kitchen and bathroom appliances and flooring in 2020.

We spoke to Wendy King, Senior Designer at Landmark Homes North Shore about the new build design trends she sees for 2020.

Landmark Homes can help you with all of the design choices for your new build. As a new home designer, it’s Wendy’s job to keep up to date with interior and house design trends so she can help their clients with their plans to design their dream home.

Wendy knows all the suppliers and their product ranges and innovations as soon as they become available, so she has a wealth of product knowledge to draw on for inspiration.

We asked Wendy about what she sees are the new build design trends for 2020.

1. Matte finishes on door handles and tapware

Matte finishes are the new trend for new builds in 2020. “In the past it used to be that everyone wanted chrome, then it moved to black, now its brushed nickel for everything from door handles to tapware.”


Landmark Homes runner-up 2019 TIDA New Zealand Designer Bathroom with brushed nickel tapware

2. Natural timbers and moody colours in kitchens and living areas

Interior design trends for 2020 new builds include lots of natural timbers and colour is having a revival after a period of internal walls being painted white to create a neutral backdrop. According to Wendy “moody blues and grey greens are making a comeback with strong timber accents in the kitchen.”

Laminate flooring continues to be popular and is the number one product for kitchens, dining and living areas in 2020. “It looks like the real thing but performs better, being scratch resistant and providing a warmer surface to walk on, a key consideration if there are pets or kids in the house.”

There’s also a wide range of price options to choose from making it a great product to suit all budgets. A great example of the beauty of laminate flooring is Landmark Homes Taupo’Design & Build Showhome with a Belle laminate in a Pinnacle Oak Lime Wash.


Landmark Homes Taupo’s Design & Build Showhome with a Belle laminate in a Pinnacle Oak Lime Wash

3. Window casings for better home ventilation

With new regulatory requirements for homes to have proper ventilation from every room in the house, passive ventilation systems are trending in 2020. Wendy explained, “In the past, window joinery was geared towards ensuring a tight seal so no air could enter the room. Now it’s about passive ventilation systems.”

For example, Vantage has developed a window solution that incorporates a manual slide to allow the vent to be opened and closed. This is ideal for ensuring airflow into the room without having to worry about leaving a window open when you’re not home. You can also achieve passive ventilation by using APL Urbo double tooth venting window fasteners that allows the window to have a small gap but remain fastened.


Vantage Passive Ventilation System with manual slide allowing the vents to open and close

4. Single colour kitchen appliances and bathroom fittings

Up until recently, stainless steel was the must have for kitchens, from sinks to appliances. Although still hugely popular, people are now using black as a statement by choosing to have all their appliances and fixtures, including in the bathroom, in one colour.

With the wide range of colour options available, using one colour throughout the kitchen, including the stove, creates a dramatic and eye catching effect. A trend that has been gathering momentum over the past couple of years, expect to see more black sing-colour fittings in 2020 new builds.

5. Kitchen walk in pantries and sculleries

Another trend Wendy is seeing is the requirement for a walk-in pantry and/or scullery. “With modern homes designed to be open plan with the living, dining and kitchen areas flowing into one another, people are looking for an area where they can stack the dishes and do the washing up out of sight.”

A walk-in pantry also provides a useful area to store kitchen appliances and free up kitchen workbenches. A fine example of this is in our two storey Design & Build in Karaka, Auckland which was custom designed for a renowned food stylist to store her extensive collection of food preparation equipment.


Landmark Homes Design & Build Karaka, Auckland kitchen with separate scullery


The long scullery is filled with storage spaces for utensils and equipment with convenient access from both ends

6. Outdoor kitchens

Having a good indoor/outdoor flow is a key requirement when building a new home and what better way to achieve this than having an outdoor kitchen. In fact, outdoor kitchens are the hottest trend in home design for 2020 according to Wendy.

“They provide an area where you can entertain year-round and usually include a built in, covered BBQ area and outdoor sink.” The sky’s the limit with what you can include and pizza ovens, storage for utensils and a bar fridge are all popular options.

Landmark Homes Ruapehu design features a gorgeous outside pizza oven with wood stack below for year-round al fresco dining.


Landmark Homes ready to build Ruapehu home with outdoor pizza oven

Last Year Wendy was awarded runner-up in the 2019 TIDA New Zealand Designer Bathroom awards for the stunning bathroom design she did for a new home build on Auckland’s North Shore. You can read more about this award-winning home here: https://www.landmarkhomes.co.nz/landmark-homes-named-runner-up-in-2019-tida-new-zealand-designer-bathrooms-awards/.

Is 2020 the year you get to Design and Build your dream home?

For more inspiration and ideas, why not download our free book. Inside you’ll find some of our very best Landmark Homes from around New Zealand, including a number of award-winning design & build projects, plus a showcase of our popular Ready to Build plans.

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