A sharp increase in interest rates and the rising cost of living is putting pressure on consumers to re-examine their lifestyle choices, with downscaling being one of the options for homeowners who are feeling financially squeezed.
But it’s not only those who are watching their wallets who are making this move. ‘Empty-nesters’, whose kids have grown up and left home to study or work, are also looking to move into complexes and residential estates in central locations. ‘A smaller home with less maintenance appeals particularly to this generation,’ notes Suvasin Moodley, head of decorative marketing at Plascon. ‘This is because selling a big home frees up cash for new hobbies and longed-fortravel experiences. Plus, there’s more of a community spirit in an estate than in a neighbourhood with high walls and large properties.’
Individuals who work from home and young families also tend tofavour this type of living arrangement, in which gyms, squash or tennis courts, a golf course and even jogging paths are laid on to encourage an active lifestyle, and where kids can cycle and play in the streets due to excellent security, vigilant neighbours and regulated traffic speeds.
One of the adjustments these downscalers have to make is in their interior décor choices for their smaller living spaces, and paint colour plays an important role in this. ‘While there is likely to already be a recommended neutral-spectrum colour code for the exterior of a compact city-based townhouse estate, the Plascon palette is truly your oyster when it comes to its interior,’ says Moodley.
The rule of thumb when creating an interior design scheme, she says, is that neutrals, greys, whites and rich bluey-greens all contribute towards making an interior feel several degrees more spacious, not to mention having a broader appeal when it comes to re-selling. A fresh coat of slightly off-white paint, like the popular Plascon Ray of Light (07-A2-3), provides a clean, updated look without minimising the surrounding space.
In the living room – generally the epicentre of any small-scale home – an inviting statement that doesn’t overpower the entire room can be achieved by painting one key wall a bold but soothing colour such as Plascon Eye of the Storm (B7-C1-1). And adding touches of a muted grey, such as Plascon Serene Setting (B3-C2-2), around a large window, can create a dynamic effect as the light changes.
In a space that leads out onto a garden or balcony, a bright and breezy hue – think Plascon Whipped Cream (07-B2-3) – is a good bet for the walls (and floors too), to bounce natural sunlight all around the room. And for smaller apartments on upper storeys that may feel far from any soothing greenery, a choice like the highly popular Plascon Mulberry Leaf (G1-C1-1), especially in a study or as a feature wall colour, is a natural friend in its ability to offer much-needed eco-friendly calm.
in the bedroom or bathroom, where downtime in the form of a snooze or a restorative soak in the bath is typically sought, a soft, cool grey like Plascon Ripple (34), or a warming neutral such as Plascon Cream of Mushroom (32), may offer the perfect cocooning effect.
For more information visit www.plascon.com.