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Step Into Space in Home of Future.
It's not getting bigger it's getting better.

Home interiors are evolving to reflect a taste for more casual living spaces rather than formal living rooms and dining rooms, according to a survey of Chicago-area home builders recently reported in The Journal Newspapers. Builders also expect kitchens to get bigger and two-car garages to become three-car garages.

Chicago is the nation's fifth-busiest housing market and a bellwether for trends seen at the national level. According to the National Association of Home Builders, living rooms are giving way to dens and family rooms. Nationally, as many as one in four houses being built have no living room in the formal sense. One builder interviewed in the Chicago survey predicted the living room and formal dining room both will die. That opinion may not be universal but it's safe to say that more space will be devoted to informal living at the expense of formal space.

Popular exterior features will not change so much because they remain classic--brick and shingles in the East, and stucco and tile in the West. But new things are arriving in the master bath and boudoir--separate his and her bathrooms and walk-in closets, for example. Separate sleeping rooms are in demand, indicating when it comes to snoozing, more spouses want to be alone.

Three out of four Chicago builders predicted that kitchens will continue to grow to make room for innovative ideas not normally associated with making and consuming food. How about an open floor plan with family room and kitchen combined? Or a study area? It's no secret that kitchens get more use than practically any other room. Builders are including skylights, more and better lighting, tray ceilings and open space to make the whole area both inviting and practical.