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Life at Home 2020 – insights into the home of the future

Three people are huddling together and smiling to pose for a photo in their home.

We believe that home is the most important place in the world. That’s why every year we speak to thousands of people across the world in different types of homes to find out what’s changed, and what really matters. This is our annual Life at Home Report. Our work has always been driven by a desire to learn, inspire and enable people to make their life at home that little bit better, no matter where or how they live. In 2020, during the pandemic, our life at home became more important than ever.

A mother and her two children are standing in their backyard. She is looking at a plant and moving its leaves with her hand.

Every year, we publish a single Life at Home Report; however due to the dramatic effects of lockdowns across the world, this year we took a different approach. As well as surveying thousands of people across the world, we also spent two months speaking regularly to 20 households in six countries, exploring how different people in different cultures experienced lockdown. They gave us a unique insight into how it affected them emotionally, what changed, and how they are now rethinking life at home. They shared their experiences, their ups and downs, new routines and rituals that helped them pull through.

This year’s report shares the stories of what we can learn from life at home in lockdown, but also offers a glimpse into the future. We look at trends in the way we live, many of which have been accelerated by how we have responded to the pandemic. From the growing importance of being in touch with nature in our homes, to the transformation of the spaces we now live in, to a reassessment of our roles in the home – we identify the trends that will shape our homes of the future.

A young woman wearing bright yellow pants and a pair of glasses is sitting on her bed. She is smiling at her phone.

Our research suggests that 2020 truly represents a dramatic shift and a new answer to the question: "What does home mean?"

A computer screen is showing five people on a video conference call.

The year that our home became our world

2020 is a year where many of us have been confined to our homes for long periods. During this year, through new rituals, routines and adjustments many people have made home work despite the challenges. For others, the experience has been more difficult, and our homes have not lived up to the task. The report assesses how our homes have affected our well-being in 2020.

A dog is lying in front of a mirror. In the mirror a woman is sitting behind her laptop and taking a picture of the dog.

Different types of home, ready for anything

Our homes have become our offices, our schools, our sanctuary. Many of us previously took our homes for granted. Now all of us are looking at our homes in a new light, as multi-purpose spaces that need to be set up and ready for any and all eventualities.

An elderly woman wearing an apron is holding a metal ruler, concentrating on the piece of art in front of her.

The home of the future

We explore the new standards and new aspirations we have as we reappraise our homes. We will have new ambitions for the places we live in. We are challenging each other to think differently about our roles in our homes, to make our homes work harder for us than ever before. 2020 will give rise to a new standard of life at home.

Explore our rich breadth of knowledge from the last seven years of Life at Home research and find out more about how people around the world have responded to the pandemic.