2018 is in full swing, and now that all the holiday bustle has subsided, it’s time to start thinking about the changes you can make to your business that will have a real impact in the upcoming year. And one major way to make an impact on your team, your community, and potential buyers?
Redesigning your sales office.
Your sales office is an incredibly important part of your organization; it’s where potential buyers go to learn more about your homes and decide whether they want to be a part of your community. It’s where your team works together to come up with new and innovative ways to drive more people to your community. It’s where your residents come to get questions answered. It’s the heart of your community, and if you want to get the most out of your sales office, you need to invest in design that’s going to help you meet your goals.
Let’s take a look at five of this year’s biggest design trends that you’ll want to incorporate into your sales office in 2018:
Cork experienced a major resurgence in the design world in 2017, and its showing no signs of slowing down in 2018. Which is good news, because there are few materials that work as well in a sales office than cork.
Incorporating a cork wall into your sales office works for a few reasons. First, it offers flexibility. Just like a smaller cork board, you can easily move things, put new things up, take things down, and rearrange things to create new, visually interesting displays for your sales office. This kind of flexibility is great when you have something new and interesting to share with potential buyers (like a new floor plan or home model). A cork board is also helpful for your team; a cork wall is a great tool to have for planning and strategy. From laying out marketing materials to brainstorming new techniques to drive new buyers into your community, having a large cork wall will help your team visualize their ideas – but then can easily be taken down when necessary.
Going green
Another trend that’s taking over the office design world is biophilic design – or, in other words, going green.
Bring natural elements into your sales office (like plants, live walls, or nature-based materials like bamboo) not only creates a more welcoming atmosphere, but it can actually boost the mood and productivity of everyone who walks through your doors – sales team and potential buyers alike.
According to a report from Human Spaces, incorporating biophilic design and incorporating more natural elements into your office space can increase feelings of well-being by 13% and give productivity an 8% boost. Which means your team and your potential buyers are going to get more done in your sales office – and feel better doing it.
Infusing color
A lot of sales office have a tendency to play it safe when it comes to design, with grays, beiges, and other neutrals dominating the space. But this year, neutrals are going to take a backseat to color – and lots of it.
Each year, the Pantone Institute (which is widely considered the world’s leading authority on color), releases the color palettes they predict are going to be the most popular and versatile in the upcoming 12 months. And this year, the palettes are bold, bright, and impactful.
Some of the palettes include Playful, a quirky mix of lime, yellow, and blue; Intricacy, which mixes metallics with a deep berry red; and TECH-nique, a combination of vibrant blues, greens, and purples.
If  you’re attached to neutrals and these color palettes feel extreme, try incorporating smaller pops of color into your neutral color palette. The infusion of color will make your sales office feel more lively and vibrant – and will definitely grab the attention of potential buyers.
Open floor plans
The last design trend you’re going to want to think about incorporating into your sales office in the upcoming year is an open floor plan.
Smaller, more traditional offices can feel confining – and can make the common area of your sales office feel crowded, especially when your team is working with a group of potential buyers. An open floor plan will make your sales office feel more spacious and welcoming – and it will give your sales team more freedom in the way they work.
Incorporating an open floor plan with different workstations will give your office a more casual, “at home” feel that can be appealing to buyers, and the freedom to move around and work where they please will allow your sales team to make better use of the space. An open floor plan also allows for more collaboration and cooperation between your employees, which will only help your sales team become more efficient (and help you sell more properties as a result).
Incorporating technology into your sales office design has been a trend for awhile, but in 2018, it’s a non-negotiable. If you want to stay competitive and close potential buyers, you need to incorporate cutting-edge technology into your sales office design – the kind of technology that makes the process of viewing and purchasing a property in your community faster, easier, and more informative.
Staff each of your workstations with a tablet so potential buyers can view your floor plans, look at model photos, and fill out paperwork – all in one place. Put flat-screens on the wall that show drone footage of your community. Do away with paper and make all of your processes (from filling out applications to signing final paperwork) digital. The more you can bring technology into your office design, the better your sales office will perform.
2018 is an exciting year for design – and if you incorporate these design trends into your sales office, it’ll be an exciting year for your business as well.