Wouldn’t it be great if we could accurately forecast the future and act upon the insights we might glean? History has proven time and again that ‘accuracy’ and ‘forecast’ are hard to merge successfully, but studying trends does improve the odds. With that in mind, we’ve looked at a long list of trends that affect us in our home and business lives in order to see how 2018 might change our collective lot in life. Here are four trends that suggest major shifts for Paul Davis ahead.

  1. Passive Fire Protection. Common sense suggests that passive fire protection (PFP) is an excellent idea. PFP attempts to contain fires or slow their spread through use of fire-resistant walls, floors, and doors. A fire-resistant material is fabricated to resist burning and withstand heat. Fire-retardant materials are designed to burn slowly. An example of a fire-resistant material is one that is used in bunker gear worn by firefighters to protect them from the flames of a burning building.
  2. 3D Printing. The industrial age brought us factories to manufacture what we needed. The digital age brings us architectural models, household sinks and fixtures, component parts, and more by eliminating long processes, production lines, packaging and shipping in favor of lower cost printers that produce items right before our eyes. Look for 3D print shops nearby that promise and deliver amazing items in minutes. Restoration materials can be a likely beneficiary.
  3. Home-Based Work. Companies are using more freelance and contract workers to manage the skill gaps in their staff. The most in-demand freelance services are data entry, academic writing, Excel projects, data processing, Web search and Facebook-based jobs. Many freelance jobs pay by the project while others pay hourly, and the rates can vary greatly. The more experience, the greater the earning potential as demand soars. With greater time spent at home, the need for better home safety and business insurance coverage is a likely result.
  4. Smaller is Big in Home Purchasing. First-time home buyers are continuing to seek smaller homes than their parents had. In addition, aging baby boomers are downsizing to make their lives more manageable and less expensive. Smart home builders are connecting the dots by connecting indoor and outdoor spaces, where possible, to make their home offerings appear grander while keeping square footage under roof smaller.