Australians have developed a new appreciation for living in and decorating their humble abodes, according to new research from Amart Furniture.
The findings revealed that Australians used the extra time spent indoors since March to treat their home to some love, with a third of those surveyed updating their home décor and furnishings during the pandemic and 40 per cent revealing that making these updates gave them something to be passionate about during lockdown.
"So many of us can relate to making changes to the way we live in our homes at the moment," said Steve Norman, general manager of buying at Amart Furniture, "whether that's creating a new office space from scratch, or turning our living rooms into makeshift restaurants, cinemas and gyms."
Why so inspired? One third of the Aussies surveyed realised they needed a change once they were spending more time at home and nearly another third finally had time to make improvements.
Close to one in five people said they needed to change their home to suit their new lifestyle, including a desk set-up for those working from home, or a more comfortable outdoor living area to support lockdown conditions.
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An extraordinary 93.8 per cent of respondents said the changes brought them happiness and 91.5 per cent reported they were now enjoying their home more.
Indeed, 62 per cent even said their home improvement efforts made them want to spend more time at home, even after the easing of COVID restrictions.
The most popular ways of reinvigorating homes were revealed as buying new furniture (58.4 per cent), followed by rearranging existing furniture (50.4 per cent) and re-organising the home (43.7 per cent).
Some became so desperate for an excuse to shop, one in seven respondents threw away a perfectly good piece of furniture so they could buy something new.
In fact, one in 10 Aussies surveyed spent more than $1000 on home décor since the pandemic arrived on our shores and 18.1 per cent admitted they avoiding telling a loved one how much a new item of furniture cost.
This COVID decoration trend shows no sign of slowing down, with 65.7 per cent agreeing they will continue this newfound interest in the future.
Some of the more curious findings to come out of the survey include the fact more Aussies found picking out new home interiors more exciting than going on a date with their loved one - one in five of those surveyed would rather unpack brand new furniture than go on a first date. A further 15.8 per cent of the people surveyed would rather go through the effort of unpacking a new mattress and bed frame than chilling in front of Netflix with their partner.
One in six even admitting to cancelling plans or avoiding socialising in order to complete a home improvement project.
The're interesting admissions and perhaps symptomatic of how our priorities shifted during the prolonged period of time spent at home this year.