Glass floors bring a new spectrum of perception at the apex of current real estate and interior design trends.
As designers and glass floor contractors polish the art of using these diamonds in the rough in residential homes, real estate investors, home builders, and discerning homeowners might find this the sparkling element that seals the deal when selling properties for top dollar.
Glass Floors in Innovative, Architectural Art
“Glass walkways bend time and space, creating windows of opportunity never dreamed of.”
Over 888,089 glass floor design images, garnering thousands more reviews and shares, on Houzz.com alone, leaves no question that glass is back. Yet, few realize just how monumental and valuable glass tiles and glass floor design has been throughout history.
Glass architecture began with tiles and mosaics as early as 2,500 BC. New innovation and technology has seen major leaps from the gold leaf glass tiles of the Byzantine Empire to the Roaring 20s, to new trends in glass walkways and flooring in late 2014.
11 historic, breathtaking, mind bending, glass floor feats:
- Calgary Tower, Calgary
- CN Tower, Toronto
- Spinnaker Tower, Portsmouth
- Ostankino Tower, Moscow
- Tokyo Tower, Tokyo
- Blackpool Tower
- The Ledge, Chicago (1,122 ft.)
- Grand Canyon Sidewalk (4,000 ft.)
- Museum of Sydney
- Salvador Dali’s personal glass floor to enable new perspectives in surrealist art
- The Science Centre AHHAA, planetarium in Estonia incorporates a glass floor for complete 4D experience, as if you are floating in space
Beyond these fantastic examples of glass floors in world class monuments, new design and installation methodology has made glass so attractive that one brick company in Texas now has an illuminated glass floor in their lobby.
Combining both that special ‘X factor’, and practicality, it’s easy to rave about them, but what hard data, facts, and new trends support putting glass floors in residential properties today?
Real Estate & Design Trends
Glass flooring is the convergence point of multiple current real estate and interior design trends.
Five trends that tip their hats to glass:
- Outdoor living space as the number one house crush factor
- Micro-apartment construction
- Green building
- Luxury home rehabbing and high end house flipping
- Remote working
According to the Realtor.com House Crush survey and a feature from Allay Magazine, outdoor living spaces are now the number one turn on for home buyers. Glass is perfect for blending both interior and outdoor design. Sun rooms are okay, but a glass floor over hang, or view through to the pool or atrium below may be even more stunning.
Due to municipal authority pressure, and the higher profits which come from dense building plans micro-apartments are coming in mass. This is despite home buyers declaring their top 3 wants in 2014 as “view, outdoor living, and chef’s kitchens,” suggesting suburban life is a better fit. Glass floors and walk ways can do wonders for maximizing and creating useable space in small apartments and lofts, while retaining light and roomy feel.
Green building is no longer an option. It is mandatory in many areas, and just good business where it isn’t yet. According to the CCIM Institute landlords must go green in order to keep tenants, and LEED certification, and lighting are critical areas which can save the most waste, and yield top results. In many cases tenants also have to reimburse their landlords for energy efficient improvements.
From the Hamptons in the Northeast to Los Angeles in Southern California, real estate investors have increasingly been moving into fixing and flipping high end luxury homes. Coverage by the Union Tribune San Diego has revealed some Orange County investors are now also being heavily funded by the nation’s largest private equity funds in these efforts. With millions of dollars on the line, and rapidly increasing competition, unique and dramatic features such as glass staircases are needed to stand out, and seal the deal.
A Stanford University study published on August 18th, 2014 reveals 50% of US, UK and German managers already working from home. Forrester Research projects 63 million US workers (43% of the workforce) will be telecommuting employees with 24 months. Glass floors could help home based workers balance having their own sanctuaries of quiet, while being able to keep an eye on the kids in the living room below, and to prevent the grind of solitary confinement from impacting productivity.
How Glass Can Help Sell Houses Faster, and for Top Dollar
5 ways glass lends itself to speeding up the marketing time of homes, and maximizing offers:
- More glass means more light and better angles for stunning real estate photography
- Glass won’t stain like carpet or wood flooring
- Underfloor ambient lighting can be used to enhance mood in prospective home buyers
- Increased energy efficiency can make homes with glass floors more affordable
- Design neutrality is consistently among the top recommendations of Realtors when providing lists of tips for selling homes faster and for more money
Glass Applications for Your Home
- Glass enclosed showers
- Glass balconies and rails
- Glass staircases
- Glass pavers
- Glass floors above wine cellars and basements
- Unique accents and focal points
- Glass walkways
- Water features, without the mess
Little Known Benefits of Glass in Interior Design
- Glass pavers can hold up to 1,800lbs, depending on specifications, and can be 3x stronger than stone or granite
- Texture and color options allow glass tiles to be customized with virtually endless choices
- Qualifies for LEED points and meets NAHB building guidelines
- Has no negative impact on air quality
- Being nonporous, glass is one of the most hygienic building materials to use in a home
How much do Glass Floors Cost?
Glass floors range in cost depending on customization, yet can be far more affordable than most imagine.
Factors impacting cost of installing a glass floor in Southern California may include:
- Total square footage of install
- Size of individual glass tiles
- Thickness of tiles and load bearing requirements
- Colors and textures chosen
- What you plan to put underneath your glass floor
- Shape (circular sections may need to be far thicker to bear weight than small square tiles)
Homeowners are best served by obtaining a quote from a reliable, local residential glass floor installer.
In summary; in addition to being absolutely visually stunning, glass floors come with numerous benefits and perks. They are healthy, strong, and can potentially be one of the best features and tools when it comes time to sell a home. More than this, glass floors and walkways have been proven add iconic value to monumental real estate and art projects throughout history, and have many practical advantages for everyday living. Their visual appeal, and current status as a top trend will certainly not go unnoticed by visitors either.
If you are considering having a glass floor, the next step is to get in contact with a glass expert at Slater Glass.