A new study of Brummies aged 65 plus has revealed a list of interior trends for retirees that are IN and the ones that are well and truly OUT. The study, by leading developer of retirement communities, McCarthy Stone, has found that today’s over 65s in Birmingham are after top spec home security systems (a must for 55 percent), electric vehicle charging points (43 percent), Alexa (41 percent) and hive heating (29 percent).


Over 65s in Birmingham also want walk-in wardrobes (61 percent), wet rooms (55 percent), kitchen islands (48 percent), wine fridges (36 percent) and modern art on the walls (16 percent). On the flip side, as many as 72 percent said fluffy toilet seat covers were old-hat, while 68 percent cannot stand avocado bathrooms suites, and 55 percent would rather have a fashionable blind than a net curtain on their window.

When it comes to tableware, 62 percent wouldn’t dream of using doilies, 56 percent would never lay out a lace tablecloth, and 62 percent wouldn’t be seen dead using a tea cosy. And it’s also becoming increasingly unlikely that older Brummie retirees will have cheeky gnome statues adorning their gardens (51 percent), patterned carpets in their rooms (48 percent) and pebbledash walls on the outside of their homes (50 percent).

Forget upholstered floral print furniture - 15 percent of those polled want a home full of houseplants, hanging pendant lights (15 percent), and a minimalist kitchen (26 percent). While 12 percent would like on-trend industrial fixtures and fittings, 9 percent a home gym, and a further 4 percent a yoga practice area.

Cheryl Bisset, Divisional Sales and Marketing Director for McCarthy Stone, which conducted the research said: “This research shows how today's over 65s in Birmingham are favouring stylish home environments they can tailor to their modern and vibrant lifestyles.

“McCarthy Stone apartments offer plenty of sophisticated design features from spacious open plan living and minimalist kitchens, to walk in wardrobes and wet rooms, and are the perfect canvas to add their own unique style and personality, however they choose. Our research also shows the importance of location and with our unique settings, positioned close to local high streets, whatever our homeowners are into there's something for everyone right on the doorstep.”

The study also found that the over-65s are NOT fans of flowery and patterned wallpaper (48 percent), traditional china figurines (47 percent) and shag pile carpets (40 percent). They are also saying goodbye to flowery bed covers (38 percent), lavender soap (37 percent), and talcum powder (31 percent).

So it’s no surprise that almost HALF (49 percent) of Brummies aged 65 and over agree that it’s a complete misconception that older people are less stylish than younger generations. In fact, 52 percent of today’s over 65s think that when it comes to interiors and fashion, older Brummies are able to put their own stamp on things and don’t follow the crowd, while 58 percent say they avoid short lived trends and instead stick to classic, timeless styles instead.

One in two (45 percent) even say they have more self-confidence in their style than younger people do. And when it comes to seeking inspiration for fashion and interiors, 16 percent of older people in Birmingham look to social media platforms like Instagram or Pinterest.

The research also revealed that today’s over 65s are all about location, location, location, and would like to live close to parks and green spaces (68 percent), good restaurants (68 percent) and farmers’ markets (57 percent). 41 percent want to be near a good coffee house, 54 percent are after an independent greengrocer and 27 percent would like to be a stone’s throw away from an artisan bakery.

McCarthy Stone is behind the Wheatley Place Retirement Living Plus development in Shirley, which, when complete, will be exclusively available to the over-70s. The development will offer a choice of one and two bedroom apartments as well as a range of shared facilities such as a communal lounge, wellness suite and roof terrace for socialising, landscaped gardens, a hotel-style guest suite and an on-site bistro.

A suburb of Solihull lying 9 miles southeast of Birmingham city centre, Shirley is a quiet residential neighbourhood with excellent shopping opportunities. A short bus ride away is a small shopping centre that has all day-to-day needs covered, and within half a mile there's a large supermarket and retail park, with Shirley's main high street area only a mile away.