There is a new trend in town: Multigenerational living. We are moving from the “me” generation to the “us” generation. One of the main reasons for the growing trend in multigenerational living is changing economic conditions. With the rising cost of living, many families find it difficult to afford their own homes, especially in desirable areas with high housing costs. By pooling their resources and living under one roof, multiple generations can save money on housing expenses and share other expenses such as utilities, food, and transportation.
Another reason for the popularity of multigenerational living is the desire for more family support and closeness. In many cultures, family is highly valued. The role of extended family is often emphasized. By living together, family members can provide emotional support to each other, as well as share in the joys and challenges of everyday life. This type of living can also be beneficial for children. Children who grow up in multigenerational households may have more opportunities for learning and growth, as they can interact with people of different ages and backgrounds. They may also have a greater sense of security and stability as they have more people to rely on for care and support.
“The number of Americans who live in multigenerational family households is about four times larger than in the 1970s, according to a March Pew Research Center report. As of March 2021, there were 59.7 million U.S. residents who lived with multiple generations under one roof.” Mark Gordon, The Observer
How do you select a home that will set your family up for success?
- A place to age safely. Dedicate one floor or wing for older adults — without stairs. Wide hallways and doorways are a plus.
- Define personal spaces with separate suites. Ideally, each suite should have separate entrances and ensuite bathrooms in a multigenerational home. A living room and kitchenette per suite create even more privacy.
- Incorporate flexible spaces: Flex or bonus rooms can be used as workout rooms or office spaces — separate from the common areas of the rest of the house, giving all residents ample room to have the space they need.
Many baby boomers and their parents anticipate assisted living or moving in with their children. This is a challenge for everyone. The good news is many savvy builders across the country are now embracing this new trend and are building homes with Multigenerational suites, flex spaces with private entrances, kitchenettes, and more, while still allowing access to the main house.
What if you love the home you are in? Reconfiguring your current home to accommodate this growing need is becoming more common. It can be a wise investment for families looking to save money and stay close.
Is multigenerational living the right move for your family?